Article on IQ: The Inappropriately Excluded 2016-09-19T01:36:00.317Z
LIST: I can't vote Karma on some people, some contexts. 2015-05-08T03:06:03.009Z
Robin Hanson talking about Bias on Stossel tonight 2014-12-12T05:15:08.834Z
Thinking Fast and Slow for Kindle $3 at Amazon 2013-12-24T19:53:38.907Z
EY "Politics is the Mind Killer" sighting at Washington Examiner and 2012-09-27T19:48:04.828Z
E.T. Jaynes and Hugh Everett - includes a previously unpublished review by Jaynes of a published short version of Everett's dissertation 2012-07-02T04:49:25.558Z
Draft of Edwin Jaynes' "Probability Theory: The Logic of Science" online, with lost chapter 30 2012-06-23T05:48:16.443Z
Free Kindle Textbook: The Cerebellum: Brain for an Implicit Self (FT Press Science) 2012-06-07T02:43:19.652Z
"How We Decide", by Jonah Lehrer, kindle version on sale for 99 cents at amazon 2012-03-07T06:43:20.092Z


Comment by buybuydandavis on Article on IQ: The Inappropriately Excluded · 2021-07-25T00:54:02.908Z · LW · GW

AFAIK, the Triple Nine Society mainly just puts out a bimonthly magazine as pdfs. Surprisingly, I couldn't find an archive of those. They have a few at their site. It was only $10 to join for a year. I joined and let it lapse. I don't have anything bad to say about it, but it obviously did not interest me enough to return, and I had forgotten about it for years since.

Wikipedia says they have a facebook group and a linked in group, but they also say two yahoo groups, and and I know yahoo canceled yahoo groups, so that page isn't up to date. 

Comment by buybuydandavis on Trapped Priors As A Basic Problem Of Rationality · 2021-03-13T10:54:09.670Z · LW · GW

Someone else had pointed out in your previously linked comment "Confirmation Bias As Misfire Of Normal Bayesian Reasoning" that Jaynes had analyzed how we don't necessarily converge even in the long run to the same conclusions based on data if we start with different priors. We can diverge instead of converge. 

Jaynes hits on a particular problem for truth convergence in politics - trust. We don't experience and witness events themselves, but only receive reports of them from others. Reports that contradict our priors on the facts can be explained by increasing our priors on the reported facts or downgrading our priors on the honesty of the reporter

I'm not religious, but I've come to appreciate how Christianity got one thing very right - false witness is a sin. It's a malignant societal cancer. Condemnation of false witness is not a universal value.

ajbFebruary 13, 2020 at 2:05 pm

I think Jaynes argues exactly this in his textbook on the Bayesian approach to probability “Probability Theory:The Logic of Science”,
in a section called “Converging and Diverging views”, which can be found in this copy of Chapter 5

Comment by buybuydandavis on HPMOR: What could've been done better? · 2020-12-20T04:30:32.350Z · LW · GW

I had great hopes. GREAT hopes.

A book of Narrative that exemplifies values makes for a religion. What I've come to realize/believe, is that you don't have to believe The Narrative is literally true for The Narrative to serve the positive purposes of a religion.

While all the rationality homilies are fine and dandy, I thought HPMOR could have been more. HPMOR was so close to a transvaluation of values.

  • Mum and Dad, Hermione's friendship and Draco's journey, Neville and Seamus and Lavender and Dean, the blue sky and brilliant Sun and all bright things, the Earth, the stars, the promise, everything humanity was and everything it would become...
  • And someday when the descendants of humanity have spread from star to star, they won’t tell the children about the history of Ancient Earth until they’re old enough to bear it; and when they learn they’ll weep to hear that such a thing as Death had ever once existed!
  • You are not invincible, and someday the human species will end you. I will end you if I can, by the power of mind and magic and science. I won’t cower in fear of Death, not while I have a chance of winning. I won’t let Death touch me, I won’t let Death touch the ones I love. And even if you do end me before I end you, Another will take my place, and another, Until the wound in the world is healed at last…

A Rejection of Death as part of the Natural Order. Time Binding. Humanity as the Glass Half Full. Now that's a transvaluation of values. 

