curi blog discussion http://curi.us/comments/recent Explanations for the curious en-us curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNtpWSRF6o8]]>
Wed, 23 Sep 2020 03:49:55 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18109 http://curi.us/comments/show/18109
Gamer The CCP Coronavirus
My opinion on all this is that I don't think businesses have any obligation not to exploit loopholes in government financial programs, whether those are forgivable loans or tax breaks.

I think the government is to blame for allowing those loopholes in the first place. Upper Echelon Gamers says the government had to act quickly with the PPP loan program and made some mistakes. That may be, but it seems to me that the government more or less has lots of financial loopholes available at any given time to entities that know how to take advantage of them. In terms of government financial loopholes, I'd be surprised if the PPP loan abuse was anywhere near the worst of it in total dollar terms.

Regarding taxes, Judge Learned Hand wrote in [Helvering v. Gregory](http://www.uniset.ca/other/cs5/69F2d809.html), later [affirmed by the Supreme Court](http://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/293/465/case.html):

> Anyone may arrange his affairs so that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which best pays the treasury. There is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes.

In the same vein, Judge Learned Hand wrote in [Com’r v. Newman](https://casetext.com/case/commissioner-of-internal-revenue-v-newman):

> Over and over again courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging one's affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everybody does so, rich or poor; and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands: taxes are enforced exactions, not voluntary contributions. To demand more in the name of morals is mere cant.

I agree with Judge Learned Hand. Maybe in a better world, businesses would follow the spirit of the law as well as the letter. I don't think we live in that world, and I don't blame businesses for not acting as if we do.]]>
Wed, 23 Sep 2020 01:22:21 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18108 http://curi.us/comments/show/18108
curi Andy B Harassment Continues Tue, 22 Sep 2020 21:40:49 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18107 http://curi.us/comments/show/18107 Technical Solutions to Perceived Noise Gavin Palmer Less Wrong Banned Me
I'm a fan of solving problems with technology. One way to solve this problem of people not liking an author's content is to allow users to put people on an ignore list (and maybe for some period of time).]]>
Tue, 22 Sep 2020 12:43:34 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18106 http://curi.us/comments/show/18106
FaZe clan abuses the PPP loan program Gamer The CCP Coronavirus
In September 2020, Upper Echelon Gamers (UEG) released a video called [FaZe Clan - Financial Parasites](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g9MhsBQL35Q). The video criticizes [FaZe](http://fazeclan.com), an esports organization, for applying for a $1-2 million PPP loan. According to UEG, FaZe technically meets the standards for PPP loan approval. However, UEG argues that FaZe's loan application violates the spirit of the PPP loan program and that any money FaZe received should have gone to small businesses that actually needed it. Specifically, UEG notes that:
- FaZe's YouTube channel makes, conservatively, $1.2 million per year
- FaZe closed a [$40 million round of funding](https://news.yahoo.com/faze-clan-reveals-40-million-130000962.html) in April 2020
- Esport revenues have been growing strongly since the COVID-19 pandemic started
- FaZe is a financially irresponsible organization that provides a $30 million California mansion (with $80,000 monthly payments) for its players, who in turn release videos in which they smash computer monitors
- More than 100,000 small businesses have permanently shut their doors due to COVID-19
- The first round of PPP funding quickly ran out
- 1.7 small businesses were waiting for PPP funding as the second round was about to run out
- The money FaZe took could have saved dozens to hundreds of legitimate small businesses
- The owner of FaZe made over $200,000/day [running a "gambling platform for CS:GO" skins out of Antigua](https://www.esports.com/en/gambling-in-esports-faze-clan-ceo-banks-reveals-involvement-92326) (such a site is legal there, in contrast to the U.S.)
- FaZe likely has significant performance and integrity issues; for example, in a lawsuit, FaZe claimed they did were barely based out of California, even though they had the mansion there

PPP loan abuse extends far beyond FaZe. According to the [NY Post](https://nypost.com/2020/04/22/small-businesses-frustrated-about-getting-shut-out-of-ppp-funding/), lots of large businesses took advantage of PPP loans that were meant for small businesses:

> The [PPP loan] program has also come under a torrent of criticism for paying banks big bucks to steer hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money to their large, publicly traded clients, like Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Potbelly Sandwich Shop and Wilhelmina International, a talent agency that represents big stars like Nicki Minaj and Nick Jonas.

[MSN](https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucebrumberg/2020/05/14/federal-charges-of-ppp-loan-fraud-are-here-to-remind-you-these-loans-are-not-free-money/#4e6b0a97ed53) claims that the finance industry received $12.2 billion in PPP loans, despite not generally being negatively affected by COVID-19:

> The finance and insurance industry received $12.2 billion in loans from the small business program, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. While many of those firms are technically small businesses -- employing 500 people or fewer -- they weren’t forced to shut by stay-at-home orders, unlike barber shops, florists and mom-and-pop retailers whose revenues evaporated. Financial markets have remained open during the lockdowns, allowing Wall street firms to keep earning fees from clients.

According to [Business Insider](https://www.businessinsider.com/jpmorgan-chase-investigating-misuse-of-federal-ppp-loans-by-customers-2020-9), the government has started noticing the PPP loan abuse:

> Members of the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis wrote a memo sounding the alarm bells, explaining that tens of thousands of PPP loans "could be subject to fraud, waste, or abuse."
> Among the memo's chief points of concern: Some companies received multiple loans, when the original program was intended to grant recipients just one loan. As much as $1 billion in PPP funding was carved up by firms that received more than a single loan.
> What's more, as much as $96 million in PPP loans was pocketed by companies which are excluded from doing business with the federal government. And, government contractors with "significant performance and integrity issues" received another $195 million in funds, the memo said.

[Forbes](https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucebrumberg/2020/05/14/federal-charges-of-ppp-loan-fraud-are-here-to-remind-you-these-loans-are-not-free-money/#4e6b0a97ed53) reports that the government has begun prosecuting cases of PPP loan fraud. However, the cases Forbes covers are blatant, such as lying about how many employees you have, getting loans for businesses that don't exist, and spending the loan money in unauthorized ways. Forbes doesn't cover any cases in which a business was prosecuted for applying for a loan for which they technically qualified and spending the loan money in technically authorized ways.]]>
Tue, 22 Sep 2020 02:05:55 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18105 http://curi.us/comments/show/18105
Twitter's Photo Cropping Algorithm curi Deplatforming and Fraud
> Twitter has a cropping algorithm for displaying previews of images that prefers to center white faces over Black faces… and apparently pictures with lots of cleavage over those without.

Examples:

https://twitter.com/JeffFromRegina/status/1307903677290561536

https://twitter.com/sina_rawayama/status/1307506452786016257

The point is to show Twitter doesn't crop to the person on top in an image with two people. It crops to the boobs or white guy over the non-boobs or black guy. In the white/black example they tried doing 3 images: one guy top and bottom, other in middle. Trying it both ways (black in middle or black top and bottom) it crops to white guy regardless.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 23:01:25 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18104 http://curi.us/comments/show/18104
curi Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong Mon, 21 Sep 2020 19:30:36 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18103 http://curi.us/comments/show/18103 curi Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong >
> - Lack of common understanding. If I try to talk to someone about a topic they know nothing about and lack the foundation to learn, then they will end the conversation.
>
> - Lack of trust. If a conversation moves towards an area that makes the person feel insecure then they will end the conversation.
>
> - Lack of priority. If the person has other things in their lives that are higher priority then they will end the conversation.

I agree those happen and that, to a first approximation, they are OK. There can be cases where they’re problematic too. Due to their perceived legitimacy, they’re sometimes used as excuses when actually ending conversations for other reasons.

I think lots of conversations end because someone is biased in favor of “their” side/position/conclusion, and is losing the debate.

I think lots end because people don’t want to answer challenging questions. Often they have no good answer and don’t want to admit it.

I think conversations often end because people don’t want to address certain specifics, and don’t want to admit or explain that preference, and then they take conversational actions to avoid the specifics. If the other person doesn’t take some sort of unclear hint and back off, then the person will leave (often with an excuse).

There are boundaries for what ideas people think are reasonable to consider. If you go outside the boundaries, they shut down conversation.

Lots of people, when it comes down to it, simply will not answer short, simple, direct questions with literally correct answers (when there’s a possibility it leads to them being wrong about something they’d rather not be wrong about).

There are lots of ideas about rationality that people approve of in the abstract but then hate when applied to themselves or to some other specific cases. E.g. lots of people think my Paths Forward is great … until I judge they’re wrong about something that they don’t want to be wrong about, and I want them to have a Path Forward so that, if I’m right, correcting them is possible. They like Paths Forward when they see it as a criticism of how dumb most people are, but leave when they’re asked to change themselves in some way.

The overall situation is: it’s extremely hard to correct people on important points when they don’t want to be corrected on those points. And there are a lot of points people don’t want to be corrected on.

And: People (like Harris) can look somewhat rational in reasonably controlled circumstances, but would quickly reveal substantial irrationality if challenged in certain ways, e.g. being “grilled” with clear, short, specific questions about facts for the purpose of showing how one of their claims is in conflict with uncontroversial facts.

Overall, I think it’s very hard for intellectual controversies to be resolved because of how people do and don’t discuss. E.g. there’s basically no way to get any inductivist to go through Popper’s arguments, and various other arguments, in an organized way, and try to reach a conclusion. Lots of people essentially bet their careers on induction being correct, but ~none of them will answer Popper or endorse any particular answer to Popper that anyone else has provide. This sort of situation repeats with many other topics. Arguments exist to refute some positions, and tons of people ignore those arguments and won’t debate, and there’s a severe shortage of conversation capable of resolving these disagreements.

> Meta: As I mentioned kids school is saturating time during the week. My family is making adjustments, but its a work in progress. I am probably going to be less responsive until late October, but I will still do my best.

ok]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 19:28:21 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18102 http://curi.us/comments/show/18102
curi Blatant Lying Example
> Lying requires spending some of your time and attention on maintaining the lie rather than solving real problems.

Yes but if the effort isn't too huge, and you get lots of money for it, couldn't that be worth it? It might be less effort than it takes to get money in other ways.

> Gullible and stupid investors can't give you much useful feedback on your plans.

Sure but you can get their money and get feedback elsewhere. Money is fairly hard to come by. Why is that a bad idea?]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 18:13:26 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18101 http://curi.us/comments/show/18101
curi Passivity as a Strategic Excuse
Paying closer attention to what you do helps some people. You could record what you do on a daily basis. This would help you more clearly see how you spend your time. Some people would make improvements if they knew what was going on better. Others would feel pressured and would hate the measurements. What works depends on you.

http://curi.us/1859-how-to-get-unstuck

You should share info about your personal situation if you want to. If you do, it'd be more possible to give you personalized advice. And just generally. the more info you share, the more people would be in a position to help. I don't know enough about your life to say much even if I wanted to.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 18:09:03 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18100 http://curi.us/comments/show/18100
Anne B Passivity as a Strategic Excuse
> What are the solutions? Like Joe I don't know what is going on. I watch a lot of Talk Show videos from shows like Jimmy Fallon on Youtube.

Can you state in one or two sentences what the problem is that you're asking for solutions to? I think that would help people give you answers.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 14:54:06 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18099 http://curi.us/comments/show/18099
Anonymous Passivity as a Strategic Excuse
curi doesn't say Joe doesn't know what's going on:

> Joe says he doesn't know what's going on.

I'm not sure why you say:

> I watch a lot of Talk Show videos from shows like Jimmy Fallon on Youtube.

You asked on discord for "advice and solutions people have to this problem". I presume you mean passivity (if not, LMK).

If your trouble is that you don't know why you're passive, well, why don't you do more FI instead of watching Fallon clips? Do you not like it? Is it hard? Do you have objections you're not saying? (e.g. you doubt some of the content?) other reasons?

If you think you're hiding something from yourself, I suggest you look at the analyzing lies stuff on the FI list, try doing the exercises in https://curi.us/2167-analyzing-how-culture-manipulates-you-by-pulling-your-puppet-strings, and if you like, watch the videos in the *tutoring max* series about analyzing lies (the first analysis might start in [tutoring max 27](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjB1Bn05o_Y&list=PLKx6lO5RmaetREa9-jt2T-qX9XO2SD0l2&index=27), see timestamps). That continues over the next few videos, though can't remember for how long.

You could also read Fountainhead, a good deal of that is about being honest with yourself.

It'd be easier to give you advice with more details.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 14:12:42 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18098 http://curi.us/comments/show/18098
Max Dennis Hackethal, Plagiarist
which edition of the book do you have? It'll say on the page with the publishing details.

plagiarism is yes/no. either DH did or didn't; the length of the book might mean it's easier to make a mistake, but it's still that: a mistake, and still plagiarism.

how did DH respond to ET?

curi said:

> Besides breaking his word about reviewing the problems I sent him at his request, DH’s reply also said he’d consulted a lawyer and implied that he would only deal with copyright violations not plagiarism. The unstated reason is that copyright violations break the law while plagiarism is unethical but is not generally against the law. So DH is knowingly and intentionally a plagiarist. I tried to double check this with him but he didn’t reply.

DH didn't want to do the right thing. He knew he was doing the wrong thing.

curi said:

> I will update this post if anything substantial changes, e.g. if Dennis Hackethal stops being a plagiarist or helps investigate the DOS crime.

DH presumably hasn't contacted ET.

---

Apparently there was a second edition published June 2020:

The publishing page reads:

> First edition March 2020
> Second edition June 2020

Searching this edition:

I can't find 'criterion of universality' in the book, and skipped chapter 4 and couldn't see the quote ET has up.

Also a ctrl+f for 'qualifiers' didn't show anything either. (The quote ET has up under criterion of universality)

DH's acknowledgements at the beginning also (now?) have

> David Deutsch, whose books were the main inspiration for this book, for answering my many questions.

So DH tried to fix the issues ET brought up -- 2-3 months later. I don't know about other examples or how else the book has changed.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 13:25:50 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18097 http://curi.us/comments/show/18097
addendum Dan Elton Dennis Hackethal, Plagiarist Mon, 21 Sep 2020 12:54:09 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18096 http://curi.us/comments/show/18096 doubtingthomas Passivity as a Strategic Excuse Mon, 21 Sep 2020 12:51:29 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18095 http://curi.us/comments/show/18095 oh my god it's turpentine Blatant Lying Example
> Suppose he keeps the lying within standard social boundaries, keeps it externally directed, doesn't piss people off, doesn't break laws, etc. Suppose most people react positively and view it as something like good marketing. Then would it be effective and beneficial?

Lying requires spending some of your time and attention on maintaining the lie rather than solving real problems.

>> attracting gullible and stupid investors?
>
> Is that a bad thing? If you take their money and don't give them decision making power.

Gullible and stupid investors can't give you much useful feedback on your plans.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 12:32:56 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18094 http://curi.us/comments/show/18094
Max Learning Updates Thread
I also posted my LR with a title for the week, but OP says to only do that per month.

I listed a lot in the LR, including links to some postmortems. I talked about about the speedrun I was doing and some updates. I listed some goals of mine, though not in much detail. I didn't really add any sort of reflection to my LR, which I think I might do next time (as well as taking more notes along the way).]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 12:25:59 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18093 http://curi.us/comments/show/18093
Max Eliezer Yudkowsky Is a Fraud
> If you want to slap a 300% luxury tax on giant yachts, that's fine by me.

from: https://www.facebook.com/yudkowsky/posts/10152873248924228

anonymous #18090 - are you intending to defend EY, like do you think curi was wrong or something?

What was your goal in posting #18090?]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 12:16:19 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18092 http://curi.us/comments/show/18092
Max Eliezer Yudkowsky Is a Fraud
> this seems relevant

To what?

I don't think curi is saying EY *can't* make better arguments if he tried, or doesn't have any good ideas.

I think curi's topic is more about EY's integrity and the dishonest way he's represented himself in the tweets.

curi said:

> he brings up names while knowing basically nothing about them.

If EY--a different time--brought up names he *does* know about, that doesn't answer the criticism that he also "brings up names while knowing basically nothing about them".

anonymous says:

> just musing about the silly arguments other people make on twitter.

he should stop doing that then because the image of himself he's presenting is dishonest. EY doesn't even hedge.

There are more problems with EY's tweets, like this:

> Gates vaccine funding

is used as an example of an answer to anti-billionaire stuff. that's a *terrible* answer.

q: why should we let billionaires keep their money (or something)

a: Gates does some ineffective philanthropy

EY should stick to things he knows more about and avoid name-dropping.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 11:51:26 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18091 http://curi.us/comments/show/18091
anonymous Eliezer Yudkowsky Is a Fraud (there's also some stuff in the comments)

It doesn't seem to me that he was trying to actually argue anything with those tweets, just musing about the silly arguments other people make on twitter.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 11:27:27 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18090 http://curi.us/comments/show/18090
Max Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> dad jokes = jokes that are not mean and not dirty

I dunno about that. I googled for dad jokes and found [this page](https://www.rte.ie/lifestyle/living/2017/0403/864882-dad-jokes-to-make-you-cringe/)

examples:

> 1. Child: ‘Dad, can you make me a sandwich!’ Dad: ‘Poof, You’re a sandwich!’
> 2. Child: 'Can I watch the TV?' Dad: 'Yes, but don’t turn it on'.
> 4. Anytime I do something smart my dad says, ‘Wow, you’re a fart smella…I mean smart fella!’

I think these could be seen as mean. There are elements of dishonesty, deliberate misinterpretation, and coercion.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 07:29:59 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18089 http://curi.us/comments/show/18089
Max's learning report 2020 week 38 Max Learning Updates Thread

my incomplete LR from last week: https://xertrov.github.io/fi/posts/2020-09-13-learning-report-2020-week-37/]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 01:56:37 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18088 http://curi.us/comments/show/18088
Prepper Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> And preferably, look for a state which is conservative all the way from from your county sheriff to the mayor, to the county to the... at every level [so] that you don't have a situation where, yeah, my mayor is pretty solid, but the DA is a communist. And every time the mayor tries to do something, or the police chief arrests these guys, the communist DA just says, "no charges".
> So, it's better than being in Portland. Portland is like a worst case. You have communist, communist, communist, communist from the local to the state governor. So when you move and, if you have a choice, like, if you're moving to North Carolina, don't move to Asheville, okay? Asheville is like the Austin of North Carolina.
> So, even in a great state like North Carolina, look for the county where it's like, you know, a military veteran is the mayor, you know, a former Special Forces guy is the police chief. And I'm not saying it's 100%, but I do look for Special Operations qualifications or SWAT team. If I see a guy is former SWAT team, I see he's a former Army Ranger captain, he's a former Blackhawk pilot, Apache pilot, I'm thinking, it's not very likely this guy is sympathetic to the communists. Even if he's, you know, 35 years old, he's generally going to be a pretty solid guy. Because, like, there's nothing like being a war fighter to ground you in reality. And I'm not saying that some of these guys that came out of our wars didn't go in the communist direction. Some of them do. But if I have to just pick between, you know, a candidate for mayor who has a liberal arts degree from a liberal college, and some guy with a community college degree who spent his 20s in the Army Rangers, I'm picking the Ranger. Period. You know, that's the way to vote. And that's where you want to move. You want to move where people like that are going to be, you know, your Sheriff mayor, all the way up to Governor.

That sounds like good advice.]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 01:55:18 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18087 http://curi.us/comments/show/18087
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> i dont really have much of a plan other than: dont read to many of them in the same day.

FYI u could import the first ebook here (which has the FI articles) into Voice Dream Reader and then read them using that
http://curi.us/ebooks]]>
Mon, 21 Sep 2020 01:17:52 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18086 http://curi.us/comments/show/18086
internetrules Open Discussion 2 (2019)
i dont really have much of a plan other than: dont read to many of them in the same day.

maybe i could try doing some reading practice on some of them, the main practice im thinking of is: reading a sentence, saying what i think the sentence meant, then re reading it and seeing if i think i accurately remembered what it meant. i think this kind of practice helps with remembering/knowing what things meant.

i might only do the sentence remembering practice every few sentences or if it seems especially important cuz i think it could more than double the time it takes to read an article if i do it for every sentence. if i dont mind it taking to long then i think i could do it for every sentence

----

to get a sense for how long it would take to read all the articles i:

- opened fallibleideas.com/
- opened in new tab every second article in each paragraph
- i then pressed CTRL A to select all the text on the page
- then CTRL C to copy all the text
- then CTRL V to paste each article into wordcounter.net

at 350 WPM the 8 article i copied would take 22 minutes to read. 22min / 8 articles = 2.75 min per article. 2.75min x 34 (the total number of articles) = 93.5min

so an hour and a half to read every article at 350 WPM

i think i read at about 300 WPM

idk how to do the math to figure out how long it would take to read at 300 WPM so im just gonna put every article into the word counter and see how that goes:

ok total reading time is 153 minutes at 350WPM instead of the 93.5 minutes i calculated

at 300WPM that would be 172 minutes

at 150WPM it would be 356 minutes (172 x 2 is supposed to be 344. i dont understand why this is 356 instead of 344 but im gonna move on for now)

----

ok so reading all the articles would take about 6 hours minimum if i did the practice for every sentence, not including the time it would take say what i think the idea is outloud before i re-read the sentence. also not including the time it could take for me to see an idea, then stop reading and think about it for a few minutes.

what things take time? reading a sentence, saying the idea i read outloud, re-reading the sentence, pauses i take to think about something for a few seconds or a minute.

i think saying what i think the sentence i read meant, would take as much time as reading the sentence for hte first itme.

i feel like reading the articles would be about 4 hours if i dont do any of the practice and 8~9 hours if i do the practice all the time. main thing im unsure about is how much time am i gonna spend not reading.]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 23:26:39 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18085 http://curi.us/comments/show/18085
curi curi's Microblogging
So people sabotage discussions while trying to be helpful/tolerant/etc. To get along with me/FI better, they need to say things they don't like and talk about the disagreement. If they aren't comfortable doing this the first time, that's fine, they can do it the third time, that way there's a recurring pattern but it's still before they run out of patience. (If they're an impatient person they might run out of patience on the first, second or third incident. That's hard to deal with. But better people might have enough patience for 5-10 incidents, so then discussing it after the third will work well.)]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 20:08:50 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18084 http://curi.us/comments/show/18084
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
(i'm anonymously stealing credit for something my friend told me and they got it from some reddit thread they read years ago)]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 20:02:32 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18083 http://curi.us/comments/show/18083
curi Less Wrong Banned Me
https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=rg2aBQujqL68C7xXr

> For what it's worth, I think a decision to ban would stand on just his pursuit of conversational norms that reward stamina over correctness, in a way that I think makes LessWrong worse at intellectual progress.

