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Comment author: DanielLC 16 October 2014 01:37:10AM -1 points [-]

Part of it is tax refunds.

The effectiveness of different charities varies by orders of magnitude. I don't think tax refunds will make a notable difference.

Part of it is that there are problems in our own country as well that need solving, not just in sub-Saharan Africa.

Relvant xkcd comic. There will always be problems in your country. If you haven't gotten to the point where you'll start helping sub-Saharan Africa yet, when will you?

Comment author: jsteinhardt 16 October 2014 03:26:44AM 2 points [-]

Relevant xkcd comic response: http://xkcd.com/871/

Comment author: casebash 13 October 2014 01:35:04PM 4 points [-]

Is there convincing evidence either way on Speed Reading? Some people swear by it, others claim that it doesn't actually provide an improvement over skimming.

Comment author: jsteinhardt 13 October 2014 05:35:41PM 5 points [-]

This is only an anecdote, but I've always been an extremely slow reader, but worked hard to fully comprehend everything on the first read-through (at least for subjects that weren't extremely subtle and required lots of time to chew over). An example of this is that when I took AP U.S. History, I could just read the textbook once and ace the tests. This isn't just about having a photographic memory (which I don't have), this is also about synthesizing facts into patterns and ideas as I read. I find this very helpful and do the same thing while following whiteboard talks (except I'm apparently a much faster verbal learner, or at least I don't have trouble following talks in real time at all).

I'm not sure what direction this anecdote points in, but at the very least I'd personally be afraid to do speed-reading because it would mess up a pretty good system I already have in place.

Comment author: army1987 17 September 2014 04:32:58PM 4 points [-]

What about “smart people”? IQ > 100? IQ > 115? IQ > 130? IQ > 145?

Comment author: jsteinhardt 17 September 2014 06:24:11PM *  3 points [-]

Let's say IQ 145 or higher?

ETA: Although I would push things like conscientiousness into the picture as well if I were trying to be more precise; but for the sake of not writing an essay I'm happy to stick with an IQ cutoff.

Comment author: ChristianKl 15 September 2014 11:30:20AM *  6 points [-]

[Please read the OP before voting. Special voting rules apply.]

The study and analysis of human movement is very underfunded. There a lot of researches into getting information about static information such as DNA or X-ray but very little about getting dynamic information about how humans move.

Comment author: jsteinhardt 16 September 2014 08:25:14AM 1 point [-]

This is very intriguing. Can you give examples of what gains we would get from studying this?

Comment author: gjm 15 September 2014 08:00:39PM 6 points [-]

Clarify "many"?

Comment author: jsteinhardt 16 September 2014 01:59:21AM 2 points [-]

~30% maybe?

Comment author: bramflakes 15 September 2014 08:05:18PM *  6 points [-]

Highest value for the person, for society, or both?

Also, by "high value" do you mean purely monetary or do you mean other benefits?

Comment author: jsteinhardt 16 September 2014 01:57:20AM 3 points [-]

Society. For the second question, not quite sure what it would mean to provide monetary value to society, since money is how people trade for things within society rather than some extrinsic good.

Comment author: shminux 15 September 2014 03:44:01PM 47 points [-]

There is no territory, it's maps all the way down.

Comment author: jsteinhardt 16 September 2014 01:55:45AM 3 points [-]

I think this post should win the thread for blowing the most minds. (I'll upvote even though I think your position is tenable, since I only assign it 20% probability or so.)

Comment author: jsteinhardt 15 September 2014 05:40:41PM *  8 points [-]


Is there some way to encourage coherence in people's stated views? For some of the posts in this thread I can't tell whether I agree or disagree because I can't understand what the view is. I feel an urge to downvote such posts, although this could easily be a bad idea, since extreme contrarian views will probably seem less coherent. On the other hand, if I can't even understand what is being claimed in the first place then it's hard for me to get much benefit out of it.

Comment author: jsteinhardt 15 September 2014 05:37:34PM 23 points [-]

[Please read the OP before voting. Special voting rules apply.]

For many smart people, academia is one of the highest-value careers they could pursue.

Comment author: jsteinhardt 15 September 2014 05:36:36PM 45 points [-]

[Please read the OP before voting. Special voting rules apply.]

The replication initiative (the push to replicate the majority of scientific studies) is reasonably likely to do more harm than good. Most of the points raised by Jason Mitchell in The Emptiness of Failed Replications are correct.

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