That's what I wish the Narrative had turned on. The moral issue. Values. Transvaluation of values in Voldemort. Isn't that Harry's dream? That we can all be saved? That we are all worth saving? And that people can come to understand that?

If Harry could understand that, why not Voldemort, the guy with the same brain?

That's the argument to win. That's the case to be made. That's the story to be told.

Instead, the climax was an Encyclopedia Brown Beats the Bad Guy by solving a cognitive puzzle. Harry won because Voldemort didn't know all that Harry was capable of. Sure. You get a win that way. But what was learned? That it's good to have powers the enemy doesn't know about? Well, yeah, but that's neither news nor uplifting.

And "having people to save gives you cognitive superpowers" just isn't true. Maybe it motivates you to work diligently. But it doesn't turn your brain up to 11 when faced with dozens of enemies about to kill you.

Comment by buybuydandavis on No, Really, I've Deceived Myself · 2020-12-20T04:23:07.034Z · LW · GW

Sounds like you are blessed and cursed with a mind that values epistemic rationality over instrumental rationality. That's how your neural net is wired.

It's one thing to see the argument. It's another to feel it in your values.

We're probably just a mutation that helps group survival at our own expense.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Ten small life improvements · 2017-08-30T13:43:26.809Z · LW · GW

Video Speed Controller

That sounds nice!

Hope it works in mobile chrome. I prefer all talking videos at 2x, and have to go back to youtube desktop to get it. It will help me get off Youtube, and move to alternate video sites now that Google's has changed it's motto to Do Evil.

EDIT: yay! Works at Bitchute

Comment by buybuydandavis on Prediction should be a sport · 2017-08-12T08:52:44.837Z · LW · GW

I don't know many tankies.

My favorite word of the day!

Comment by buybuydandavis on The dark arts: Examples from the Harris-Adams conversation · 2017-07-26T21:56:44.893Z · LW · GW

Adams has stated why he doesn't make claims about Trump's character. Recent podcast.

He says his own moral views are such that if he went around shunning people for immorality, he'd be shunning everyone.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The dark arts: Examples from the Harris-Adams conversation · 2017-07-26T21:53:35.058Z · LW · GW

The claim that Trump is a Master Persuader is falsifiable.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The dark arts: Examples from the Harris-Adams conversation · 2017-07-26T21:51:47.106Z · LW · GW

The prediction of the win shows he has insights into Trump's capabilities, but not necessarily his intentions.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The dark arts: Examples from the Harris-Adams conversation · 2017-07-26T21:36:15.080Z · LW · GW

Adams uses several techniques (listed in the post) that could be used to argue for any position—even one that I wholeheartedly agree with. I suspect that in such a case I might not be quite so enthusiastic to point out the flaws in the reasoning.

So that perhaps the following is not quite what you really did:

Where I disagree with you is the claim that attacking someone's epistemological method is necessarily the same as attacking the positions they hold.

Maybe some of that extra enthusiasm leaks over into actual opposition to the person, like:

and he is the kind of figure we rationalists should know how to fight against.

Was Adams v. Harris a convenient vehicle to discuss the dangers of Dark Arts to epistemic rationality, or was a Dark Arts analysis a convenient vehicle for you to advocate opposition to Trump and Adams?

So please, contribute in the comments with your own observations about the Dark Arts involved here.

Have you stopped beating your wife yet?

I note this as one of the prime methods of the Dark Arts that one sees in the media all the time - the presupposition. I think it's actually amazing effective. I simply can't stand watching most talking head news media because the discussions presuppose some propagandistic talking point.

But to be even handed about this, I'll give you an example of presupposition from Trump. It's genius Dark Arts.

We’re going to win so much, you’re going to be so sick and tired of winning, you’re going to come to me and go ‘Please, please, we can’t win anymore.’ You’ve heard this one. You’ll say ‘Please, Mr. President, we beg you sir, we don’t want to win anymore. It’s too much. It’s not fair to everybody else.’”

From a dialectical standpoint, this is just absolute balderdash, silly and absurd. It's just goofy.

But from a Dark Arts perspective, it's amazing. The silliness disarms. Not only does he presuppose "winning", he has exactly the same silliness going on within the presuppositions themselves, that we'll all be begging to stop the winning, which again is rejected by the mind - "no, we won't get tired of winning!".