Apparently he thinks disagreeing about what conversational norms reward correctness is a bannable offense. And he doesn't conceptualize it as a disagreement, just as me being wrong. He sees no need to debate the matter or to tolerate disagreement. He also makes it ambiguous whether he knows I disagree and thinks I'm mistaken, or whether he's (incorrectly) suggesting that my goal is to reward stamina.]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 06:08:47 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18082 http://curi.us/comments/show/18082
Khaaan Public University Bigotry
> Two weeks ago, Princeton University’s president, Christopher Eisgruber, issued [a letter](https://www.princeton.edu/news/2020/09/02/letter-president-eisgruber-universitys-efforts-combat-systemic-racism) to the Princeton community in which he admitted that the institution he has run for seven years is plagued by “systemic racism.”...

> Yesterday, the Department [of Education] [sent its own letter to Eisgruber](https://www.scribd.com/document/476441457/Princeton-Letter-09-15-2020#download&from_embed). The letter informs him that the Department is opening an investigation into racism at Princeton — an investigation that could have important adverse financial consequences for the University.
> The letter includes probing requests for information. And it informs Eisgruber that he will be called on to answer questions, under oath, about Princeton’s racism.
> It also warns that Princeton’s response to the Department’s information requests falls under [18 U.S.C. Section 1001](https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1001). This means that knowingly and willfully providing false information carries a fine and a prison sentence of not more than 5 years.
> The Department’s letter begins by reminding Eisgruber that Princeton has received more than $75 million in federal aid during his tenure as president, and that as a condition of receiving this aid, the University has repeatedly certified that it complies with Title VI’s non-discrimination requirement. In addition, Princeton represents to the public, including students and their parents, that it does not discriminate on the basis of race.
> The letter then notes the contradiction between Princeton’s representations that it doesn’t discriminate and Eisgruber’s confession that the institution is systemically racist. Based on this contradiction, and perhaps understating the obvious, the Department tells Eisgruber that Princeton’s representations may have been false. It also expresses concern that Princeton “perhaps knew, or should have known, these assurances were false at the time they were made.”

Good for the Department of Education. There's lots more info in the article.]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 04:20:18 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18081 http://curi.us/comments/show/18081
Quick thought on a secondary goal of life. Max Max Microblogging
Ofc there will always be conflicts and problems to solve, but this state is like the closest you can get to that *and sustain*.]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 04:00:28 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18080 http://curi.us/comments/show/18080
curi Blatant Lying Example
https://hindenburgresearch.com/nikola/

Theranos only got to $9 billion by lying.]]>
Sun, 20 Sep 2020 00:35:34 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18079 http://curi.us/comments/show/18079
curi Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong Sun, 20 Sep 2020 00:26:32 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18078 http://curi.us/comments/show/18078 gigahurt Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong Sun, 20 Sep 2020 00:09:06 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18077 http://curi.us/comments/show/18077 LW's Sexual Assault Problem curi Less Wrong Banned Me
REACH is a LW IRL community space in Berkeley. I've previously read some [Reddit discussion](https://www.reddit.com/r/SneerClub/comments/avu24t/the_bay_area_rationalist_community_can_not_escape/) about how those places have lots of poly sex and sexually pressure people. It sounded awful and not related to rationality.

Anyway, I liked the blog post. He wanted to share why he changed his mind about something and he complains about the lack of transparency when banning people at REACH.

Then I found out what happened by looking at comments. The issues include a MeToo sexual assault accusation thread against the friend (and the girl simultaneously accused multiple other people) by his ex-girlfriend who was admittedly mad about being dumped:

https://twitter.com/RuffleJax/status/1009637239075287040

I have no idea whether the sexual assault accusations are true. How did REACH handle it?

They tried to set up a panel to investigate but then they had even worse problems to deal with so the panel was distracted by those for months. The person who runs REACH said basically she's incompetent to investigate or deal with such things (other than by the method of forming a panel of other people to maybe look into it months later). She said they were planning to get around to these sexual assault allegations soon since the other even worse problem was wrapping up.

And the person in charge of REACH denied having banned the accused sexual assaulter while the investigation was incomplete. And she ghosted the blog author who followed up asking for info because she's disorganized. He finally got to find out what was going on due to publishing the blog post.

And then 5 months later someone asked in comments if the investigation had happened yet. There was no reply.

Another month later, someone else was apparently banned without explanation or investigation:

> It seems like a similar process has been used in the recent Jacy Reese case. Curious if you have similar feelings about that?

And the blog author replied:

> I don't follow that scene closely anymore. It makes me too sad and I don't see much upside.

Previously, the blog author had been a big enough LW fan to donate money to REACH despite not living in the area.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 23:32:16 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18076 http://curi.us/comments/show/18076
curi Less Wrong Banned Me
> the moderators of LW are the opposite of trigger-happy. Not counting spam, there is on average *less than one account per year* banned.

My friend suspected that LW miscategorizes some non-spam bans as spam bans. I thought this was possible but that perhaps LW wasn't doing it. I delete some blog spam myself. There exists a category of blatant spam that's pretty easy to categorize accurately and is reasonable to distinguish from other bans.

I think I've discovered the answer:

habryka, a Less Wrong admin, writes:

https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/vWEgN376HazKn6vGC/moderation-list-warnings-and-bans?commentId=CweWPc32BwArbaEAu

> Update: Steve Whetstone is banned for spamming lots of really long crackpoty looking comments

Banning someone for writing crackpoty comments is incorrectly being categorized by LW as a spam ban. I think LW bans some alleged crackpots and then doesn't count them when considering how often they ban non-spammers.

Based on this description, I'm very doubtful that he deserved to be called a spammer on the same page that talks about banning *actual spammers* who do things like use spam bots to advertise shady websites.

:(

After writing the above, I read the rest of the comments on the page:

![](https://curi.us/img/pK2AqYw0Fdx5fKi-908x882.png)

Apparently he was such an actual human being trying to communicate that he made a new account to quote LW's own guidelines at them and protest the ban. And then LW admitted they were wrong and unbanned him.

Although this case got fixed, I'm now even more confident that LW bans people who aren't actually spammers and while falsely categorizing them as spammers. People who are bad at discussion should never be conflated with people or bots who are e.g. selling viagra.

His thread, that he asked about, remains deleted from public view (I tried the link).

LW appears to have a recurring but not clearly publicized policy of banning people they don't like who write things they don't value, and using downvotes as one of their excuses.

I fear downvotes represent *what lurkers think* more than *what the best LWers think*, and emphasizing downvotes helps cause *reversion to the mean*.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 22:56:48 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18075 http://curi.us/comments/show/18075
curi Less Wrong Banned Me
https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=WqMsvrEGMoRcnzwsE

>> I've reliably used the word "threat" to simply mean signaling some kind of intention of inflicting some kind punishment in response to some condition by the other person. Curi and other people from FI have done this repeatedly, and the "list of people who have evaded/lied/etc." is exactly one of such threats, whether explicitly labeled as such or not.

> This game-theoretic concept of "threat" is fine, but underdetermined: what counts as a threat in this sense [depends on where the the "zero point" is](https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/Mey7SLY3xnchMv98H/unpacking-the-concept-of-blackmail); what counts as aggression *versus* self-defense depends on what the relevant "property rights" are. (Scare quotes on "property rights" because I'm not talking about legal claims, but "property rights" is an apt choice of words, because I'm claiming that the way people negotiate disputes that don't rise to the level of dragging in the (slow, expensive) formal legal system, have a similar structure.)
> If people have a "right" to not be publicly described as lying, evading, *&c.*, then someone who puts up a "these people lied, evaded, *&c.*" page on their own website is engaging in a kind of aggression. The page functions as a threat: "If you don't keep engaging in a way that satisfies my standards of discourse, I'll publicly call you a liar, evader, *&c.*."
> If people *don't* have a "right" to not be publicly described as lying, evading, *&c.*, then a website administrator who cites a user's "these people lied, evaded, *&c.*" page on their own website as part of a rationale for banning that user, is engaging in a kind of aggression. The ban functions as a threat: "If you don't cede your claim on being able to describe other people as lying, evading, *&c.*, I won't let you participate in this forum."
> The size of the website administrator's threat depends on the website's "market power." *Less Wrong* is probably small enough and niche enough such that the threat doesn't end up controlling anyone's off-site behavior: anyone who perceives not being able to post on *Less Wrong* as a serious threat is probably already so deeply socially-embedded into our little robot cult, that they either have similar property-rights intuitions as the administrators, or are too loyal to the group to publicly accuse other group members as lying, evading, *&c.*, even if they privately think they *are* lying, evading, *&c.*. (Nobody likes self-styled whistleblowers!) But getting kicked off a service with the market power of a Google, Facebook, Twitter, *&c.* is a sufficiently big deal to sufficiently many people such that those websites' terms-of-service do exert some controlling pressure on the rest of Society.
> What are the consequences of each of these "property rights" regimes?
> In a world where people have a right to not be publicly described as lying, evading, *&c.*, then people don't have to be afraid of losing reputation on that account. But we *also* lose out on the possibility of [having a public accounting](http://benjaminrosshoffman.com/honesty-and-perjury/#A_tax_on_criticism) of who has *actually in fact* lied, evaded, *&c.*. We give up on [maintaining the coordination equilibrium](https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/4hLcbXaqudM9wSeor/philosophy-in-the-darkest-timeline-basics-of-the-evolution) such that words like "lie" [have a literal meaning that can actually be true or false, rather than the word itself simply constituting an attack](https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/N9oKuQKuf7yvCCtfq/can-crimes-be-discussed-literally).
> Which regime better fulfills our charter of advancing the art of human rationality? I don't think I've written this skillfully enough for you to not be able to guess what answer I lean towards, but you shouldn't trust my answer if it seems like something I might lie or evade about! You need to think it through for yourself.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 22:34:29 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18074 http://curi.us/comments/show/18074
curi Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems Sat, 19 Sep 2020 18:56:00 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18073 http://curi.us/comments/show/18073 curi Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong
I've just been [banned from Less Wrong](http://curi.us/2381-less-wrong-banned-me) because the sock puppeter followed me there and caused trouble with the goal of preventing me from having productive discussions there. He was recently commenting here as Periergo and then trolling anonymously.

I noticed that:

- your comments show signs of using privacy protection or hacking software which sends false information to my web server
- you didn't want to register a phone number with Discord
- you didn't accept my request to follow you on Twitter and your tweets are not publicly visible
- your Less Wrong account was created recently
- you aren't using your real name

I want to respect your privacy, and I think it's highly unlikely that you're the stalker, but I've been fooled before. For my peace of mind, would you please send a Direct Message to @curi42 from your Twitter account @gigahurt_ to confirm that you control it? That would let you keep your tweets private while linking you to an account created in 2008.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 18:51:23 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18072 http://curi.us/comments/show/18072
Anonymous Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems
https://cc.bingj.com/cache.aspx?q=http%3a%2f%2fcuri.us%2f2215-list-of-fallible-ideas-evaders&d=4598664483972610&mkt=en-US&setlang=en-US&w=w9CRsK2KT7grO0GnLFke2cucacX9n4fx

https://archive.vn/0s9xJ]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 16:31:42 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18071 http://curi.us/comments/show/18071
Another LW reply Max Less Wrong Banned Me
https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=GKz8GfnKK2WjwAEij

----

> Yeah, almost everyone who we ban who has any real content on the site is warned. It didn't feel necessary for curi, because he has already received so much feedback about his activity on the site over the years (from many users as well as mods), and I saw very little probability of things changing because of a warning.

I think you're denying him an important chance to do error correction via that decision. (This is a particularly important concept in CR/FI)

curi evidently wanted to change some things about his behaviour, otherwise he wouldn't have updated his commenting policy. How do you know he wouldn't have updated it *more* if you'd warned him? That's exactly the type of criticism we (CR/FI) think is useful.

That sort of update is *exactly* the type of thing that *would be reasonable to expect* next time he came back (considering that he was away for 2 weeks when the ban was announced). He didn't *want* to be banned, and he didn't *want* to have shitty discussions, either. (I don't know those things for certain, but I have high confidence.)

What probability would you assign to him *continuing just as before* if you said something like "If you keep continuing what you're doing, I will ban you. It's for these reasons." Ideally, you could add "Here they are in the rules/faq/whatever".

Practically, the chance of him changing is *lower* now because *there isn't any point if he's never given any chances*. So in some ways you were exactly right to think there's low probability of him changing, it's just that it was **due** to your actions. Actions which don't need to be permanent, might I add.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 15:42:16 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18070 http://curi.us/comments/show/18070
gigahurt Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong
Here it is with less words. I tried to be honest about the edits, but I may have made mistakes. For a canonical understanding of either opinion the audio recording is recommended:

> WA: So then [for Laura Ingrham to] traffic in those words replacement, and give it an explicitly race related Valence. And then to turn around and deny that you're trafficking and race baiting. It just beggars belief

> SH: But I mean, the problem with the dog whistle hypothesis is that it really is unfalsifiable it is conspiracy thinking of a sort that gives us all these conspiracy theories that are that whose adherence just cannot be reasoned with

> WA: I really want to stay away from always and never and you know, yes, if you turn your dog whistle detector up to 11 and you try to see it everywhere. That's a bad approach. But I also think it's a bad approach to never see it. And I think you're verging in this case and in other cases on never seeing it. I think you're narrowing the the possible field to literally utterances where someone says I am a racist.

> WA: [When] you're Laura Ingram, in the quote, we're discussing, you're tipping your hand by saying no, this is about what conservatives being replaced.

> SH: it's possible that I didn't understand the context of this Ingram quote

> WA: She means people from South and Central America. It's very clear in context

> SH: right. Okay. So yeah, I didn't know that. The connection immigration here I thought she was more or less just saying we have. Basically she was just summarizing intersectional identity politics and let's get rid of the old white conservatives.

> WA: It's much easier for Donald Trump took shithole countries, you know, shithole countries. And and to say, I think they're shithole countries, because they have black people in them.

> SH: Well, again, no, I mean, for me, it's not. the question is, are these utterances evidence of the crime?

> WA: so what utterances are ones that fall into that?

> SH: [Using the N word on apprentice tapes]

> WA: So I guess I would be worried about setting the bar at, you have to be a celebrity who's taped on camera repeatedly using the N word.

> SH: That's not the bar if you're going to refer to shithole countries, as a, a rich guy, pseudo billionaire who likes everything in his life gilded seems to be the variable there is not race, the salient variable, the necessary variable in order to understand the utterance is not race, it is squalor and poverty and disease. And it's he's talking about the developing world. And if you could find me a country filled with white people who are as poor and chaotic as what you find in Congo, well, then he's talking about them to AI right or he would be

> WA: [I think it was race based]

> SH: If statements like that are unequivocal signs of the speaker's racism Then they have to work for other speakers and then anyone no matter how blameless their record, if they say something about shithole countries, they're racist, right. And I just don't think that runs through.

> WA: No, I think I think context matters.

> SH: But this is what has given us cancel culture. It's the narrow fixation on the magical power of words, given their worst conceivable interpretation

> WA: I take your point about how these things can be under determined and how, at the very least, like with the example that I started with, [...] if you accuse someone of something and they are very plausibly able to deny it, you lose a point, I get that. On the other hand, the solution cannot be: We will never call anyone a racist unless they say I am a racist.

> SH: But that's a straw man version of my position here. I mean, clearly, there are racists who will answer to the name. Clearly there are people who are, you know, bigoted and they had and they're so lacking in introspection, or awareness of these issues, that they don't even understand the shape of the dark cloud, that they're trailing behind them, right? They're not ideological racists, but they're Archie Bunker types. But then there are people who just are using words in ways that would have been quite normal 20 years ago, and everything is being subjected to a different Litmus test.

I see progress getting to a more rational space. While I agree this it is not immediately helpful to the listener from a factual perspective, I think its an illustration of people engaging on a controversial topic and moving towards a more rational place. It did not degrade into name calling, threats, or folks dropping out. Its a low bar, but better then most humans would do in this situation.

> Why did you pick it? I was looking for an impressive example with e.g. progress on improving human knowledge, not *sometimes people go from egregiously straw manning each other to not doing that and getting closer to some well known, standard positions*.

Apologies for missing the mark expectation wise. I picked it because it was a long form conversation I had listened to recently that was not thoroughly one sided and where the rational/social mix seemed to be reasonable.

I hypothesize not many public conversations exist that improve human knowledge. I think progress more often happens within a single mind, or between people with such a high quality relationship they talk too much to record 99% of it for posterity.

I do think people have personal breakthroughs during public conversation (I have had some in this conversation), but that's a pretty low bar considering how ignorant most of us are.

Pushing human knowledge is quite a high bar. I don't think that's the bar for rational conversation. I think it just needs to contain reasons and exploration. I don't even think it needs to make progress. Meaning, I don't think the people having it need to change their views or discover something new. I think they just need to provide reasons and listen to the reasons with an open attitude.

>> gigahurt: [Move on to solutions now?]

> curi: I think it's worth exploring this more first.

Sounds good.

> If you agree with that, the next issue to consider is what things cause conversations to end, and what don't. Where are the limits and what are their causes? And sorting out the rational and irrational limits, e.g. people will stop discussing if you're just flaming but that's OK (there are edge cases where e.g. someone is accused of flaming but doesn't think they're flaming, but never mind, I don't think we need to worry about those currently).

Okay. Here are some initial thoughts:

- Lack of new data. If I have shared everything I know and the other person has as well and the conversation starts to go in circles then the conversation will end.
- Lack of common understanding. If I try to talk to someone about a topic they know nothing about and lack the foundation to learn, then they will end the conversation.
- Lack of trust. If a conversation moves towards an area that makes the person feel insecure then they will end the conversation.
- Lack of priority. If the person has other things in their lives that are higher priority then they will end the conversation.

What are your thoughts? What items would you add?


----

Meta: As I mentioned kids school is saturating time during the week. My family is making adjustments, but its a work in progress. I am probably going to be less responsive until late October, but I will still do my best.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 12:26:17 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18069 http://curi.us/comments/show/18069
Anonymous Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems
This seems like a bad mistake. I don't buy it.

What are you doing editing your post? What's your policy on this? And are you no longer going to call evaders "evaders"? WTF? I don't think your heart's in this - that's why you ended up misspelling "Popper" in the rewrite.

> If this kind of list scares you,

It seems like you got scared of your own list.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 09:22:10 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18068 http://curi.us/comments/show/18068
correction s/corrosively/coercively Max Max Microblogging Sat, 19 Sep 2020 07:59:38 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18067 http://curi.us/comments/show/18067 TCS and passions Max Max Microblogging
There's a possibly coercive idea I have that I think is the *common-er* version of the problem (maybe), then there's a more general version.

the possibly coercive version is like:

> I want my child to have a passion for maths (coercive), or
> I value passion about maths in general, and I want my child to be able to develop that if they want -- I don't want to *hinder* them (coercive?)

The second formulation feels like it could be done okay--without coercion--but I don't know enough to tell for sure.

I was thinking about this in the context of **a parent who's bad at maths**.

This made me think of a possible common issue *most* ppl would run in to if they tried TCS: *their skills/passions are inadequate (not broad enough and general enough) to avoid hindering the child.*

I think not being perfect is okay, but if we can avoid significant hindrance that's good.

One situation is if the child develops a passion for X but the parent isn't good/passionate about it, they can still buy equipment/supplies or hire tutoring or find a friend who's passionate, etc. This is the 1/2 solution I mentioned.

But more broadly, how do you facilitate the *development* of a passion before it's manifested?

One thing I was thinking about is when ppl have been passionate about something and sparked something in me. A good example is Haskell and type-safe programming; a guy at a technical meetup sold me on Haskell over a beer. It took me *years* before I actually used it in production, but I was sold in 20 min.

So exposing a child to a wide range of *passionate* people--who are probs the higher-value ppl to expose children to, anyway--is maybe one way, though that could be done corrosively. If you happen to be friends with passionate ppl and the visit and talk to your child, that feels different than like *engineering situations* to trick your child or something.

I haven't looked through the archive to see what other ppl have said on the topic, yet.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 07:57:33 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18066 http://curi.us/comments/show/18066
More LW replies Max Less Wrong Banned Me
> > define:threat

> I prefer this definition, "a declaration of an intention or determination to inflict punishment, injury, etc., in retaliation for, or conditionally upon, some action or course; menace".

This definition seems okay to me.

> undue justice

I don't know how justice can be *undue*, do you mean like undue or excessive *prosecution*? or *persecution* perhaps? thought I don't think either prosecution or persecution describe anything curi's done on LW. If you have counterexamples I would appreciate it if you could quote them.

> > We have substantial disagreements about what constitutes a threat,

> Evidently yes, as do dictionaries.

I don't think the dictionary definitions disagree much. It's not a substantial disagreement. [thesaurus.com seems to agree; it lists them as ~strong synonyms](https://www.thesaurus.com/browse/retribution?s=t). the crux is *retribution* vs *retaliation*, and *retaliation* is more general. The mafia can threaten shopkeeps with violence if they don't pay protection. I think *retaliation* is a better fitting word.

However, **this still does not apply to anything curi has done!**

-----

reply to habryka (who, notably, hasn't replied to me, but has made some--short--replies to others) -- https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=DhcKpyeKDQhCnsb96


> This is the definition that I had in mind when I wrote the notice above, sorry for any confusion it might have caused.

This definition doesn't describe anything curi has done (see my sibling reply linked below), at least that I've seen. I'd appreciate any quotes you can provide.

https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=H2tyDgoRFov8Xs8HS

-----

reply to Kaj_Sotala --
https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=geeuqyCMB49v7qiut

> The traditional guidance for up/downvotes has been "upvote what you would like want to see more of, downvote what you would like to see less of". If this is how votes are interpreted, then heavy downvotes imply "the forum's users would on average prefer to see less content of this kind".

You're using quotes but I am not sure what you're quoting, do you just mean to emphasize/offset those clauses?

