Nick Bostrom TED talk on world's biggest problems

post by Dr_Manhattan · 2012-01-06T18:52:09.991Z · score: 17 (20 votes) · LW · GW · Legacy · 8 comments


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comment by orthonormal · 2012-01-06T23:45:31.962Z · score: 8 (8 votes) · LW · GW

Good talk, but AUGH don't read the comments.

comment by iceman · 2012-01-07T02:37:29.925Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

The percentage of deathist comments there makes me sad, especially since it was a small part of the presentation.

comment by siodine · 2012-01-08T21:34:02.739Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

On the other hand, it's not at all surprising. It takes a significant amount rationalization, compartmentalization, and cognitive dissonance to accept the life of Sisyphus. But I think most atheists do it to a varying degree, and once there, comfortable, they don't want move back toward the possibility of existential despair. Of course, this is just me psychologizing, but I don't see any validity to their arguments, and they're fairly thin, so I'm left with the hypothesis that they haven't examined their arguments well for the reason I mentioned.

comment by Thomas · 2012-01-07T21:01:25.788Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

Yesterday I gave this link to my friend architect who is some kind of postmodernist. He says he is not, but I am unable to find a better description of his views.

Today, we have met for a glass of vine and he expressed his reaction. He was quite eager to.

According to him, transhumanists have "Faustonian complex which should be outgrown". I said that he could use "the Dedalian complex" - (100 and more years ago, when there was no airplanes yet) for an argument in a debate about flying.

The rest of his arguments were even more "postmodern".

comment by siodine · 2012-01-08T21:09:02.721Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

That's not even an argument, that's psychologizing. Turn the tables and address his concerns with Freudian psychoanalysis. "Faustonian complex, you say? Interesting... interesting. Tell me about your childhood relationship with your mother."

comment by JoshuaZ · 2012-01-08T21:34:06.314Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Yes, there is a Faustian desire. And there is a Faustian bargain too. One is required to learn about how reality works.

comment by Curiouskid · 2012-01-07T04:15:50.975Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

I wish he were more skilled at the Dark Arts.

comment by Grognor · 2012-01-07T01:34:19.218Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

You know, I just assumed that everyone at this site had already seen that talk. I was obviously wrong, since this post has 8 karma.

(I had also assumed most of us had seen this talk. I was clearly wrong.)