The dialectical mind thinks it is completely rejecting everything said, while underneath all that's left is the feeling of winning, winning, and more winning.

And this is not just analysis. This is empirical observation. It worked. It is yuge. Go search twitter for "not tired of winning yet" and #somuchwinning. They're basically "Hallelujah" for Trump supporters.

As a final note, I suggest that if you want to discuss the Dark Arts, find it in your side in politics. That way you can be sure you're not just using it as an avenue to attack an enemy, and will give them every benefit of the doubt before casting the accusing finger and proclaiming "I spy Dark Arts!" And you may learn some weaknesses in your side's arguments too.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The dark arts: Examples from the Harris-Adams conversation · 2017-07-25T21:42:12.628Z · LW · GW

For my part, I found the interview itself as an exercise in Dark Arts by Sam. He wants to pretend that he has given Trump politics a fair hearing. But he doesn't have on someone who actually supports the politics in any conventional sense.

He has on a persuasion analyst who doesn't believe in that there is much utility in us having political opinions because of our lack of knowledge and ability to be objective, and will say that his political opinions are so outside the mainstream that there is no point in discussing them. Similarly, he doesn't argue morality because his he says that his own moral values are so outside the mainstream that he finds everyone immoral.

Not a guy who is going to defend Trump on policy or morality. He finds him an effective persuader, and thinks that an effective persuader will make a good president, and sees a number benefits accrued already.

Sam has him on, and then doesn't even talk policy, but spends the hour attacking Trump personally.

Now watch to see how many times Sam uses this interview as evidence of engaging with the ideas behind Trump's politics and finding them unconvincing.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The dark arts: Examples from the Harris-Adams conversation · 2017-07-25T21:22:44.554Z · LW · GW

The OP is an interesting twist on the usual "Dark Arts" political argument.

It is commonplace as an extended exercise in confirmation bias to poison the well.

I wanted to work on this essay more carefully, and find out all the different ways in which Adams subverts the truth and sound reasoning.

Seek, and ye shall find, o' confirmation bias.

But "the well" is not just Scott himself, but his epistemological method. This is much more powerful than just attacking the person, as it provides a fully general counterargument to dismiss anything Scott Adams has to say as "Dark Arts".

He is a bad person, for engaging in the Dark Arts, and all his arguments are bad, because they are Dark Arts.

Comment by buybuydandavis on WMDs in Iraq and Syria · 2017-05-23T01:41:40.629Z · LW · GW

Did they even have "Saddam is faking it" as a possibility?

Comment by buybuydandavis on WMDs in Iraq and Syria · 2017-05-11T09:43:37.322Z · LW · GW

The US intercepted communications where Saddam told his units to ensure that they had no chemical weapons that inspectors could find. Of course, that communication didn't happen in English. That communication seems to have been misinterpreted by the US intelligence community as evidence that Saddam is hiding WMDs.

Even in the English given, I can see alternate interpretations. Make sure you destroy any you have. Make sure they can't find any you have.

Anyone knows how intelligence works? Given those two interpretations, do they get assigned priors that trickle up?

My impression from the Saddam days is that the scenario that Saddam destroyed his weapons the best he could, while trying to maintain the appearance that he had them, really hadn't trickled up to general consciousness, if anyone had considered it at all.

People are overly confident in thinking they've covered the possible motivations a person might have had. "He wouldn't have done this unless."

Any actual science out there on this particular effect?

Comment by buybuydandavis on Stupidity as a mental illness · 2017-02-26T13:17:41.371Z · LW · GW

So how many 150+ IQ samples did the latest studies have access to?

More generally, what's the equivalent general population sample size for the tail sampled high IQ populations?

Article about the Chinese Study and it's linking up with the SMPY study

Comment by buybuydandavis on Stupidity as a mental illness · 2017-02-25T12:14:05.716Z · LW · GW

"We have the tools to do this--we could, for instance, sequence a lot of peoples' DNA, give them all IQ tests, and do a genome-wide association study, as a start."

I remember a few years ago the Chinese offering free genomic scans for the sufficiently intelligent. Did anyone sign up for that? Anyone know of how that story turned out? I assume they weren't going to share that info.

Comment by buybuydandavis on A semi-technical question about prediction markets and private info · 2017-02-25T11:55:36.363Z · LW · GW

What information do they have?

