Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

Comment author: Benito 17 September 2017 07:06:45PM 5 points [-]

FYI R:AZ is shorter than The Sequences by a factor of 2, which I think is a substantial improvement. Not that it couldn't be shorter still ;-)

Comment author: ingres 17 September 2017 08:41:54PM 1 point [-]

Oh huh, TIL. Thanks!

Comment author: DragonGod 17 September 2017 01:37:12AM 1 point [-]

I expect that for most domains (possibly all), Lesswrong consensus is more likely to be right than wrong. I haven't yet seen reason to believe otherwise; (it seems you have?).

Comment author: ingres 17 September 2017 03:42:37PM *  1 point [-]

Just so we're clear here:

Profession (Results from 2016 LessWrong Survey)

Art: +0.800% 51 2.300%

Biology: +0.300% 49 2.200%

Business: -0.800% 72 3.200%

Computers (AI): +0.700% 79 3.500%

Computers (other academic, computer science): -0.100% 156 7.000%

Computers (practical): -1.200% 681 30.500%

Engineering: +0.600% 150 6.700%

Finance / Economics: +0.500% 116 5.200%

Law: -0.300% 50 2.200%

Mathematics: -1.500% 147 6.600%

Medicine: +0.100% 49 2.200%

Neuroscience: +0.100% 28 1.300%

Philosophy: 0.000% 54 2.400%

Physics: -0.200% 91 4.100%

Psychology: 0.000% 48 2.100%

Other: +2.199% 277 12.399%

Other "hard science": -0.500% 26 1.200%

Other "social science": -0.200% 48 2.100%

The LessWrong consensus is massively overweighted in one particular field of expertise (computing) with some marginal commentators who happen to do other things.

As for evidence to believe otherwise, how about all of recorded human history? When has there ever been a group whose consensus was more likely to be right than wrong in all domains of human endeavor? What a ludicrous hubris, the sheer arrogance on display in this comment cowed me, I briefly considered whether I'm hanging out in the right place by posting here.

Comment author: DragonGod 17 September 2017 09:32:00AM 2 points [-]

Pie in the sky: the Yudkowsky sequences edited, condensed, and put into an Aristotelian/Thomsian/Scholastic order. (Not that Aristotle or Thomas Aquinas ever did this but the tradition of the scholastics was always to get this pie in the sky.) It might be interesting to see what an experienced book editor would advise doing with this material.

Doesn't Rationality: From AI to Zombies achieve this already?

Comment author: ingres 17 September 2017 01:46:37PM 0 points [-]

Rat:A-Z is like...a slight improvement over EY's first draft of the sequences. I think when Craig says condensed he has much more substantial editing in mind.

Comment author: Habryka 16 September 2017 11:26:35PM 1 point [-]

A wiki feels too high of a barrier to entry to me, though maybe there are some cool new wiki softwares that are better than what I remember.

For now I feel like having an about page on LessWrong that has links to all the posts, and tries to summarize the state of discussion and information is the better choice, until we reach the stage where LW gets a lot more open-source engagement and is being owned more by a large community again.

Comment author: ingres 17 September 2017 12:32:21AM 3 points [-]

Seconding SaidAchmiz on pmwiki, it's what we use for our research project on effective online organizing and it works wonders. It's also how I plan to host and edit the 2017 survey results.

As far as the high barrier to entry goes, I'll repeat here my previous offer to set up a high quality instance of pmwiki and populate it with a reasonable set of initial content - for free. I believe this is sufficiently important that if the issue is you just don't have the capacity to get things started I'm fully willing to help on that front.

Comment author: SaidAchmiz 16 September 2017 04:01:04AM 3 points [-]

If you have a more-legible quality signal (in the James C. Scott sense of "legibility"), and a less-legible quality signal, you will inevitably end up using the more-legible quality signal more, and the less-legible one will be ignored—even if the less-legible one is tremendously more accurate and valuable.

Your suggestion is not implausible on its face, but the devil is in the details. No doubt you know this, as you say "this sketch has many problems of its own". But these details and problems conspire to make such a formalized version of the "expert's vote" either substantially decoupled from what it's supposed to represent, or not nearly as legible as the simple "people's vote". In the former case, what's the point? In the latter case, the result is that the "people's vote" will remain much more influential on visibility, ranking, inclusion in canon, contribution to a member's influence in various ways, and everything else you might care to use such formalized rating numbers for.

