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roomanitarian comments on Building Weirdtopia - Less Wrong

28 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 12 January 2009 08:35PM

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Comment author: roomanitarian 06 May 2011 05:02:10PM 16 points [-]

Hi All -

This is my first time posting a comment here @ Less Wrong.

I really liked both this post and Eliezer's story 'Three Worlds Collide' - so much so that I've written my own weirdtopian story, 'Round Robin'.

You can read it at the following link, if you'd like:

http://www.wordcereal.com/serial/?story=18

p.s. I apologize that this comment is kinda spammy - I'm posting it because I actually think you might be interested, not to drive traffic (but you'd just have to take my word on that :)

Comment author: Alicorn 06 May 2011 05:18:37PM 1 point [-]

Your story was good, but what really moved me to comment was the charming innocuousness of the title.

Comment author: roomanitarian 07 May 2011 04:52:26AM 1 point [-]

Thanks :)

Comment author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 07 May 2011 05:15:00AM 3 points [-]

Well-written!

Comment author: roomanitarian 09 May 2011 06:44:46PM 1 point [-]

Thank you so much!

Comment author: MinibearRex 07 May 2011 05:29:52AM 2 points [-]

I'm impressed by your writing. Post more, and welcome to Less Wrong!

Comment author: roomanitarian 09 May 2011 06:46:54PM 2 points [-]

Many thanks!

Sidenote: There's a new short story @ Word Cereal every week

(This week's is running a little behind, but we won't mention that :)

Comment author: cousin_it 07 May 2011 06:24:18PM *  11 points [-]

Your story doesn't immediately come across as a horrible dystopia only because you chose not to depict the emotions men would feel when leaving their kids behind, or to describe the truly equitable arrangement where women would be forced to leave their kids behind 50% of the time.

Comment author: roomanitarian 09 May 2011 06:59:49PM 0 points [-]

I hear you - and I don't disagree.

However, I ask that you imagine it from the perspective of a small village.

It's fairly well known that, in some villages, everyone is responsible for raising the children, not just the parents who conceived them. Over time, this process might evolve and grow, as populations evolve and grow, into the modern day version I've depicted.

In this latest version of the system, you're still allowed to keep in touch with the children you've conceived (and the wives you've had); it's just that someone else from your village is raising them right now.

And this seems weird (which is the point), but not when you consider that this system didn't come about overnight, but grew from something that made a lot more sense when the population was smaller.

Does that make any sense?

Comment author: Barry_Cotter 09 May 2011 08:13:56PM 2 points [-]

It's fairly well known that, in some villages, everyone is responsible for raising the children, not just the parents who conceived them. Over time, this process might evolve and grow, as populations evolve and grow, into the modern day version I've depicted.

I think this is stretching the reality of the situation a fair bit. In societies with very strong and consistent social norms, in communities where everybody more or less knows everybody (less than the Dunbar number), anybody can discipline children who are misbehaving. The children still have a mother and a home, and they know who that is and where it is. This will be much weaker in societies that aren't so much about the nuclear family.

I can't see any plausible mechanism to get a society with apartments and suburbs doing this though. (Meaning such a society would not develop such living arrangements, and such living arrangements would rapidly destroy such a social arrangement)

It's well written. You may have inspired me to write my own weirdtopia.

Comment author: Normal_Anomaly 07 May 2011 07:34:31PM 8 points [-]

It's a well-written story, and you packed a lot of characterization into not much text. But you show some gender bias that you may or may not be aware of. For instance, in weirdtopia men move around while women stay with the house and kids, and you say that in utopia, "Men provide stable home-lives for their wives and children." Do you believe that it's better for men to work for a living and women to stay at home and raise children, or am I reading too much into literary license?

Comment author: roomanitarian 09 May 2011 07:11:34PM 3 points [-]

I'm pleased to hear that you liked my characters. I'm new to writing and characterization is something I'm focused on improving.

You're right, and I'm willing to own a certain amount of gender-bias. While I have no problem at all with woman having equal rights, I do on some level tend to see the world tinted with a "men hunt/gather and women nest" perspective.

I hadn't noticed that come through in the story, though, until you pointed it out. Honestly, I think length played a large part in it.

As you noted, I don't have a great deal of room to work with, as the point of Word Cereal is that it's short fiction - something you could consume as regularly as, say, a webcomic.

Streamlining the system to move only men made it much easier to set the stage, though that's a decision I'd made subconsciously when I wrote it, that I'm only seeing (and justifying) now.

Anyway, thanks for the kind words and insight :)

Comment author: FiftyTwo 15 January 2013 06:35:18PM 1 point [-]

Link seems to now be broken, is it hosted anywhere else?

Comment author: CAE_Jones 01 February 2013 05:36:01AM 1 point [-]

Just remove everything after the .com; the archives linked from the home page still has it.

Comment author: Vladimir_Nesov 01 February 2013 01:46:15PM *  1 point [-]

(In cases like this, you should post a link, not (just) a description of how to find the link.)

Comment author: CAE_Jones 01 February 2013 04:26:28PM 1 point [-]
Comment author: Vladimir_Nesov 01 February 2013 01:45:46PM 1 point [-]