Comment by ajayjetti on Less Wrong Q&A with Eliezer Yudkowsky: Ask Your Questions · 2009-11-12T03:23:32.460Z · score: 3 (5 votes) · LW · GW

Are you a meat-eater?

Comment by ajayjetti on Near and far skills · 2009-10-23T05:25:25.736Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

fully agree with this.

Comment by ajayjetti on The First Step is to Admit That You Have a Problem · 2009-10-19T13:46:27.101Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I think lot of people indirectly follow the things written in the post--I certainly do. What we actually try to do all the time is: Not try to control things which cannot be, we have to accept certain things are beyond us, and we deal with things which we think we can deal with, isn't it?

Comment by ajayjetti on Let Them Debate College Students · 2009-09-11T18:02:41.378Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Comes a day, when a creationist is hell bent on having a debate to prove how rationalists/biologists are ignorant, and that day, we will send a college-student-rationalist--there is no need to go out there and bat for Darwin, but we would act in defense if required to.

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-27T09:58:38.577Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

got it

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-26T17:50:00.163Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Your strength as a rationalist is your ability to be more confused by fiction than by reality.

--Eliezer (

Comment by ajayjetti on Scott Aaronson's "On Self-Delusion and Bounded Rationality" · 2009-08-18T22:04:34.091Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Few quotes from the article:

"Bananas were created by God for human enjoyment, for why else would they come in such convenient cases?"

"...Am I to hope that, in the hereafter, a rationalist God will reward me for having the intellectual integrity not to believe in Him?".....

...Right, but if the only reason it works is that you believe it works, then how can it work if you know it only works because you believe it works?"...

..."Richard Dawkins, the biologist, was once asked about a study claiming that the devout live longer on average than atheists. He replied that, even if that were so, he'd rather know the truth about where he came from and die early than live longer under a fantasy."

. .... "In other words: the stupider, more ignorant, more irrational you can prove you are, the better the chance you have of winning".

When Douglas Yates wrote that "people who are sensible about love are incapable of it," he might have added a footnote: "the Darwinian explanation for this fact arises from certain paradoxes of rationality in games played by agents known to each other to have bounded computational capacity."

Comment by ajayjetti on Singularity Summit 2009 (quick post) · 2009-08-17T18:26:11.452Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Yes webcast would be heaven; a chance to catch all the best at one place

Comment by ajayjetti on Singularity Summit 2009 (quick post) · 2009-08-17T14:57:11.816Z · score: 1 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Is there a webcast of the same for the people around the world?

Comment by ajayjetti on Open Thread: August 2009 · 2009-08-16T00:13:18.793Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I don't know if it is appropriate to even post this thing, but I didn't find a single thread which talks about the kind of music people in this forum listen to. Has it ever happened that you have used rationality to decide the kind of music you should be listening to? Like all the other things, even listening to music needs "training" (the ears in this case). Music is art-form, so can it be quantified? One might get the same satisfaction listen to MJ or Pat Metheny. But if it happens that you have to choose only two records to listen to for the rest of your life, can rationality help there?

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-15T21:31:17.660Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

yeah, just totally missed it...edited now

Comment by ajayjetti on Towards a New Decision Theory · 2009-08-15T19:17:55.515Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

This is one of those posts where I think "I wish I could understand the post". Way to technical for me right now. I sometimes wish that someone can do a "Non-Technical" and Non-mathematical version of posts like these ones. (but I guess it will take too much time and effort). But then I get away saying, I don't need to understand everything, do I?

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-14T23:05:15.313Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

“To rationalize their lies, people -- and the governments, churches, or terrorist cells they compose -- are apt to regard their private interests and desires as just.”

--Wendy Kaminer (A woman social activist)

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-13T23:18:26.445Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

What is wrong with that?

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-13T21:14:25.644Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Can somebody tell me what is wrong with the above quote? Just curious, because I already see downvotes on it

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-13T20:51:08.847Z · score: 1 (7 votes) · LW · GW

Whenever, then, anything in nature seems to us ridiculous, absurd or evil, it is because we have but a partial knowledge of things, and are in the main ignorant of order and coherence of nature as a whole, and because we want everything to be arranged according to dictates of our own reason; although in fact, what our reason pronounces bad is not as bad as regards the order and laws of universal nature, but only as regards the order and laws of our own nature taken separately.... As for the terms good and bad, they indicate nothing positive considered in themselves...For one and the same thing can at the same time be good, bad and indifferent. For example, music is good to the melancholy, bad to mourners and indifferent to the dead. ---Spinoza

From the story of philosophy by Will durant

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-11T23:17:10.911Z · score: 16 (18 votes) · LW · GW