The question of reputation, and of whose opinion to trust and value, is a deep and fundamental one. I don't say it's impossible to algorithmize, but if possible, it is surely quite difficult. And simple karma (based on unweighted votes) is, I think, a step in the wrong direction.

Comment author: ingres 16 September 2017 04:17:28AM 1 point [-]

As far as an algorithm for reputation goes, academia seems to have something that sort of scales in the form of citations and co-authors:

http://www.overcomingbias.com/2017/08/the-problem-with-prestige.html

It's certainly a difficult problem however.

Comment author: casebash 15 September 2017 09:54:04AM *  7 points [-]

Firstly, well done on all your hard work! I'm very excited to see how this will work out.

Secondly, I know that this might be best after the vote, but don't forget to take advantage of community support.

I'm sure that if you set up a Kickstarter or similar, that people would donate to it, now that you've proven your ability to deliver.

I also believe that, given how many programmers we have here, many people will want to make contributions to the codebase. My understanding was that this wasn't really happening before: a) Because the old code base was extremely difficult to get up and running/messy b) Because it wasn't clear who to talk to if you wanted to know if your changes were likely to be approved if you made them.

It looks like a) has been solved, if you also improve b), then I expect a bunch of people will want to contribute.

Comment author: ingres 15 September 2017 10:40:04PM 1 point [-]

I'm going to write a top level post at some point (hopefully soon) but in the meantime I'd like to suggest the content in the original post and comments be combined into a wiki. There's a lot of information here about LW 2.0 which I wasn't previously aware of and significantly boosted my confidence in the project.

Comment author: highpriestessofelua 15 September 2017 07:10:07AM 1 point [-]

I'm obviously very late to the party, but FWIW I have a different take of what LessWrong 2.0 should look like: https://highpriestessofelua.tumblr.com/post/165334646282/apparently-some-people-are-trying-to-revive

Comment author: ingres 15 September 2017 10:21:40PM *  1 point [-]

Making friends is not the mission of LW 2.0. However, right now the 2017 survey is investigating what demand there is for a site which does have that as its mission.

As for the largest diaspora community, this is a question which was investigated in the 2016 survey: http://lesswrong.com/lw/nor/2016_lesswrong_diaspora_survey_analysis_part_two/

In general summary:

The largest diaspora community is SSC.

LessWrong was actually still bigger than Tumblr by a smidgen.

Comment author: Benito 15 September 2017 04:56:07AM 16 points [-]

We've actually talked a bit with Eliezer about importing his past and future facebook and tumblr essays to LW 2.0, and I think this is a plausible thing we'll do after launch. I think it will be good to have his essays be more linkable and searchable (and the people I've said this to tend to excitedly agree with me on this point).

(I'm Ben Pace, the other guy working full time on LW 2.0)

Comment author: ingres 15 September 2017 09:53:44PM *  11 points [-]

Please do this. This alone would be enough to get me to use and link LW 2.0, at least to read stuff on it.

UPDATE (Fri Sep 15 14:56:28 PDT 2017): I'll put my money where my mouth is. If the LW 2.0 team uploads at least 15 pieces of content authored by EY of a length at least one paragraph each from Facebook, I'll donate 20 dollars to the project.

Preferably in a way where I can individually link them, but just dumping them on a public web page would also be acceptable in strict terms of this pledge.

Comment author: Raemon 15 September 2017 06:27:16PM 8 points [-]

We have link post functionality but I think we're trying to shift away from it, and instead more directly solve the problem of people-posting-to-other-blogs (both by making it a better experience to post things here on your personal section, and to make it possible to post things to your blog that are auto-imported into LW)

Comment author: ingres 15 September 2017 09:49:20PM 0 points [-]

and to make it possible to post things to your blog that are auto-imported into LW

What kind of technical implementation are you looking at for this?

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 15 September 2017 04:19:49PM *  9 points [-]

Thank you for developing this.

I'm reminded of an annoying feature of LW 1.0. The search function was pretty awful. The results weren't even in reverse chronological order.

I'm not sure how important better search is, but considering your very reasonable emphasis on continuity of discussion, it might matter a lot.

Requiring tags while offering a list of standard tags might also help.

Comment author: ingres 15 September 2017 09:33:51PM *  1 point [-]

Better search is paramount in my opinion. Part of how academic institutions maintain a shared discussion is through a norm of checking for previous work in a space before embarking on new adventures. Combined with strong indexing this norm means that things which could be like so many forgotten Facebook discussions get many chances to be seen and read by members of the academic community.

http://www.overcomingbias.com/2007/07/blogging-doubts.html

View more: Next