Monthly Bragging Thread April 2016

post by Soothsilver · 2016-04-08T13:26:58.618Z · score: 3 (4 votes) · LW · GW · Legacy · 22 comments

Your job, should you choose to accept it, is to comment on this thread explaining the most awesome thing you've done this month. You may be as blatantly proud of yourself as you feel. You may unabashedly consider yourself the coolest freaking person ever because of that awesome thing you're dying to tell everyone about. This is the place to do just that.

Remember, however, that this isn't any kind of progress thread. Nor is it any kind of proposal thread. This thread is solely for people to talk about the awesome things they have done. Not "will do." Not "are working on." Have already done. This is to cultivate an environment of object level productivity rather than meta-productivity methods. For example:
  • Published a new novel: Yes, brag heartily.
  • Wrote an outline for a new novel: No, please wait until the novel is finished.

So, what's the coolest thing you've done this month?

(Previous bragging thread - January 2016)

22 comments

Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by username2 · 2016-04-08T15:27:45.400Z · score: 21 (23 votes) · LW · GW

At 26, I got my first girlfriend, and lost my virginity to her.

comment by RowanE · 2016-04-11T13:53:27.784Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I unironically love how highly upvoted this post is - it's just so much my tribe, bonobo rationalist tumblr notwithstanding.

comment by Gunnar_Zarncke · 2016-04-08T22:13:37.385Z · score: 10 (10 votes) · LW · GW

To help my son with his English language skills and motivation I organized a four day trip to London just me and him (we are from Germany). This included getting a permit for a day off from school (remember: Germany has always had compulsory schooling and is very strict on such rules). I organized lots of experiences or exercises there, many of course involving sight-seeing but also buying groceries, or stuff on a flea market, reading maps, asking for directions and writing his experiences in a diary (of course in English). It was great for both of us. The father son experience, the city and everything. Doing a city travel may sound trivial but this was actually my first out trip out of the country alone where I totally depended on my English skills and it was at times thrilling but also rewarding to see that it actually works quite well.

comment by D_Malik · 2016-04-09T02:07:20.924Z · score: 9 (9 votes) · LW · GW

Lost 35lbs in the past 4 months, currently at 11.3% body fat, almost at my goal of ~9% body fat, at which point I'll start bulking again. Average body fat is ~26% for men in my age group. My FFMI (= non-fat mass / height^2) is still somewhere above 95th percentile for men in my age group.

Got an indoor treadmill, have since walked 1100km in the past 2 months, 18km/day, 4.5hour/day average. Would definitely recommend this.

Scored 2 points short of perfect on the GRE. Got a 3.8 average for college courses over the past year.

comment by [deleted] · 2016-04-08T17:47:25.021Z · score: 9 (9 votes) · LW · GW

I leveled up in Adult at work. I'm being trusted with more responsibility, have taken advantage of several opportunities to impress my superiors, and am getting a reputation as highly competent.

comment by Gunnar_Zarncke · 2016-04-11T19:23:35.906Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Can you share what worked for you? Did you use and of these tips?

comment by Viliam · 2016-04-09T21:17:09.246Z · score: 7 (7 votes) · LW · GW

I invented a game I could play against my 13 months old daughter, with chances balanced enough that I didn't have to hold back (so it was fun for me, too). Successfully communicating the rules was a part of the awesomeness.

Here is the game: My daughter sits on a couch in a corner of our room. I sit on the floor in front of the couch. She takes a small ball. She is trying to throw the ball away, so it would hit the floor (or get out of my reach). I am trying to catch the ball. I am not preventing her movements in any way (other that not letting her fall from the couch), and I don't touch the ball until she releases it. However, I may put my hand into the predicted path of the ball, far enough from her not to prevent her movements. If I catch the ball, I put it to her feet (she is kneeling), and she tries to get rid of it again. If I don't catch the ball, I offer her a bag containing more balls, to pick a new one (we have a transparent bag with a few dozen balls). As a further handicap, I only use one hand for catching the ball, and the same hand also for offering the bag.

The game turned out to be surprisingly well balanced. Despite trying my best (within the described rules), sometimes the ball flew in a weird angle, or sometimes I didn't grab it properly and it bounced off my fingers. (It probably contributed that I was tired in the late afternoon, while she was full of energy after her late-afternoon nap.) So I never succeeded to catch the ball more than about seven times in a row, which was not enough to make her frustrated; therefore I never actually held back (other than inventing the proper handicaps for myself, but that happened quite naturally soon after the beginning).

The motivation for the game was natural: she loves throwing things on the floor, and she always proudly says 'bump!' (in Slovak, the interjection sounds like "buts"). And she already understands the concept of conflict. So "she wants to throw a thing on the floor, and I want to prevent her from doing so" was easy to get accross. (Well, it's what we do sometimes during lunch.) Seeing the floor getting gradually filled by the balls probably also helped.

We played about 30 minutes, and she kept laughing almost all the time. It was interesting to watch how she developed various strategies during the game. At the beginning she was only throwing the ball in one direction. At some moment she noticed that if she throws the ball immediately after taking it from the bag, I don't have enough time to put down the bag and catch the ball with the same hand. So she started throwing the ball immediately. But soon I developed a better technique of dropping the bag quickly; and when she was throwing this fast, her actions became more predictable. At some moment she turned around and threw the ball in the other direction. Then she kept alternating the directions (not randomly enough; more like about five times in one direction, and then five times in the other). Then she suddenly put the ball on my head, waited for a few seconds, and then she rolled it off my head, so I had to catch it blindly. Then she also added this to her strategy repertoire.