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked. "Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat. "I don't know," Alice answered. "Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter." ~Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - August 2009 · 2009-08-11T23:15:20.657Z · score: 5 (7 votes) · LW · GW

Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it. ~Andre Gide

Comment by ajayjetti on Why You're Stuck in a Narrative · 2009-08-05T06:24:12.318Z · score: -1 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I don't get you

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - July 2009 · 2009-08-01T00:16:36.099Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

yeah, very well put, every reason to give the art of rationality a chance

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - July 2009 · 2009-07-31T23:25:10.678Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

“To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it” --I tried to find where I read it, but unsucessfully

EDIT: Googled, it's by Kurt Vonnegut

Comment by ajayjetti on Thomas C. Schelling's "Strategy of Conflict" · 2009-07-30T23:47:45.413Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

so rationality doesn't always mean "win-win" ? In a chicken situation, the best thing for "both" the persons is to remain alive, which can be done by one of them (or both) "swerving", right? There is a good chance that one of them is called chicken.

Comment by ajayjetti on Information cascades in scientific practice · 2009-07-30T14:34:57.968Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Oops!! thanks for correcting ( good i din write Vendetta!!)

Comment by ajayjetti on Thomas C. Schelling's "Strategy of Conflict" · 2009-07-29T23:37:25.714Z · score: 9 (9 votes) · LW · GW

So what happens in the broken radio example if both the persons have already read schellings book? Nobody gets the prize? I mean how does such a situation is resolved? If everybody perfects the art of rationality, who wins? and who loses?

Comment by ajayjetti on Information cascades in scientific practice · 2009-07-29T20:30:36.262Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Very interesting!! Isn't it similar to people saying something and then citing some reference as evidence, when, in reality, the evidence is far from the people's "distorted views".

An example:- In Indian Philosophy, "Maya" is often translated as "illusion", and we see people quoting Maya in in popular cultures in India, but the actual psychological, epistemological, and ontological meaning is defined in "Vendanta", which people rarely cite as an "evidence" for saying what they say.

Comment by ajayjetti on Welcome to Less Wrong! · 2009-07-23T01:24:38.555Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW


I am Ajay from India. I am 23. I was a highly rebellious person(still am i think), flunked out college, but completed it to become a programmer. But as soon as i finished college, i had severe depression because of a woman. I than thought of doing Masters degree in US, and applied, but then dropped the idea.Then i recaptured a long gone passion to make music, so i started drumming. I got accepted to berklee college of music, but then i lost interest to make a career out of it, i have some reasons for it. Then i started reading a lot(parallel to some programming). I face all the problems that an average guy faces(from social to economic problems). I graduated from one of the top colleges in india and now don't do my degree any justice. sometimes i think about the fact that all my colleagues are happy working with companies like google, oracle, etc. In a spur to make a balance, i gave gmat and applied and got admit to some supposedly TOP MBA schools. But i again lost interest for pursuing that thing. Now i write a bit, and read and i teach primary school mathematics in a local school. I love music ranging from art tatum to balamurlikrishna to illayraja to blues. I have been to US once when i was working with Perot systems bangalore(i was campus placed there). I would like to travel more, but i dont see that happening in near future because of financial contraints and constraints by governments of this world.

So, i always keep searching for some interesting "cures" on internet. One fine day i found paul grahams website through some Ajax site. Then i was reading something on hacker news, something related to cult following and stuff. There was a name mentioned there--Eliezer yudkowsky(hope i spelled it right). So i wikied that name. i found his site and then from there to less wrong and overcoming bias. Since 2 months, i am really obsessed by this blog. I dont know how will this help me "practically", but i am quite happy reading and demystifying my brain on certain things.

One thing: I have noticed that this forum has people who are relatively intellectual. Lot of them seem to be from developed countries, who have got very less idea about how things work in a country like India. Sitting here, all these things that are happening in "developed" world seem incredulous to me. I get biased like lot of indians who think US or Europe is a better place. I dont need to say that there are millions of indians in these regions. Then i think some more. So far, i dont think anybody is doing things any differently when it comes to living a life. Even in this community i dont see we are living differently, i dont know whether we even need to!!

We are born, we live and we die, that is the only truth that appeals me so far. One might think that a different state of my mind would give different opinion about what my brain thinks is "truth", but i doubt that. But i love this site, if anybody doubts that whether this site has practical benefits or not---I say that it is very useful. Onething stands out, people here are open to criticism. Even if we don't get truth from this site, we have so many better routes to choose from!! This site seems to be a map. For a timeless travel. Dont give a shit about what others have to say. People can come with theories about everything it seems. And i dont like when people have -ve stuff to say about this forum. I am and would like to loyal to the forum which serves me good.