This is the general problem of a mixture of experts when all you have are the predictions but not the information on which the predictions are based (at least for the market). I don't think there is a real answer to that until you input more information into the system.

We want P(side | I_them, I_me)

We have P(side|I_them), P(side|I_me)

The latter don't give the former.

Comment by buybuydandavis on A semi-technical question about prediction markets and private info · 2017-02-25T11:48:57.556Z · LW · GW

Mutual fund managers have incentives other than maximizing expectation of price. OPM.

Also, they likely overestimate the value of their privileged information.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Increasing GDP is not growth · 2017-02-25T11:27:04.998Z · LW · GW

That should be the argument.

But the argument is also made that "GDP goes up" in the context of the immigration debate and nationalism. That is the usual context of the question these days.

From a nationalist perspective of the existing citizens of the country, their GDP may go down when immigrants are allowed into the country, even while the GDP of the aggregate including the new immigrants is higher than the original GDP of the existing citizens.

And of course, the influx of immigrants also affects the distribution of GDP within the existing citizens.

Comment by buybuydandavis on A question about the rules · 2017-02-08T23:53:02.725Z · LW · GW

LW is the empty place with the empty boxes are the threads with politics in them.

Though driving isn't the best metaphor. LW is the moot court. Or boxing ring. Or dance floor. Takes two to tango.

We could segregate these things for those who don't feel their up to having a political discussion. Tag a thread with Politics. Don't want to talk politics, don't go into the thread.

Comment by buybuydandavis on A question about the rules · 2017-02-03T08:56:45.034Z · LW · GW

But driving drunk is not exactly the same skill as driving sober, so that practicing drunk can be expected to improve your skills in driving drunk in ways that only driving sober would not.

Comment by buybuydandavis on A question about the rules · 2017-02-03T04:10:12.411Z · LW · GW

Except by the analogy, we want to be able to drive better, whether drunk or sober. In fact, especially when drunk, because that's where our poor driving causes real disaster elsewhere, as opposed to the relative safety of our test track.

We want to get Less Wrong, except where it would matter the most.

Comment by buybuydandavis on 80% of data in Chinese clinical trials have been fabricated · 2016-10-03T09:30:10.956Z · LW · GW

Don't regulate efficiency. Regulate consistency of formulation, at most.

There are plenty of actors interested in efficacy. Really, everyone else involved.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Article on IQ: The Inappropriately Excluded · 2016-10-02T10:43:37.114Z · LW · GW


Did that include being a part of an elite profession?

I think the original article said that smart people accomplished more in a profession, though they were in appropriately excluded.

Comment by buybuydandavis on 80% of data in Chinese clinical trials have been fabricated · 2016-10-02T10:32:37.151Z · LW · GW

Anyone have information on cross cultural studies on attitudes toward honesty?

Comment by buybuydandavis on The progressive case for replacing the welfare state with basic income · 2016-10-02T10:27:07.706Z · LW · GW

Computers are already better than us in a ton of intelligence tasks, and that list is only going to get longer and longer.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The progressive case for replacing the welfare state with basic income · 2016-09-23T16:37:48.000Z · LW · GW

Wrong. This proposition has never been tested before. Things were not a threat to be smarter, cheaper, better before.

Humans have dominated the world through their intelligence. It's the most powerful factor of production.

You need a stronger argument than "intelligence is just the same as all other factors of production".

Comment by buybuydandavis on Article on IQ: The Inappropriately Excluded · 2016-09-21T08:51:40.811Z · LW · GW

Had no idea what TIP/SMPY were.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Article on IQ: The Inappropriately Excluded · 2016-09-19T03:51:50.487Z · LW · GW

If your lunatic sensor didn't go off reading this, you should get it adjusted.

A funny comment at LW.

Even lunatics can be right.

Gwern said

The assumption here is that both the general population and elite professions are described by a normal distribution (N(100,15) and N(125,6.5), respectively)

Is it? I didn't see that. assumption stated. Problem is, they didn't explicitly specify where they got their distributions. At least I don't see it.

Looking again at some of their conclusions in the preceding paragraph, it does look like they're assuming gaussians based on mean and sd a small sample, then projecting that out to the tails. Clearly malpractice.