> but people also have the right to choose who they want to spend their time with,

Sure, that might be part of the reason curi hadn't been active on LW for **13 days** at the time of the ban.

(continued)
> even if someone who they preferred not to spend time with viewed that as being punished.

I don't know if curi think's it's punishment. **I** think it's punishment, and I think most ppl would agree that 'A ban' would be an answer to the question (in online forum contexts, generally) 'What is an appropriate punishment?' That would mean a ban **is** a punishment.

LW mods can do what they want; in essence it's their site. I'm arguing:

1. it's unnecessary
2. it was done improperly
3. it reflects badly on LW and creates a hostile culture to opposing ideas
4. (3) is antithetical to the opening lines of the LessWrong FAQ (which I quote below). Note: I'm introducing this argument in this post, I didn't mention it originally.
5. **significant parts of habryka's post were factually incorrect.** It was noted, btw, in FI that a) habryka's comments were libel, and b) that [curi's reaction](https://curi.us/2381)--quoted below--is *mild* and undercuts habryka's claim.

curi wrote (in his post on the LW ban)

> > Those three things in combination, a propensity for long unproductive discussions, a history of threats against people who engage with him, and being the historically most downvoted account in LessWrong history, make me overall think it's better for curi to find other places as potential discussion venues.
>
> I didn’t threaten anyone. I’m guessing it was a careless wording. I think habryka should retract or clarify it. Above habryka used “attack[]” as a synonym for criticize. I don’t like that but it’s pretty standard language. But I don’t think using “threat[en]” as a synonym for criticize is reasonable.
>
> “threaten” has meanings like “state one's intention to take hostile action against someone in retribution for something done or not done” and “express one's intention to harm or kill“ (New Oxford Dictionary). This is the one thing in the post that I strongly object to.

from the FI discussion:

> JustinCEO: i think curi's response to this libel is written in a super mild way
>
> JustinCEO: which notably contrasts with being the sort of person who would have "a history of threats against people who engage with him" in the first place

LessWrong FAQ (original emphasis)

> LessWrong is a community dedicated to improving our reasoning and decision-making. We seek to hold true beliefs and to be effective at accomplishing our goals. More generally, we want to develop and practice the art of human rationality.
>
> **To that end, LessWrong is a place to 1) develop and train rationality, and 2) apply one’s rationality to real-world problems.**

I don't think the things people have described (in this thread) as seemly *important parts of LW* are at all reflected by this quote, rather, they contradict it.]]>
Sat, 19 Sep 2020 07:21:51 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18065 http://curi.us/comments/show/18065
curi Blatant Lying Example
![](https://curi.us/img/NAJVs2HaKfuhLGg-1027x897.png)

I appreciate that patio11 is willing to point out lies.]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 21:52:09 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18064 http://curi.us/comments/show/18064
curi Less Wrong Banned Me
The feedback I believed I had received was that nothing I had done previously was bannable. Then I did less than that and got banned...]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 20:36:01 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18063 http://curi.us/comments/show/18063
curi Less Wrong Banned Me
> a statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action on someone in retribution for something done or not done.

No such statement has been quoted. No evidence has been given.

habryka also [wrote](https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/PkpuvsFYr6yuYnppy/open-and-welcome-thread-september-2020?commentId=GKz8GfnKK2WjwAEij#z3X9RqxyYi7Tr9nc6):

> Yeah, almost everyone who we ban who has any real content on the site is warned. It didn't feel necessary for curi, because he has already received so much feedback about his activity on the site over the years (from many users as well as mods), and I saw very little probability of things changing because of a warning.

They saw no need to give me a warning, or info about any problem, or any guidance ... because I got feedback 3 years ago on LW 1.0 from a different mod team? Really?

And their own account is that I listened to that feedback and made significant changes that are positive from their pov. But they saw no need to give me any warning that those changes were inadequate and to give any guidance about what additional changes were necessary? I still, after reading the ban note, do not know what more would have been needed to stay unbanned. (Other than not being harassed by my stalker, which I think might have worked.)]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 18:45:11 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18062 http://curi.us/comments/show/18062
Max Less Wrong Banned Me
----

lsusr said:
> (1) Curi [was](https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/iAnXcZ5aGZzNc2J8L/the-law-of-least-effort-contributes-to-the-conjunction?commentId=mc2P9dtc9cyjXqxkA) warned at least once.

I'm reasonably sure the slack comments refers to events 3 years ago, not anything in the last few months. I'll check, though.

There are some other comments about recent discussion in that thread, like this: https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/iAnXcZ5aGZzNc2J8L/the-law-of-least-effort-contributes-to-the-conjunction?commentId=38FzXA6g54ZKs3HQY

gjm said:
> I had not looked, at that point; I took "mirrored" to mean taking copies of whole discussions, which would imply copying other people's writing en masse. I have looked, now. I agree that what you've put there so far is probably OK both legally and morally.
>
> My apologies for being a bit twitchy on this point; I should maybe explain for the benefit of other readers that the last time curi came to LW, he did take a whole pile of discussion from the LW slack and copy it en masse to the publicly-visible internet, which is one reason why I thought it plausible he might have done the same this time.

I don't think there is case for (1). Unless gjm is a mod and there are things I don't know?

lsusr said:
> (2) Curi is being banned for wasting time with long, unproductive conversations. An appeals process would produce another long, unproductive conversation.

habryka explicitly mentions curi changing his LW commenting policy to be 'less demanding'. I can see the motivation for expedition, but the mods don't have to speedrun it. I think it's bad there wasn't *any* communication beforehand.

lsusr said:
> (3) Specific quotes are unnecessary. It blindingly obvious from a glance through curi's profile and even curi's response you linked to that curi is damaging to productive dialogue on Less Wrong.

I don't think that's the case. His net karma has increased, and judging him for content on *his* blog - not his content on LW - does not establish whether he was 'damaging to productive dialogue on Less Wrong'.

His posts on less wrong have been *contributions*, for example, www.lesswrong.com/posts/tKcdTsMFkYjnFEQJo/can-social-dynamics-explain-conjunction-fallacy-experimental is a direct response to of EY's posts and it was net-upvoted. He followed that up with two more net-upvoted posts:

* www.lesswrong.com/posts/HpiTacu2P6c22GEzF/asch-conformity-could-explain-the-conjunction-fallacy
* www.lesswrong.com/posts/tKcdTsMFkYjnFEQJo/can-social-dynamics-explain-conjunction-fallacy-experimental

This is not the track record of someone wanting to waste time. I know there are disagreements between LW and curi / FI. If that's the main point of contention, and that's why he's being banned, then so be it. But he doesn't deserve to mistreated and have baseless accusations thrown at him.

lsusr said:
> The strongest claim against curi is "a history of threats against people who engage with him [curi]". I was able to confirm this via a quickly glance through curi's past behavior on this site. In this comment threatens to escalate a dialogue by mirroring it off of this website. By the standards of collaborative online dialogue, this constitutes a threat against someone who engaged with him.

We have substantial disagreements about what constitutes a threat, in that case. I think a threat needs to involve something like *danger*, or *violence*, or something like that. It's not a 'threat' to copy *public* discussion under fair use for criticism and commentary.

I googled the definition, and these are the two (for `define:threat`)
* a statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action on someone in retribution for something done or not done.
* a person or thing likely to cause damage or danger.

Neither of these apply.]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 12:57:22 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18061 http://curi.us/comments/show/18061
curi Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems
And you can pick a unique name for posting at FI and curi that you don't use on other sites.]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 09:03:58 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18060 http://curi.us/comments/show/18060
Post Edited curi Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems Fri, 18 Sep 2020 08:51:17 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18059 http://curi.us/comments/show/18059 curi Less Wrong Banned Me
> What could curi have done differently which *would* have tipped the scales?

good question]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 08:37:47 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18058 http://curi.us/comments/show/18058
Max Less Wrong Banned Me
----

> Today we have banned two users, curi and Periergo from LessWrong for two years each.

I wanted to reply to this because I don't think it's right to judge curi the way you have. Periergo I don't have an issue w/. (it's a sockpuppet acct anyway)

I think your decision should not go unquestioned/uncriticized, which is why I'm posting. I also think you should reconsider curi's ban under a sort of appeals process.

Also, the LW moderation process is evidently transparent enough for me to make this criticism, and that is notable and good. I am grateful for that.

> On his blog, he and others maintain a long list of people who engaged with him and others in the Critical Rationalist community, but then stopped, in a way that is very hard to read as anything but a public attack.

You are judging curi and FI (Fallible Ideas) via your standards (LW standards), not FI's standards. I think this is problematic.

I'd like to note **I am on that list**. (like 1/2 way down) I am also a public figure in Australia, having founded a [federal political party](https://voteflux.org) based on [epistemic principles](https://voteflux.org/2019/03/06/flux-most-transparent-political-party/) with nearly 9k members. **I am okay with being on that list.** Arguably, if there is something truly wrong with the list, I should have an issue with it. I knew about being on that list earlier this year, before I returned to FI. **Being on the list was not a factor in my decision**.

There is nothing immoral or malicious about curi.us/2215. I can understand why you would find it distasteful, but that's not a decisive reason to ban someone or condemn their actions.

A few hours ago, curi and I discussed elements about the ban and curi.us/2215 [on his stream](https://youtu.be/MxVzxS8uMto?t=350). I recommend watching a few minutes starting at 5:50 and at 19:00, for transparency you might also be interested in 23:40 -> 24:00. (you can watch on 2x speed, should be fine)

Particularly, **I discuss my presence on curi.us/2215 at 5:50**


You say:

> a long list of people who engaged with him and others in the Critical Rationalist community

There are 33 by my count (including me). The list spans *a decade*, and is there for a particular purpose, and it is not to publicly shame people in to returning, or to be mean for the sake of it. I'd like to point out some quotes from the first paragraph of curi.us/2215:

> This is a list of ppl who had discussion contact with FI and then quit/evaded/lied/etc.
> It would be good to find patterns about what goes wrong.
> *People who left are welcome to come back and try again.*

Notably, you don't end up on the list if you are active. Also, although it's not explicitly mentioned in the top paragraph; a crucial thing is that those on the list have left and *avoided discussion* about it. Discussion is much more important in FI than most philosophy forums - it's how we learn from each other, make sure we understand, offer criticism and assist with error correction. You're not under any *obligation* to discuss something, but if you have criticisms and refuse to share them: you're preventing error correction; and if you leave to *evade* criticism then you're not living by your values and philosophy.

The people listed on curi.us/2215 have participated in a *public* philosophy forum for which there are established norms that are not typical and are different from LW. FI views the act of truth-seeking differently. While our (LW/FI) schools of thought disagree on epistemology, both schools have norms that are related to their epistemic ideas. Ours look different.

It is unfair to punish someone for an act done *outside of your jurisdiction* under *different established norms*. If curi were putting LW people on his list, or publishing off-topic stuff at LW, sure, take moderation action. None of those things happened. In fact, the main reason you've provided for even *knowing* about that list *is via the sockpuppet you banned*.

Sockpuppet accounts are not used to make the lives of their victims *easier*. By banning curi along with Periergo *you have facilitated a (minor) victory for Periergo*. This is not right.

> a history of threats against people who engage with him

**THIS IS A SERIOUS ALLEGATION! PLEASE PROVIDE QUOTES**

curi prefers to discuss in public so they should be easy to find and verify. I have **never** known curi to threaten people. He may criticise them, but he does not threaten them.

Notably, curi has **consistently and loudly opposed violence and the initiation of force**, if people ask him to leave them alone (provided they haven't e.g. committed a crime against him), *he respects that*.

> being the historically most downvoted account in LessWrong history

This is not a reason to ban him, or anyone. Being *disliked* is not a reason for punishment.

> Those three things in combination, a propensity for long unproductive discussions, a history of threats against people who engage with him, and being the historically most downvoted account in LessWrong history, make me overall think it's better for curi to find other places as potential discussion venues.

"a history of threats against people who engage with him" **has not been established or substantiated**.

> he seems well-intentioned

I believe he is. As far as I can tell he's gone to great personal expense and trouble to keep FI alive **for no other reason than that his sense of morality demands it**. (That might be over simplifying things, but I think the essence is the same. I think he believes it is the **right** thing to do, and it is a **necessary** thing to do)

> I do also think his most recent series of posts and comments is overall much less bad than the posts and comments he posted a few years ago (where most of his negative karma comes from)

He has **gained** karma since returning to LW briefly. I think you should retract the part about him having negative karma b/c it misrepresents the situation. He could have made a new account and he would have *positive* karma now. That means your judgement is based **on past behaviour that was already punished**. This is **double jeopardy**.

Moreover, *curi is being punished for being honest and transparent*. If he *had* registered a new account and hidden his identity, would you have banned him *only* based on his actions this past 1-2 months? If you can say yes, then fine, but I don't think your argument holds in this case the only part that is verifiable is based on *your disapproval of his discussion methods*. Disagreeing with him is fine. I think a *proportionate* response would be a warning.

As it stands **no warning was given, and no attempt to learn his plans was made**. I think doing that would be proportionate and appropriate. A ban is not.

It is significant that **curi is not able to discuss this ban himself**. I am voluntarily doing this, of my own accord. **He was not able to defend himself or provide explanation**.

This is *especially* problematic as *you specifically say you think he was improving compared with his conduct several years ago*.

> I do also think his most recent series of posts and comments is overall much less bad than the posts and comments he posted a few years ago (where most of his negative karma comes from), but they still don't strike me as great contributions to the LessWrong canon

This alone is not enough. A warning is proportionate.

> are all low-karma

Unpopularity is no reason for a ban

> and I assign too high of a probability that old patterns will repeat themselves.

How is this different to pre-crime?

I think, given he had deliberately changed his modus operandi **weeks ago** and has *not posted in 13 days*, this is unfair and overly judgmental.

You go on to say:

> and I do think that was the right move, but I don't think it's enough to tip the scales on this issue.

What could curi have done differently which *would* have tipped the scales? If there is no acceptable thing he could have done, *why was action not taken weeks ago when he was active?*

I believe it is fundamentally unjust to delay action in this fashion without talking with him first. curi has an *incredibly long track record of discussion*, he is very open to it. He is not someone who avoids taking responsibility for things; quite the opposite. *If you had engaged him, I am confident he would have discussed things with you.*

> and to generally err on the side of curating our userbase pretty heavily and maintaining high standards.

It makes sense that you want to cultivate the best rational forums you can. I think that is a good goal. However, again, there were other, less extreme and more proportionate actions that could have been taken first, especially seeing as curi had changed his LW discussion policy and was inactive at the time of the ban.

We presumably disagree on the meaning of 'high standards', but I don't think that's particularly relevant here.

> This means making difficult moderation decision long before it is proven "beyond a reasonable doubt" that someone is not a net-positive contributor to the site.

There were *many* alternative actions you could have taken. For example, a 1-month ban. Restricting curi to only posting on his own shortform. Warning him of the circumstances and consequences under conditions, etc.

> In this case, I think it is definitely not proven beyond a reasonable doubt that curi is overall net-negative for the site

I'm glad you've mentioned this, but LW is not a court of law and you are not bound to those standards (and no punishment here is comparable to the punishment a court might distribute). I think there are *other good reasons* for reconsidering curi's ban.

> banning him might well be a mistake, but I think the probabilities weigh heavily enough in favor of the net-negative, and the worst-case outcomes are bad-enough, that on-net I think this is the right choice.

I think there is a critical point to be made here: **you could have taken no action at this time and put a mod-notification for activity on his account.** If he were to return and do something you deemed unacceptable, you could swiftly warn him. If he did it again, then a short-term ban. Instead, this is **a sledge-sized banhammer** used when other options were available. It is a decision that is now *publicly* on LW and indicates that LW is possibly intolerant of things *other* than irrationality. I don't think this is reflective of LW, and I think it reflects poorly on the moderation policies here. I don't think it needs to be that way, though.

I think a conditional unbanning (i.e. 1 warning, with the next action being a swift short ban) is an appropriate action for the moderation team to make, and I implore you to reconsider your decision.

If you think this is not appropriate, then I request you explain why 2 years is an appropriate length of time, and why Periergo and curi should have identical ban lengths.

The alternative to pacificity does not need to be so heavy handed.

I’d also like to note that curi has published a post on his blog regarding this ban; I read it after drafting this reply: http://curi.us/2381-less-wrong-banned-me]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 08:25:49 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18057 http://curi.us/comments/show/18057
curi Less Wrong Banned Me
> Also, LW didn't explain how they decided on ban lengths. 2.3 year bans don't correspond to solving the problems raised. Andy or I could easily wait and then do the stuff LW doesn't want. They aren't asking us to do anything to improve or to provide any evidence that we've reformed in some way. Nor are they asking us to figure out how we can address their concerns and prevent bad outcomes. They're just asking us to wait and, I guess, counting on us not to hold grudges. Problems don't automatically go away due to time passing.]]>
Fri, 18 Sep 2020 07:46:57 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18056 http://curi.us/comments/show/18056
Max Kaye Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems Fri, 18 Sep 2020 02:12:23 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18055 http://curi.us/comments/show/18055 curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
Girls makes video mocking coronavirus conspiracy theories. Deletes within a day because too mean.

Netflix screen records it and puts it in a documentary, with her handle. But they only include the part where she describes a conspiracy theory, without the mocking. They present her as advocating the thing she was attacking.]]>
Thu, 17 Sep 2020 18:03:26 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18054 http://curi.us/comments/show/18054
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019) Thu, 17 Sep 2020 08:49:20 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18053 http://curi.us/comments/show/18053 Max Max Microblogging
> Whether something is an error depends on your goal. If your goal is to get it correct, exploring works badly. If your goal is e.g. to get a rough overview, exploring works well.

I hadn't considered this. It makes sense. That said, I don't think it's what I had in mind.

The italicised bits of this example are a bit of an outline.

An example is the route-finding-app I made for my SSOL speedrun: *I spent way too long* trying to get the PNG of the map as a background image behind the lines and points that get drawn. *Eventually I managed it* (after lots of different attempts and integrating bits of code I found online). *The main difficulty* was that the original author of the (simple) travelling salesman program used Haskell's GLUT library which is basically a *lowish-level* OpenGL lib (and *I'm not familiar* with low level opengl stuff). There are higher-level ones that make this stuff easy. *I only really cared about the outcome but it took way longer than I wanted it to.*

I didn't read a manual or in depth tutorial, instead tried to fumble my way though. That is sometimes faster. But you can't tell stuff like 'how long is left till I finish?' and other basic questions.

In some ways my process involved exploring as you describe. I toyed with the idea of switching to a higher level library, looked for higher level stuff that exposed/integrated with the lower level stuff (no luck), and read bits from the middles of some advanced/in-depth tutorials.

But, crucially, the exploring was a side-effect of a particular problem with the other bits. I'd say my choice of method when trying to get the PNG to draw on-screen was exploratory learning, so it's different to exploration as you describe (though somewhat related).

Eventually I found some code someone had written that was close enough to what I needed to make it work. There was a weird interaction with other code I'd written tho (involving drawing text), that meant the first line of text was the right size but all the other lines didn't appear on screen. I managed to fix that but it took another like 30 min of experimentation.

A better method - in hindsight - would have been to just do a tutorial for Gloss (an alternative opengl-based library, but much higher level) and recode what I'd already written, and the opengl bits that came with the app originally. I could have gone through enough of a tutorial on Gloss given the amount of time I spent (like 5hrs+).

I did learn other stuff during that time, but I didn't feel like the time was particularly well spent. I don't expect to use OpenGL + Haskell much in future, so it's not like this is particularly useful outside this one thing I wanted to do.

In some ways I do this stuff for the challenge, like thinking "I should be able to do this, so I will", but I don't think "I should be able to do this, eventually, but should I bother, or should I look for a different way to do the same outcome?"]]>
Thu, 17 Sep 2020 03:10:23 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18052 http://curi.us/comments/show/18052
Max's postmortem on #18030 #18043 #18050 Max Max Microblogging
IR wrote (addressing curi)

> i feel very much like i have gotten some of these ideas from you, but i dont know which things youve wrote that i got these ideas from. and i dont know how much ive changed them.

I asked IR:

> Otherwise, does it matter how much you've changed your mind?

which didn't make much sense. Context: #18030 #18043 #18050

I think 2 main things happened:

1. I wasn't careful when reading IR's comment, so missed important details / relations. (i.e. he was talking about changes to curi's ideas in his head, not changes to his own pre-existing ideas in his head)
2. I've been thinking recently about how my own ideas have changed over the last ~3 months.

(1) allowed me to ~*skip between trains of thought* without noticing. I ended up thinking about IR's comment in terms of (2). My question to IR makes more sense in this light.

Beyond the issue of miscommunication in general, there's a bigger problem I should care about and deal with. That is: responding earnestly to someone (usually) takes longer than reading what came immediately before. If I spend time responding to what I *thought* they wrote (but I'm wrong about that) then it's, in essence, wasted time. Maybe there are some benefits, but they're lesser than would be otherwise.

To avoid this sort of thing the obvious answer is reading stuff better. That doesn't feel super actionable tho b/c just concentrating more on ~*everything* I read is not v efficient, esp if this sort of issue isn't super common.

I could try re-interpreting what the person says, like re-writing out what I thought they meant before replying, but how would I know if that were right/wrong? It might make it clearer to me if I was *unclear* about what they thought. It doesn't help if I think I know what they meant and that idea is clear and consistent in my mind (as it was in this case).

This issue was - I think - that the reference "these ideas" is somewhat ambiguous (or maybe just tricky). I think IR's full sentence (expanding "them") is something like:

> and i dont know how much ive changed [my version of ideas I got from your ideas relative to the original ideas you wrote]

So, this might be a better sketch of what to do:

- recognise tricky references (ideally automatically)
- when tricky references occur, expand them out (there could be more than one possibility)
- criticise the possibilities so I get just one
- if I can't and it's ambiguous still, ask a clarifying question (listing the possibilities too)
- optionally respond to each possibility if short enough or easy enough
- if I get one and it's reasonable I can just respond
- if I get one and I'm not sure it's reasonable, ask a clarifying question and respond at the same time

the next step in this action-plan-sketch is "recognise tricky references (ideally automatically)". **The first part of that is introducing a breakpoint (in the coding sense) on tricky references.** I can do this a bit by paying more attention to references in general, trying to quickly figure out what they mean (and eval-ing if I know what they mean), and taking action if I don't. If I'm not 10/10 confident on the reference I should stop and investigate.

