Comment by biasedbayes on Models of human relationships - tools to understand people · 2017-07-31T18:38:54.358Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Learning social dynamics from the book Game is like trying to learn science from clickbait media.

Try David Buss: Evolutionary psychology - the new science of mind (newest edition)

Comment by biasedbayes on Three Responses to Incorrect Folk Ontologies · 2017-06-26T14:43:35.664Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

First of all thats wrong level of analysis. There is nothing relativistic about the theory of relativity itself. Proper analogy would be between theories/ontologies/belief systems not in terms of the content of those theories.

No reference frame makes Newtons, Thomas Youngs, Augustine-Jean Fresnels or Ernest Machs ideas about motion less or more right compared to Einsteins. You need evidence to value the ontologies, even if the content is relativistic.

Comment by biasedbayes on Three Responses to Incorrect Folk Ontologies · 2017-06-24T12:04:41.801Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Is this supposed be little cute side notion or powerful counterargument?

Its possible to have better and worse ontologies even if philosophers cant solve what is the right theory of truth. One could answer to the liars paradox based on Russells, Tarskis, Kripkes or Priests ideas but this is irrelevant IF one is interested about actually having accurate beliefs. It is not necessary to have completely water tight necessary and sufficient theory of the truth to be able to rank beliefsystems based on evidence at hand and evidence about human cognitive tendencies to create predictable folk theories.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-03-17T14:17:18.548Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

To state P is to imply "P is true". If you didn't think your theory was better, why state it?

Im not advocating some big grand theory of ethics but a rational approach to ethical problems given the values we have. I dont think its needed or even possible to solve some big general questions first.

Anyone else? Any number of people have stated theories. The Catholic Church The Protestant churches.Left wing politics. Right wing politics. ....etc etc etc.

In this discussion.

Anyone can state an object-level theory which is just the faith of their ancestors or whatever, and many do. However, you put yourself in a tricky position to do so when your theory boils down to "science solves it", because science is supposed to be better than everything else for reasons connected to wider rationality...it's supposed to be on the high ground.

Irrelevant. Given values we have there are better and worse approaches to ethical problems. The answer is not some lipservice slogan "science solves it " but to give an argument based on synthesized evidence we have related to that specific ethical problem. After this peers can criticise the arguments based on evidence.

Why? To support some claim about ethics? I haven't made any. To prove that it is possible?

Because you keep insisting that we have to solve some big ethical questions first. When asked repeatedly you try to specify by saying "closer you are solving them" but that does not really mean anything. That is just a mumbo-jumbo. Looking forward to that day when philosophers agree on general ethical theory.

an ethical system can be better or worse adapted to a society's needs, meaning there are better and worse ethical systems.(Strong ethical relativism is also false...we are promoting a central or compromise position along the realism-relativism axis).

How do you know which system is better or worse? Would you not rank and evaluate different solutions to ethical problems by actually researching the solutions using empirical data had and applying this thing called scientific method?

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-28T12:56:12.897Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Since we agree that this is true, but you still keep insisting that "you have to solve (funny to use this word because this task is still work in progress after thoussands of years) the general questions first get to an "interesting" object-level ethical propositions" as you wrote in the beginning, please put forward your answers to these general questions. Im begging for you to give your foundational ethical arguments.

After this we could really proceed to compare our suggestions and other people could perhaps conclude whose proposition is more or less imperfect. Im very happy to do this and give more structured arguments how science is relevant when answering more specifically to your points.

So far I have not concluded that "my theory is less perfect than everybodys else". You or anyone else have not even stated a hint of a theory! What I have said is that the question "how much weighting do you put on the wellbeing of the folks at home versus people in far off lands" is not interesting to me.

I never wrote the last sentence of your second quote

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-27T18:22:13.817Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for your answer. My 20 cents:

There are no both necessary and sufficient conditions for the perfect foundational general ethical theories. Would be interested hearing your arguments if you think otherwise. Give me an example to refute this. This does not mean that there cant be general guidelines. Contrary to your post there is huge falsifiability demand on my proposition because scientific enquiry can and has to inform what is the right (or better) moral answer. Which leads nicely to G.E. Moores naturalistic fallacy.

So there is such a thing as value, and the answer the fact-value dilemma is to wholeheartedly embrace the naturalistic fallacy?