They don't come out and say it, but the "This means that" below shows that they are extrapolating to the tails.

This means that 95% of people in intellectually elite professions have IQs between 112 and 138 99.98% have IQs between 99 and 151.

Funny that an article talking about how hard it is to be smart can be so dumb.

Still, my question remains - is there real data out there to support the contention that P(elite career|IQ) has a local max and then decreases for higher IQ?

Comment by buybuydandavis on [Link] My Interview with Dilbert creator Scott Adams · 2016-09-18T22:43:39.077Z · LW · GW

Half of voters are dumber than average. Trump isn't shy about appealing to them. Or showing respect to them. Their votes count too. "I love the poorly educated."

It drives Republican Bow Ties insane; they're more attached to their Bow Ties than winning elections.

I think Trump scores highly on showing respect and solidarity to voters. He attacks individuals, and he attacks non voters, but he respects all voters.

Hillary I'm with Her. Basket of Deplorables.

Trump I'm with You. I'm your Voice. I respect all of you, even if you don't vote for me. I love Xs.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The progressive case for replacing the welfare state with basic income · 2016-09-18T22:35:03.700Z · LW · GW

Until now, humans always had multiple competitive advantages in sensing, intelligence, and motor control, and an integrated system for all. That competitive advantage made them the best adaptable machines available.

That advantage is going away, particularly for the less intelligent and less educated.

Horses used to compete for real work in the economy, and win. Their population dwindled in the US as they were competed out of the marketplace by machines. Horse genocide. Their domesticated population has been coming back, but now as pets more than workers, and they're still not near the numbers they used to be.

How many human pets do people want? How many people want to be a pet?

When other things get smarter, cheaper, better, and you don't, eventually you lose. And machines have advantages to employers that people don't.

Comment by buybuydandavis on [Link] My Interview with Dilbert creator Scott Adams · 2016-09-18T22:01:04.527Z · LW · GW

Can't remember where I saw it, but I think Adams is trying to transition his career to "trusted expert".

He's willing to take the financial hit to make the transition.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The progressive case for replacing the welfare state with basic income · 2016-09-13T17:42:42.244Z · LW · GW

Good point. I expressed myself poorly.

A lot of people are soon to be automated out of economic viability as employees.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The progressive case for replacing the welfare state with basic income · 2016-09-12T03:02:27.572Z · LW · GW

Something has to be done about this, none of those manufacturing, or managerial jobs are coming back

And a lot more jobs are soon to be automated out of existence.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The progressive case for replacing the welfare state with basic income · 2016-09-12T02:55:40.029Z · LW · GW

I was surprised at how popular Basic Income was in the recent survey.

I suspect one reason for that is that while some see it as an alternative to current programs, others see it as an additional program, and I don't believe the question specified which.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Stupid Questions September 2016 · 2016-09-10T10:56:59.509Z · LW · GW

It's a 50-50 arbitrary convention.

I suggest physically tracing through the matrices with one finger from each hand. As you would multiply If you do it the right way enough times, doing it the wrong way will feel weird.

Also, the canonical example is y=Ax, with A a matrix, and x,y as vertical vectors. If you can at least remember that one goes vertically, and one horizontally, Ax will show that it is the one on the right that goes vertically.

Comment by buybuydandavis on [LINK] Collaborate on HPMOR blurbs; earn chance to win three-volume physical HPMOR · 2016-09-10T10:46:21.284Z · LW · GW

Speaking of HPMOR, I wondered about something.

Quirrell often smirks/makes faces to himself while talking to Harry. He's emotionally interacting with himself while talking to others. Does EY do anything of the kind?

Comment by buybuydandavis on [LINK] Collaborate on HPMOR blurbs; earn chance to win three-volume physical HPMOR · 2016-09-10T10:42:32.281Z · LW · GW

I can't think of one, but there should be a blurb from the book that seems appropriate to apply out of context to the book.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The 12 Second Rule (i.e. think before answering) and other Epistemic Norms · 2016-09-10T10:38:38.439Z · LW · GW

Korzybski advocated a "semantic pause" of 30 seconds.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Open Thread, Aug 29. - Sept 5. 2016 · 2016-09-04T20:23:56.632Z · LW · GW

Nope. Won't work.

