10 Fun Questions for LessWrongers

post by Ben Pace (Benito) · 2020-08-18T03:28:05.276Z · LW · GW · 15 comments

Here are 10 fun questions for LWers.

Questions like "how much karma makes a post worth reading" and "do emotions mostly help or hinder you in pursuing your goals".

All multiple choice / dropdown selection (bar an optional one).

I'll publish the results in a few days.

I've filled it out. Fill it out here?

15 comments

Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by Gyrodiot · 2020-08-18T17:10:57.979Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I have taken the survey as well. I have the same remark as Dagon here [LW(p) · GW(p)], #7, #8 and #10 made me chuckle as it's a clever way to ask for feedback.

I admit I wouldn't have dared (or even thought about) giving feedback to the team unless specifically prompted by #10. I may have needed that little push... but if it had been an e-mail with "We need your feedback", I wouldn't have answered!

I am confused and I will now reflect on what prompts me to participate.

comment by ESRogs · 2020-08-18T05:14:28.217Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I have taken the survey.

comment by Ben Pace (Benito) · 2020-08-18T05:27:15.698Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I appreciate it.

As a random piece of info, to the question "What's the biggest problem with LessWrong" I liked whoever answered "low-quality surveys".

comment by Dagon · 2020-08-18T16:26:28.992Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

It was at least somewhat tongue-in-cheek, I'm glad no offense was taken. That said, this survey frustrated me, as there were underlying and incorrect assumptions in a lot of questions, and no option for "does not apply to me". Specifics:

#1: liked this a lot. anti-equilibrium is fun! Is there any way to see current results without re-taking the survey?

#2: Karma is mostly irrelevant - I read posts based on title and comments.

#3,4: I couldn't find a clear proposition for what it would mean to "believe in the thesis of civilizational inadequacy". Only an if-then that sets out conditions for not being surprised that economists at the BoJ are incorrect in some way. I don't know if the survey was intended to say "believe that many current humans are pretty wrong", or "humans are doomed to wrongness", or something else.

#5: Many of these terms I've known and used in conversation long before Overcoming Bias and Less Wrong.

#6: I'd quibble about the examples of Slack (I come at it from the Subgenius tradition, rather than the current rationalist fad) but no real problem.

#7,8.10: No worrries, injecting an actual "feedback for mods / is this worth it" question into otherwise-fun survey.

#9: Emotions play a role in identifying my goals, more than in a as pursuing them.


Even with all that, it delivered about 70% of what it promised (that was about 7 questions worth of fun), and that's more than I'd have guessed before I took it. Good work!

comment by Ben Pace (Benito) · 2020-08-18T20:30:41.033Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Haha. Sorry if it was frustrating. I didn't mean it to be very serious, and I still think it'll be fun to see the answers (and how they correlate) even if the q's aren't perfect. I'm glad I gave you 70% of fun.

comment by ESRogs · 2020-08-18T21:00:24.842Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

#5: Many of these terms I've known and used in conversation long before Overcoming Bias and Less Wrong.

For this one, I tried to answer based on whether I had learned the terms from LW or not. But wasn't 100% sure whether that's what the survey wanted. Would def have appreciated that being stated more clearly.

comment by Ben Pace (Benito) · 2020-08-19T00:05:07.985Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Alas. I want to note that I did try to be clear, the question said "because of LessWrong (and other rationalist blogs)". Like, if you heard of 'slack' elsewhere, but then started to use it significantly more because of LW, then I wanted that to count. 

But yeah, agree the answers will be noisy.

comment by ChristianKl · 2020-08-18T14:15:07.209Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

We used to have high quality census surveys and it's been a while since the last one happened.

comment by Ben Pace (Benito) · 2020-08-18T20:34:14.715Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

One of the reasons I felt like throwing up a quick survey (note: primary reason was because it was fun and easy) was to get more in touch with making surveys and finding out how LWers feel about them. I have quite high error bars on how many will respond to this, and will update based on it. 

For example I can imagine moving from one massive schelling survey to regular smaller surveys throughout the year.

Either way, do want to get back to doing a high quality survey for the audience. Not my current project (which is the LW book), but can imagine focusing on it next.

comment by ChristianKl · 2020-08-18T22:36:27.518Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

For example I can imagine moving from one massive schelling survey to regular smaller surveys throughout the year.

That means you can see a lot less for the same amount of survey taking because you don't see how various questions relate to each other. 

comment by Ben Pace (Benito) · 2020-08-19T00:06:54.799Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

We could give people an identifier (e.g. random number) to enter each time, or perhaps incorporate the survey into the LW site directly to associate it with your account.

(It's probably the wrong call, but I do want to think about it some more.)

comment by Sherrinford · 2020-08-19T07:12:50.427Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

There was a smaller one here: https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/yn4Aw6jejS3SHKuzu/2020-lesswrong-demographics-survey-results [LW · GW] It was not promoted to frontpage post, but had some interesting results [LW(p) · GW(p)]nonetheless.

comment by bvbvbvbvbvbvbvbvbvbvbv · 2020-08-18T09:47:16.574Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I found the first question really interesting. It would be interesting to make it recurrent (say every week) and see how quickly equilibrium would be found and how stable it is.

I must point out that I think it was not well phrased though, I thought it meant something like "pick the subject most readers will not choose to read" or something like that. This could explain why the distribution is so far from 25% each.

comment by Bucky · 2020-08-18T14:00:15.687Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

This could explain why the distribution is so far from 25% each.

I think the distribution range is roughly what you would expect by chance given the number of responses (when I did it: 65 responses total, range of results 18.5% - 30.8%)

comment by bvbvbvbvbvbvbvbvbvbvbv · 2020-08-18T16:52:58.289Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

You are completely right. I should have known better. Allow me to downvote myself.