I hope something happens that we are able to live for atleast 500 years. I think that would be a good time to know few things( my fantasy)

i have recently started writing at

thanks for reading if u have reached here!!

Comment by ajayjetti on Extreme Rationality: It's Not That Great · 2009-07-22T20:57:14.977Z · score: 0 (4 votes) · LW · GW

fantastic !!!

Comment by ajayjetti on Outside Analysis and Blind Spots · 2009-07-22T01:50:53.777Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

yes, i am stumped!! the thing is clear from one of the comments. actually i was a bit sleepy (still am) and skimmed thru it, and missed the part after the cut. Fantastic post though.

I have a question: I am a real beginner here in this forum. Although i read a lot, the language used by you and many others in this forum is very high quality. The sentences are huge, which have to be re-read sometimes to understand what is being said. Although i know i will feel more comfortable with time, is it really simple english that is used in this forum? simple is relative, but lets say, is the english used here simple when compared with english used in most of the "standard" philosophy books or sites? i hope i am able to put across my point!!!

Comment by ajayjetti on Outside Analysis and Blind Spots · 2009-07-21T23:57:29.636Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Orthonormal, can you please post a link to blog that you quoted?

Out of the 23 comments so far, none has actually properly handled the question[1] raised by orthonormal.

Would love to see eliezer reply to this one

Please do that if possible.

  1. How seriously do you take this critique? Do you wonder why I'm bothering with this straw-man criticism of Less Wrong?
Comment by ajayjetti on Creating The Simple Math of Everything · 2009-07-21T00:14:44.074Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

thanks for tellin that. I should have looked up before saying that

Comment by ajayjetti on Creating The Simple Math of Everything · 2009-07-20T23:50:29.034Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I realise it should be basic "math". For some strange reason almost 99% of people here in india say maths. We are taught by teachers as maths. People invariably say I like maths, not math. Its just so ingrained by now that i wrote that in spite of knowing that its "math". Probably a thing like your comment is what my brain was waiting for, it would be more "brainy" before writing maths again :)

Comment by ajayjetti on Creating The Simple Math of Everything · 2009-07-20T23:43:44.767Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Yes, and probably a detailed probability lesson. I was very good at maths in high school, but now after 10 years after highschool, i have totally lost touch. Though i still know the concepts, i get a bit lost when people start talking in "p" terms out of nowhere. I would like to follow everything.

Comment by ajayjetti on Article upvoting · 2009-07-20T23:36:22.653Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

i totally second this!!! Eliezer posts very few articles. I usually come back from work and sit down to read on LW for 2-3 hours. I was fighting myself and telling myself to make a bit of effort to vote, as it is helpful as pointed out by eliezer. But, bcos the number of posts is so less, it really doesn't matter. Eliezer can almost assume that we like the post, unless theres something negative about it written in the comments section. As pointed out by eirenicon, comment votes are very important and they certainly should be given more attention. yesterday i was reading the "alcohol thread" and it really helped to skim thru few and get past 250 comments!!!!

Comment by ajayjetti on Creating The Simple Math of Everything · 2009-07-20T23:13:58.165Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

A page named "basic maths", explaining "essential" concepts would be great. I don't know if it is possible, but i would want the explanations to be theoretical-- the way eliezer explains bayes, basically something for the generalists who can't learn maths by looking at equations!!

Comment by ajayjetti on Rationality Quotes - June 2009 · 2009-06-15T10:41:30.319Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

when the small projects upon the great, it can only come up with a small answer

--JD krishnamurthy

Comment by ajayjetti on Honesty: Beyond Internal Truth · 2009-06-06T05:16:49.472Z · score: 2 (6 votes) · LW · GW

From what i've read and able to understand(a little) after spending 3 months reading this blog is that rationality is (just to put what has already been said lot of times by eliezer) "something that helps us getting more of what we want", please correct me if i have got it dead wrong, else i might be "de-rationalised" in a rational way. Im a pathalogical liar, i have little to hide (nobody who knows me visits this blog, i think, and if somebody does and happens to read this, then he wouldn't mind it i'm sure).

"........- the theory being that if you give yourself permission to lie outright, you will no longer feel the need to distort internal belief. In this view the choice is between lying consciously and lying unconsciously, and a rationalist should choose the former."

I like the idea of outright lying, but what i've realised over a period of time is that the "outward lying" slowly creeps into the "conscious" and "aware" mind and sometimes i forget that i am lying, i guess it happens to other also.

Again, from the definition of rational (as i ve put it above), i think honesty is related to rationality, since not being honest may help us want more of what we want or just get us what we want. How well we manage lies and are able to separate conscious and unconscious lies is subjective.

Truth is beautiful, without doubt; but so are lies--Ralph waldo emerson