Okay, this feels like a decent PM and plan. Feedback welcome/appreciated. It was a bit trickier than normal to figure out what to do because a plan like 'learn2read' didn't feel good enough.]]>
Thu, 17 Sep 2020 02:49:35 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18051 http://curi.us/comments/show/18051
Max Writing Update
Yeah, I misinterpreted what you originally said to mean ~*you didn't know how much your ideas had changed* via reading curi's ideas. But you meant *you don't know how much you've changed curi's ideas in your own mind since reading them*. (I think)

Makes a lot more sense now (and, to answer my own question, yeah it would matter how much you've changed them).

I think writing stuff like #18027 is a good way to help avoid ~corrupting them (like letting any particularly bad misconception stick around).

You could also make a bit of an index type thing where you track stuff you read that seems really good. Or if you find yourself thinking about it later that day/week/whatever, you could add it to a list.

That way, at the very least, you could go back to those sorta articles at times like this and re-read some or scan them for relevant stuff. It's not like a huge deal if you don't because a basic list is sorta like doing a search (but google doesn't show some of curi's articles so maybe it's no so much like search, depending)

I think writing notes / journaling is more useful.]]>
Thu, 17 Sep 2020 02:16:21 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18050 http://curi.us/comments/show/18050
Anonymous Deplatforming and Fraud Thu, 17 Sep 2020 01:20:47 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18049 http://curi.us/comments/show/18049 Anonymous Deplatforming and Fraud Thu, 17 Sep 2020 01:09:17 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18048 http://curi.us/comments/show/18048 Anonymous Media Matters Memo: Their Plans To Control All Political Speech Thu, 17 Sep 2020 00:13:12 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18047 http://curi.us/comments/show/18047 curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> When deciding where to work, mobile elites place a lot of weight on state tax rates, so little surprise.

> Doesn't happen overnight, so shortsighted voters barely notice as the trickle eventually floods the basement.

The tweet also has a picture of text from a study about this and a link about Ben Shapiro moving his company out of California and blaming the government.]]>
Wed, 16 Sep 2020 23:47:54 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18046 http://curi.us/comments/show/18046
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
![](https://curi.us/img/PRxNA3N97CXpdWh-1075x948.png)]]>
Wed, 16 Sep 2020 04:45:11 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18045 http://curi.us/comments/show/18045
curi Max Microblogging
Whether something is an error depends on your goal. If your goal is to get it correct, exploring works badly. If your goal is e.g. to get a rough overview, exploring works well.]]>
Wed, 16 Sep 2020 04:42:19 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18044 http://curi.us/comments/show/18044
internetrules Writing Update
no. doing atleast small amounts of writing seems good. like this sentence.

> Otherwise, does it matter how much you've changed your mind?

when i said:

> and i dont know how much ive changed them

i meant like: unintentionally altered. like i feel curi might have had multiple articles kind of relating to this that i have read. but over time i might have lost details and slightly altered the ideas unconsciously and made them worse.

i feel like you might have interpreted it differently. im not sure in what way it was different.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 23:52:41 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18043 http://curi.us/comments/show/18043
KneeAnon Open Discussion 2 (2019)
>> Ok.
>> Have you tried sport taping? It will not fix the cause of the knee issues but dependign on the knee issue it might reduce the pain for the time being. So might be of interest to add to the knee exercises if your knee exercises are helping.

>> Random videos of sport taping:
>> https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=sport+tape+knee&FORM=HDRSC3


> been meaning to try it for a while, finally got around to it. had a problem - i think cuz my legs are very hair the tape didn't stay in place and curled up.

Anon with knee issue from previous posts here. I decided to go by KneeAnon

I found the exercise in this video pretty demanding.

https://youtu.be/kB8OBFM_vWg

I liked the clear, straightforward explanation of what to do and variations. Too many YT exercise vids have lots of buildup and social stuff but this vid seemed okay as far as that]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 23:25:14 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18042 http://curi.us/comments/show/18042
Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019)
I also don't know if I got the idea of many dimensions vs. a spectrum from Yes or No and forgot the connection, or if I got it somewhere else.

My intuition is that I got it somewhere else, and didn't connect it to Yes or No because when I saw it there I already knew it.

But that could easily be incorrect because I don't remember getting it anywhere else, and I don't remember coming up with it on my own either.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 22:49:35 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18041 http://curi.us/comments/show/18041
Max Open Discussion 2 (2019)
This reminds me of some stuff in BoI about knowledge and life support.

I wonder how many people with an NPP have a health condition like this (esp type 1 diabetes), or require regular medication. Do they include things like keeping a supply of pigs on hand to manufacture insulin from? Or maybe they have a lab set up to handle GMO e.coli/yeast cultures (plus the filtration, etc)?

I suspect not.

I think part of the problem with over-prepping is that most "failure of civility" (FoC) situations are either big and man-made (nukes, bio-weapons) or big and not man-made (gamma ray burst, meteor, volcano). Prepping generally doesn't help with the *actual* problems (which are due to a lack of knowledge). I think if preppers where really really serious about this sort of stuff happening they'd put more effort in to preventing it (there'd be more evidence of that, too).

Personally I'd prefer to put work into preventing bad things, rather than ending up better off after bad things have happened. I can't solve every problem, but I might be able to contribute to some. If everyone does that (given the degree of specialization ppl have) it seems like a reasonable way for society to avoid FoC situations. And it lines up well with other goals we have, like having a specialized and/or rewarding job.

(Note: I think we can do a lot better avoid FoC situations. Resources dedicated to global warming alarmism is a good example. Better to spend it on e.g. figuring out how to better deal with forest fires; or even just educate ppl on stuff like why a bit of smoke a few times a year/decade from back-burning is a good idea. I'm not sure what the situation is in SW USA, but back-burning is one of the main preventative measures in Australia and ppl complain about it whenever it happens, despite it significantly reducing the risk of an uncontrolled fire destroying their house.)

I mention *over*-prepping particularly b/c stuff like having a go-bag seems reasonable; a large collection of firearms and military grade rations/supplies seems like a waste of money.

That said, I think that's one reason ppl get in to prepping and (some of them) have some of the associated fantasies: it involves stuff they like, e.g. shooting/guns, camping, low-tech high-utility tools and knowledge, a feeling of self sufficiency and competence, etc. Do preppers get much of those things elsewhere? If not, I think it makes sense for them to--in essence--have a shared hobby like this. It lets them do the stuff they like. Some of the associated context/fear-mongering is bad (and dishonest) but prepping does solve a real need for them; just not the one they claim it does.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 22:47:28 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18040 http://curi.us/comments/show/18040
Perimortem on intuitive response to #18037 Max Max Microblogging
(note: I think this is valid, and it's why I don't think my analogy was all bad)

I think that intuitive response is wrong though. It's subtly moving the goal posts (similar to e.g. a "strategic" clarification), and would be expressing an idea like: "we're both right, we should blame miscommunication". That'd be dishonest though, because:

a) I didn't see some limits of the analogy that I do now - this contradicts the idea of miscommunication being a primary issue (it's not important if curi and I understood each other fully in every way; we understood each other sufficiently), and

b) the reasonable next steps from a miscommunication would be to figure out how to avoid it. Some miscommunications are due to like ~inferential distance but that doesn't make sense here. The easiest solution (if it really was miscommunication) would have been for me to be clearer originally. If I advocated that (and claimed I could have done it) I'd be pretending like there wasn't ever an issue; at the very least my lack of clarity would be an issue. Maybe I couldn't have been clearer for lack of knowledge, in which case it'd still be dishonest--and evasive--to claim a miscommunication b/c that wasn't the problem.

I don't know any way that my intuitive response would have been good, which is the reason I wrote this perimortem.

I'm not sure if putting the response in this perimortem is like a roundabout (and/or cowardly) way of trying to say the idea anyway. However, I think writing the perimortem is a better alternative than making the titular reply, so I'm satisfied for now.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 22:23:43 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18039 http://curi.us/comments/show/18039
Max Max Microblogging Tue, 15 Sep 2020 22:23:15 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18038 http://curi.us/comments/show/18038 curi Max Microblogging Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:56:26 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18037 http://curi.us/comments/show/18037 Max Max Microblogging
> time is somewhat different in that you can't save it for later. but, like money, you can spend time on things with later benefits (investment rather than consumption).

I'm not sure if we disagree on something or not. I think we roughly agree but I'm thinking of time spent in a specific way (just a subset of the time we get). For context, I read curi.us/2378 a few minutes before having that idea. I liked these bits particularly (and liked being reminded of them)

> capital goods, not consumption goods

> accumulation of capital increasing the productivity of labor

I think time can be sometimes seen like money and other capital goods. How do people save money? One option is a bank account, but that performs poorly, and is sort of like investing in loans/debt, anyway. Better investors save money by spending it *on capital goods* (and they choose the goods). After they spend money, they don't have it any more, but they have something else they can exchange for money later.

I think *time spent on learning* is similar, but not all time spent is similar. Granted, there's no bank account for time, but you can spend time now so you get more of it later -- that's one of the reasons to learn and think, you - in essence - get more time in the future because you avoid making mistakes or being slower than you could be. In that sense it's like investing in productive capacity. There's a higher upfront cost, but you get a higher capacity and larger RoI than the alternatives. The choice to spend time learning ineffectively seems to me like spending some chunk of your factory budget on hookers and cocaine; fun at the time, but it's in opposition to the main goal.

Similarly, by analogy, learning skills that don't end up helping you, but learning them effectively, is like market risk. Not every investment makes a profit, but diversification helps, and the better you are the less you waste.

Time spent on things like downtime is different from normal money; that's more like $100 of food stamps you both get once a week and have to spend the same week. You might only be able to spend it at low-quality grocers, but avoiding spending it only hurts you.

An alternative thing about spending time on learning is trying to spend downtime doing pseudo-learning stuff. That's more like trying to invest your $100 food stamp (not going to go well). I find trying to do ~learning stuff when I'm tired etc. often means I stay up later, sleep worse, and have less high-capacity time for important things.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:53:48 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18036 http://curi.us/comments/show/18036
curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
Multiple dimensions that don't convert into a single, unified spectrum/unit/ranking is one of my themes of Yes or No Philosophy. (idk if you had that connection in mind). I agree it applies here. I think your list is a good example.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:33:27 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18035 http://curi.us/comments/show/18035
curi Max Microblogging Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:29:23 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18034 http://curi.us/comments/show/18034 Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019) > *A Failure of Civility* categorizes societal conditions on a spectrum from "Normal Civility" to a "Failure of Civility"

Sounds bad.

One reason it sounds lake a bad way to think is that I don't need to prep for "societal conditions" directly, but only insofar as they may affect my personal conditions. And that varies a lot.

For example if I'm diabetic and need regular insulin that spoils without refrigeration, I'm in deep shit if I'm not prepared for my electricity to be off for a few days. Or if no new insulin supplies are available for a few weeks. That's true for me even if the rest of society is functioning approximately normally, there's plenty of food & water, police and courts functioning etc.

Conversely, if there's a severe, long-term water shortage but I've got a *secret* water well in my basement, I may be fine even though most of my society is quite desperate.

Another reason it sounds like a bad way to think is that both societal and individual conditions exist across many relevant dimensions and can't be adequately represented by a single spectrum. Some of the dimensions I have in mind are:
- Physical infrastructure (how damaged?)
- Information infrastructure (how comprehensive? how available?)
- Area (are problems happening only local, or national or global?)
- Supply status (are there lots of available supplies or are there major shortages?)
- Legitimacy (is there consensus on who is legitimately the government?)
- Tyranny (is the government trying to oppress some people?)
- Health status (are people basically healthy or are many people sick or injured?)
- Outlook (is it reasonably expected for things to get better soon or not for a long time?)
- Economy (do people have a functioning money and price system?)
- Conflicting ideologies (are people trying to impose ideologies on each other, or just trying to live?)

Preparing to handle even quite dire conditions on one dimension does not necessarily prepare you to handle even moderately disrupted conditions on others.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:28:05 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18033 http://curi.us/comments/show/18033
Inefficient learning is like eating the seed corn Max Max Microblogging
Sometimes I prioritize the wrong thing. I'll spend time on fun (and maybe even slightly useful) 'intellectual' activities like coding, instead of doing more structured, efficient, and goal directed learning. That's like eating the seed corn.

It's like: I end up fed, and I still have some seed corn left over, but the harvest isn't going to be as good. What's the point of learning and thinking if not for the harvest?

indirectly related: #18025 and https://curi.us/2378-eliezer-yudkowsky-is-a-fraud]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:22:09 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18032 http://curi.us/comments/show/18032
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> Ok.
> Have you tried sport taping? It will not fix the cause of the knee issues but dependign on the knee issue it might reduce the pain for the time being. So might be of interest to add to the knee exercises if your knee exercises are helping.

> Random videos of sport taping:
> https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=sport+tape+knee&FORM=HDRSC3


been meaning to try it for a while, finally got around to it. had a problem - i think cuz my legs are very hair the tape didn't stay in place and curled up.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 21:05:55 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18031 http://curi.us/comments/show/18031
Max Writing Update
> for me, and mb other ppl as well: if i set my minimum to high like with exercise, i might be able to do it for like a week, but then i might just give up and not try it anymore.

I like this idea, and yeah it works like that for me too.

Minimum goals aren't something I do atm.

> i feel very much like i have gotten some of these ideas from you, but i dont know which things youve wrote that i got these ideas from. and i dont know how much ive changed them.

I have that feeling sometimes too. It might not come from something curi explicitly said -- like it could be b/c you're reading -> learning -> doing creative work -> reprocessing ideas. Part of the processing is like establishing connections to other ideas and your life. That would explain why it's highly compatible with curi's relevant articles, but also why you can't put a finger on it. could have come from elsewhere, too, ofc.

> and i dont know how much ive changed them.

Do you write much down when you start thinking about something? Even a little bit will help you remember what you thought and give you something to reflect on (which helps remember more, too).

Otherwise, does it matter how much you've changed your mind?]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 20:59:08 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18030 http://curi.us/comments/show/18030
curi Writing Update Tue, 15 Sep 2020 20:43:58 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18029 http://curi.us/comments/show/18029 Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019) > Whereas if better knowing the truth led to doing actually-significant work, or to some better path to getting money/status/other-values, then it'd be easier to evaluate.

Makes sense. That hasn't happened yet, and I don't know if it will.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 20:43:09 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18028 http://curi.us/comments/show/18028
internetrules Writing Update
having a minimum goal which you can easily do seems good.

for me, and mb other ppl as well: if i set my minimum to high like with exercise, i might be able to do it for like a week, but then i might just give up and not try it anymore.

having it so you can consistently do something and have it be a part of your live seems good. then u can build off of that if u want to go further

it would be a lot easier to do 20 pushups a day if your already doing 5 pushups a day instead of 0 pushups a day.

same would work with books and maybe anything i think. like if u want to read 5 chapters of a book per day, it would prob be way easier to start from 1 chapter a day, than it would to start from 0 chapters a day.

i feel very much like i have gotten some of these ideas from you, but i dont know which things youve wrote that i got these ideas from. and i dont know how much ive changed them.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 20:36:09 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18027 http://curi.us/comments/show/18027
curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
I agree.

> Makes sense. It's not the kind of fantasy I find appealing though. I don't feel like I've missed out on anything good by rejecting it.

Yeah, I think it's bad.

> I haven't fully and successfully criticized the idea that I'd have been better off maintaining the fantasy that known methods were capable of producing AGI.

It depends significantly on what you do instead.

You're describing an option where you wouldn't have done anything very significant (re global optima), but would have done some stuff that got you money and social status, and which could be fun/clever to do (local optima) when you didn't realize how useless it was.

If you compare that to e.g. a job/life where you more honestly don't do much, and make less money and have lower social status, I could see why you'd remain conflicted. Where are the positive benefits from that extra truth and honesty? Certainly there are benefits to being a better more honest thinker, but if you don't get *concrete* benefits then it's easier to have doubts.

Whereas if better knowing the truth led to doing actually-significant work, or to some better path to getting money/status/other-values, then it'd be easier to evaluate.

It's also more clearly beneficial if you become a better and more honest thinker about *all* or *many* issues, and easier to doubt the benefits if you think better about AGI specifically (leading to a lost career path, but not to any AGI process) while *not* thinking much better about other stuff.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 17:30:33 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18026 http://curi.us/comments/show/18026
Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019) > This reminds me of people with ideas, like Solmononoff Induction, or their pet theory on how to make an AGI, or tons of other sophisticated-sounding philosophy stuff. They have key unaddressed flaws that render their view as a whole near useless. But they ignore that and view themselves as doing their best and think that's good. They don't want to consider that reality doesn't grade on a curve and there's no A for effort (themes emphasized by EY in RAZ btw), and you need to look at objectively whether your stuff will actually accomplish your goals, and if your goals are out of reach with known methods too bad.

Regarding AGI, I think it's possible for currently known and applied methods to meet some common but unstated goals like:
- Be seen as or feel like you're working on something important.
- Make a bunch of money by supplying the market's demand for investments making socially credible claims of doing world-changing work in tech.
- Write fun or useful programs which aren't AGI but can fool most people about being meaningfully closer than previous efforts.

In meeting such goals it seems to me that belief, requiring some combination of ignorance + self dishonesty, would be helpful.

> The purpose of the Neighborhood Protection Plan is fantasy.

Makes sense. It's not the kind of fantasy I find appealing though. I don't feel like I've missed out on anything good by rejecting it.

Whereas with AGI I still have the idea I missed out on opportunities to achieve the goals I listed above and be happy with those results despite not actually succeeding at AGI. I haven't fully and successfully criticized the idea that I'd have been better off maintaining the fantasy that known methods were capable of producing AGI.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 16:57:07 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18025 http://curi.us/comments/show/18025
n Open Discussion 2 (2019)
Ok.
Have you tried sport taping? It will not fix the cause of the knee issues but dependign on the knee issue it might reduce the pain for the time being. So might be of interest to add to the knee exercises if your knee exercises are helping.

Random videos of sport taping:
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=sport+tape+knee&FORM=HDRSC3]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 12:41:00 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18024 http://curi.us/comments/show/18024
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> What have you done to directly try to address the knee issues themselves? If you haven’t tried to fix the things *causing* you knee issues addressing this might be a good thing to do first. Try to see if any of these things help:

> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kbe_DqMJfzg

> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YYb9vyj6zQ

> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iODncOLJnk

I did in-person physical therapy sessions for a while recently and have been doing exercises from that + trying other stuff I've found on YT. I am familiar with the videos you linked. I've been working on this issue for several months.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 08:54:54 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18023 http://curi.us/comments/show/18023
Mini post.m on post formatting Max Max Microblogging
I wrote the above in vscode (posted also on my site in a new category), so wrote it like normal markdown - using linebreaks to make sentences clearer, easier to read/write while editing, etc. ([How the paragraphs are meant to look](https://xertrov.github.io/fi/posts/2020-09-15-a-thought-on-overreaching-and-greatness/))

The solution is I'll need to check for that beforehand. I could write a short script to strip linebreaks between consecutive sentences, but not sure that's worth it.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 08:34:47 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18022 http://curi.us/comments/show/18022
Overreaching, greatness, and ~meta-knowledge Max Max Microblogging One of the things that makes them great is ~*meta-knowledge*, like knowledge about context regarding their *actions*.

I watched a bit of a recent [Sea of Thieves WR speedrun](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5T0rSi6IhA) - particularly the events during 7:25:00 -> 9:00:00 (it's like a 21hr run).
They lost like 1:20:00 from a choice to steal another crews loot b/c that crew chased them for a decent while.
A third ship joined in a bit, too.
Near the end of this chase (8:49:00) they spot another sloop (ship of 2 crew) and one guy jokes about taking this new ship's loot.
The two speedrunners have been talking about what to do at this point, and particularly risk/rewards tradeoffs for how to sell the loot.
The two guys are good enough to - ordinarily - take on another sloop no problem.
after all, they just fought off 2 other crews of sizes 4 and 3.
their choice not to go after the sloop (and the humor of the joke) is based in this like ~*meta-knowledge~ type stuff.

it doesn't matter how great you are at something, even the best ppl in the world know there are some challenges they won't win (or it's too much a risk), and the choose to back off. they're not OP just because they're the best in the world.

Generalising this means something like: the ~meta-knowledge is *at least* as important as the knowledge about how to do the skill well (which is more like technical knowledge). Or, at least it's that important at high levels.

Basically, this is like "don't overreach", or rather, if you do overreach, don't expect to *still* be great. the ability to pick challenges is part of the reason great people are great. sorta like flying *close*, but not *too close*, to the sun.

It also relates to knowing your limits, either when something is too big a task or when (and what) to learn before doing it.

This offers a bit more clarity for an ongoing conflict of mine - something to do with learning styles and methods. I intuitively think that 'exploratory' style learning (with a high(er) error rate) has benefits. and I mean it's not as bad as doing nothing at all (I guess it could be sometimes), but it's not as efficient as directed and non-overreaching learning.

I think part of the reason I have this conflict is in essence thinking too much of my own skills. That's true even tho, I went through a few ~breakpoints early on in the *Tutoring Max* series. (Breakpoints might not be the right word, but I think there are like significant points of increased ~reach when we adopt new and better ideas about ourselves)]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 08:30:37 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18021 http://curi.us/comments/show/18021
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
What have you done to directly try to address the knee issues themselves? If you haven’t tried to fix the things *causing* you knee issues addressing this might be a good thing to do first. Try to see if any of these things help:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kbe_DqMJfzg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YYb9vyj6zQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iODncOLJnk]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 04:39:01 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18020 http://curi.us/comments/show/18020
Prepper Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> I think it's important to have a good grasp of the possible scenarios...

*A Failure of Civility* categorizes societal conditions on a spectrum from "Normal Civility" to a "Failure of Civility":

> The Authors define *Normal Civility* as the time when there is a functioning effort of law and order, where a judicial system is the civilized method of dispute resolution between people, when there is a functioning commerce, when there is a working government maintaining essential services and when people are not fighting over Critical Life Supplies and Services [particularly food and water] to sustain their and their family’s daily existence.

