Sidekick Matchmaking

post by diegocaleiro · 2015-02-19T00:13:30.498Z · score: 7 (16 votes) · LW · GW · Legacy · 19 comments

Thanks linkhyrule5 for suggesting this.  

Post your request for Sidekicks or your desire to be a sidekick in the comment section below. 

Send a personal message to your potential match to start communicating instead of replying in the thread, to save space and avoid biases, besides privacy. 

[edit] Mathias Zamman suggests some questions: 

Questions for both Heroes and Sidekicks (and Dragons, etc.)

Questions for Heroes:

Questions for Sidekicks:


Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by Rukifellth · 2015-02-20T15:24:10.621Z · score: 9 (9 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Does anyone else find the terminology for this discussion strange? I know LW likes to use words with more emotional-colouring when describing concepts and motivations, but now it's being used to describe people, in a semi-official way.

comment by free_rip · 2015-03-02T04:05:25.874Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Yeah, I think it would make more sense to just have a project match-making thread - people can say what they're working on, and others who want to help/make it easier for the runner of the project (even in ways not directly related to the project, which seems to be what the side-kicking thing is about) can offer said help.

comment by acchan · 2015-02-19T04:23:40.226Z · score: 9 (9 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

I'm going to post about this on an open thread later, but meanwhile I think it might be useful here.

I made a ZeeMap for LessWrong just yesterday:

A ZeeMap is a good way of finding people that share an interest living nearby. You add your location and contact information, and hope someone living near you sees it.

comment by Gram_Stone · 2015-02-24T23:37:32.239Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

It seems that the visibility of such a post is a large factor in how effectively it fulfills its purpose. In my opinion, it warrants a discussion post.

I was just trying to figure out, short of asking in a post or an open thread, how many enthusiastic LessWrong users live in Tampa, Florida. Apparently Michael Vassar briefly stopped in Tampa a few years ago, and there was a meetup, but the chapter never began to meet regularly. If many people reported their interests and locations, it would facilitate the creation of new meetup groups.

I would also like to see that sort of thing circulated around survey time at the end of this year. You might consider reaching out to someone about that. People are primed to report large amounts of information during survey time. It would seem the most prudent time to request any such information.

Lastly, it's conceivable to me that ZeeMaps is not the only service like this. Which service to use is an entire decision in itself that could affect the efficacy of your plans. E.g. services with well-designed user interfaces are preferable to services with poorly-designed user interfaces because you don't want trivial inconveniences to be your data bottleneck, etc.

comment by acchan · 2015-02-25T21:24:42.514Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Yes, I'm going to post to Discussion, but I wanted to test the waters in an Open Thread first.

I would also like to see that sort of thing circulated around survey time at the end of this year

Good idea. I'll see what I can do about that.

it's conceivable to me that ZeeMaps is not the only service like this

ZeeMaps is the one I know. I did check AlternativeTo, but haven't found anything promising so I just went with ZeeMaps. It's possible to export the data if someone comes up with a better alternative.

comment by RomeoStevens · 2015-02-20T07:09:10.521Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Has Bostrom gotten a sidekick/personal assistant yet? What are the obstacles to this happening? Money based or simply finding the right candidate? The second partially collapses into the first in that if a higher wage is offered you get a bigger applicant pool.

comment by Gunnar_Zarncke · 2015-02-19T00:21:34.560Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)


I suggest to find some rules for this.

For example location and some genral info should be given. A list like in Bostrom's sidekick request is balanced by the benefit for the sidekick - here being part of unique research. But it could be as simple as shared awesomeness.

comment by MathiasZaman · 2015-02-19T13:33:35.032Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

I'm going to post some rule suggestions that come to mind, mostly to just get a discussion going:

Questions for both Heroes and Sidekicks (and Dragons, etc.)

  • Post a short description of yourself: personality, skills, general goals.
  • Where do you live?
  • How do you see the contact between the two of you going?
  • What you require in your counterpart: This can be a bit vague but it might be too hard to verbalize for some people

Questions for Heroes:

  • What is your goal?
  • Why are you a Hero?
  • Why do you require a Sidekick?
  • What specific tasks would a Sidekick perform for you?
  • What qualities would you not want in a Sidekick?

