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Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 14 February 2017 01:48:27PM *  1 point [-]

I've been hired by a rich dwarf to fortify his castle, and I found that instead of using the world-endangering Mithril you get about 80% or the strength with an alloy that contains very small amount of Mithril and large amounts of other metals that does not require deep excavation (we patented the alloy as Mothril(TM). While the strength is a little less it's much cheaper and you can make it up in volume. If people need an even stronger metal I think they should be working on Mothril++

So I think the economic explanation for Mithril is somewhat weaker than the dwarfs' desire to keep digging deeper. They really need to be re-educated (I hope wizards are also working on that)

Comment author: Lumifer 13 February 2017 10:33:32PM *  7 points [-]

An interesting metaphor, given how the balrog basically went back to sleep after eating the local (and only the local) dwarves. And after some clumsy hobbitses managed to wake him up again, he was safely disposed of by a professional. In no case did the balrog threaten the entire existence of the Middle-Earth.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 14 February 2017 01:42:23PM 2 points [-]

That was a Shallow Balrog. Everyone knows a Balrogs strength and hunger increases as you dig deeper, and the dwarfs are starting to dig pretty deep to get the mithril out.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 14 February 2017 01:40:31PM *  1 point [-]

or even used it to hire a wizard to work on an admittedly long-shot, Balrog control spell

I have a higher probability of a group of very dedicated wizards succeeding, worth re-doing the above decision analysis with those assumptions

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 10 February 2017 05:38:14PM 0 points [-]

Former Stripe CTO (Greg Brockman) co-founded OpenAI and also shares much of the memeplex.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 01 January 2017 01:29:14PM 0 points [-]

and that many (most?) mental flinches are in some sense attempts to avoid bucket errors

maybe better as

and that many (most?) mental flinches are in some sense attempts to avoid imagined consequences of bad reasoning due to bucket errors

emphasizing "avoiding consequences" vs "avoiding bucket errors"

Comment author: alyssavance 03 December 2016 02:02:03AM *  27 points [-]

This is just a guess, but I think CFAR and the CFAR-sphere would be more effective if they focused more on hypothesis generation (or "imagination", although that term is very broad). Eg., a year or so ago, a friend of mine in the Thiel-sphere proposed starting a new country by hauling nuclear power plants to Antarctica, and then just putting heaters on the ground to melt all the ice. As it happens, I think this is a stupid idea (hot air rises, so the newly heated air would just blow away, pulling in more cold air from the surroundings). But it is an idea, and the same person came up with (and implemented) a profitable business plan six months or so later. I can imagine HPJEV coming up with that idea, or Elon Musk, or von Neumann, or Google X; I don't think most people in the CFAR-sphere would, it's just not the kind of thing I think they've focused on practicing.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 03 December 2016 02:59:25AM 2 points [-]

For the sake of counter factual historical accuracy, if anyone came up with it, it would be Leo Szilard.

Comment author: MixedNuts 07 August 2016 06:15:37AM 2 points [-]

Well yes, I am very concerned, because you're talking about convincing people that it won't collapse ecosystems, and not about figuring out whether it'll actually collapse ecosystems in the real world that doesn't care how persuasive you sound.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 07 August 2016 04:01:44PM 0 points [-]

I agree figuring out whether this might collapse ecosystems is important, (and what this collapse would entail, it would probably go beyond mosquitos and lead to some species rebalancing, but pretty darn sure not "destroy everything" either)

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 06 August 2016 08:48:14PM 2 points [-]

This is probably a good idea. My take is that most of resistance I'm culturally aware of would come from people concerned about an irreversible change to the ecosystem, whether or not this concern is warranted. Potentially worth investigating/getting some experts on your side/proposing a contained preservation of a mosquito population (the way we preserve rare diseases)

Comment author: Manfred 18 January 2016 03:41:14AM 3 points [-]

Assuming you have some exposure to linear algebra, calculus, and a little programming, I recommend Andrew Ng's machine learning course on youtube. AI: A Modern Approach is still a good textbook, but I think machine learning specifically is where interesting stuff is happening right now.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 20 January 2016 06:08:59PM 0 points [-]

There is also an argument for doing stuff that's less in vogue right now.

Comment author: IlyaShpitser 19 January 2016 05:12:23PM 0 points [-]

I recommend against starting with deep learning.

Comment author: Dr_Manhattan 20 January 2016 06:07:49PM 1 point [-]

reason? (I intuitively agree with you, just curious)

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