> A *Catastrophic Event* is an event that will interrupt your normal life and that of the majority of people around you... it may progress to cause extreme suffering and death. [A few of the 20 or so examples they give include:] Financial collapse ... [Nuclear or solar] EMP... pandemic...

> The Authors define an *Area Emergency* as the condition after which a Catastrophic Event has occurred, but Critical Life Supplies and Services are available to all people just as they were during Normal Civility. There may be damage to property, infrastructure damage, or commerce and everyday life may be temporarily disrupted.

> The Authors define a *Crisis* as Critical Life Supplies and Services being either rationed or controlled but are sufficient for all people of the area affected or assistance from outside areas will prevent a Long Term Crisis until enabling the return to Normal Civility. This is a worse condition than an Area Emergency where all Critical Life Supplies and Services are available as they were during Normal Civility without disruption.

> The Authors define a *Long Term Crisis* as when the duration of the Crisis has begun to exhaust the Critical Life Supplies and Services. What Critical Life Supplies and Services exist are being rationed but reduced in amount below normal demand. There are shortages or an insufficient amount for some or all people of the affected area before further Critical Life Supplies and Services can be obtained. This is a worse condition than a Crisis where all Critical Life Supplies and Services are being either rationed or controlled but are sufficient for all people of the area affected.

> The Authors define A *Failure of Civility* as the condition in which some or all Critical Life Supplies and Services are either insufficient or exhausted for the majority of people.

Note: most emphasis in the original was lost in my copy & paste; however, I have retained the emphasis on each term as it was being defined.]]>
Tue, 15 Sep 2020 02:14:36 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18018 http://curi.us/comments/show/18018
curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
This reminds me of people with ideas, like Solmononoff Induction, or their pet theory on how to make an AGI, or tons of other sophisticated-sounding philosophy stuff. They have key unaddressed flaws that render their view as a whole near useless. But they ignore that and view themselves as doing their best and think that's good. They don't want to consider that reality doesn't grade on a curve and there's no A for effort (themes emphasized by EY in RAZ btw), and you need to look at objectively whether your stuff will actually accomplish your goals, and if your goals are out of reach with known methods too bad.

---

Overall I liked and agreed with lots of your comments Andy D. Seems like a reasonable and competent pov to me.

Although I think it's interesting in some ways and not all wrong, I think prepper stuff is mostly pretty bad and dumb, and a lot is related to dumb fantasies. And if you're going to have escapist fantasies, i suggest reading novels where some *good* things happen instead of fantasizing about disasters and spending a bunch of money on the matter too.

The purpose of the Neighborhood Protection Plan is fantasy. You socialize with other people fantasizing about how badass you'll be protecting your homes with military tactics. It is reasonably realistic to get some other guys to share those fantasies and hang out with you, and some additional people to pay lip service to it, especially since preppers do not live in random places. While their neighbors will be pretty average in lots of ways, like you talk about, they will tend to have neighbors who are more open to prepping or combat training, at least as a fantasy. So while it could easily fail, I think a decent number of book readers could get a few buddies to agree to read the book, and to talk about stuff over beers, etc. And then the book readers will lie to themselves that they have an NPP and enjoy the social legitimacy for their prepper ideas and be happy.

Then you can all read books about how preppers save the day (with specific scenes designed for each prep to come in handy) and save all the women in town from the rape dungeon (actual plot from a wish fulfillment book that the Prepper poster recommended above) and feel even better about yourselves.

*EMP: Equipping Modern Patriots: A Story of Survival*:

> Yesterday morning we set an ambush and captured Mr. Andrews and his men on their way into town and we marched them back to his retreat to rescue this man's daughter. We found her in his basement, chained to a bed along with six other young girls who had been abused and raped repeatedly over the last months. I cannot describe or adequately put into words the atrocious conditions these young women were found in. Along with the aid of Sheriff Branson, we have brought Mr. Andrews and his men before you to stand trial and face the consequences of their actions.

Themes like "once the police go away, lots of people become rapists" and "only preppers can protect effectively against rapists" and "none of the preppers will become rapists themselves" are pretty common in prepper books.]]>
Mon, 14 Sep 2020 20:09:05 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18017 http://curi.us/comments/show/18017
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019) Mon, 14 Sep 2020 18:52:45 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18016 http://curi.us/comments/show/18016 Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019) > Fire prevention is apparently a big deal post-SHTF.

It's a big deal all the time.

I don't understand why people routinely live in wood frame houses when the premium for masonry is relatively modest. A brick house + stainless steel screens & a tile or metal roof is not fire proof but is way less prone to intentional, natural, or accidental burning than wood frame construction and bare windows. Not to mention termites!

Fire extinguishers are cheap and various types should be plentiful around the house, checked / recharged regularly.

Don't use natural gas, or know where the shutoff is & how to shut it off, and do so whenever fire is a concern.

Make sure your electric breakers are working, appropriately sized, and are easy to shut off when needed.

> how you need to have a 24/7 watch over your perimeter

I think this is true if your perimeter is too large and permeable for passive threat detection and response (certainly anything bigger than a house) -or- if you are a target of choice rather than a target of opportunity.

I think I'm relatively safe without 24/7 watch if my perimeter is my house, it's difficult to get in silently, getting in noisily without very special equipment is slow enough for me to respond, and no one is targeting me in particular.

> It says one of the critical things for long-term survival is having a water source in or near your location.

Ya, but you need to match that source to your planned time frame and processing capability. A 40 gallon water heater has enough for about a week if you're only drinking and cooking with it, and requires zero processing. A 10,000 gallon swimming pool with a cover will last for months but requires filtration capable of removing both chemicals and biological contamination. The effectiveness of rain barrels depends on the location and season, but also require filtration for biologicals. Natural sources like streams and wells are unlimited, but probably require filtration and are quite scarce in some locations.

> For example, it talks about how when you need to move as a team when people are shooting at you, you have some people fire at the enemy so the enemy has to stay behind cover, while other people move, then once the other people reach some cover, they fire at the enemy so people in the first group can move, and so on.

Lol the book should be talking about how to avoid situations where people are shooting. And if that fails, how to avoid situations where people are shooting at you. And if that fails, how to avoid situations where you need to move as a team when people are shooting at you. If you get to the point of needing to move from cover while people are shooting at you, you failed really really badly and your risk of death is super high.]]>
Mon, 14 Sep 2020 18:29:59 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18015 http://curi.us/comments/show/18015
Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> the best way to survive an SHTF scenario for many people living in urban or suburban areas is to band together in advance and create what the book calls a Neighborhood Protection Plan (NPP).

IMO this sounds like a good example of an extremely costly and probably ineffective prep.

Unless you take extraordinary steps your neighbors are, for practical purposes, random with an average knowledge, skill, principle, and moral level not much different from the average in the population as a whole. Which is good in some respects - they're unlikely to be murderers, rapists, or outright thieves. But they *are* likely to be shallow, dishonest (to themselves as well as others), gossips, fickle, lazy, have low standards, lots of bad political ideas, tons of family drama, etc.

If you want your neighbors to be significantly better people than average you have to pay a lot of location premium for the privilege, especially in urban or suburban areas. A house in a legitimately (no bullshit) great neighborhood costs at least 2X, probably more like 4X-10X, what a house of similar size and amenities in an average neighborhood costs. Such neighborhoods are also hard to find, since price alone is not a reliable indicator. Lots of pricy neighborhoods select for authoritarian aesthiticists, conspicuous consumers, social status seekers, or some combination thereof rather than people who are legitimately better than average at the kinds of things you care about in prepping for SHTF.

So you either spend a lot of time & research & money to acquire a spot in a significantly better than average neighborhood, or you get average.

NPP in an average neighborhood is just flat out not going to happen IMO. You won't get a critical mass of people to actually commit to what it takes over time. When it comes to stuff like this average people are a bunch of flakes and morons.

Let's suppose you bear all the costs to get better than average neighbors though. Now you talk to your above-average neighbors enough for them to start trusting you (maybe you like that sort of activity, but I don't and consider it another big cost). You eventually bring up this NPP. Since they're better than average neighbors, we'll assume they don't mostly just laugh at you, or decide they'd rather spend the money on booze, or figure your interest in the end times makes you a great potential convert to their particular religious sect. They actually talk seriously about the NPP, and maybe some agree to do some stuff in advance beyond what ex: Neighborhood Watch already does.

Then you gotta do the prepping stuff. I'm not sure what the author specifically recommends, but if you don't train together regularly you'll be ineffective when the time comes to act. You gotta keep this training up regularly, for years, or it goes stale. You gotta coordinate among all the things going on in your life, and all your neighbor's lives. You gotta bring in new neighbors who move in when others move out. It better be, at least, a significant ongoing hobby.

Suppose you do all that then the SHTF. Time to put all your planning and preparation into action. Except, neighbor Joe who has half the barricade supplies was on vacation when it happened and the person he had watering his plants (with the key) doesn't live in the neighborhood and doesn't know about the NPP. And Steve and Mary's son is recently woke and thinks it's totally wrong to seal off the neighborhood so is going to secretly undermine the activity any way he can. So you gotta watch him like an outsider while permitting him to be an insider. Or (somehow?) kick the whole family out? And Bob's cousin lives just two blocks over and wants in, but Lou knows that guy is his brother-in-law's boss and is definitely an asshole. So now Bob and Lou aren't speaking. Meanwhile Ray's wife Sue never liked the idea of an NPP to begin with but silently went along figuring it would never matter. Now that SHTF has actually happened she just wants to leave for her mother's place, and if she leaves Ray (the paramedic) leaves too. And Jack is still recovering from the gall bladder surgery he had last week, so can't do his expected jobs. And between all those absences there aren't enough people to man the perimeter and we have no medic. And so on.

There's a real good chance that whatever adversely affected the local cops to the point of rendering them wholly ineffective is also going to adversely affect the members of your NPP.

In any realistic SHTF scenario I think there's going to be too much damage and personal drama for any reasonably sized neighborhood to be effective at much. Military units composed of healthy 20-somethings separated from family commitments, wearing uniforms, training and working together as a full time job struggle with unit effectiveness in things like maintaining a secure perimeter 24/7. Even an above average neighborhood is going to be a basket case. IMO.

Plus your neighborhood perimeter is now a big, obvious target. Your whole neighborhood becomes a target of choice. Must be lots of goodies in there if all those people coordinated and planned well enough to set all that up.

I think you have *your* house, hopefully *your* immediate family members, and that's all you can expect to rely on unless you are part of some kind of intentional prepper community (which won't be in an urban area to begin with).

Make sure that, externally, your house doesn't look much different from anyone else's house. You want to look a little more secure than average so you don't get a bunch of opportunistic probes but otherwise look like one of the hundreds of other houses in the area, so that no one has reason to target you in particular or think you have a bunch of stuff worth taking.

In terms of resources: How much time & money could you put into selecting and unobtrusively fortifying and stocking a house in an average neighborhood, and equipping and training your family, for what it costs to move to a neighborhood where your neighbors might possibly maybe be able to be effective and then coordinating things for years to try to maximize that?

I think the answer is: you could do a ton of stuff to your house, buy a bunch of weapons, take classes for you and your family, get a bug-out vehicle, tons of supplies, etc. and have money and time left over compared to trying to have an actually effective strategy involving neighbors.]]>
Mon, 14 Sep 2020 18:25:50 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18014 http://curi.us/comments/show/18014
Andy Dufresne Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> SHTF scenario

There are many different SHTF scenarios. What works well in one doesn't necessarily help much in others.

I think it's important to have a good grasp of the possible scenarios, what would and wouldn't work in them, the costs of various forms of preparation, and which of the workable strategies you're willing and able to prepare to implement.

Here's what I personally think about at a high level.

There are some relatively mild scenarios where I just want my normal life to be able to handle them with minimal or no changes. Crime, lack of timely or effective police response, some supply shortages / interruptions, and the rioting and burning that's happened in many cities (including a limited amount in mine) are all in this category. COVID itself has also turned out to be mostly in this category.

There are some relatively short duration infrastructure, supply and services disruption scenarios I prep for. Natural disasters are the model (tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes), though some man-made scenarios also fit here (some kinds of terrorism and conflict).

There are some longer term localized disruption and danger scenarios for which my primary prep is the ability to leave the area in relative speed and comfort, with places to go already pre-arranged. My primary unaddressed vulnerability here is with scenarios that would prevent me from leaving safely while self-protecting with only relatively normal arms (pistols, rifles, etc). I don't prep anything more for that because of cost reasons.

There are some political scenarios such as oppressive / totalitarian government for which my prep is to leave for a different political jurisdiction in which I have residency rights. Again the main vulnerability here is something that would prevent me from leaving. Which could happen but is difficult to prepare for beyond some basics like having different forms of money and different exit modes planned.

There are some economic scenarios such as hyper-inflation, currency crisis, unemployment, major taxation, or property confiscation which I am, to a good extent, prepared for. Any of it that goes on long enough / bad enough to sink me economically would almost certainly cause enough follow-on problems first that the scenario would cease to be primarily economic in nature.

There are some severe scenarios for which I have preps to avoid some of the immediate impacts but for which my long term approach would have to be determined after the event and my preps would realistically be inadequate. Targeted assault, EMP and nuclear detonation are the main ones in this category.

My list of prepared scenarios *does not* include widespread failure of civilization. For some people, that is most or all of what they mean by "SHTF scenario", and since I don't prep for that they wouldn't even classify me as a prepper. Which is fine - I'm not attached to the label.

I don't prep for widespread failure of civilization for two related reasons:
- Cost: I believe preparing for such a scenario is necessarily either ineffective or extremely costly. Ineffective preparation is mostly wasted (you prepared and the scenario occurred but your preps didn't actually help much). I think most preppers are in the ineffective category. They have key unaddressed vulnerabilities that render the rest of their preps near useless. Some peppers do plan a lot, spend a bunch of resources and could be effective for some reasonable period of time in a civilization failure scenario, but I think they're a small minority.
- Preference: Most of the widespread civilization failure scenarios result in long term life situations I regard as a fate worse than death or something nearly so. As a result, the value to me of surviving, say, a tornado greatly exceeds the value to me of surviving a widespread civilizational failure. So even if they were equally likely (which I don't think they are), I'm willing to put many more resources towards surviving tornados than I am towards surviving civilization failure.

Because prepping for widespread failure of civilization is both high cost and low value to me, I don't do it, and I explicitly recognize that I am not prepared for a widespread failure of civilization.]]>
Mon, 14 Sep 2020 17:11:57 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18013 http://curi.us/comments/show/18013
A Failure of Civility Prepper Open Discussion 2 (2019)
The book talks about lots of things, including:

- how you need to have a 24/7 watch over your perimeter
- how many people are required to defend a location, depending on whether you have an isolated farmhouse or a larger section of a neighborhood (even for an isolated farmhouse they say you need at least 6 people)
- how to block all but one of the entrances to the area inside your "protective perimeter"
- how to approach your neighbors to get the ball rolling for the NPP before the SHTF

The book has one chapter on securing a region in a low-rise residential neighborhood and another chapter on securing a high-rise building.

It says one of the critical things for long-term survival is having a water source in or near your location.

Fire prevention is apparently a big deal post-SHTF. So is disease prevention, which requires sanitation measures like burying dead bodies deep enough and safely disposing of urine and fecal matter. Also, any outsider who comes to your NPP is potentially a vector for disease.

The book has a lot of info, is clearly written in simple language, and is well organized. It does a great job explaining stuff in a way a beginner can understand, without overloading the reader with info. For example, it talks about how when you need to move as a team when people are shooting at you, you have some people fire at the enemy so the enemy has to stay behind cover, while other people move, then once the other people reach some cover, they fire at the enemy so people in the first group can move, and so on. I guess when a guy shouts "cover me" in the movies, that's what he's referring to: fire at the enemy to impair their ability to fire so the guy can move. I never knew that before.

One of the authors, Jack Lawson, just came out with what seems to be an updated version of the book, called the Civil Defense Manual ( http://civildefensemanual.com ). I ordered it.]]>
Mon, 14 Sep 2020 04:33:02 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18012 http://curi.us/comments/show/18012
curi Praise from David Deutsch Mon, 14 Sep 2020 00:58:57 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18011 http://curi.us/comments/show/18011 curi Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong
> I spent a lot of time putting together a simplified version of their discussion. But it's pretty long, and I know you asked for a sentence or two.

Feel free to post the long version. I can skim or do targeted search for something relevant. Also I'd still like some specific sentences.

> While the conversation is not a paragon of rationale conversation, I think it is serviceable.

Why did you pick it? I was looking for an impressive example with e.g. progress on improving human knowledge, not *sometimes people go from egregiously straw manning each other to not doing that and getting closer to some well known, standard positions*.

> If I agree, which I have, that the Internet has a shortage of rational conversation partners, then would you want to move on to discussing solutions?

I think it's worth exploring this more first.

> I agree that people sometimes refuse to discuss further, refuse to answer a question or criticism, and refuse to think about an idea. I also agree these types of behaviors are not productive and would categorize them as irrational. I also think it's fair to say those types of reactions end the discussion rather than make it less efficient.

I think most discussions are in serious danger of this happening if continued in certain ways, including the SH/Woke discussion: let me take over talking for either of them and make a bunch of correct arguments, and they'd refuse to continue. The conversation only continued as much as it did due to the limited nature of the arguments made (which may be due to lack of skill and knowledge rather than suppression, idk).

If you agree with that, the next issue to consider is what things cause conversations to end, and what don't. Where are the limits and what are their causes? And sorting out the rational and irrational limits, e.g. people will stop discussing if you're just flaming but that's OK (there are edge cases where e.g. someone is accused of flaming but doesn't think they're flaming, but never mind, I don't think we need to worry about those currently).]]>
Mon, 14 Sep 2020 00:21:28 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18010 http://curi.us/comments/show/18010
gigahurt Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong
I spent a lot of time putting together a simplified version of their discussion. But it's pretty long, and I know you asked for a sentence or two. Rather than give a sentence or two or inundate you with a huge amount of content to sift through, I'll explain what I see as beneficial about this conversation:

They began out of sync on the topic and also on understanding each other. The main point of contention seemed to be the criteria or standard by which one can categorize a statement as racist or not. At the beginning of the conversation they both had caricature-like views of the other's position. WA thought Sam required the person declaring themselves as a racist as the only admissible evidence. Sam thought WA believed anything that could be construed as racist should be construed as racist. By the end both had gained a clearer understanding of the others perspective. Sam conceded that with sufficient context assumptions can be made. WA conceded that cancel culture is too aggressive. There was even some error correction. Specifically, Sam's interpretation of the Laura Ingram quote. While the conversation is not a paragon of rationale conversation, I think it is serviceable.

> I agree that people don't need to be perfect. But irrationality sometimes leads to things like refusing to discuss further, refusing to answer a question or criticism, or refusing to think about an idea. It often does stop discussions rather than making them less efficient. Do you agree?

I agree that people sometimes refuse to discuss further, refuse to answer a question or criticism, and refuse to think about an idea. I also agree these types of behaviors are not productive and would categorize them as irrational. I also think it's fair to say those types of reactions end the discussion rather than make it less efficient.

If I agree, which I have, that the Internet has a shortage of rational conversation partners, then would you want to move on to discussing solutions? I am okay remaining on the current topic, changing to solutions, ending the conversation, or revisiting leaf nodes of the conversation tree we both find interesting.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 23:56:46 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18009 http://curi.us/comments/show/18009
Anne B Learning Updates Thread
> > I watched all the curi videos that came out and took notes on them

> Why don't you share notes?

I didn’t think of it. I’ll consider posting my notes in the future.

My notes would be different if I knew I was going to post them. I’d take more notes. I’d omit some personal stuff that I thought of in response to the videos. I’d think more about the videos. I’d go back more to make sure I heard and understood things correctly. I don’t know if I want to spend more time on the videos than I have been.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 23:19:59 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18008 http://curi.us/comments/show/18008
curi curi's Microblogging
it argues the value from edu is at least 1/3 signaling and the author suspects >50%, mb 80%

he says 3 types of signaling: intelligence, conscientiousness, and conformity

IQ tests only cover the first, so not good enough

employers want diligent workers who are team players and put up with boredom

he says if someone makes it thru school it signals at least: good in 1 trait + ok in other 2

he’s an academic. Bryan Caplan. kinda libertarian but non-Austrian economist. flawed guy. friends and colleagues with Robin Hanson.

he says other professors have disagreed with him a fair amount re edu but not minded. he hasn’t been attacked as a heretic.

i believe that was his experience. i think he’s treated differently due to his social status and he gets away with stuff, and most ppl, including academics, can’t get away with it.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 19:42:27 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18007 http://curi.us/comments/show/18007
curi Learning Updates Thread
> I think the biggest win was this: comparing now to the past, I now view learning with the help of other people very differently than previously. Other people can only serve a support role. This is something I knew in abstract but I don't think I successfully incorporated that thinking into my actions until recently. So like in the past, I might get a reply from Elliot and then all my thinking regarding learning goes out the window and now I'm just focussed on what Elliot said, out of context of the broader goal of me learning stuff, out of context of the framework of me driving my learning and how Elliot's ideas (or anybody's external ideas) fit into that.

I've noticed a positive difference. It's partly about being more autonomous and continuing regardless of whether I say anything or not. It's partly about solving some problems on your own instead of getting stuck and being helpless. E.g. I've noticed a few times I was considering replying to tell you something, but then you figured it out yourself later in the post.

> I now watch a lot more of Elliot's screencasts (finished all Tutoring Max series, now working to finish Tutoring InternetRules series).

You write anything about under 10% of them? Why don't you have things to say more often?]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 17:53:40 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18006 http://curi.us/comments/show/18006
Peter Thiel and Eric Weinstein Quotes Gavin Palmer Blatant Lying Example
I recommend listening to the whole podcast many times, but I will share a few interesting quotes.

https://theportal.wiki/wiki/1:_Peter_Thiel

> Peter Thiel: And the reason for this is that in late modernity, which we are living in, there's simply too much knowledge for any individual human to understand all of it. And so in this world of extreme hyper specialization, where it's narrower and narrower subsets of experts policing themselves and talking about how great they are, the string theorists talking about how great string theory is, the cancer researchers talking about how they're just about to cure cancer, the quantum computer researchers are just about to build a quantum computer, there'll be a massive breakthrough. And then if you were to say that all these fields, not much is happening, people just don't have the authority for this. And this is somehow a very different feel for science or knowledge than you would've had in 1800 or even in 1900. In 1800, Goethe could still understand just about everything.

