grumpyfreyr's Shortform

post by grumpyfreyr · 2020-08-15T20:52:26.733Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW · 9 comments

9 comments

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comment by grumpyfreyr · 2020-08-15T12:50:03.834Z · score: 1 (6 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Less wrong is still wrong. There is a way of seeing that is not wrong.

comment by MakoYass · 2020-08-16T09:59:59.106Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Less wrong can be right. If you believe there is a way of seeing that is not wrong at all, it will be arrived at by becoming less wrong.

comment by grumpyfreyr · 2020-08-16T10:23:35.820Z · score: 2 (4 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Eventually, yes. If you keep removing wrongness, eventually there won't be any left, and you'll be right. But that approach takes a long time.

Imagine you've lost your keys. You know they are in your flat somewhere but they could be anywhere. So after eliminating a few likely places, you systematically go through every object in your flat, checking "are these my keys?"

But imagine another scenario, where you don't know that they are in your flat. And in fact, you believe that they aren't. Will you search as systematically? Probably not.

In this analogy, the keys are rightness, and the flat is our mind. Now I am telling you that I once searched for rightness, and found it. I also tell you that there are many others who have found it, that all minds are capable of rightness. Of course, I cannot prove it because you cannot see inside my mind, and I cannot search through your mind and find your keys- I mean, rightness. But just knowing that rightness can be found, is helpful.

Knowing what right looks like is even more helpful. It's easy to find your keys when someone tells you exactly where they are.

Since my initial comment, I've found a nice, explainy article [LW · GW] which puts it this way:

When you have enough data, your mind is able to produce a lens that it strictly less distorting than everything that came before.
comment by MakoYass · 2020-08-16T06:47:43.939Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

But how would you know when you'd found it?

You can't know. All you can know is that you're becoming less wrong.

comment by grumpyfreyr · 2020-08-16T07:52:53.273Z · score: 1 (5 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

That is a question that would only concern someone who has not found it.

"You can't know" - how do you know that? Can you prove that rightness is impossible?

comment by mr-hire · 2020-08-17T22:21:23.024Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Isn't that the whole point? You can't prove that rightness is impossible, the same way you can't prove rightness is possible.

comment by Dagon · 2020-08-15T13:03:31.074Z · score: 2 (3 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Unlikely. All models are wrong, some models are useful.

comment by grumpyfreyr · 2020-08-15T13:11:30.617Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

By that logic "all models are wrong" is wrong. "all models are wrong" is a model.

"some models are useful" is also a model, which, according to you, is wrong, because all models are wrong.

comment by mr-hire · 2020-08-15T14:31:58.670Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

Yeup, all models are wrong, even this one.

From some perspective there's a way in which 2 + 2 = 4 is  just "right."