Im not completely sure that you understand what is the naturalistic fallacy since you even suggest it here. There are many naturalistic approaches to ethics that do not fall into Moores naturalistic fallacy. What these approaches have in common is the argument that science is relevant for ethics, without being an attempt to start from a foundational first moral principles .

Moore’s naturalistic fallacy is aimed towards arguments seeking a foundation to ethics, not to criticize ethicists who do not provide such a foundation. Im not trying to derive foundational ethical principles here if that is not clear already. This is approach where normative inquiry is aimed to tangible problem solving and where a moral problem is not necessary ever completely solved.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-26T13:51:46.547Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

You are partly trying to carve nature in clear categories, and it does not care about your intent doing so. There are general answers to general questions but when being more specific your nice clean and clear general answer can be problematic. Im in no way forced to keep defending universalism if the question is more specific. Good luck solving anything with that kind of conceptual musings from the armchair.

For instance, a decision-theoretic weighting on the desirbiilty a future outcome.

And those utilities on that decision-theoretic weighting are affected in the first place by the actual facts of how our nervous system and cognition is evolved to appreciate these specific values, how our beliefs are in line with the facts of the reality and also hopefully be updated and criticised based on facts too.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-26T10:42:42.134Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I have not stated that I do not undestand the terms.This should be very clear. I have stated that the question is not interesting to me because its too general. BUT because you keep insisting I still gave an answer to you while very clearly stating that if you would like to be more specific I could give you even better answer.

How can it add up to value? It can can provide crucial information in meeting those values. Hard distinction between facts and values is illposed. What is a fact free value? In the other hand even our senses and cognition have apriori concepts that affects the process of observing and processing so called value free facts. Welcome to 2017 David Hume.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-10T20:21:06.295Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Well yes, I think morality is related to the wellbeing of the organism interested about the morality in the first place. There are reasons why forcefully cutting my friends arm vs hair is morally different. The difference is the different effects of cutting the limb vs hair to the nervous system of the organism being cut. Its relevant what we know scientifically about human wellbeing. We can obtain morally relevant knowledge through science.

Comment by biasedbayes on Interview with Nassim Taleb 'Trump makes sense to a grocery store owner' · 2017-02-10T20:05:10.172Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thats a way too simplistic way to think about this. One has to stand on the shoulders of giants to be intellectual in the first place. Also there is this thing called scientific consensus and there are reason why its usually rational to lean ones opinions in line with scientific consensus- not because of other people think like it too but because its usually the most balanced view of the current evidence.

Talebs argument about being IYI is pretty ridiculous and includes stuff like not deadlifting, not cursing on twitter and not drinking white wine with steak while naming some of attributes of IYI using people he does not like. I get it its partly satire but he fails to make any sharp arguments, its mostly sweeping generalisation while generating these heuristics around the concept of IYI that are grossly simplistic.

Come on : ”The IYI has been wrong, historically, on Stalinism, Maoism, GMOs, Iraq, Libya, Syria, lobotomies, urban planning, low carbohydrate diets, gym machines, behaviorism, transfats, freudianism, portfolio theory, linear regression, Gaussianism, Salafism, dynamic stochastic equilibrium modeling, housing projects, selfish gene, election forecasting models, Bernie Madoff (pre-blowup) and p-values. But he is convinced that his current position is right.”

OK.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-10T13:13:42.843Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Actually authors point is the choice between moral facts or slide to the nihilism. As a relativist one can try to muddle the water by saying that one should say that "according to culture X, Y is wrong" but this is a descriptive statement of culture X carrying no normative power. I really like the article, thanks a lot. Should have read it better in the first place.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-10T11:50:41.939Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

You are right sir. I think we might have different opinions about the ways/angle to approach the issue of right normative moral code. If I interpret it right I would be sceptical about authors idea "to employ our usual mix of argument, intuition and experience" in the light of knowledge of the limits and pitfalls of descriptive moral reasoning.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-10T11:27:13.021Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Its not meaningless in general, just your question: "How much weighting do you put on the wellbeing of the folks at home versus people in far off lands" is meaningless to me or atleast not interesting. What do you mean by wellbeing? who are these people? (all people abroad?),Whats "far away"? what do you mean by saying to "put weight on wellbeing"?, whats "home"?

