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Comment author: Clarity 04 September 2015 09:35:43AM *  1 point [-]

How to perform surgery on yourself with Clarity

I do irrational things. The other day I bought a flight interstate, somewhat impulsively, to a conference I knew next to nothing about for complicated reasons. Instantregret, but the cancellation fee is about half the price of the ticket. I also got some art professionally designed for a few hundred dollars, that I didn't need or want. I've also lost thousands gambling and on the stock exchange. I'm stupid in many ways, but I'm also capable enough to be able to share insights from the other side of sanity with the real world, or so I'd like to think. There are some things which I do that aren't rational, for which the term irrational isn't very useful, in the same what that people can be 'not even wrong', perhaps. But enough self-indulgent psychopity and self-handicapping.

I'm finding it hard recently to concentrate on anything other than surgery - particular self surgery and how and why I ought to perform it. But, Im not a surgeon. And, for this to be rational I ought to have a terminal goal. I don't have one. In fact, at best I can rationalise that in case I get in a survival situation and have no one to help, I can do it myself. But, that's extremely unlikely. It's not even rationalisation since I haven't made the decision, it's merely optimism. Being crazy is hard, so looking on the bright side keeps me from feeling like killing myself. At least this new found interest is somewhat amusing and something that is somewhat learnable. Sometimes I get interested in areas for which I have no where near the pre-requisite knowledge to understand, often some technical something in economics or computer science. In those cases, I just end up learning things incorrectly. At least with surgery, it's somewhat of a practical skill and medical students are often taught things superficially (this leads to this, or this is connected to that) rather than say, (this is proven by that the rem, or demonstrated by this experiment). To celebrate my 100 karma (and it was a difficult journey!) I just thought I would document this experience and what I'm compelled to research to give the more rational among you some insight in what its like to be on the far other side of rationality, and aware of it.

  1. See examples of self-surgery for inspiration. Examples

  2. people who do it are heroic. Don't be half assed

  3. desensitise yourself by snooping on actual surgeries. From experience in psychiatric wards, it shouldn't be very hard to sneak into surgical viewing theatres. Minimal social engineering required. Hospitals are shocking with security. Note: Don't actually do this. Remember, this is just to explain my thinking process which as I mentioned is off the beaten path of sensisbility)

  4. read this guide which is the only guide to self-surgery I can find. Though it suggests reading textbooks, the medical textbooks in the surgery section of my local university's library don't seem to be very useful at all in actually how to do surgery. Maybe one has to learn how to do it by watching.

Ok. At this point. Looks like I've somehow managed to overcome this little excursion from sensibility. I don't really care for self-surgery anymore. My testicles feel kinda sore for no apparent reason, but it feels good knowing that at least they're there and not in a medical waste bin instead.

In the spirit of radical honesty, I'm going to be posting this highly embarrassing comment then try not to think about it. Certainly won't be my most embarrassing post so far.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 05 September 2015 01:18:48PM 0 points [-]

Voted up for honesty.

Do you know anything about the difference between the times when your irrational impulses fade and the times when you act on them?

Comment author: Vaniver 04 September 2015 05:02:58PM 3 points [-]

So, he's specifically talking about the failures of previous longevity research. It seems to me that modern longevity research has portions that are considerably better (among other things, the reductionistic view appears to be the dominant view among the top researchers). Consider this section in particular:

I could wish Stambler made more of an effort to evaluate researchers on scientific grounds and give a better idea of where ideas have been vindicated or refuted by subsequent work.

That Stambler spent too little time on whether or not they actually got the science right / pushed in the right or wrong direction, and spent too much time focusing on their political persuasion, strikes me as highly relevant and interesting when it comes to scientific history (and the modern versions--namely, choosing who to fund or not, and what experiments to pursue or not).

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 04 September 2015 08:11:41PM 1 point [-]

Gwern also makes a more general claim that aging is too complex for any simple solution to be plausible.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 04 September 2015 11:39:01AM 3 points [-]

Gwern rubbishes longevity research.

I think he's taking about the dream of achieving indefinite numbers of healthy years.

However, there are some people who live into their 90s in pretty good health, and they're far from the majority. What's the likelihood of just making good health into one's 90s much more likely? I'm not talking about lifestyle improvement-- I'm talking about some technological fix.

Comment author: ArisKatsaris 01 September 2015 10:44:04PM 2 points [-]

Short Online Texts Thread

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 04 September 2015 03:36:32AM 2 points [-]

Kickstarter Economics-- details about how to estimate what you need for your project, how to manage perks, etc.

Comment author: Clarity 03 September 2015 09:06:42AM 0 points [-]

What are the 'best buys' in warm fuzzies?

I want to satisfice my urges for the least cost. Perhaps there's a kind of GiveWell for warm fuzzies out there.

I feel like 'purchasing status' is part of my warm fuzzies calculation, which complicates things.

Perhaps buying coffees for people in line around me?

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 04 September 2015 01:52:39AM 2 points [-]

Someone I know on Facebook just did a "say something nice about yourself" thread, and the result has been warm fuzzies all around.

Comment author: SquaredError 03 September 2015 08:48:20PM 1 point [-]

Is a major advantage of capitalism that it gives people who are naturally born sociopaths (but highly functioning such that they'll gain considerable influence over people) something do in a game that has at least some rules.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 04 September 2015 01:50:29AM 0 points [-]

Another advantage of capitalism is that it limits some of the local power of sociopaths who are heads of families and landowners and such. Money is less entangled in systems of obligation than a more personal set-up.

Comment author: WhyAsk 01 September 2015 04:59:50PM 1 point [-]

For me, avoiding biases means a cognitive load which means I have to be vigilant which means I can't relax. Perhaps when and if avoiding all/most of the foibles becomes second nature then it will be less of a load. I hope! :)

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 03 September 2015 10:02:21AM 0 points [-]

Would it be bad if you gave yourself time off for specific durations and/or activities?

Comment author: RichardKennaway 02 September 2015 03:41:06PM 5 points [-]

Could a moderator please nuke the swidon account and all of its posts?

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 02 September 2015 07:56:47PM 4 points [-]

The account is nuked. I need to find out how to remove posts.

Comment author: Lumifer 01 September 2015 05:16:36PM 2 points [-]

It's not a memory error, it's a hasty pattern-match error.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 02 September 2015 07:04:18PM 0 points [-]

I agree that it's a pattern-match error, but I think I'd classify that as a type of memory error.

Comment author: PhilGoetz 01 September 2015 04:18:17AM *  0 points [-]

Sorry for misspelling your name. I don't think memory errors are rationality errors.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 02 September 2015 07:03:23PM 0 points [-]

Memory errors have a bearing on rationality because you need accurate data to think about, and one of the primary causes of not remembering something is not having noticed it.

I can say my name twice, spell it, and show people a business card, and still have them get it wrong.

If you want more about how little people perceive, I recommend Sleight of Mind, a book about neurology and stage magic.

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