There is too much information and always has been too much information at every level: individual and group. Goethe didn’t understand everything. What Peter means is that Goethe could understand everything that had been written. And this is relevant because there will always be knowledge which is not written. And much of the stuff which is written is not true.

> Eric Weinstein: One thing that I'm very curious about is how this discipline seems to have arisen, where almost everyone representing the institutions tell some version of this universal story.

Everyone is telling a story.

> Peter Thiel: You know, one of my friends studied physics at Stanford in the late '90s. His advisor was this professor at Stanford, Bob Laughlin, who, you know, brilliant physics guy, late '90s he gets a Nobel prize in physics, and he suffers from the supreme delusion that now that he has a Nobel prize he has total academic freedom and he can do anything he wants to. And he decided to direct it at, you know, I mean, there are all these areas you probably shouldn't go into, you probably shouldn't question, climate science, there are all these things when one should be careful about, but he went into an area of far more dangerous than all of those. He was convinced that there were all these people in the university who were doing fake science, who were wasting government money on fake research that was not really going anywhere, and he started by investigating other departments, started with the biology department at Stanford university. And you can imagine this ended catastrophically for Professor Laughlin, you know, his graduate students couldn't get PhDs. He no longer got funding, Nobel prize in physics, no protection whatsoever.

The institutions didn’t like Laughlin. But neither does the individual enjoy having someone tell them they are making big mistakes.

> Peter Thiel: If one of the big drivers of scientific and technological progress was actually just the military dimension, when that became absurd did the whole thing slow down to the space age? Not in 1972 when Apollo left the moon, but was the key moment 1975 when you had the Apollo Soyuz docking? If we're just going to be friends with the Russians, does it really make sense for people to be working 80 hours, 100 hours a week around the clock? And again, I don't think it's all that, but I think one of the challenges, that we should not understate how big it is in resetting science and technology in the 21st century is, how do we tell a story that motivates sacrifice, incredibly hard work, deferred gratification for the future, that's not intrinsically violent?

Peter said we need a good story but hours earlier said we need to get out of the “Truman Show”. I think we should stop believing stories. I think we should practice entertaining a story and analysing its usefulness. But we should avoid submitting to a belief entirely. There should always be a good place for people to question the story so that learning can happen.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 13:02:16 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18005 http://curi.us/comments/show/18005
Preparing for monthly review and quarterly plan change - 2020-09-13 GISTE Learning Updates Thread
I started documenting my thoughts on this. I decided to break it up into multiple posts. Here's the first in the series.

https://ramirustom.blogspot.com/2020/09/preparing-for-monthly-review-and.html]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 11:42:00 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18004 http://curi.us/comments/show/18004
Anonymous By Any Means Necessary: A Violent Marxist Cult
> “Me and three of my buddies were in Portland this weekend, got attacked by Antifa. There’s a Twitter video with millions of views on it. They ended up on Hannity and Tucker Carlson, Ben Shapiro etc., of us getting beaten with bats and rocks the size of cantaloupes thrown at us, getting spit on etc. We were all carrying pistols as well. Opportunity, ability and jeopardy, we were in a deadly force situation and we could easily articulate the use of deadly force, but they had pepper sprayed us. They were using industrial strobe lights on us, etc. We couldn’t PID our target and what lied beyond it, They did a great job of taking our situational awareness away, it was fucking incredible.
> Bro my perspective on this changed so much.

The account covers some more that wasn't in the video:

> It got way worse after that video ended, they chased us for 11 city blocks. They had a convoy of about 25 vehicles that cut us off at the next intersection, They had scouts on the corner with radios, they had a drone following us, they had a bull horn calling us Nazis, and the crowd was following a red strobe light that was up in the air on a stick, so they would announce Nazis and then people would follow the red strobe light, That video is just the beginning, I’ve got a fucking fractured hand from a baton, everyone of us has black and blue bruises up and down their legs and back...

It ends with this advice:

> Bottom line: don’t go to an Antifa protest where you can put yourself in that situation. And if you find yourself in that situation, expect them to employ tactics that take away your situational awareness, and complicate the use of force continuum.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 07:20:52 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18003 http://curi.us/comments/show/18003
Anonymous Black Lives Matter Is Evil
Christopher Rufo is the journalist who reported on critical race theory indoctrination at Sandia National Labs, and, on Tucker Carlson Tonight, made a successful appeal to President Trump to put an end to it. He is a brave man. https://www.amren.com/news/2020/09/christopher-rufo-vs-the-critical-race-theory-goliath/ :

> I have had threats, harassment, vandalism, people coming after my wife and kids, you name it. But doesn’t principled dissent require great risk? There are two ways you can fight this: the first is by appealing to civil discourse, moderate pluralism and debate. That strategy has failed. The ‘principled dissent’ strategy is the only one that remains. We have to stand up to institutions that could obliterate us at any moment. We have to steel ourselves with our principles and have the confidence that those principles will ultimately protect us, whatever the odds.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 06:09:20 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18002 http://curi.us/comments/show/18002
Alisa Learning Updates Thread
> I think I should change either my goal or my approach for achieving my goal.

curi replied (#17995):

> Do you know how to make a decision like that?

I don't know what "a decision like that" refers to*. However, I can say that I don't know how to make *this particular decision*.

*I realize that it refers to decisions that are similar in some way to the one I mentioned, but that doesn't give me enough information.]]>
Sun, 13 Sep 2020 05:07:26 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18001 http://curi.us/comments/show/18001
Anonymous Learning Updates Thread
> I watched all the curi videos that came out and took notes on them

Why don't you share notes?]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 22:35:19 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18000 http://curi.us/comments/show/18000
Aug - Sept 11 Anne B Anne B Learning Updates Thread
Analysis: I want to try different methods of organizing analysis. I did some tree analysis and some chart analysis of paragraphs or sets of paragraphs.

Grammar: I posted at least twice a month about grammar, with a focus on thinking about the grammar I learned last year so I don’t forget it.

Karate: I continued to practice 15-20 minutes a day. My focus is on learning what the correct moves are for each form and on remembering them. (I was very far from knowing all the correct moves when I started this study in February.) In this period I covered two new forms (Bassai and Sip Soo) and reviewed the nine I had worked on before August. I also improved my spear hand strikes.

Technology: I reorganized my website. I tried different methods of formatting my blog posts. I posted my first image to the curi blog. I tried Ulysses, TextSniper, Vienna. I continued to slowly work on learning keyboard shortcuts.

FI: I watched all the curi videos that came out and took notes on them, and read almost all FI posts and curi blog posts and FI Discord chat.

Reading: I’ve read at least two hours every week, sometimes taking notes and sometimes not.

Future: I plan to continue with all of this. I may do more of Simply Scheme in addition to my SICP work.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 22:13:59 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17999 http://curi.us/comments/show/17999
Andy Dufresne Learning Updates Thread
I am not actually trying to learn philosophy. I haven't ever tried very much / very hard to learn philosophy.

I have a hobby of discussing some topics where philosophy is relevant. As a side effect of pursuing that hobby, sometimes I learn some philosophy. I expect that pattern to continue for the near term.

The near term goals I have are not about philosophy. I don't want to discuss the details of my current near term goals and my progress towards them in public for privacy reasons.

I will say that my near term goals include, as one outcome, getting to a life situation where I think I might decide to actually try to learn philosophy.

However I also recognize that I could succeed at my current near term goals, they could have the effect I anticipate on my life situation, but I might continue to decide not to try to learn philosophy.

Or I could succeed at those goals but they don't have the effect I anticipate on my life situation.

Or I could fail to achieve those goals.

Or something else could happen in my life which would prevent me from trying to learn philosophy, like major sickness or death.

So, I recognize lots of scenarios where I never actually try to learn philosophy. But I'm also still optimistic that at some point I will actually try to learn philosophy.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 21:16:23 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17998 http://curi.us/comments/show/17998
Gavin Blatant Lying Example
> I think Gavin means 'some of the people doing startups are deceptive so the startup benefits financially'.

I wonder if every company which has success creating technology has people who are being intentionally deceptive. Is there a company which has success creating technology which does not have people who are being intentionally deceptive? Can a company which is trying to create technology have success without using intentional deception? Can an honest company which creates technology compete in the same market where every other company is being dishonest?

> I also think there's an implicit scope here of two particular things: public perception and VC funding. The deception for financial benefit does not include stuff like scamming old people; it's particularly benefit WRT *funding* from VC. Making their idea look better than it is, or more successful, or transformative, or whatever.

I have seen people who deceive target investors, consumers, producers, and themselves.

When I talk about a "type" of person in a company I mean that there can be people in the company or organization who are not being intentionally deceptive. These people who are not being intentionally deceptive have their head in the sand. And a reason why they have their head in the sand is because management intended the organization to be structured in such a compartmentalized way.

> **it suppresses criticism** -- as a founder you should **want** to know where your issues and pain points are and which things *aren't working*. Lying about how well those bits work means you're not just hiding it from *yourself*, but you're also *dedicating resources to hiding it* which is like suicide for a startup. Startups are resource constrained, and any $ not spent on fixing problems is, in essence, being spent *prolonging* problems instead.

The meeting with the engineering team is very different from the meeting with the consumer. Should the company record their meetings with the engineering team and make those meetings available to the consumer? Is there any company doing this? Is there a company with complete transparency? I heard about https://buffer.com/ recently but I don't think they are 100% transparent either.

Most of the deception I see tends to be a "lie by omission" or a "lie by accident" because truth is not perceived to be valuable.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 13:02:15 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17997 http://curi.us/comments/show/17997
Aug - Sept 12 nikluk Learning Updates Thread - "Teaching Johnny to Think" by Leonard Peikoff
- "Isaac Newton" by James Gleick
- "Philosophy: Who Needs It" by Ayn Rand
- "Popper" by Brian Magee
- "Why Businessmen Need Philosophy" by Ayn Rand

I partly listened to:
- "Ending Aging" by Aubrey de Grey
- "Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman" by James Gleick

I started (audiobooks):
- "Economics in One Lesson" by Henry Hazlitt (only doing specific parts)
- "The Fountainhead" by Ayn Rand (co-listening)
- "The Virtue of Selfishness" by Ayn Rand
- "The Goal" by Eli Goldratt
- "The Fabric of Reality" by David Deutsch (epistemology chapters)

I posted 5 blogposts to encourage myself to keep the blog active. 3 posts where only quotes.

I started practicing typing again. I do roughly 1-2 sessions in Typesy a day.
I have moved to sitting by a folding table more and less in the sofa.

I have started reworking my goals.
My previous goals were too vague. I am working on more specified goals.

I restarted working on Simply Scheme after getting stuck and quitting.

I organised Vienna for RRS following.

I started watching some "Tutoring Max" videos.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 11:18:10 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17996 http://curi.us/comments/show/17996
curi Learning Updates Thread
Do you know how to make a decision like that? (How?)]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 05:54:52 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17995 http://curi.us/comments/show/17995
Alisa Learning Updates Thread Sat, 12 Sep 2020 05:29:08 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17994 http://curi.us/comments/show/17994 Aug - Sep 11 Alisa Alisa Learning Updates Thread
## Goal: Spend enough time on FI

I intended to spend 2 hours per day on FI at least one day per week. On each of the other days, I intended to average 30-60 minutes on FI.

Result so far: From 2020-07-07 through 2020-09-10, I averaged slightly over 30 minutes per day total (computed with the average() function in the Google Sheet where I track my time). My time tracking is sometimes estimated (I don't always use a stopwatch), so it could be less than 30 minutes. I only had 3 days in that period (computed with sum() and if()) where I spent at least 2 hours on FI. If I were on track with my goal, I would have had at least 9 such days. I think I should change either my goal or my approach for achieving my goal.

## Goal: Practice free-writing

I intended that every day, with 50% probability, I would start off by free-writing for 5 minutes.

Result so far: I have never started off with free-writing. I think I should change either my goal or my approach for achieving my goal.

## Goal: Post to FI every day

This has been going OK.

## Goal: Keep my FI posting error rate low

What this goal amounts to is: I intend to write postmortems for ~all the errors in my posts that I learn about that are in error categories I care about (as listed in my learning plan). This has been going OK.

## Goal: Follow up on things

There are a fair number of messages from the past few months that I've been meaning to follow up on. I intend to add them to my learning plan soon in order to better keep track of them.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 05:19:51 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17993 http://curi.us/comments/show/17993
Alisa Open Discussion 2 (2019) Sat, 12 Sep 2020 04:48:42 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17992 http://curi.us/comments/show/17992 Max Open Discussion 2 (2019) Sat, 12 Sep 2020 04:29:12 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17991 http://curi.us/comments/show/17991 Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
* [Julius Caesar playlist](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsK4nX0tCGQ&list=PLODnBH8kenOoLUW8BmHhX55I-qexvyU32) - A subset of the Roman Empire playlist, though at least one video (Caesar's funeral) is missing. I think this series is basically completed, too.

* [Roman Empire playlist](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s9qlNBBoFG4&list=PLODnBH8kenOrjXjWy7Hhkz9uOpZ3NTAow) - I'd suggest this over the Caesar playlist for those who have more time or are interested in the wider political context and fallout after Caesar's assassination.

I knew very little before watching the above, and I didn't realise how enjoyable history could be. HC changed my mind on that.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 04:27:21 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17990 http://curi.us/comments/show/17990
Max Blatant Lying Example
>> attracting gullible and stupid investors?

> Is that a bad thing? If you take their money and don't give them decision making power.

I suspect there aren't too many to attract (or the amounts of $ are small). Evolution and all that.

I think it's a good thing for the startup if it happens, though - maybe not for the investors (or maybe?)

Some investors, like family, have lower standards (not necessarily gullible/stupid). I think it's good and important those sort of financing sources are available to some ppl.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 03:27:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17989 http://curi.us/comments/show/17989
Criticisms of Gavin's quote (only) Max Blatant Lying Example
> I agree that the two guys in the video are being dishonest.

Note: Gavin agrees w/ and identifies the dishonesty. (Particularly WRT the founders saying how great and transformative their product is).

> I find a type of person in startups and companies which is doing deception in an attempt to portray their organization in a positive light so that the organization will benefit financially.

I think Gavin means 'some of the people doing startups are deceptive so the startup benefits financially'. I also think there's an implicit scope here of two particular things: public perception and VC funding. The deception for financial benefit does not include stuff like scamming old people; it's particularly benefit WRT *funding* from VC. Making their idea look better than it is, or more successful, or transformative, or whatever.

Gavin says "a type" so he's not saying *everyone* doing startups, but I think it's fewer ppl than "a type" implies. Note: that's anecdotal so IDK if the broader situation is worse or it's worse in the US, etc.

I think startup founders are often incentivised to be dishonest like this, but not all of them do. Founders that are dishonest like this are wrong to do that.

> I am not the kind of person to do this deception (intentionally).

Gavin says this, however he (sorta) contradicts it with the next sentence.

> But I have thought that it would benefit my startup to have someone like that working with me as a partner.

Why is this "sorta" a contradiction? Gavin is hedging in two ways: first via '(intentionally)' -- it's good he realises he might do it unintentionally; second via 'I have thought' which is posed as a sort of hypothetical. So there are still issues here, but it's not as bad as if Gavin were e.g. actively looking for business partners who are okay lying in the ways described.

The following criticisms treat the situation as though there weren't any hedging / ambiguity. That way the criticisms can be clear. I'll indicate this with '~Gavin' instead of 'Gavin'. If that's not clear, think of '~Gavin' as 'the worst parts of Gavin' without any restraint/hesitation/etc.

First, WRT the contradiction between these last two sentences. Having someone be dishonest on your behalf (or wanting that and benefiting from it) **is in itself dishonest in the same way**. It's a proxy/accomplice type situation. It's like saying 'I'm not a thief, but it would be useful if someone stole other ppls stuff and gave it to me'. What ~Gavin means by "I am not the kind of person to do this deception" is more like "I don't like being [seen as] ..." or "I am not good at being ...".

It's also **second-handed** - it suggests ~Gavin wants his startup (himself too?) to be seen and valued based on **other people's subjective and social ideas**. And it's okay that this is *based on a lie* -- so it lacks principles and integrity too.

Second, ~Gavin is (probably unintentionally) dishonest when he claims "I am not the kind of person ...". ~Gavin genuinely thinks this (which is in itself a static meme repressing criticism, typically via triggering defensiveness). ~Gavin is also expressing second-handedness when he claims this b/c it's calibrated to make other ppl think more positively about him and his intentions. It's a way to excuse the last sentence and let ppl like him still.

It's second-handed b/c of the comparison to the hypothetical less-moral founder (the one actively doing the lying); It's easier for ppl to approve of ~Gavin than the other founder.

(I'm not sure if Gavin is a founder, or works at a startup, or what, but I don't think it matters and the above still applies).

Lastly, I think it's questionable that this sort of dishonesty would lead to better outcomes for your startup. Not only is investment predicated on a lie (which can complicate things down the line), but more importantly:

**it suppresses criticism** -- as a founder you should **want** to know where your issues and pain points are and which things *aren't working*. Lying about how well those bits work means you're not just hiding it from *yourself*, but you're also *dedicating resources to hiding it* which is like suicide for a startup. Startups are resource constrained, and any $ not spent on fixing problems is, in essence, being spent *prolonging* problems instead.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 03:18:33 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17988 http://curi.us/comments/show/17988
Max Blatant Lying Example
> If an employee will lie to your investors, then he may lie to you. And if he's really good at it you might not know.

Also, if a *FOUNDER* will like to investors and the public, why should employees trust them?

> If you hire somebody to lie to investors your investors may dislike being lied to and may tell other people you're dishonest.

I'm actually not sure about this - at least in totality. I wrote this to someone the other day. They're in the startup-space (tho more on the VC side)

>> Personally I think [focusing a 'white-paper' on profit generation] is the best way to frame it for VC, but my feeling is there needs to be plausible deniability. Like the expectation is that one presents something profitable but that profit isn't the main selling point. Instead one should have some other reason (altruism, changing the world, etc) that *just happens( to line up. That might be an over-simplification but I think it lines up somewhat okay.

> Depending on what lies he tells he might also get you in legal trouble.

Potentially, but usually lawyers are involved with any financing stuff and all my anecdotes indicate the lawyers try pretty hard to make sure you know what *not* to say (or at least make sure you're not saying it).

> And if the investor doesn't figure out the lie, then are you just attracting gullible and stupid investors?

3 yrs ago, if you mentioned a list of gullible/stupid investors I might have said 'sign me up'. Getting VC money is *hard* in Australia (not sure about USA).]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 02:47:58 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17987 http://curi.us/comments/show/17987
Max Learning Updates Thread
By chance I'm doing this today and tomorrow, and was planning to share it to FI (unlike weekly, which I don't think is necessarily interesting enough)

> If you don't share monthly updates or explain why not, I will not regard you as actually trying to learn philosophy.

I think this is fair. Esp because they don't have to talk about everything and can do it under a new pseudonym.

> So let's use the first of the month. Post them below.

Maybe use the 1st of the month from October on? (Otherwise we wait like 3 weeks?) In any case I'm going to share my one here today/tomorrow.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 02:34:46 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17986 http://curi.us/comments/show/17986
Aug - Sept 11 curi curi Learning Updates Thread
I wrote 23 blog posts from Aug 1 through this post. Lots are related to my discussions at Less Wrong (LW). LW discussion was not very productive but worth a try and it helped clarify for me what was available there. I might continue to post there sporadically. Also it led to http://curi.us/2363-discussion-with-gigahurt-from-less-wrong

I read Rationality AI to Zombies (second half), Raft, Timelike Infinity, Flux, Ring, Moneyball, 1984, Animal Farm, Way of Kings Prime, Three Worlds Collide, POOGI Forum, Haystack Syndrome (50%), Vacuum Diagrams (50%).

I wrote 1989 words per day. That doesn't count discussions like FI posts and curi messages. I try to track, roughly, what writing I think is useful for making forward progress. I wrote 18,500 words of freewriting (a lot is similar to journaling).

I've made lots of videos, particularly for Max tutoring.

That's all good.

The world is being dumb about COVID and riots. It's revealed a lot of government incompetence. I've been following politics less and I quit posting to Twitter.

Big picture: I've continued connecting Goldratt ideas to YesNo and CF. I think I've made progress on improving the ideas, so that's good. I also wrote some Critical Fallibilism stuff but not a lot. I'm actively thinking (and writing) about target audience, writing approach, state of the world, goals, etc.]]>
Sat, 12 Sep 2020 02:33:01 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17985 http://curi.us/comments/show/17985
curi Blatant Lying Example
> attracting gullible and stupid investors?

Is that a bad thing? If you take their money and don't give them decision making power.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 20:44:56 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17984 http://curi.us/comments/show/17984
oh my god it's turpentine Blatant Lying Example
If you hire somebody to lie to investors your investors may dislike being lied to and may tell other people you're dishonest. Depending on what lies he tells he might also get you in legal trouble. And if the investor doesn't figure out the lie, then are you just attracting gullible and stupid investors?

Other employees who know about the lies may dislike the lies and be less inclined to work hard for you, or they might leave. And the people who stay are stupid or gullible or don't mind lying.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 20:33:03 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17983 http://curi.us/comments/show/17983
pro dishonesty sentiment curi Blatant Lying Example
> I agree that the two guys in the video are being dishonest. I find a type of person in startups and companies which is doing deception in an attempt to portray their organization in a positive light so that the organization will benefit financially. I am not the kind of person to do this deception (intentionally). But I have thought that it would benefit my startup to have someone like that working with me as a partner.

Does anyone have a criticism of this?]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 18:38:04 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17982 http://curi.us/comments/show/17982
both 17976 and 17977 Open Discussion 2 (2019)
#17980 That's fair. Thank you for the feedback.

I've been too careless when posting as anon.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 06:45:58 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17981 http://curi.us/comments/show/17981
curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
It's hard enough to communicate instead of assuming people can read your mind, and do share your background knowledge, when you give your name and have a reputation (so they at leave have a chance). It's much harder when you are hiding your past discussion history. You have to communicate more and better to make that work. *And* you have to make every post offer more immediate value or you'll get ignored more than you would for posts attached to a reputation.