Questions for Sidekicks:

  • What sort of goals are you looking for?
  • Why are you Sidekick material?
  • Why do you require a Hero?
  • What sort of tasks could you do for a Hero?
  • What qualities don't you want in a Hero?
comment by diegocaleiro · 2015-02-19T18:57:52.283Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Thank you Mathias, I have put that on the original post so people see it on top regardless of how they display comments.

comment by diegocaleiro · 2015-02-19T00:26:04.887Z · score: 1 (5 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Specify rules and I'll post them.

comment by MathiasZaman · 2015-02-19T10:33:06.194Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)


Sidekicks is a pretty specific thing. I suggest also using this thread for people who need a Dragon or other non-hero roles.

comment by Squark · 2015-02-19T11:22:12.767Z · score: 4 (6 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Or, we can make it even more general: people who need any sort of (non-romantic) partner.

comment by diegocaleiro · 2015-02-19T00:14:59.454Z · score: 2 (12 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

I'm looking for a sidekick if someone feels that such would be an appropriate role for them.

This is me for those who don't know me:

And this is my flowchart/life;autobiography in the last few years:

Nice to meet you! :)

Polymathwannabe asked: What would be your sidekick's mission?

R: It feels to me like that would depend A LOT on the person, the personality, our physical distance, availability and interaction type. I feel that any response I gave would only filter valuable people away, which obviously I don't want to do.

comment by [deleted] · 2015-02-19T13:03:59.868Z · score: 7 (7 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

If you aren't ready to publically specify some details you would like to have in an ideal sidekick, maybe you are not ready for one.

comment by diegocaleiro · 2015-02-19T19:04:49.338Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Maybe you are right. I truly don't feel like I know details of an ideal sidekick, I thought this is a relation forged through time and adventures. Do people agree with qsz?

comment by Dorikka · 2015-02-20T05:31:01.048Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

I'm sort of looking at it from the opposite angle - it seems pretty clear that you couldn't use every type of sidekick. Not everyone will work well with you, be interested in the same things, get along with you, etc. So I think that we would both agree that there's a "good fit" and "bad fit" space. The thing is, being unable to list any features of the "good fit" space, (or even features of the "bad fit" space, so that people can self filter) does not exactly inspire confidence in your self-knowledge/introspection skills, nor does it really prompt me to think that you've considered what you're trying to do in enough detail that you know what type of competencies you need to do that successfully (because if you had, you might have mentioned them.)

I am writing this before going to bed and have probably been rather blunt and unkind in my assumptions; the nicer side of this is that you probably have thought of some of the above, but just didn't the right mental provocations to put that stuff down.

File this under "could have been posted much better, but probably better posted than not posted." Hope it helps.

comment by diegocaleiro · 2015-02-20T07:17:08.565Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

I guess seeing my chart with most of my goals and so on would give people a good idea of what a sidekick would be signing up for. Right now my main reason for not posting any particular reason is no longer that I don't think I should, I do, you have convinced me. Instead it is fear that no one else almost posted in this topic. I was expecting some 5 or 6 people who wanted sidekicks and 5 or 6 who wanted to be sidekicks. Also I got a personal message from a potential sidekick, and we are inquiring into that. Most of all I wanted to encourage other people (heros, dragons, sidekicks etc...) to post here, or create a different forum where this could be posted. It would be a waste if only one or two sidekick relations were created out of Swimmer963 post.

comment by ChristianKl · 2015-02-20T14:00:52.551Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Most of all I wanted to encourage other people (heros, dragons, sidekicks etc...) to post here, or create a different forum where this could be posted.

I think in most cases a local search strategy is more effective than using a global forum like LW. There are a lot of benefits that come from being in the same city as the person with whom one works.

comment by [deleted] · 2015-02-20T20:13:48.919Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Maybe it would be useful if people who have sidekicks/heroes/... commented on how they got them and why it works/doesn't work.

For example, I used to work with someone I consider a notably talented biologist. He has lots of ideas to try out, and not enough patience to make falsifiable hypotheses. It withered as soon as I entered grad school, because I thought I would be a 'real grown-up scientist'... and now I have lots of ideas and struggle with explaining falsifiability to my Department Head...