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Jay_Ballou comments on ...Recursion, Magic - Less Wrong

13 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 25 November 2008 09:10AM

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Comment author: Jay_Ballou 14 February 2009 12:34:05AM 2 points [-]

All "insights" eventually bottom out in the same way that Eurisko bottomed out; the notion of ever-increasing gain by applying some rule or metarule is a fantasy. You make the same sort of mistake about "insight" as do people like Roger Penrose, who believes that humans can "see" things that no computer could, except that you think that a computer can too, whereas in reality neither humans nor computers have access to any such magical "insight" sauce.

The future has a reputation for accomplishing feats which the past thought impossible.

Yes, but our ability to predict which seemingly impossible feats will actually be accomplished is quite poor, so this fact is neither here nor there, but it is appealed to by crackpots everywhere as an ad hoc defense of their own claims.