Exactly equal weighting (whatever that means) because we are the same species with the same kind of nervous system and same factors affecting to our wellbeing. If you are going to specify your question further my answer will get more nyanced too.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-08T20:01:53.727Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

That is huge generalisation from one simple general question. Science can inform general normative questions and theres nothing wrong with general normative questions, in general ;). The problem is that this specific question here is pretty meaningless. In general one should put equal weight to everybodys wellbeing. Its easy to poke holes to this answer but the problem is still your question that begs general answers like this.

Comment by biasedbayes on Most empirical questions are unresolveable; The good, the bad, and the appropriately under-powered · 2017-02-08T19:41:24.125Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Then why not to state exactly that position in the article ? To answer to your question i dont if you mean every possible crazy hypothesis being in the space of possible hypothesis but disagree if you mean in terms of pragmatic usefull hypothesis being well resolved. There is not a single doubleblinded RCT on smoking causing cancer as far as I know, but its pretty resolved that smoking causes cancer, agreed?

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-08T12:17:41.170Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Im curious about your view. Do you think that we cant say its a moral fact that its better (1) to feed newborn baby with milk from its mother and sooth it tenderly so it stops crying compared to (2) chop its fingers of one by one slowly with a dull blade and then leave it bleeding? And this moral evaluation depends on your state of mind?

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-07T19:46:01.522Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for clarifying! In that case thats a way too general normative question to give real purposeful answer. (For example 1,089 % more does not really make any sense).

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-02-06T20:16:27.659Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Depends what you mean by "solving".Yeah, this is exactly what the data shows and its called ingroup-outgroup bias.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-01-31T20:06:50.247Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the reply. My point was that evolutionary system 1 thinking and morality does not necessarily even correlate. Descriptive intuitive moral decisions are highly biased and can be affected for example by the ingroup bias and framing.Moral intuitions are there to better own reproduction/survival not to make good moral and ethical decisions.

Comment by biasedbayes on The Maze of Moral Relativism · 2017-01-31T17:10:33.982Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Confusing article. "Either total relativism or absolute moral facts". How about the following: descriptive morality is based on rationalizations of emotional system 1 responses but if morality has anything to do with human wellbeing, science can inform what is right normative moral code.

Comment by biasedbayes on Most empirical questions are unresolveable; The good, the bad, and the appropriately under-powered · 2017-01-30T21:35:27.516Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the link, the title is a bit misleading though ("most empirical questions..").

Comment by biasedbayes on This one equation may be the root of intelligence · 2016-12-11T23:25:26.925Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks! Very interesting!

Comment by biasedbayes on An attempt in layman's language to explain the metaethics sequence in a single post. · 2016-10-13T11:45:12.546Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Morality binds and blinds. People derive moral claims from emotional and intuitive notions. It can feel good and moral to do amoral things. Objective morality has to be tied to evidence what really is human wellbeing; not to moral intuitions that are adaptions to the benefit of ones ingroup; or post hoc thought experiments about knowledge.

Comment by biasedbayes on Not all theories of consciousness are created equal: a reply to Robert Lawrence Kuhn's recent article in Skeptic Magazine [Link] · 2016-09-16T16:10:11.258Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the post, I really liked the article overall. Nice general summary of the ideas. I agree with torekp. I also think that the term consciousness is too broad. Wanting to have a theory of consciousness is like wanting to have a "theory of disease". The overall term is too general and "consciousness" can mean many different things. This dilutes the conversation. We need to sharpen our semantic markers and not to rely on intuitive or prescientific ideas.Terms that do not "carve nature well at its joints" will lead our inquiry astray from the beginning.

When talking about consciousness one can mean for example:

-vigilance/wakefulness

-attention: focusing mental resources on specific information

-primary consciousness: having any form of subjective experience

-conscious access: how the attended information reaches awareness and becomes reportable to others

-phenomenal awareness/qualia

-sense of self/I

Neuroscience is needed to determine if our concepts are accurate (enough) in the first place. It can be that the "easy problem" is hard and the "hard problem" seems hard only because it engages ill posed intuitions.

Comment by biasedbayes on Suggest best book as an introduction to computational neuroscience · 2016-06-04T14:01:52.576Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I have been reading Memory and the Computational Brain: Why Cognitive Science will Transform Neuroscience by Gallistel and King.After that I will read Olaf Sporns book you recommended.

Just actually listened Brainscience podcast where Olaf spoke about his work.Thanks a lot!

