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Comment author: DanielLC 04 March 2015 09:43:17PM 6 points [-]

If you're unbiased then you should be underestimating your opposition about half the time.

Comment author: Desrtopa 27 March 2015 03:16:29PM 0 points [-]

Only if you have no margin within which you can be considered to be "correctly estimating."

Comment author: Salemicus 04 March 2015 01:48:22PM 2 points [-]

So would you get angry if a sabre-toothed tiger charged at you when you weren't expecting it? Do you get angry when a clear day gives way to rain? Do you get angry when a short story has a twist ending?

Expectations not being fulfilled doesn't necessarily cause anger. It may lead to sadness, or laughter, or fear, or disappointment, or any number of emotions. But it normally only leads to anger when the frustrated expectation is about social rules.

Comment author: Desrtopa 27 March 2015 02:54:11AM 0 points [-]

So would you get angry if a sabre-toothed tiger charged at you when you weren't expecting it? Do you get angry when a clear day gives way to rain? Do you get angry when a short story has a twist ending?

For me at least, the answers are no, yes, and no respectively. We can further refine the prior hypothesis by stipulating that the bad feelings arise from expectations not being fulfilled in an unpleasurable way, which would stop it from generating the third situation as an example. As for the first, perhaps one might experience anger if it were not being overridden by the more pressing reaction of fear. Or perhaps the hypothesis is off base, but it seems to generate some correct predictions of anger which the hypothesis that anger only arises from frustrated expectations about social rules fails to generate.

Comment author: Jost 25 February 2015 12:48:10PM 0 points [-]

And two weeks later, Quirrellmort is back at the same power level thanks to his next-gen Horcruxes and can make a new attempt to get the cloak, while Harry (who is most likely the most notable rival Quirrellmort had) stays dead. Doesn’t sound too strong to me.

(Unless you value “Quirrellmort doesn’t get the cloak” about as high as “Quirrellmort doesn’t reach world domination”, which I don’t.)

Comment author: Desrtopa 25 February 2015 03:38:11PM 2 points [-]

Actually, this might be one of the only plays Harry could have made which wouldn't have that result, because it seems the purpose of the trap is to lock away Voldemort's shade where it can't access other victims even by leaving his body. If Voldemort died while talking to Dumbledore, his shade would probably still be stuck inside the mirror world.

Although speculatively, this might not work because his shade has no reflection, but if that were the case then Voldemort would have an out even given the powers Dumbledore already knew him to have.

Comment author: SilentCal 25 February 2015 12:56:03AM 5 points [-]

A satisfying victory against an opponent just one move behind... Sure seems like Q's desire.

Only thing is this doesn't explain why Harry can see it. I'd say it has to do with the Riddles being the same person, but that would mean a mere confundus broke that link? Is it possible Voldemort was able to get the true Quirrell to confund himself? This seems improbable.

More likely what we saw was special programming of some sort, keyed to a trait common to the Riddles, and not just a normal desire show--though not necessarily what it appeared to be.

Comment author: Desrtopa 25 February 2015 03:33:16PM 0 points [-]

Well, keep in mind that Harry did just see Voldemort's reflection with Dumbledore's family before the Confoundment wore off. I don't recall the mirror doing that in the original canon, but it might just have been changed to make the scenes flow better rather than due to a specific mechanical change in how the mirror is supposed to work.

Comment author: fubarobfusco 25 February 2015 01:30:01AM 17 points [-]

Harry is the viewpoint character, and he thinks everyone is an idiot except him and Quirrell. He is in error. He has been consistently in error about this since ... forever. It's probably a character flaw that he shares with Voldemort, although Harry has a somewhat less murderous form of it.

For instance, Harry believes that the wizarding economy should be trivially exploitable via exchange with the Muggle precious-metals market. He believes this because even though he knows about half-bloods (i.e. witches and wizards who have a Muggle parent), he thinks that he is special and that nobody else ever would have thought of that.

Similarly, he believes that he is the first to come up with the idea of combining magic and Muggle science. He isn't that, either. He doesn't realize this even after he is given the (ostensible) diary of Roger Bacon.

And here's the thing ... he doesn't update about these errors. He's not particularly curious about them. "Hey, wait, there are Muggleborns; what's the chance any of them has ever had a relative in Muggle banking, finance, or economics?" "Oh, Roger Bacon was a wizard? I had better learn me some Latin so I can find out what the history of magic/science interaction has been."

Comment author: Desrtopa 25 February 2015 03:29:38PM 5 points [-]

For instance, Harry believes that the wizarding economy should be trivially exploitable via exchange with the Muggle precious-metals market. He believes this because even though he knows about half-bloods (i.e. witches and wizards who have a Muggle parent), he thinks that he is special and that nobody else ever would have thought of that.

Don't forget, his Occlumency teacher would mention after every session that he wished he would be allowed to remember the arbitrage trick.

