Open thread, July 10 - July 16, 2017

post by Thomas · 2017-07-10T06:31:11.395Z · LW · GW · Legacy · 42 comments
If it's worth saying, but not worth its own post, then it goes here.

Notes for future OT posters:

1. Please add the 'open_thread' tag.

2. Check if there is an active Open Thread before posting a new one. (Immediately before; refresh the list-of-threads page before posting.)

3. Open Threads should start on Monday, and end on Sunday.

4. Unflag the two options "Notify me of new top level comments on this article" and "


Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by ImmortalRationalist · 2017-07-14T01:02:58.395Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Does it make more sense to sign up for cryonics at Alcor or the Cryonics Institute?

Replies from: J_Thomas_Moros
comment by J_Thomas_Moros · 2017-08-01T01:09:14.899Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

If you can afford it, it makes more sense to sign up at Alcor. Alcor's patient care trust improves the chances that you will be cared for indefinitely after cryopreservation. CI asserts their all volunteer status as a benefit, but the cryonics community has not been growing and has been aging. It is not unlikely that there could be problems with availability of volunteers in the next 50 years.

comment by b4yes_duplicate0.9924090729683128 · 2017-07-11T10:28:34.086Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Will post rational articles for food. I mean for karma. Please upvote.

EDIT: Thanks I already have enough. See you tomorrow.

comment by Vladimir_Golovin · 2017-07-10T10:09:44.024Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I’d like to ask LW for feedback on names for my upcoming todo list app.

In summary, I spent the last 2 years developing a todo app to replace Wunderlist because I’ve always been unsatisfied with it. I mentioned the app on LW earlier. Microsoft recently announced that they plan to shut down Wunderlist, which is a one-in-a-lifetime marketing opportunity, so I’m currently in scramble mode preparing everything (site, app, company) for the closure event.

The central idea of the app is that it helps you keep your todo list focused on what you can do right now, at this very moment (the approach is similar to Mark Forster’s Autofocus system and is heavily based on the concept of mental ‘ripeness’ of the task to be done).

So here’s my shortlist of names (all with .com domains I already own):

  • Matterlist
  • LumenList
  • PragmaPad
  • PragmaPlanner
  • Persisto

Which name do you like the most? Which ones sound bad to you?

When giving feedback, consider Paul Graham’s advice on naming: “It turns out almost any word or word pair that is not an obviously bad name is a sufficiently good one.” So if any of the names jumps at you as ‘obviously bad’, please let me know.

Replies from: MaryCh, Thomas, Oscar_Cunningham, AspiringRationalist
comment by MaryCh · 2017-07-10T12:26:28.434Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

'Persisto' is a supervillain in the guise of a window cleaner. I think.

Replies from: Vladimir_Golovin, Vladimir_Golovin
comment by Vladimir_Golovin · 2017-07-11T15:40:57.402Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Running the names through native speakers definitely was a good idea :D

Replies from: MaryCh
comment by MaryCh · 2017-07-12T04:39:13.618Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I am a Ukrainian-born Russian-ethnic Ukrainian citizen :D

comment by Vladimir_Golovin · 2017-07-11T03:56:27.258Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

That's why one should always run names through

comment by Thomas · 2017-07-10T11:17:18.006Z · LW(p) · GW(p)


Replies from: akvadrako, Vladimir_Golovin
comment by akvadrako · 2017-07-15T19:23:51.706Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

You should add a "None of the above" option. If I saw an app with these names, I'd be hard pressed to give it a chance.

You might want to try ; crowd sourced names; pay the winner $100.

Replies from: Thomas
comment by Thomas · 2017-07-15T20:30:30.391Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Tell this to Vladimir_Golovin. I have just installed the poll, exactly for the names he proposed.

I think, the option "none of the above" is useless. Imagine some future parents have a list of potential names for their offspring. Mary, Magdalene, Judith and Margarete. They show you this list and ask you which name would you choose.

Would you still demand "none of the above" option? (Applications are somewhat like children.)

Replies from: Lumifer
comment by Lumifer · 2017-07-16T22:52:43.745Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I think, the option "none of the above" is useless.

Au contraire, I think it's quite useful and means exactly what it says: "I don't like any of the options offered".

In the case of children names, yes, if none of the proposed names are to my liking, I would find a polite way to say "None of the above"

comment by Vladimir_Golovin · 2017-07-11T03:55:45.422Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Thomas, thank you for setting up the poll! Somehow this didn't occur to me.

comment by Oscar_Cunningham · 2017-07-10T11:22:38.316Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

They all seem very long to me. Why not Xlist for some one syllable word X?

Replies from: Vladimir_Golovin
comment by Vladimir_Golovin · 2017-07-11T03:54:28.356Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

There's no chance that I will be able to secure or anything similar for a reasonable sum of money (i.e. under $3000 or so).

Edit: oh, sorry, I completely misread you (was in a hurry). I did a search on, and there were one-syllable words among the results, but none of them jumped at me as a good name (in addition to the vast majority of them being already taken).

comment by AspiringRationalist · 2017-07-15T20:34:25.239Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Because I think it would be useful to be able to weigh in explicitly on each option rather than just pick a favorite:






comment by b4yes_duplicate0.9924090729683128 · 2017-07-11T10:26:39.791Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Will post rational articles for food. I mean for karma. Please upvote.

comment by Wei_Dai · 2017-07-16T22:23:39.845Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I found a user named chron whose posts are all banned for no apparently reason. (If you use this link you can see their comments, but while looking at a post or comment they replied to, chron's comment will show as "deleted".) This user also shows up in the list of banned users. But there seems to be nothing wrong with this user's posts/comments that I can see. I tried searching for a comment explaining why this user was banned but couldn't find one. Is there a place that records the reason why each banned user was banned? If so, could someone please link it to the wiki page about moderation?