You ~all ought to pick a name and change it infrequently and probably tell me when you change it.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 06:24:44 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17980 http://curi.us/comments/show/17980
both 17976 and 17977 Open Discussion 2 (2019)
>> Should have read the article.

> Being a jerk about it isn't going to help.

I posted both #17976 and #17977 - which I don't think came across (because they were both under Anon).

I opened the link in a new tab, wrote 17976, read the first 2 paragraphs (realising my mistake), then posted 17977.

I should have said I was the same poster, though.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 05:16:14 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17979 http://curi.us/comments/show/17979
curi Open Discussion 2 (2019)
>> Shouldn't have married her, then.

> Should have read the article.

Being a jerk about it isn't going to help.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 04:17:25 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17978 http://curi.us/comments/show/17978
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> Shouldn't have married her, then.

Should have read the article.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 04:10:07 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17977 http://curi.us/comments/show/17977
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
Shouldn't have married her, then.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 04:09:30 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17976 http://curi.us/comments/show/17976
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
>> A wealthy businessman will have to pay more than $50,000 a month in spousal support for 10 years to a woman with whom he had a long-term romantic relationship even though they kept separate homes and had no children together, Ontario’s top court has ruled.

My text fell off.

He even tried too cover this kind of theft to no avail.

> he insisted she sign a marriage contract and came up with several drafts. She refused.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 03:49:18 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17975 http://curi.us/comments/show/17975
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
>> A wealthy businessman will have to pay more than $50,000 a month in spousal support for 10 years to a woman with whom he had a long-term romantic relationship even though they kept separate homes and had no children together, Ontario’s top court has ruled.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 03:47:22 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17974 http://curi.us/comments/show/17974
Max Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> It's bad to encourage people's habit of doing an reread/editing-pass on their post right after sending.

I don't think it needs to be encouragement. I agree ppl should take more responsibility tho and not rely on these sorta features.

I think I'll move it from 'high value' to 'nice to have'

The reason I think it's still good to have:

* prevents destruction of means of correcting mistakes
* cheap / easy to do
* can be turned on and off
* allows for a more 'practice friendly' environment (we're still fallible)

> And it causes trouble for anyone who sees the post pre-edit.

I was thinking it prevents publication - so there is no pre-edit as such (except like on the poster's computer).

I realise I put the "undo" type feature in with the "edit history public" feature, which contradicts the previous sentence. I was unclear/wrong in the original dot-point I posted in that regard.

> If people are rereading posts right after submission because they want to see the final formatting, the solution would be better previewing features.

That's another good one to add to nice to haves.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 01:48:32 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17973 http://curi.us/comments/show/17973
Fuck Ontario Open Discussion 2 (2019)
> A wealthy businessman will have to pay more than $50,000 a month in spousal support for 10 years to a woman with whom he had a long-term romantic relationship even though they kept separate homes and had no children together, Ontario’s top court has ruled.]]>
Fri, 11 Sep 2020 01:28:39 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17972 http://curi.us/comments/show/17972
Dagny Open Discussion 2 (2019)
It's bad to encourage people's habit of doing an reread/editing-pass on their post right after sending. If they're going to do that, they should do it right before sending instead.

People with reasonable behaviors shouldn't be expected to catch PII problems in a short time window after submitting a post that were not caught earlier. That's a bad safety mechanism.

And it causes trouble for anyone who sees the post pre-edit. If you're going to have a short edit window, don't show the post to anyone else until that window is over. This can be done manually by just not submitting it until the editing window of their choice (e.g. it can be 10m or 10h if they prefer) is over.

If people are rereading posts right after submission because they want to see the final formatting, the solution would be better previewing features.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 16:59:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17971 http://curi.us/comments/show/17971
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs Thu, 10 Sep 2020 06:14:59 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17970 http://curi.us/comments/show/17970 curi Clarifying My Beliefs Thu, 10 Sep 2020 06:06:23 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17969 http://curi.us/comments/show/17969 curi Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong
Re the Harris discussion, can you quote a few sentences you thought were good?

> - Lack of perfectly rational conversation partners does not stop progress only makes it less efficient.

I agree that people don't need to be perfect. But irrationality sometimes leads to things like refusing to discuss further, refusing to answer a question or criticism, or refusing to think about an idea. It often does stop discussions rather than making them less efficient. Do you agree?]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 05:55:04 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17968 http://curi.us/comments/show/17968
Max Open Discussion 2 (2019)
High val features:

* Server side rendering
* Rendering method supports arbitrarily deep discussions (even if there's something like pagination going on)
* Ctrl+F **always** works (no collapsing)
* Archives easy and accessible

Nice to haves

* Context provided by default when permalinking
* Collapsible tree nav (never by default)
* Easy to traverse history of a reply
* Cryptographic ID support (e.g PGP/simple ECDSA)]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 05:10:46 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17967 http://curi.us/comments/show/17967
Draft about discussion forums Max Open Discussion 2 (2019)
Interested in anyone's feedback - particularly wrt list items. Did I miss anything or put something in the wrong category?

---

Discussion forums are important. Practically, most public discussion happens via discussion forums. The vast majority of *enduring* conversations take place on these forums, and last beyond the life of the website (e.g. via archive.org).

Despite the significance of d.forums, they have not significantly improved beyond newsgroups. The basic model is still: a starting post begins a thread, and discussion takes place via a list of replies. This is still the simplest and safest model used.

Some other models are used from time to time but they have big downsides. Facebook allows replying directly to other replies to a maximum depth of 1. Reddit has a full tree structure but has poor support for navigating that structure. Reddit also locks old posts by default, positively biases comments early in the thread history, and negatively biases deep comments.

There are lots of problems with how comments and posts are ranked, too. In general there's no good way to algorithmically find the *best* posts, though you can find the posts people like to click on, or like to reply to, or want to promote (by upvoting). These aren't useful things if you're interested in the best *discussion*.

What are the things that can offer an improvement over current forums?

### High value features

* Replies to replies
* optional metadata on related posts (sort of like replying to multiple comments)
* Excellent support for quoting, emphasis, links, footnotes
* Copying a message copies emphasis and other markup
* Quotation inline by default (not a top/bottom post system -- that should be an optional way to *render* posts)
* Modest support for rich content
* Anonymous posting / easy to use aliases
* View mode: as tree (ideally with multiple sorting methods)
* View mode: as list (like curi.us)
* Edit history fully public after some threshold (e.g. posters have 1 min to click "undo" like the Gmail feature) -- note: editing at all is not necessary except to like redact PII or something like that.

### Features with some positive value

* A reply should be able to kick off a new thread
* Ideally copying from the page automatically adds a later of quotation
* Reputation and history for all posters (including disposable anons)
* Verified authorship when desired
* Automation compatible design (e.g. traversal/analysis)]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 04:06:46 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17966 http://curi.us/comments/show/17966
Partial Imagination Clarifying My Beliefs
#17946

I thought this was funny to see in the GH comments (from the author)

> tkon99 commented on Mar 28, 2018
> Hi, nope you're free to use them for whatever you like, I took them from two websites listing the most popular nouns/adjectives.
> If you do use them, please attribute to my Github :D. I also have this as an npm package called "naampje".]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:51:32 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17965 http://curi.us/comments/show/17965
Tesfaye Kwame Clarifying My Beliefs
Then I added code to fill in the Author field and wrapped it all in a function to avoid name clashes.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:42:31 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17964 http://curi.us/comments/show/17964
Tesfaye Kwame Clarifying My Beliefs Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:40:36 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17963 http://curi.us/comments/show/17963 Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
> bookmarklet that generates a random name and fills it in

Yeah, the list of names might be an issue. if you gen random names from a particular list (esp if no one else does) then you're leaking your identity because no-one else will be able to generate those names.

WRT to anonymity it can be easy to make little mistakes that lead to complete de-anonymisation (potentially *much* later)

That's another reason the browser extension isn't good for anon stuff -- you should *never* be able to tell if someone is using it because that info is leaking stuff about them and which other posts they might have made.

> The extension would be responsible for remembering the user's preferences, such as favorite Author names and global/thread Author name defaults

This makes more sense for like long term posters with established identities.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:28:32 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17962 http://curi.us/comments/show/17962
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
![name randomizer mockup with placeholder](https://i.ibb.co/nCP4KNx/image.png)]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:22:14 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17961 http://curi.us/comments/show/17961
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
> #17950 Alternate proposal: add a "Generate Random Name" button that fills in the Author field with a randomly generated name, kinda like AutoAdmit does. Whenever the user wants to keep the same identity in future comments, they can copy and paste (or retype) the name.

> The button could be implemented in pure JavaScript. No server-side code changes would be required. Also, adding that button to the form wouldn't complicate the UI much.

Yup, I think that's a good MVP. I think it should also auto-generate the name if you *don't* put one in (i.e. it doesn't default to 'Anonymous'). You can use 'placeholder' as a way to show the grey-looking anon name if you don't put one in. I'll do a mockup now.

*However*, this doesn't solve the problem of knowing who's who in a conversation with lots of anons. You just get lots of random looking names.

*Maybe that should just be solved with community norms and expectations, tho?* Like if you want to have a conversation as anon, you should use the same alias during the convo. If you keep using new names ppl can just not pay as much attention or ask if you're the same person / why you're acting like you were the previous poster but using a diff name, etc.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:20:16 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17960 http://curi.us/comments/show/17960
Tesfaye Kwame Clarifying My Beliefs
Another idea for implementing Andrew Ryan's proposal would be to make a browser extension for posting on curi.us. The extension would be responsible for remembering the user's preferences, such as favorite Author names and global/thread Author name defaults.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:18:13 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17959 http://curi.us/comments/show/17959
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
Plugin could work for this, but then it's not the default (it is for that one user, but not for comments *in general*). Also plugins can't be used on (or much harder to dev for) safari or mobile.

> Browser autofill is definitely a widespread thing.

Not full blown autofill (like auto-populate on page load) - that's a security risk for stuff like names/addresses/etc b/c JS can react to form-filling.
There have been issues in the past with websites putting up hidden inputs with field names/IDs like "address". When ppl click the drop down that chrome shows with names/email combinations, etc, chrome would *also* fill in the hidden address field (which the user did NOT know they were sending).

So there is some automation, but even if a browser remembers inputs it won't auto-populate the fields.

I don't know how I could tell chrome "On curi.us find the field named 'comment_comment_author' and fill it with 'Andrew Ryan' by default on page load"

> I imagine there is some way for people to handle this already.

Plenty of ways, tampermonkey/greasemonkey can work too.

I was making the above suggestions **particularly** b/c of how it would **change the *default* around names**, tho. Like by default you keep the same name in the same thread, but it's an anonymous and disposable name.

The rest of the stuff is just some quality of life features, really.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:15:38 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17958 http://curi.us/comments/show/17958
Tesfaye Kwame Clarifying My Beliefs
The button could be implemented in pure JavaScript. No server-side code changes would be required. Also, adding that button to the form wouldn't complicate the UI much.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:06:20 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17957 http://curi.us/comments/show/17957
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
I would be too. For the basic idea (option 1) the JS code would *just* be enough to glue together those UI components I mocked up.

The HTML I posted has a footprint in javascript on the order of 500B. I think I could probably do the rest in about 500B-1000B depending on optimisations (smaller => harder to read).

Like I mentioned above, all native JS, no libraries etc.

I don't want to work on it if you don't want to use it, though. It's fine if you're interested to see how it works and don't want to commit to using it; I just don't want it to be like a complete waste of time.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:05:34 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17956 http://curi.us/comments/show/17956
curi Clarifying My Beliefs Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:01:42 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17955 http://curi.us/comments/show/17955 gigahurt Discussion with gigahurt from Less Wrong
First, I want to start off with a concession. We started off this conversation with the question "is there a shortage of rational conversation partners?" Since our conversation began I have gained a greater understanding in how you evaluate that, taken some of those values on myself, and also realized how many people fall short of those values particularly on the Internet and when dealing with strangers. Even friends, when compared to the standards we have discussed, oftentimes fall short. So, when compared to the ideal, I concede there are a shortage of rational conversation partners.

The world is not as rosy as I thought it was, or as rosy as I made it out to be in my original response on LW. I think the knowledge I have gained so far in this exchange will help me optimize the conversations I have in the future, as well as my overall thought process.

However, I want to introduce one nuance to this concession. From a practical perspective lack of perfectly rational conversation partners does not stop progress only makes it less efficient.

### Lack of perfectly rational conversation partners does not stop progress only makes it less efficient
#### Premises
- The goal of rational conversation is to advance our understanding.
- Strangers will operate socially by default.
- The more people trust you the more rational they are willing to be.
- The process of building trust is the process of making friends.
- We can transform strangers into friends. By doing this we gain access to someone who can discuss at sufficient (say 80%+) rationality.
- A conversation with an 80% rational conversation partner will have moments that are rational and moments that are social.
- We can ignore the social moments and harvest the rational moments.
- Every time we harvest a rational moment we advance our understanding
- From a practical perspective we can proceed with imperfect conversation partners and advance our understanding.
#### Conclusion
- Lack of perfectly rational conversation partners does not stop progress only makes it less efficient.

If you agree with this, then progress can still be made without perfectly rational conversation partners. And the question becomes what is the best use of our time? Optimizing rational conversation partners or some other part of the philosophical value chain?

If you do not agree with this, then progress cannot be made without correcting this. And it makes sense we need to focus on and unblock this before proceeding on to something else.

I think progress can be made.

Since we started talking about Q theory, I am partially thinking in those terms. When I think about my own bottlenecks to understanding and contribution of insights to society, I suspect: my own ignorance, my imperfect memory, my inability to make the right connections, my own confidence, and other personal failings are my primary bottlenecks. Perfectly rational conversation partners are not my bottleneck.


---


## Further discussion on other topics

### Dishonesty

>>> I do think his presentation of his Goldratt expertise was dishonest.

>> Would you be able to expand on the way it was dishonest?

> He is not a Goldratt expert, but brags that he is.

This one is tricky, because we don't know if Dagon actually thinks he is an expert or knows he is not and pretends to be one. If he thinks he is an expert the bragging is honest, and maybe even merited from a subjective perspective. He may not realize he is wrong. If you say something that you think is true and you have reason to believe it is, but it is not, aren't you still considered honest? Dogan's belief could be 'I read and understood both books!'

> Dagon was also dishonest by pretending to thank me and be an ally when actually he was disagreeing with me and making vague attacks on my view.

I think Dagon was genuinely excited to recommend *The Goal*. In that sense I think his thank you was genuine as well. Specifically, he was thankful you brought up Goldratt.

I think it is possible to thank someone for a portion of their contribution and criticize them for another without it being dishonest. I don't see how this is dishonest. I don't think you think mixing agreement and disagreement is dishonest either, which makes me think I am missing a nuance in your observation. What led to your judgment he was signaling you were allies such that subsequent criticism read as betrayal?


### Bragging

One thing you mentioned Dagon did which was an issue was bragging. You claim bragging, like many other social behaviors, steals away from rational productivity.

I agree it is inefficient from a truth seeking perspective to brag.

One problem I think we need to deal with to diagnos and hold people accountable for bragging is how to diagnose it clearly. The difficulty in diagnosing this, in my mind, should also temper how much energy we spend mitigating it.

In your Lying essay you made the point that you should be transparent with your audience about where you are coming from when you make a claim. I agree with that.

Dagon's comments where he expalins how he gives away books and references other pieces of Goldratt's work could be interpreted as him signaling where he is coming from. He is saying, 'you can trust me because I am very passionate and well read about this topic.' At the same time, maybe his primary motive was just to look impressive. How do we know?

You also mentioned Dagon was dishonest because he was bragging but pretending that he was not bragging.

How do you distinguish between someone who is not bragging and someone who is bragging but pretending not to? Or someone strictly not bragging and someone who is proud, but trying to suppress it for the sake of social or rational purposes? Is there any practical difference between any of these scenarios when it comes to having a rational conversation?

---

Comments re: Video analyzing the YouTube video I shared:

- I like that you started the video by defining a rubric to judge the video.
- I agree that two people agreeing with each other isn't as productive as two people disagreeing with each other. I think both types of conversation can be rational but the one where views are fairly aligned has less potential for generating a breakthrough.
- I like the idea of withholding judgment until the end of a particular section.
- Standards are lower in voice: yes
- I think it's fair to say if they zoned in on an example it might be more efficient. These were not your exact words, but I feel like you expressed this sentiment.
- I think you wanted the conversation to get more done than either of them had in mind. I think Sam's primary question was something like: aren't you jumping to conclusions too quickly about people being racist? I think they both learned things about each other's position. No breakthroughs, but the engagement was not purely social. I found it serviceable (though not ideal)

> I thought it was awful. I stopped well before the end. I don't know what seemed valuable to you.

I think both speakers were representing their views honestly. I think they also were making effort to share their views and understand the views of their partner. I don't think they got to the bottom of it. But still, I think both of them are searching for truth. Even if they did not make progress their was value in testing their own claims and not finding compelling counter arguments.


---

## Meta

Also as a side note, apologies for the delayed response. My children have begun online school (online because of the virus), and it is taking up a good deal of my discretionary time helping them with that.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 02:01:41 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17954 http://curi.us/comments/show/17954
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
I mean it's easy to guess that last post was from me, but there's no way for me to keep a name by default.

One dangerous thing about defaults is accidentally posting under the wrong name. I think a *thread level default* is okay for this, though. If someone wants to post under two different names consistently, they can always use two different browsers (or profiles on the same browser), anyway.

It's like how you use a different screen for streaming. I use multiple chrome profiles for AWS so that my "production" browser profile can use a bright red theme (that way I am not going to accidentally do something bad on a live system)]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:59:48 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17953 http://curi.us/comments/show/17953
Anonymous Clarifying My Beliefs > Does it save the data in cookies?

Nope. This is what I imagine the data structure would look like.

Notice it's all in local storage. That's private per browser, and only settable by code that runs on the page. It's never set to the server (**not** like cookies)

![author-name-tools-data](https://i.ibb.co/KXtFTkX/curi-us-author-data-struct.png)]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:56:27 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17952 http://curi.us/comments/show/17952
Anonymous Clarifying My Beliefs
let encodedHtml = "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";
console.log(atob(encodedHtml));]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:48:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17951 http://curi.us/comments/show/17951
curi Clarifying My Beliefs
I'm wary of having extra code to deal with or maintain.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:46:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17950 http://curi.us/comments/show/17950
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
```html
<p>
Author
<input id="comment_comment_writer" name="comment[comment_writer]" size="30" type="text">
<sub><a>(hide options)</a></sub>
</p>

<div id="comment_tools_author_options" class="comment_note_2" style="border: 1px solid black; padding: 4px; margin: 4px;">
<label style="display: block;"><input type="checkbox" checked="true"> Remember name?</label>
<label style="display: block; padding-top: 2px">Set "Andrew Ryan" as:
<button>thread default</button>
<button>global default</button>
</label>
<label style="display: block;">Previous names:
<select>
<option> -- Thread --</option>
<option>lucid-apple-dance</option>
<option>Andrew Ryan</option>
<option> -- Global --</option>
<option>sails-seems-tango</option>
<option>Anonymouse (squeak)</option>
<option>oh my god its turpentine</option>
<option>AnneB</option>
</select>
<button>Forget "Andrew Ryan"</button>
</label>
</div>
```]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:43:42 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17949 http://curi.us/comments/show/17949
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
![Andrews mockup of curi-us changes](https://i.ibb.co/NVMJfZ0/curi-us-author-mockup.png)]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:29:49 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17948 http://curi.us/comments/show/17948
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
Nothing is shared between browsers/computers unless you do it manually (sorta like now). Option 1 is just automatic name generation and local (browser-level) caching, so it'll just remember names you've used, and set names by default.

Nothing stops people using the same name between multiple devices.

Private browsing will naturally save nothing after the session.

> also i probably don't want ppl claiming generic or common usernames like Roark, Galt, Rand, etc.

I think I've been unclear - maybe. There aren't usernames in option 1 or option 2. No one has ownership over any name (besides you with 'curi' in green/teal, but that's a whole different thing). There aren't any "passwords" that let you "log in" to anything. Option 2 has that secret idea, but it's different to a username/password situation. It's more like a cryptographic signature, except on the author name rather than the message.

The only purpose of option 2 is to ensure that impersonation is not possible (unless deliberate). Usernames/accounts are overkill for that.

> also if we're talking about adding cryptographic stuff to posts, do you have any ideas that'd make it easier to detect or ban longterm persistent harassers?

Yes, but not in a way that's simple and easy to implement. One exception might be bots, but if harassers are actual people with browsers and keyboards, etc, then it's (potentially) a reasonably hard problem.

I'll think a bit about this and let you know if I come up with something.

> idk if there's an important problem to solve here and i think a fair amount of people use Anonymous on purpose and prefer to stand out less.

Yeah, I'm not sure either. I don't think it would be *bad*, though. If more people posted anonymously I think the problem would get worse, though, and something like this would fix it.

I think people use Anonymous because it's disposable and default. I don't think they care much on the whole about whether the name is apples-count-lucid or "Anonymous".

I mean one simple experiment would be to auto-populate the "Author" field with 3x-random-words like "apples-count-lucid" and see how many people change it. If people keep using "Anonymous" then they have to be putting that in manually. I don't think you'd see many people changing it back to Anonymous.]]>
Thu, 10 Sep 2020 01:04:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17946 http://curi.us/comments/show/17946
curi Clarifying My Beliefs
also i probably don't want ppl claiming generic or common usernames like Roark, Galt, Rand, etc. i don't want those taken on a first come first serve basis by whoever wants to. if people use more distinctive names then it's fine if they claim them.

also if we're talking about adding cryptographic stuff to posts, do you have any ideas that'd make it easier to detect or ban longterm persistent harassers?

idk if there's an important problem to solve here and i think a fair amount of people use Anonymous on purpose and prefer to stand out less.]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 17:40:12 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17945 http://curi.us/comments/show/17945
Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs
"tracking" is maybe contentious but I don't think anything I suggested counts as tracking -- it's all voluntary and under user control. There's also some deliberate stuff to avoid defaults that would de-anon people across threads.

There aren't any user accounts in what I suggested. I don't think they're similar to user accounts either (one reason being that people never authenticate to the server).