Eliezer has talked about how one of his main reasons for writing the story as a work of fanfiction is that it gets the audience to accept a world that is massively exploitable by the main characters, which they would have thought was a case of the author making things too easy on them if the author had actually created it. Eliezer wrote a story set in the world of Harry Potter because Rowling didn't think very hard about the implications of her worldbuilding and created a massively exploitable setting.

Comment author: TitaniumDragon 24 February 2015 02:54:03AM -2 points [-]

It isn't a problem to judge things from different time periods; the Model-T might have been a decent car in 1910, but it is a lemon today.

New things are better than old things. I'd wager that the best EVERYTHING has been produced within the last few decades.

If you're judging "Which is better, X or Y," and X is much older than Y, it is very likely Y is better.

Comment author: Desrtopa 24 February 2015 03:46:30AM 1 point [-]

If we have incentive to continue to produce better things of that type, then probably, but sometimes the incentives we once had to do things well go away. There may not be any modern works of portrait painting which surpass premodern ones, for instance, because photography has removed a lot of the incentive to practice portrait painting.

Comment author: DanielLC 24 February 2015 02:18:00AM 3 points [-]

Did you enchant your glasses to be unbreakable? I imagine that would be standard in a magic school.

Comment author: Desrtopa 24 February 2015 03:41:39AM 0 points [-]

Well, Harry breaks his glasses in the canon books, because nobody ever does anything sensible, but as a more general rule, if you could simply transfigure people into objects and enchant those objects to be unbreakable, and thereby prevent damage to their body structure, human transfiguration would already be possible within ordinary means.

Comment author: lerjj 23 February 2015 08:50:25PM *  1 point [-]

I don't really have much to say after reading that. My thought process is pretty much summed up like this: "But Dumbledore can't beat Voldemort!" "Maybe he can. In canon he can (kinda), and even in the last few chapters QQ has given him some grudging respect," "Seriously? Voldemort was winning the Wizarding War, whilst holding back!" "Dumbledore might have been as well. Anyway, we've only got Voldemort's word on this. Also, check to see what parts of ch 108 were in Parseltongue. Maybe there's a better reason for why Voldemort didn't win in three days."

So, I guess I'm going to go check this now. Otherwise, bye-bye Albus. EDIT: there is no Parseltongue used in that particular dialogue. Quirrell claims that he didn't want to go back to Solitaire, but it is possible that he just ran up against Dumbledore in earnest.

Comment author: Desrtopa 24 February 2015 02:08:31AM 3 points [-]

It might have been possible for Quirrellmort to win the war in a few days, but I think the implication is supposed to be that he could do so by superior inventiveness and planning ability, rather than by superior dueling power. Indeed, going by his demonstrated methods, he might have been able to defeat Dumbledore in the war in spite of dramatically less dueling power.

Minerva has apparently survived skirmishes with Voldemort where Moody or Dumbledore were at her side on different occasions, and if Voldemort could have overcome his opponents in those encounters with no risk to himself, I think he'd have had a hard time rationalizing passing up the chance.

Comment author: solipsist 23 February 2015 09:01:39PM 19 points [-]

Harry had applied the Charm he'd learned for battles that made his eyeglasses stick to his face, regardless of how his head moved.

(Chapter 104)

The first thing Harry had to do was strip off all his clothes, and his shoes, and everything else he was wearing except his glasses; without his wand, Harry couldn't unstick his glasses from his own forehead, and neither could Professor Quirrell because of the magical resonance.

(Chapter 109)

Just pointing out: Hermione's body is probably Harry's glasses.

Comment author: Desrtopa 24 February 2015 01:46:56AM 0 points [-]

I forget, do we have any word on whether damaging an object someone has been transfigured into would affect its ability to retain their information? Glasses have a rather limited operational lifespan- I broke another pair just recently.

Comment author: DanArmak 21 February 2015 12:01:44AM *  6 points [-]

Is Quirrel aware of all the people whom he can possess via his True Horcruxes? Can he possess any one of them at will, without the original body dying?

This may explain the fact that he occasionally leaves his host body. We thought it was to inhabit his other horcruxes, particularly the Voyager one, but it may be to possess other people.

ETA: apparently the answer is yes:

Professor Quirrell smiled slightly. "I had many years earlier considered making [the Resurrection Stone] a horcrux, but decided against it at the time, since I realized that the ring had magic of unknown nature... ah, such ironies does life play upon us. But I digress. You, boy, you brought that about, you freed my spirit to fly where it pleases and seduce the most opportune victim, by being too casual with your secrets."

Comment author: Desrtopa 23 February 2015 02:36:09AM 3 points [-]

He's made it pretty clear that he can abandon his current body without needing to wait for it to die, but it's not clear whether he's able to temporarily leave and return. It might be that leaving the body would mean simply letting it die. Whether he can or not, that's probably not what he's doing whenever he's in "off" mode, because he's been doing that since before Harry revealed to him the identity of the Resurrection Stone.

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