Replies from: ChristianKl, Lumifer, Elo
comment by ChristianKl · 2017-07-17T12:40:26.298Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Most of the people who are banned on LW are banned because they are Eugine's clones.

comment by Lumifer · 2017-07-16T22:41:43.423Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

chron sounds like one of Eugine Nier's alter egos.

comment by Elo · 2017-07-19T05:00:14.797Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Chron was Eugine. Permanently banned for vote manipulation

comment by arundelo · 2017-07-10T14:07:33.960Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

This is probably a known issue, and I know a rewritten version of the Less Wrong software is being worked on, but I just noticed that even if I'm using HTTPS, comment permalinks (the chain icon at the bottom of a comment) are HTTP URLs.

comment by buttcake · 2017-07-10T13:30:48.506Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

What other non-rat communities are you a part of ?

Replies from: username2, lifelonglearner, Lumifer
comment by username2 · 2017-07-11T09:42:52.397Z · LW(p) · GW(p)


P.S. "rat" is a terrible label, I would even prefer "cult"

comment by lifelonglearner · 2017-07-10T13:39:30.558Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

The close-up magic community.

comment by Lumifer · 2017-07-10T15:07:11.243Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

What, a murine community is not good enough? X-)

Replies from: buttcake
comment by buttcake · 2017-07-11T06:38:49.280Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Yes but sadly there isn't a rar adjent community for everything, maybe in the form of rat fiction but still I kinda want to know what other people here visit because I'm interested.

comment by ImmortalRationalist · 2017-07-14T20:30:36.924Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Eliezer wrote this article a few years ago, about the 2 things that rationalists need faith to believe. Has any progress been made in finding justifications for either of these things that do not require faith?

comment by username2 · 2017-07-13T10:44:22.774Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

attention moderator(s?) - spam cleanup needed in Ann Arbor meetup thread

comment by Thomas · 2017-07-10T06:35:56.970Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Kindly invited to solve this.

Replies from: Gurkenglas, philh, Viliam
comment by Gurkenglas · 2017-07-11T18:27:12.038Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

An upper bound is 27 queens, which can threaten all squares of a 3D chessboard hyperplane (and the two adjacent ones), which sweeps through the hypercube and smashes the king against a hyperwall. This assumes that the game doesn't draw after 50 turns.

Replies from: Thomas
comment by Thomas · 2017-07-12T05:49:09.202Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

50 moves rule is totally inappropriate in 4D. Let us dismiss that rule here, yes.

Replies from: Gurkenglas
comment by Gurkenglas · 2017-07-12T22:11:45.636Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

An upper bound is 17 queens: 16 threaten all 6^4 inner squares, then the 17th moves to the inner square closest to the king.

Edit: Nevermind, this amounts to the 17th queen checkmating the king on a 3D board with warp sides.

comment by philh · 2017-07-10T13:22:09.112Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I'm unlikely to try to solve it, but are you looking for an answer like "if the king starts here, you can do it with N queens placed at...", or "no matter where the pieces start, you can do it with N queens"? Are you limiting positions to those which could theoretically be achieved in a legal game of 4D chess?

(By that last one, I mean that on a 2D board, you could have a king in the corner and a queen directly adjacent above and beside it, and that would be mate. But you can't ever have that position in a legal chess game. If something like that turns out to be the optimal, would you accept it?)

Replies from: Good_Burning_Plastic, Thomas
comment by Good_Burning_Plastic · 2017-07-11T07:22:57.038Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I mean that on a 2D board, you could have a king in the corner and a queen directly adjacent above and beside it, and that would be mate.

No, unless the queen is defended by some other piece, otherwise the king could just capture it. Or am I missing something?

Replies from: philh
comment by philh · 2017-07-11T09:21:46.769Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Ah, I was unclear: I meant two queens, one each above and beside.

comment by Thomas · 2017-07-10T13:45:38.626Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

It's the worst case scenario for queens, of course. Just as you ask how to mate the solitary black king with the white king and a white rook in 2D chess. The mating method should always work.

If it doesn't always work, which means that there is a position from where the mate isn't possible ... then that number of queens isn't the answer we are looking for.

Replies from: Oscar_Cunningham
comment by Oscar_Cunningham · 2017-07-10T19:34:52.519Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

To answer the other question: there exists a checkmate with two queens. Just pin the king into a corner with one, and guard that queen with another.

Replies from: Thomas
comment by Thomas · 2017-07-10T19:45:03.536Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

But can you actually pin a noncooperative king there with only 2 queens? You can in 2D, but hardly in 3D and even less in 4D.

comment by Viliam · 2017-07-10T11:31:55.639Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Legal moves are analogous to those of 2D chess.

Just to be sure, does it mean that a king can move by a non-zero vector (a, b, c, d) where a, b, c, d in {-1, 0, 1}, and a queen can move by a non-zero vector (a, b, c, d) where a, b, c, d in {-n, 0, n} for some n?

Replies from: Thomas
comment by Thomas · 2017-07-10T11:37:45.293Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Affirmative! ;)

comment by madhatter · 2017-07-12T22:51:37.647Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Where did the term on the top of page three of this paper after "a team's chance of winning increases by" come from?