I admit that most of the time when I play with my daughter, it is super boring for me. But this was a lot of fun. Both being able to really compete within the given limits, and seeing her develop a new strategy once in a while.

comment by rayalez · 2016-04-08T20:48:12.182Z · score: 7 (7 votes) · LW · GW

I've launched the first version of my startup, lumiverse:

http://lumiverse.io

I want lumiverse to become the perfect place for people to publish, discover and discuss great educational videos. I want to build a friendly and intelligent community, make it easy for video creators to find an audience, and make it easy for viewers to discover awesome videos.

I also have finaly made the first few episodes of Orange Mind - my video series about rationality.

comment by RowanE · 2016-04-11T13:38:22.674Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Guy who doesn't know much about startups here - "launched the first version" and "want [it] to become" sound indicative of something more "outline of a novel" - can you elaborate on how big of an accomplishment it was to get it off the ground in the first place?

comment by rayalez · 2016-04-12T18:09:49.983Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

In startups, it is so called "MVP" - minimal viable product, a simplest version that you can show users to get some feedback and see if it works. It is the first step to building a startup.

To me it's a pretty huge accomplishment, I'm really proud of myself =) Most of the work went not into coding the website, but into figuring out what it is. I needed a thing that would be valuable, and that I would be excited to work on for the following few years.

A competent programmer could probably create something like that in a week, but because I'm just learning web development(along with writing, producing videos, and other stuff) it took me longer. At the moment it's the best thing I've created, so I'm really happy about it.

Also it's actually the 3rd iteration of my startup idea(first one was a platform for publishing fiction, 2nd - platform for publishing webcomics.)

comment by CellBioGuy · 2016-04-10T19:21:29.755Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW · GW

Got my first citations for my first first-author molecular biology publication, and arranged random in person scientific meeting with scientists in another country on a week's notice upon realizing I would be traveling for personal reasons to the same city as some of the people who cited me.

comment by shminux · 2016-04-08T19:30:23.726Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW · GW

Not this month, but a few months back... Successfully hypnotized people over text chat on several occasions. Surprisingly easy once the subject is willing and trusts you.

comment by Viliam_Bur · 2016-04-08T19:43:44.013Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Congratulation! By the way, were those subjects mathematicians/programmers? Because I was told (by someone who uses hypnosis professionally) that those are the most difficult ones to hypnotize.

comment by shminux · 2016-04-09T06:01:52.106Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks! No, more like artsy types, or at least "neurotypicals'. Haven't tried the logical/Aspie types, but I do find it believable that they would have trouble letting go and enjoying the flow. Jimmy would know for sure.

comment by Good_Burning_Plastic · 2016-04-08T17:28:58.685Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW · GW

Finished reading Unqualified Reservations through, from "A formalist manifesto" to "Hiatus". Took me about a year. (Well, actually some of the lengthy Carlyle quotes I just skimmed. And I didn't read all the comment threads.)

(Also, got my PhD, landed a position as a post-doc starting next month, and played with my rock band in a concert, but those are nothing compared to the UR thing ;-).)

comment by username2 · 2016-04-08T18:08:35.241Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Including the poems? If so, may I just ask why?

comment by Good_Burning_Plastic · 2016-04-15T14:02:55.211Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Including the poems?

Yes.

If so, may I just ask why?

Just because.

comment by WalterL · 2016-04-11T13:52:05.325Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

I've lost enough weight that I no longer look like a fat guy. Like, if you saw a bunch of guys and me you wouldn't think "a bunch of dudes and a fat dude, but instead just 'a bunch of dudes'.

The dieting technique I used for this was Medifast. The secret key to dieting (in general) for me turned out to be drinking water instead of diet sodas. They made me hungry, too hungry to stick with the diets I tried. I think, I mean, that was my experience. Obviously what diet sodas do or don't is a topic of some dispute.

I am not unemployed anymore! I got a new job, with a big raise from back where I used to work. I used the negotiating techniques I read online and got 10k more than their original offer.

I've been able to update my web serial twice weekly without skipping since November.

I made it to 1 dan on a go web site, and have successfully stayed at that rank for a few months. I basically consider myself a 1 dan player now.

I did some serious cleaning of my living space. It doesn't look quite so much like an episode of hoarders right now. I've also instituted policies which ought to prevent the clutter from overcoming everything again. This may be a pre-brag.

comment by SquirrelInHell · 2016-04-09T01:41:03.819Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I wanted to brag here, but then I remembered that I virtuously gave up bragging some time ago.

note: this is a very meta joke, and also it's true

comment by Gunnar_Zarncke · 2016-04-09T09:40:36.267Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I upvoted you because you might well brag about Geometric Bayesian Update which I believe to be new and very valuable because it shows a new direction to think about it. More geometrically minded (sic) persons might get a lot out of this.

comment by SquirrelInHell · 2016-04-09T13:25:45.211Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks :) Glad you liked my idea :)

#LessWrongMoreNice

comment by Gleb_Tsipursky · 2016-04-17T21:31:31.056Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Got a rationality-themed blog post into the top 5 Psychology Today blog posts.