Comment by biasedbayes on Suggest best book as an introduction to computational neuroscience · 2016-04-30T09:01:58.949Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the info :) Yes, thats true. I ordered Theoretical Neuroscience couple of days ago together with Mathematics for Neuroscientists by Gabbiani and Cox. No one teaches computational neuroscience in our university, so i have to try to learn this field by myself.

Comment by biasedbayes on Suggest best book as an introduction to computational neuroscience · 2016-04-29T16:19:57.676Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Found this free online course if someone else is interested: https://www.coursera.org/course/compneuro

Comment by biasedbayes on Suggest best book as an introduction to computational neuroscience · 2016-04-27T18:27:17.361Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Awesome! Judging by the first 30 pages this is gold. Very nice, thanks a lot!

Comment by biasedbayes on Suggest best book as an introduction to computational neuroscience · 2016-04-27T18:26:24.363Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I love that book too! I have read it once and listened it once.

Suggest best book as an introduction to computational neuroscience

2016-04-26T21:16:09.096Z · score: 2 (3 votes)
Comment by biasedbayes on Map:Territory::Uncertainty::Randomness – but that doesn’t matter, value of information does. · 2016-01-24T20:24:25.109Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thinking "probability exists only in the territory" is exactly taking the idea that probabilities exists as "things itself" to the extreme as i wrote. This view is not a strawman of dogmatic frequentists position, as you can see from the John Venn quote.

I feel the need to point that i have tried to describe the context of the debate where the heuristic: "uncertainty exists in the map, not in the territory" was given in the first place. This whole historical debate started from the idea that probability as a degree of belief does not mean anything. This was the start. "Fallacious rubbish", as Fisher puts it.

I have tried to show that one can have this very extreme position even if there exists only epistemic uncertainty. One can answer to this position by describing how in some situations the uncertainty exists in the map, not in the territory. This is the context where that general heuristic is used and the background that it should be judged against.

"A rational decision maker genuinely needs both the concept of frequency and the concept of belief." Amen!

Comment by biasedbayes on Map:Territory::Uncertainty::Randomness – but that doesn’t matter, value of information does. · 2016-01-24T18:20:30.168Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Generally if you approach probability as an extension of logic, probability is always relative to some evidence. Hardcore frequency dogmatists like John Venn for example thought that this is completely wrong: "the probability of an event is no more relative to something else than the area of a field is relative to something else."

So thinking probabilities existing as "things itself" taken to the extreme could lead one to the conclusion that one cant say much for example about single-case probabilities. Lets say I take HIV-test and it comes back positive. You dont find it weird to say that it is not OK to judge probabilities of me having the HIV based on that evidence?

Comment by biasedbayes on Map:Territory::Uncertainty::Randomness – but that doesn’t matter, value of information does. · 2016-01-24T17:27:46.778Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

If you mean me and you...well we dont. I agree. But maybe one should ask that having Ronald Aylmer Fishers ideas about Bayesian statistics in mind: "the theory of inverse probabilities must be fully rejected"

Let me reprhase my quote: The heuristic "uncertainty exists in the map, not in the territory" is in the first place meant to be an heuristic against dismissing Bayesian concept of probability."

Comment by biasedbayes on Map:Territory::Uncertainty::Randomness – but that doesn’t matter, value of information does. · 2016-01-23T09:33:45.751Z · score: 1 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Upvoted. The heuristic "uncertainty exists in the map, not in the territory" is in the first place meant to be an heuristic against frequentist statistics. One can argue that probabilities are properties of the things itself also in situations of purely epistemic randomness. The argument "uncertainty exist in the map, not in the territory" is used in this context to show that thinking probablilities existing as "thing itself" can lead to weird conclusions.

Comment by biasedbayes on Rationality Reading Group: Part R: Physicalism 201 · 2016-01-18T18:36:41.048Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

If someone is interested about the book, i highly recommend the audiobook version. You can find it from: http://castify.co/channels/53

It took me 5 days to listen the whole book (volume 1-3).

Comment by biasedbayes on The Number Choosing Game: Against the existence of perfect theoretical rationality · 2016-01-05T12:42:19.801Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Ok, lets say you are right that there does not exist perfect theoretical rationality in your hypothetical game context with all the assumptions that helps to keep the whole game standing. Nice. So what?

Comment by biasedbayes on Nature publishes an article about alternative therapy · 2015-10-19T21:31:47.600Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

"Speaking as someone who finds that placebos cure my headaches as well as painkillers do, I dispute that that is the question.."

