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Comment author: Risto_Saarelma 12 October 2014 05:27:52AM *  4 points [-]

It's just math and parsing theory jokes riffing on an intentional misinterpretation of "a direct opposite of interesting", nothing that relates to the substance of the discussion as far as I can see.

(Well, it might be meta-level commentary on the substance. Anything might be a meta-level commentary. Constant vigilance.)

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 14 October 2014 01:10:50AM 0 points [-]

Thanks.

Comment author: Kawoomba 30 September 2014 06:42:06AM -3 points [-]

This post comes across as a direct opposite of your usual interesting, clear and insightful entries.

Multiply by -1? While reversed stupidity may not be intelligence, the opposite (in the sense of antithetical) sure is.

Now, all that is left is to figure out how to multiply an English sentence by -1. The neutral element would be the empty string, I suppose. Or some tangentially related but really inconsequential comment, like this one. That's nice, introducing some reflectivity.

Hmmm ... maybe reverse the polarity? This is harder than I thought. If we're defining this operation cleanly, we can always reward ourselves with a Kleene star. Seems arbitrary enough, no?

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 11 October 2014 10:24:36PM 0 points [-]

Can you use different words to describe what you are trying to say here? I don't understand but would like to.

Comment author: shminux 29 September 2014 11:06:29PM 3 points [-]

This post comes across as a direct opposite of your usual interesting, clear and insightful entries. It feels to me as if it was written by a novice to this site who is also bad at writing. Normally I'd simply downvote and move on, but you are neither new, nor a poor writer, so I am hoping that somewhere inside this post there is a worthwhile point. However, it failed to materialize in the comments I checked, hence my suggestion to rewrite (and maybe run by someone in your local LW crowd, before posting again -- I hear you know a lot of high-profile regulars who would be happy to oblige).

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 11 October 2014 10:23:50PM 0 points [-]

I am glad that I didn't realize that people could still reply to the post after I deleted it, since its nice receiving the last responses quite a bit later after I am no longer triggered by the initial general response.

I think the reason that my writing is coming off to you this way is that I have moved into a very different mental space than the Less Wrong community, and forgot the degree to which I needed to tune my thinking/writing for Less Wrongers to understand/appreciate my messages.

Less Wrongers are used to talking to people who think and speak in the way that people think and speak on this site. I don't read Less Wrong personally, only post to it. I've read some of the sequences, and I have spent years speaking in person on a regular basis with many high profile Less Wrongers, but the way in which people read and write on the blog is kind of like a foreign language to me, which I am currently rusty at.

Likewise with the cultural expectations about what I should be delivering and how.

I'm considering attempting a rewrite, but not sure if I want to or not. What would my incentive be to do so? So far I have received contempt and criticism for my attempt to communicate what I consider to be some very useful principles. Why should I keep trying?

In order to get it right, I need to wrap my head around the Less Wrong way of thinking again, and figure out how to translate everything I'm saying into something that people on this site will understand. That is quite a lot of work. I really hate this culture of tearing things apart when you don't understand rather than asking questions and being curious about what signal the author is attempting to send. I'm genuinely not sure if I want to engage it again or not.

Comment author: AndHisHorse 30 September 2014 02:12:23PM 0 points [-]

Actually, the point of my response was to illustrate that to say "all of these things are faith" is an incorrectly simplifying assumption. I did deliberately choose an absurd example of faith, not to attribute it to you, but to show the difference between one thing which you did explicitly claim is faith - trust in people - and another thing which would have to be an example of blind faith - belief in leprechauns. If you acknowledge that there is a real difference between the two, it would seem that I have misinterpreted your thesis.

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 11 October 2014 10:09:12PM 0 points [-]

Please let me know if what I just wrote makes sense to you. If it does, perhaps this comment might be good as a start for making a second attempt at communication - I think I articulated what I was trying to say better here than before.

Comment author: AndHisHorse 30 September 2014 02:12:23PM 0 points [-]

Actually, the point of my response was to illustrate that to say "all of these things are faith" is an incorrectly simplifying assumption. I did deliberately choose an absurd example of faith, not to attribute it to you, but to show the difference between one thing which you did explicitly claim is faith - trust in people - and another thing which would have to be an example of blind faith - belief in leprechauns. If you acknowledge that there is a real difference between the two, it would seem that I have misinterpreted your thesis.