Also, if it wasn't clear, option 2 is meant to be an optional extension to option 1 (not mutually exclusive), and I wanted to separate them completely because I thought there was qualitative differences around stuff like privacy and burden on site admin]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 12:45:01 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17944 http://curi.us/comments/show/17944
Anne B Use RSS to Subscribe to Blogs
----

I wanted to try Instapaper too. But I got to this:

![](https://i.imgur.com/zCL97Ip.png)

Can Instapaper see passwords you type in to other sites? That would not be good.

I tried searching “instapaper permissions” and “why does instapaper want to see my passwords”.

I found this:

https://www.instapaper.com/help

> There are many reasons why certain pages aren't accessible offline or in Text view. The most common:
> The page requires a login. The Instapaper server must fetch a copy of the page without knowing your username, password, or session details. Pages such as Gmail messages or travel itineraries generally can't be reached without logging in, so Instapaper cannot access them for offline saving.

This implies that Instapaper doesn’t know your passwords. Why would they want permission to read them and then not know them?]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 09:54:22 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17943 http://curi.us/comments/show/17943
curi Clarifying My Beliefs Wed, 09 Sep 2020 08:24:02 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17942 http://curi.us/comments/show/17942 possible solution to the mess caused by lots of people using the Anon name Andrew Ryan Clarifying My Beliefs re #17928 (in another thread) curi said:

> idk why a bunch of people want to share the name Anonymous and make a mess. it seems like Anonymous got more popular a couple days ago when i suggested people use *anything other than their real name*. i don't understand why.

first, some labeled groundwork:

1. "a bunch of people want to share the name Anonymous" - I note 'Anonymous' is the default name and the *author* field isn't required to make a post

2. "make a mess" - I suspect you mean: the mess is b/c it's harder to keep track of individual conversations and whether you're talking to the same person or who each party in the thread is. I think we agree on this, and also that community/anon accounts can be important in other ways i.e. it's not the case ppl should avoid sharing names always. *tyranny of the default* as such.

3. "Anonymous got more popular" - I've used it more than usual, and it looks like other ppl have, too.

I think the reason for (3) is your post + (1).

I agree with (2). it can be a mess. I have an idea for a ~small change to solve the problem of it being a mess.

I think curi should consider adding some tools regarding author-names to curi.us. I don't think it's reasonable for anyone to expect/demand he's the one that does it.

I think a potential "solution" - if done wrong - could be pandering and otherwise bad, but there are some good reasons to avoid (2) e.g. it's easier to keep track of convos. less "housekeeping" -> less mental load -> more mental energy or time for good stuff. It'd also make extracting a particular conversations easier if there's a reason to do so (also: someone else could do it, not necessarily curi).

I have two ideas for things that might be good to do.

I am willing to implement the frontend stuff for these if crui thinks they're worth adding.

@curi if you're interested in this or want more detail: the next thing I plan to post is a draft interface with no logic behind for idea 1. just like screencaps of what it might look like.

I imagine the end result (of all of idea 1) is either like 2KB of JS, or some HTML for the template + like 1KB of JS. I'd write it straight in JS so it's small; no 200KB JS file nonsense.

**1. basic and easy-to-use tooling around author names (no changes to backend/API/DB stuff)**

purpose: ensure that *by default* conversations and threads are more organised by making it easier to tell which actors are which and who's talking with whom.

aux goals: low impact and easy to implement. no significant side effects. no new required actions for users to do. broadly: hopefully find out more about discussion forum theory.

- note: any info that needs to be saved can be done in local storage (so it's only stored by the user's browser and only frontend code)
- note: you can hide as much/little of the UI via like a little "(options)" button or something

* auto-populate the author field on page-load (with something)

* (optional) auto-generate a name as a default if none exists
* it can look real like "Andrew Ryan" or fake like "limit-trial-grain" which is 3 random 5-letter words; however, there needs to be lots of possible permutations. (nb: I think the second option is better)

* 2x checkboxes: "save name for thread" (default 'yes') and "save name globally" (default 'no')

* a drop down of past names you've used in 2 groups: names used in *this* thread, and names used globally. also: an adjacent "forget name" button which deletes whatever's selected (permanently)

* users can set a default name per thread or globally (this takes precedence over generic defaults)

in essence it means:

* global default: still anonymous + no login required etc
* new thread default: ppl keep the same name (they're free to change it if they want)
* it's easier for ppl to manage multiple names
* it encourages ppl to have unique names, multiple names, and different names for different things

however

* people can easily impersonate someone else
* even if that hasn't been a problem it could potentially become one b/c now everyone has a unique name by default -> potential benefit of impersonation goes up

**2. added security around author names (small change / extension to backend/API/DB)**

purpose: prevent ppl from falsely claiming to be other ppl

* use some basic methods for users to "sign" their posts so that it's obvious if two ppl are using the same name but not the same person. in essence there'd be a bit of "unforgeable" text alongside the post which is unique to *that* author (curi/server admins would be the only ppl who could forge this). something like "dg9f87y" or whatever. users would be able to get new ones whenever but it would be super hard to choose one w/out knowing the secret.

* (optional) reject posts an empty "Author" field (note: it looks like an empty string is sent currently). ppl can still put in "Anonymous" if they want, but now it's deliberately chosen like other name.

the only backend changes (I think) would be like:

- accept an extra field with 32 bytes of data (output of a hash alg like sha256)
- calculate another hash via an HMAC -- note: this requires the DB to store a constant secret but it's impossible for ppl to brute force without making like 1000s of posts
- store that 2nd hash with the post
- send that 2nd hash with the post
- render part of the 2nd hash alongside the author

The client would generate a random secret and hash it to produce the 32 bytes they send with the post. So as a function it'd be like:

author_hash = sha256(author_secret)
// send (comment, author_hash) to server
author_fingerprint_hash = hmac(sha256, author_hash, server_secret)
// gets saved to DB with comment
pretty_author_fingerprint = trim(encode(author_fingerprint_hash))

when rendering the page you just have like: "Andrew Ryan - d9s0843v"

important features for *frontend*:

- author_secret should be linked to the particular name and have the same scope (e.g. per thread / global); info shouldn't get leaked if someone uses 2 diff names
- user can forget secrets
- user can generate more secrets
- user can *share* secrets (or set it to "") so ppl can share identities via like community accounts or things

All the frontend stuff is as easy as the stuff in the first idea, and similarly doesn't need and backend changes besides what I've mentioned here (I think?)]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 07:49:44 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17941 http://curi.us/comments/show/17941
Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019) Wed, 09 Sep 2020 05:30:29 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17940 http://curi.us/comments/show/17940 Anonymous Open Discussion 2 (2019)
- Andrew Ryan]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 05:28:11 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17939 http://curi.us/comments/show/17939
Anonymous Deplatforming and Fraud
https://reclaimthenet.org/instagram-suspends-accounts-of-two-charlie-hebdo-journalists/ :

> On Twitter, Daussy said:
> “My Instagram account has been deactivated. The last photo I posted was the front page of Charlie Hebdo.”

> Daussy acknowledged that sharing the photo was the most likely reason for the suspension but she also touted mass reporting, which she described as a new method of censorship.]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 03:32:13 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17938 http://curi.us/comments/show/17938
Anonymous Deplatforming and Fraud
If you search Twitter for "from:llinwood", you won't get any results unless you already follow him.]]>
Wed, 09 Sep 2020 03:19:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17937 http://curi.us/comments/show/17937
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? Nah it made sense for you to say that. I didn't explain the context in my head clearly in that post]]> Tue, 08 Sep 2020 12:12:05 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17936 http://curi.us/comments/show/17936 anon14 Is FI Discussion Mean? > If I don't think for myself, this small society teaches me that this is good. This is one example of a social dynamic that has a negative effect, posing as positive.
ok. I think I misunderstood your previous post.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 11:35:22 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17935 http://curi.us/comments/show/17935
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean?
But what I'm saying is that I see others doing it. I see others doing their job right only when they fear authority. And that they slack off when they can. And then they act as if what they're doing is normal or that they're being smart(not all of them btw. some people). If I don't think for myself, this small society teaches me that this is good. This is one example of a social dynamic that has a negative effect, posing as positive.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 10:53:26 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17934 http://curi.us/comments/show/17934
anon14 Is FI Discussion Mean? > Example: As I go to work, the current society pressures me to learn to be responsible for what I do, but at the same time it teaches me that if you can get away with something that is good for you and bad for your employer (like slack off without anyone noticing), do it.

I don’t think slacking off without anyone noticing it is good for you if it hurts the business. If you slack off and it hurts your employer (as you write it does: “bad for your employer”) it might lead to you losing your job. This is generally not good for you.
I think that “good for you” should be judged by another standard than the pragmatic and shortsighted one that I read this example to be.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 10:11:24 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17933 http://curi.us/comments/show/17933
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean?
Society isn't inherently good or bad. It either lifts you up or pulls you down. Either way, learn to think for yourself and distinguish what is good and what is bad in society based on your own authentic values. The reason society is thought of as "bad" isn't as much its inherent evil, but that people who conform to it give up their identity, self-exploration and knowledge, for comfort and easy answers. And this ignorance and conformity gives way for the bad and the evil.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 09:56:51 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17932 http://curi.us/comments/show/17932
anon14 Is FI Discussion Mean? > if you'd put in some name (switch every thread if you want) you wouldn't have these problems.
ok.

#17929
> You have to look at the context and use your judgement. There isn't a mechanical set of rules you can use to know when things are good or bad.
ok. Depends on context was roughly my guess. This was helpful on how to think about social dynamics:

> There are lots of things that are sometimes good and sometimes bad. Eating, drinking water, going to the grocery store, going outside, sleeping, lying, telling the truth.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 09:49:10 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17931 http://curi.us/comments/show/17931
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? I think it's an important thing to consider that societies have status quos, and that this status quo acts as a homeostasis; it's like a pendulum. I'll explain to make it a bit more clear.
When you are born, you are cognitively and knowledge-wise totally dependent on your parents/parent-figures. Without them and the larger society that's effecting them, you're not that different from an orphan cavebaby (caveman's baby lol). It is the ideas and dynamics of the society that effects the parents that then transfers to the kid and brings him up to meet the status quo of that society at that stage of his life. In this way, it has an uplifting effect on the kid. Same goes for adults. It brings you from an utter new situation that you yourself have to examine and discover for yourself (like me going to my first job this month) to its level of understanding/cognition/knowledge. Since I got introduced to Popper's process of knowledge creation, let me use that here. The society, just like an individual, also goes through this process of knowledge creation through conjectures and refutations. So the knowledge that currently is ingrained in society is the result of a complex and long-term social knowledge creation process. This knowledge is passed onto each member of the society, and the person moves up on knowledge quickly through these ideas.
BUT, as I said, this "moving up" is the result of a pendulum-like movement. The status quo is bringing you up to meet its current level. But as you reach it, you get an opposite level as you try to break its limit. You see a pull-back effect from society. For example, in a third world country people might point at you for doing something differently than how it's done traditionally, you get misjudged, people think of you as "the other", and this force to bring you back to conformity is put on your shoulders.

So I guess I don't think of social dynamics as "good and bad", but rather "lifting up" in knowledge/cognition vs "pulling down". It's also worthy to note that it doesn't fully lift you up or pull you down. You can be getting lifted up at some place and pulled down in another at the same time. Example: As I go to work, the current society pressures me to learn to be responsible for what I do, but at the same time it teaches me that if you can get away with something that is good for you and bad for your employer (like slack off without anyone noticing), do it.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 09:39:17 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17930 http://curi.us/comments/show/17930
anotherAnon Is FI Discussion Mean?
It's not clear from reading your questions how much you already understand, how much you've read, what your own thoughts are, what your learning process is, etc.

> Are social dynamics considered a bad thing?

Social dynamics are part of tradition. There are bad things in them, like with other traditions. But just rejecting them without understanding them or knowing how to replace them isn't good either.

> If they can be both good and bad at different times, how does one tell the difference in a reliable way?

There are lots of things that are sometimes good and sometimes bad. Eating, drinking water, going to the grocery store, going outside, sleeping, lying, telling the truth.

You have to look at the context and use your judgement. There isn't a mechanical set of rules you can use to know when things are good or bad.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 09:07:19 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17929 http://curi.us/comments/show/17929
curi Is FI Discussion Mean?
also in general i ignore ppl way more if i can't associate them with a positive reputation. some ppl who have been around a long time post Anonymous and it doesn't matter much b/c i can tell who they are by reading what they said, but that doesn't work with people i know less well.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 08:44:42 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17928 http://curi.us/comments/show/17928
anon14 Is FI Discussion Mean? > I wrote #17914. I am a new anon to the discussion.

I made a mistake. I wrote #17920 not #17914.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 08:36:13 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17927 http://curi.us/comments/show/17927
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? Tue, 08 Sep 2020 08:32:19 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17926 http://curi.us/comments/show/17926 anon14 Is FI Discussion Mean? I wrote #17914. I am a new anon to the discussion.]]> Tue, 08 Sep 2020 08:32:08 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17925 http://curi.us/comments/show/17925 curi Is FI Discussion Mean?
IME ppl like me better if i don't do meta discussion like that.

Also, even if I did get to know people first, it still wouldn't work. It seems to work for you because you have different ideas and conversations. With me, people would think I bait and switched them, and now that I've revealed that I'm a witch they'll want to burn me.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 08:13:28 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17924 http://curi.us/comments/show/17924
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? oh forgot to mention
>I don't think it's "rules". Partly it's cargo culting. People copy me badly, even though I keep telling them not to.
This is why I used the phrase "invisible rules". It's the type of thing that nobody said, but a significant number of people do act upon. It's not an accident that the literature people use to communicate in discussions seems similar. It's the default response of a lot of people to new environments: to adapt to the social norm.
Ironic as it is that places like FI are supposed to get people out of cult-like conformity and to make each person think for himself, it could actually do the opposite for a lot of people.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 08:00:49 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17923 http://curi.us/comments/show/17923
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:55:06 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17922 http://curi.us/comments/show/17922 Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? Ah. I understand. This is too complicated for me to find any realistic solutions for. I personally just get to know the persons that I talk to for a while, NOT expose them to the amount of things that I know so they don't create some sort of "intellectual" image of me in their heads and think they have to act and be a certain way in front of me. This way I am just another person who has some good things to say. Then slowly as we talk, based on my knowledge of who they are I adjust how I talk to each person.

But what you're doing in this community is very different. Most of those people are people I already know in my life, and most are IRL contacts. I have the time to get to know them. I'm not in a rush. If I'm having a conversation with them, it's because both of us are interested in the conversation. etc. But you are already recognized as an intellectual, so you can't avoid people's projections of who you are and how they should react toward you (they wanna match your/community's "level"). On the other hand, you don't have the time or mental capacity to deal with all the random strangers and get to know them enough to know how to deal with each of them, and that's even before we consider the anonymous status of a lot of these people.

I think you are systematically set up to fail to connect with others in any way that is satisfactory. The best thing I can think of that you can do, is that tell each person that wants to talk to you, very briefly, this situation that you discussed above:
> Yes. People pretend to be something they're not. They do it badly. They get bad results.
> When i assume this, people get upset and ask to be treated like they are super rational.
When i don't assume this, people get upset too.
and so on.

I think if you do your role at clarifying that you'd rather have a real conversation than a "intellectual looking" one, maybe some people will reconsider. Dunno though it has to be put to practice and the results will show.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:51:07 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17921 http://curi.us/comments/show/17921
Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean? Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:50:41 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17920 http://curi.us/comments/show/17920 Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean? Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:39:04 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17919 http://curi.us/comments/show/17919 Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean?
> You do social things all the time. I don't get why you're so scared of this fairly mild one. Selective attention? Bias?

I’m not scared of welcoming people. There’s something else going on that I am now conscious of and didn’t say yesterday. I can’t right now think of a way of addressing it.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:37:43 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17918 http://curi.us/comments/show/17918
anon#17915 Is FI Discussion Mean?
you joined the discussion and talked like you're the same anon from #17905 and #17910 but maybe you're not?]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:30:54 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17917 http://curi.us/comments/show/17917
Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean?
> re (3) you're heavily dropping context and comparing your problems to *very very different* problems an *actual new person* would have.

I think that many new people have problems handling criticism and problems understanding and dealing with the FI social world and that I have those problems too. I don’t think I’ve made much progress on these problems since I was I new person here.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:26:01 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17916 http://curi.us/comments/show/17916
Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean? Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:22:57 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17915 http://curi.us/comments/show/17915 Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean?
> you should care about any incompatibilities. you seem to be thinking that all welcoming is social dynamics. i don't see why that would be the case. i think some welcoming is just plain truth telling. just like some praise is truth telling.

If you’re saying/doing something with the purpose of welcoming someone, you’re doing a social thing. The thing you’re saying might be objectively true. But there are lots of objectively true things you could say. If you’re picking that thing to say with the purpose of showing someone that there’s a comfortable place for them in the FI social world, you’re doing it for a social reality reason.

I’m not sure if you mean the same thing by “social dynamics” that I do by “social reality”. I'm also not sure if I mean the same thing by "social reality" that anyone else does. If not, that's something I might like to discuss more.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 07:07:52 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17914 http://curi.us/comments/show/17914
curi Is FI Discussion Mean?
I don't think it's "rules". Partly it's cargo culting. People copy me badly, even though I keep telling them not to.

If anything is a "rule" it's be honest and talk about what's going on. If something seems bad or confusing, say so. But no one listens to me.

> This causes less authentic conversations on the side of these people.

Yes. People pretend to be something they're not. They do it badly. They get bad results.

> people can assume that who they're talking to is affected a lot by the social norm of being fragile and defensive against criticism by default

When i assume this, people get upset and ask to be treated like they are super rational.

When i don't assume this, people get upset too.

> Think of people you don't know as babies in the path of thinking and criticism (especially learning self-criticism).

But I've tried that many times and people dislike that.

People want to be treated like they are competent adults. They notice when you are treating them like they are babies and dislike that.

They want to talk about sophisticated, impressive stuff that's too hard for them, rather than learn about easier stuff. They are pretending to be better than they are. Young children don't do that but ~all adults do (some young adults do it less).

And people will directly say they want to have rational debates, and want me to give full criticism and treat them rationally without holding back. People often insist on that with me.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 06:11:08 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17913 http://curi.us/comments/show/17913
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean? Different people have different capacities in being criticized and being shown where they're wrong before they become defensive. There are a lot of factors into why a person's defense mechanisms come up. But the worst thing one can do is to suppress these negative emotions that rise up with the criticism.
I think the psychological environment in this community has this intellectual tone to it that people submit to, because that what most people do in new environments; they either submit to the ways of the environment or they rebel. There are different forms of rebellion too. Some people leave immediately. Some people start making trouble in the name of standing against the stream. And a very few number of people choose to directly approach their issues with that environment and try to understand and resolve the issue.
As I was saying, there is this intellectual "be analytical, be critical, be serious, etc" invisible "rules" in this community that runs around in the environment. People who just submit or rebel stop being themselves and learn to adapt with their social persona in FI. This causes less authentic conversations on the side of these people. They say what they think they're expected to say instead of saying what they have to.
I'm not really sure if this is curi's fault, because as he said, if people can't take criticism, they can't improve. But I still think it's a good idea to not take everything totally objectively and take in subjective and interpersonal issues into account. It's not possible to be perfect and know how much everyone's capacity of criticism is, but for example, people can assume that who they're talking to is affected a lot by the social norm of being fragile and defensive against criticism by default (statistically this seem right. right?) And instead of just going soft on them and saying what they like to hear (which I understand why curi doesn't like), you could give them context of how you're being critical to help improve their ideas, without some sort of "isn't is obvious? what else do you think I'm doing?" background tone to it. Think of people you don't know as babies in the path of thinking and criticism (especially learning self-criticism).

I think that's a good starting point for each individual in the community. Not sure about any systemic solutions though]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 05:43:04 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17912 http://curi.us/comments/show/17912
Sia Is FI Discussion Mean?
> a place where people focus on objective reality and not on social reality. Welcoming and friendliness and trying to help people feel comfortable are social reality things, so I think you don’t want them to happen at FI

This is a crucial error! You cannot dismiss the human part in a human conversation. People who are discussing things are not computers that are comparing data and analysis. There is "separating objective reality with social reality". There surely could be a ground/context in which two people are clear that they want to discuss a topic objectively together, and they proceed to do so. But in this specific discussion about newbies and the people who just entered the community, there's A LOT of social stuff going on. I'm sure even if you don't have some sort of background in psychology or sociology, you can appreciate this feeling of alienation or anxiety or confusion when you enter a new environment. This happens less if your stay at that environment is temporary, like a hospital or a distant relative's home. But if you move to a new city, or a new workplace, you can see how tense this sort of thing gets. The only way you can become "objective" is to fool yourself and suppress the psychological turbulence.

I think the human and subjective aspects are a must-consider in every human conversation.]]>
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 05:29:21 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17911 http://curi.us/comments/show/17911
Anonymous Is FI Discussion Mean?
> I told you to stop welcoming people who *had not talked*. That's too stalker.

Now I remember it as you say. I agree that it’s too stalker to welcome people before they’ve said anything. It’s notable and bad that I didn’t remember it that way.]]>
Mon, 07 Sep 2020 23:31:55 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17910 http://curi.us/comments/show/17910
curi Is FI Discussion Mean?
> point #2 has another weird thing. complicated topic? it doesn't seem complicated to me. here's what i envision. you continue welcoming people to FI. and when elliot or others give feedback on your process, analyze and adjust (according to your judgement, meaning you're fully happy with the change).

if people are gonna stop when they get negative feedback, i'd like to know that in advance. then i'll just say "you suck" instead of giving reasons. it'll be easier to write. giving reasons is pointless if people aren't going to use them. or sometimes, if i know nothing will be fixed, i just won't say anything if i'd rather they keep doing it that stop entirely. not all problems are "worse than nothing" type problems.

PS i think using your blog more has helped you and that other people would benefit from writing more regularly like that.]]>
Mon, 07 Sep 2020 22:23:11 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17909 http://curi.us/comments/show/17909
Ann Coulter Article Link Moved Anonymous Ann Coulter Mini Biography Article Mon, 07 Sep 2020 22:10:07 +0000 http://curi.us/comments/show/17908 http://curi.us/comments/show/17908