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

Comment author: jhuffman 06 January 2012 09:59:12PM 1 point [-]

I'm curious, are you still mining? Also, are you living in a dorm with fixed electricity cost?

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 07 January 2012 09:56:14PM 1 point [-]

mining was unprofitable for a long while until just recently with the price recovery. mining now is worth it for the free heating.

In response to comment by Yvain on 2011 Survey Results
Comment author: J_Taylor 04 December 2011 09:23:06PM 5 points [-]

Journals use "blacks"? I had no idea it was used in technical writing. In some of my social circles, it just happens to be considered, at best, grandma-talk.

Generally, within these circles, "black people" is used.

However, I have no real preference regarding this matter.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 06 December 2011 10:05:12AM 1 point [-]

as opposed to black fish.

In response to Better Disagreement
Comment author: GilPanama 23 October 2011 08:22:55AM *  38 points [-]

DH7 should be kept internal, at least at first. Being misinterpreted as trying to construct a straw man when you've been trying to do the opposite can derail a conversation. To actually believe that you've made a steel man, not a straw man, the person you're arguing with would have to admit that you've created a stronger argument for their own position than they could.

It's probably best to practice up to DH7 internally, and only up to DH6 vocally.

If we imagine arguments as soldiers, as they tend to be, the problem becomes even clearer:

(A and B are about to fight.)

A. Ah! My worthy opponent! I shall send my greatest soldier to crush you... GOLIATH! ATTACK!

B. His sword's a little wimpy. Let me give him a bazooka.

If I were A, I wouldn't trust that bazooka on B's word alone, I'd be annoyed at the slight against my blacksmiths, and, even if it turned out to be a totally legitimate bazooka, I would, at the very least, consider B a tactless grandstander.

(Though if the bazooka did work, I'd use it, obviously. I just wouldn't like using it.)

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 25 October 2011 03:46:29AM *  17 points [-]

You can be gentle about DH7 by attributing the improved argument to someone with high status. This is my typical strategy and seems to work well. It's a double whammy because you're implicitly associating them with someone of high status e.g. "it's funny you say that, it's very similar to an argument by <famous person>". I'm NOT saying that you actually have to know a bunch of famous arguments offhand, the better argument can be attributed fallaciously to anyone who has spoken on a topic and can have little to do with the person's original argument. Few notice and you have the out of being mistaken even if they do.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 23 October 2011 09:29:59PM 0 points [-]

Satisficing seems a great way to describe the behavior of maximizers with multiple-term utility functions and an ordinal ranking of preference satisfaction i.e. humans. This sounds like it should have some fairly serious implications.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 23 October 2011 09:20:31PM *  5 points [-]

I think I can summarize hedonomics right here: Most people spend too much time optimizing for the acquisition of more objects and not enough optimizing their use of objects they already have (where objects can be anything we want not just physical items).

ex: "If only I was better looking!"

economics: acquire more of the properties that make you attractive to other people

hedonomics: are you maximizing your looks given your current resources?

I think the distinction relies on a naive understanding of economics, but it is nonetheless a good heuristic in general to ask that sort of question.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 23 October 2011 02:08:38AM 5 points [-]

The things that increase testosterone serum levels are things you should be doing anyway.

  1. ensure you're getting good quality sleep (poor quality sleep responsible for up to a 40% drop)
  2. ensure that your diet includes enough fresh vegetables that you're getting RDAs of zinc, magnesium, and b-vitamins.
  3. engage in physical activity, especially those that engage the largest muscle groups.
  4. stop eating low fat foods. the majority of people eating low fat food make up for the lack of calories with more sugary foods. whole milk, eggs, full fat cottage cheese, nuts are all good for you.
  5. decrease stress in your life. cortisol is bad for test levels. meditation has been shown to significantly reduce cortisol levels. this is one of the things sleep plays into as well.
Comment author: [deleted] 21 October 2011 05:27:42PM *  2 points [-]

If someone is going to try that, they should report back (considering there are so many fearless nootropic experimenters here already, it seems possible at least one or two people will try it).

In response to comment by [deleted] on Social status & testosterone
Comment author: nazgulnarsil 23 October 2011 01:25:30AM 1 point [-]

I do not plan to supplement my natural levels but I do intend to use supllemental test to stay at my baseline as the level naturally drops off with aging.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 23 October 2011 01:14:41AM *  5 points [-]

I favor a diaspora cev. Why compromise between wildly divergent CEV's of subsets if you don't actually have to? In more concrete terms, I'm in favor of holodecking psychopaths.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 19 October 2011 07:54:56PM 3 points [-]

Using technical definitions and ignoring folk meanings is something I've been noticing more in myself and others lately. Until I started making the distinction when listening to others I never realized how painfully bad it must sound when I do it.

Comment author: JoshuaZ 18 October 2011 12:28:02PM *  1 point [-]

Can you expand on this? The poverty threshold in the US is designed to incorporate parameters for living standards regarding food and other essentials. How would you do things differently? It does have some problems certainly, like not taking into account differing costs of living in different locations, but as a rough measure for this purpose it seems fine.

Comment author: nazgulnarsil 19 October 2011 07:46:10PM 1 point [-]

After further investigation I retract the "much worse" comment. It is a little more precise than I previously thought.

View more: Next