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 11 October 2014 10:07:48PM 1 point [-]

Yes. I do see a huge difference between appropriate faith and blind faith.

It is my opinion that everyone functions based on faith far more than we acknowledge. That much of what we believe we have evidence for is actually based on quite flimsy chains of reasoning, that have lower and lower probability of being true with each subsequent link from the evidence we are supposedly basing the chains on.

It is also my opinion that this is pretty much unavoidable in order to function in the world, and that you pretty much have to function on a faith based system. Even a scientist who understands things at a fundamental level in one area is still probably accepting the world as she knows it based on faith in the majority of cases in her life.

So, it is my opinion that a key first step in being rational is to acknowledge that you have a faith based system, and then to optimize that system based on the acknowledged reality of what it actually is.

Comment author: RichardKennaway 30 September 2014 02:24:49PM 0 points [-]

Sorry, I didn't mean to be so abrasive. It's just that communication is, practically by definition, communication with people who are not oneself. It seemed to me that you were surprised to come up against this.

As for the original post itself, it seems to me, as it has to some others who have commented, that it talks around something that sounds like it might be interesting, but never says the thing itself.

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 11 October 2014 09:58:27PM 1 point [-]

Hi Richard,

I just saw this, sorry about the delay in response.

Yes, I was surprised by the response, because my assumptions about other people's assumptions were wrong in this case.

I do of course understand that no one else has the same mental model I do - my mistake was in that I did not model correctly quite how different my mental models are from the majority of Less Wrong readers on this topic.

Given the hostility of the responses I received in response to my attempt to share something I find valuable, I'm really not inclined to keep going.

Yes, I did make a mistake, but I do not feel an obligation to keep paying and paying for it to ungrateful people... why would I want to teach them anything?

It is work to better articulate - to figure out what the difference is between our models and be able to name it in a way that the group can understand.

I do not feel that I have adequate reason at this point in time to make that investment of my time and energy, when the only payment is contempt and ridicule.

Comment author: Lumifer 29 September 2014 04:14:59PM *  2 points [-]

Platitudes are platitudes not because people don't get them -- they are platitudes because everybody has already heard them many times and repeating them once more is not helping.

I am still not sure what are you trying to get to. Is it, basically, better living through self-hacking? Or through being hacked by you?

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 29 September 2014 06:10:43PM 0 points [-]

A certain type of self hacking. I added a summary, does it help?

Comment author: Lumifer 29 September 2014 05:33:56PM 1 point [-]

You can have a look at the testimonials page on my site

You don't think there might be a wee bit of a selection bias there..? :-)

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 29 September 2014 06:08:46PM 0 points [-]

Of course. For the statistics I used all clients and did not cherry pick, but you only have my word for that. And of course there is selection bias for who gives me a testimonial.

That said, those testimonials and statistics are the best that I have to make my point.

If you want me to provide you a perfect, infallible argument to persuade you to change your life, you are going to be waiting a very long time, because I am neither interested nor possessing the time and energy to do it.

If you want evidence that has signal, then that is what I have given you. You can ignore it and/or pick it apart, and get nothing from it, as you seem to have chosen to do.

Someone else might get quite a lot of value from it, if they use the strategy of looking at signal rather than assuming that they are right until proven wrong.

Comment author: hairyfigment 28 September 2014 08:42:18PM 2 points [-]

I don't even know the question. The OP's comparison with religious faith serves no clear purpose; the whole post seems more like an advertisement than an immediately useful suggestion. Compare and contrast this post.

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 29 September 2014 05:47:24PM 0 points [-]

The summary has been added, thank you for the suggestion.

Comment author: Lumifer 29 September 2014 02:45:56AM 3 points [-]

Like gjm, I don't understand what the point of this post is. All is see is playing with words and making them stretch into uncomfortable positions -- something that doesn't seem all that useful.

Comment author: ShannonFriedman 29 September 2014 05:46:28PM 0 points [-]

I added the summary to the main post.

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