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Comment author: [deleted] 08 February 2015 09:20:59AM 1 point [-]

If you look at my profile you'd notice I have enough karma to look like a bible salesman. It seems like for whatever reason my comments are not appreciated if not depreciated. The annoying thing is that I'm repeatedly judged (downvoted) but am not given any explanation. Whatever's supposedly wrong with my comments isn't even being explained and it keeps happening enopugh for me to realize I'm not getting anything positive from commenting.

In response to comment by [deleted] on Have you changed your mind recently?
Comment author: Metus 08 February 2015 04:30:36PM 0 points [-]

Skimming your comment history it seems like the majority of your downvotes comes from expressing views inconsistent with the progressivist narrative on gender. LW now is overloaded with that.

Comment author: [deleted] 07 February 2015 04:23:01PM *  4 points [-]

Yeah, I decided to leave LW. I'll post from time to time if I find something interesting (I logged in just to comment here) I'll come back with an update in about half a year and we'll see how much of a distance there will be between me and the downvoters. Haters gonna hate!

But on topic I don't particularly care if someone attacks my beliefs. I don't strongly identify with them anyway. You eventually just realize that you're better off working on yourself than trying to influence others. Your only option (at least the only one that isn't completely useless) is to basically be competent yourself and have other people look up to you and maybe then you'll influence them. Sad, happy, or whatever, that's the truth. Also remember to encourage competency, VERY IMPORTANT.

On topic #2: I had three things here but the bottom one summarised it pretty well: I decided I'm going to be the person I want to be. I'm dropping behind all fears. All anxiety. All whatever. There's work that needs to be done and it's definitely going to be fun. I have a smile on my face as I type this.

And, hell, I'm out of things to say. Good luck to everyone who's going to better himself and fuck what everyone else thinks. At least as long as you know what you're doing and.. sanity waterline and the such.

In response to comment by [deleted] on Have you changed your mind recently?
Comment author: Metus 07 February 2015 08:21:29PM 2 points [-]

Yeah, I decided to leave LW.


Comment author: pianoforte611 02 February 2015 07:43:41PM 5 points [-]

Why do we not allow people to sell organs? If it is a medical worry or a problem with people getting ripped off, a national regulatory body (there is already an organization that regulates organ donation), should solve those problems.

Comment author: Metus 03 February 2015 08:12:58PM *  2 points [-]

There exists a mild market in organs. I can donate a kidney in exchange for a loved one getting a kidney. I also can donate my body to science, in exchange the institution - at least in Germany - pays for some kind of burial.

Immediate edit: Actually, since there exists a black market in organs we could make some estimates about prices and conditions on a legalised market in organs.

Comment author: solipsist 02 February 2015 03:03:35PM *  10 points [-]

A lot of math and physics definitions feel like they have weird dross. Examples:

  • The Gamma function has this -1 I don't understand
  • The Riemann Zeta function ζ(s) negates s for reasons beyond me
  • cosine seems more primitive than sine
  • The gravitational constant looks like off by a factor of 4π
  • π seems like half the size it should be

After years of confusion, I was finally vindicated about π. That π is not 6.2831853071... is mostly a historical accident. Am I "right" about these other definitions being "wrong"? What are other mathematical entities are defined in ugly ways for historical reasons?

Comment author: Metus 02 February 2015 03:40:49PM 1 point [-]

π seems like half the size it should be

That one you found out already, it would make it much more consistent with how similar constants are used.

The gravitational constant looks like off by a factor of 4π

Not sure what you mean. Do you mean when comparing the equation for gravitational force to the electric force? Or do you mean when looking at the 'intuitive' way of writing the differential equation


In either case it seems that the choice of 4π is arbitrary on one equation or the other. For example choosing Gaussian units introduces a 4π in the electrical equation and makes it look more like the gravitational equation.

cosine seems more primitive than sine

They seem equally primitive by


The Riemann Zeta function ζ(s) negates s for reasons beyond me

It doesn't according to Wikipedia

The Gamma function has this -1 I don't understand

I haven't read up on that so I don't really know. Seems arbitrary to me too.

Comment author: James_Miller 02 February 2015 05:54:43AM 13 points [-]

I'm vaccinated and my kid is vaccinated, but how likely is it that vaccines cause harm? I completely accept that they do lots of good, but is the case for common vaccinations (1) that the benefits greatly outweigh the costs or (2) that the benefits are high and the costs statistically trivial?

Comment author: Metus 02 February 2015 03:17:03PM 4 points [-]
Comment author: Metus 19 January 2015 10:54:51AM 4 points [-]

European countries are way more lenient with workers who do not show up for health reasons. How does the data compare there, are workers more productive on average and sick less often?

Also, what is the unintended side effect of this? Do we open up an evolutionary niche for something even more horrible? Wouldn't it be better to require sick people to wear a face mask like it is usual in some Asian countries?

Comment author: Metus 17 January 2015 05:05:19PM 2 points [-]

[Seperate post, because it is a seperate point]

I wonder how a "rational" funding system would look like if an economist designed it. The expression "where researchers see the most potential for a breakthrough" under the constraint of competition over limited resources just screams "market mechanism" to me.

Comment author: Metus 17 January 2015 04:53:33PM *  4 points [-]

It seems to me that research funding is surprisingly well calibrated with a bias for infectous diseases as opposed to what I as an amateur would call "structural failure" collecting ischemic heart disease, stroke, injury and so on.

Looking at the "overfunded" category the worst offenders are HIV and cancer. I suppose cancer research is overfunded because people donate to causes their loved ones suffered and cancer tends to kill old people with a lot of money. But I have no good explanation for the overfunding of HIV which is a completely preventable disease on the personal level by using a condom and refraining from using IV drugs. BTW, the most successful HIV reduction programs give out free needles and condoms, reducing the need for medical treatment and of course human suffering in the first place.

Looking at the "underfunded" category we have injury, ischemic heart disease, COPD, depression, stroke. Injury is something that disproportionally affects poorer people, so I use the reverse reasoning to cancer. I have no good explanation for the underfunding of the other diseases here, except for maybe depression which has a bit of a stigma to it. At best I'd guess that heart attack and stroke do not have the spectacular, drawn out suffering like cancer and HIV treatment have.

Comment author: Metus 16 January 2015 09:56:52PM *  6 points [-]

Rinderpest was a disease in cattle we have eradicated. We are also making progress on on some more. Let's hope that this does not have any unintended horrible consequences like opening the ecosystem of human parasites to something potentially more deadly.

Comment author: Tenoke 13 January 2015 08:57:13PM 17 points [-]

I used to believe that bitcoin is under-priced before, but there are so many agents involved in it now (including Wall Street), that I can't really convince myself that I know better than them - the market is too efficient for me.

Additionally, I'd be especially wary about buying based on arguments regarding the future price based on such obvious metrics, that many agents pay attention to.

Comment author: Metus 13 January 2015 11:12:04PM 7 points [-]

It would be an interesting analysis to find out how many traditional players are involved and to derive from that confidence in the optimality of the bitcoin price.

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