You should consider regression to the mean and illusion of correlation.

Comment by biasedbayes on Nature publishes an article about alternative therapy · 2015-10-19T20:55:25.587Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Sorry the misleading title and thanks for downvoting :D.The author goes much further than just ”utilizing the placebo effect”. The article is basically about endorsing alternative medicine. You can easily see this from the following quotes .

There are many shady arguments in the article:

”Conventional medicine, with its squeezed appointment times and overworked staff, often struggles to provide such human aspects of care. One answer is to hire alternative therapists.”

--> Just because there are challenges in medicine like overworked stuff does not mean alternative medicine practicioners should be hired.

”Critics say that this is dangerous quackery. Endorsing therapies that incorporate unscientific principles such as auras and energy fields encourages magical thinking, they argue, and undermines faith in conventional drugs and vaccines. That is a legitimate concern, but dismissing alternative approaches is not evidence-based either, and leaves patients in need.”

-->Dismissing alternative approach does not mean that the patient is leaved ”in need.” If the patient is in need the answer is not necessarily alternative medicine.

I have problems seeing the problem of utilizing placebo using evidence based medicine and at the same time NOT "hiring alternative therapists".... While acknowledging the limits of placebo.

Nature publishes an article about alternative therapy

2015-10-19T17:07:30.875Z · score: 1 (8 votes)

Help with relevant rational decision making research ideas

2015-09-25T17:46:05.285Z · score: 1 (2 votes)
Comment by biasedbayes on Welcome to Less Wrong! (8th thread, July 2015) · 2015-09-24T12:36:24.939Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the link! Very nice publication!

Comment by biasedbayes on The Heuristic About Representativeness Heuristic · 2015-09-15T14:03:59.373Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the post. I love it.

My comments:

First sidenote that dont assume that if something is a heuristic it is automatically a wrong way of thinking.(sorry if i misinterpret this, because you dont explicitly say this at all :) In some situations simple heuristics will outperform regression analysis for example.

But about your mainpoint. If I understood right this is actually a problem of violating so called "ratio rule".

(1) The degree to which c is representative of S is indicated by the conditional propability p (c | S)- that is, the propability of members of S have characterestic c.

(2) The propability that the characteristic c implies membership S is given by p (S | c). (Like you write)

(3) p (c | S) / p (S | c) = p(c) / p(S)

This is the Ratio Rule= Ratio of inverse propabilities equals the ratio of simple propabilities. So to equate these two propabilities p(c|S) and p(S|c) in the absence of equating ALSO the simple propabilitis is just wrong and bad thinking.

Representative thinking does not reflect these differences between p(c|S) and p(S|c) and introduces a symmetry in the map (thought) that does not exist in the world.

For example: "Home is the most dangerous place in the world because most accidents happen in home. So stay away from home!!!" --> This is confusion about the propability of accident given being home with propability being home given accident.

Comment by biasedbayes on Welcome to Less Wrong! (8th thread, July 2015) · 2015-09-14T17:36:35.949Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Yep :) You are definetely right career wise. Problem for me was the 200 other people who will absorb completely wrong idea of how the mind works if I wont say anything. Primum non nocere.

But yeah, this was 4 years ago anyway...just wanted to mention it as an anecdote of bad general reasoning and biases :)

Comment by biasedbayes on Welcome to Less Wrong! (8th thread, July 2015) · 2015-09-14T12:15:30.827Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks hyporational ! It is exactly same here. Cognitive biases, heuristics, or even Bayes Theorem (normative decision making) is not really taught here.

Also I once argued against some pseudoscientific treatment (in mental illnesses) and my arguments were completely ignored by 200 people because of argumentum ad hominem and attribute substitution (who looks like he is right vs. looking the actual arguments). Most people dont know what is a good argument or how to think about the propability of a statement.

Interesting points Anders_H, I have to think about those littlebit.

Comment by biasedbayes on Welcome to Less Wrong! (8th thread, July 2015) · 2015-09-13T15:51:11.168Z · score: 8 (8 votes) · LW · GW

Hello all!

Im a medical student and a researcher. My interests are consciousness, computational theory of mind, evolutionary psychology, and medical decision making. I bought Eliezers book and found here because of it.

Want to thank Eliezer for writing the book, best writing i have read this year. Thank You.