The cheap goods can't be available to the poor, because then they'd be available to the not poor, and the government enabled rent seeking would no longer work.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Open Thread, Aug 29. - Sept 5. 2016 · 2016-09-04T20:19:42.801Z · LW · GW

I think the regulatory targeting of government enabled shake downs toward the wealthier middle class is much more of an issue. The wealthy middle class can afford to put up with more than the poor.

Though they try, it's hard to market segment your shakedowns, so the poor are often just priced out of the market.

Market segmentation by price/quality/status works just fine where there is a free market. If you've got the money to buy it, goods will come.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Open Thread, Aug 29. - Sept 5. 2016 · 2016-09-04T20:10:38.680Z · LW · GW

Or he could use whatever pills to make his own liquid melatonin, and titrate from there.

I bought a bunch of stoppered bottles with calibrated eye droppers for the purpose. 6 bottles, 7 bucks at amazon, though that item shows no longer available.

Comment by buybuydandavis on The map of ideas how the Universe appeared from nothing · 2016-09-04T20:03:25.690Z · LW · GW

“Why does anything exist at all?”

I lose no sleep over this. I think people who do are just confused by language.

I'd say that if you examine your concept of "why", you find it presupposes existence.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Identity map · 2016-08-21T05:01:46.338Z · LW · GW

Begs the question of what you will consider "I" in the next moment.

And all physics is based on idea of the sameness of an observer during an experiment.

? Sounds like hokem to me. Reality does not have to conform to your structural language commitments.

You can have multiple observers during an experiment. It's the observations that matter, not how you choose to label the observing apparatus.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Identity map · 2016-08-20T22:43:17.270Z · LW · GW

"Is it me?" is a question of value masquerading as a question of fact.

Intertemporal, interstate solidarity is a choice.

Comment by buybuydandavis on European Soylent alternatives · 2016-08-20T21:23:02.774Z · LW · GW

I started probiotics around Christmas last year. Been losing weight consistently since then. Have largely gotten off the easy carbs. Pre diabetic. All numbers have gotten much better since then.

There has been a lot of noise in recent years about probiotics for treating diabetes and generally controlling insulin levels.

Comment by buybuydandavis on European Soylent alternatives · 2016-08-20T21:15:55.750Z · LW · GW

I've never tried the meal replacements, but I've got a pretty good simple food regimen going lately. At least I like it, feel good, and have been losing weight.

(I supplement heavily as well. )

Cheerios in the morning, with almond+coconut milk plus vanilla powdered eggs over them. Tasty. Avoids dairy and easy carbs. Carrot juice with some of the ac milk (much tastier with the ac milk added).

Lunch - salad bar at work. Chunk fruits. Spinach. Red/Green peppers. Olives. Artichokes. Feta. Wish they had avocados. Usually some chunked chicken and tiny cheapo shrimp.

Dinnner - Vegetable infused pasta, chopped chicken thighs, some tomato sauce, and shredded cheese. Started having some wine with it.

I've gotten off the rice/bread/potatoes. And I only actually cook once a week, when I bake a pile of chicken thighs. Otherwise, it's pour or microwave to reheat. With cooking not a daily grind, I usually cook something interesting once a week. Rib eye steak last night. Tasty.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Help with Bayesian priors · 2016-08-15T01:59:28.942Z · LW · GW

But picking and choosing the category is again so subjective.

No. Use all information available. What problem are you actually looking to analyze? What information do you have?

Someone may also argue that woman inequality back then was so great that the data should only look at men, as a woman’s chance of being portrayed on a coin was skewed in a way that isn’t applicable to men.

That may be some useful information to include. Willfully ignoring relevant information, or not seeing how to use some information that seems like it may be relevant does not mean that the problem is "subjective", it means that we are often lazy and confused. And that's fine.

Include what you can transform into meaningful probabilities.

That thinking is hard is not a problem unique to bayesian methods.

Comment by buybuydandavis on Help with Bayesian priors · 2016-08-15T01:21:32.328Z · LW · GW

I don't recall Jaynes discussing it much. Anyone?

For him, I think the reference class is always the context of your problem. Use all information available.

A brief google for "jaynes reference class" turned up his paper on The Well Posed Problem.

He analyzes the Bertrand Paradox, and finds that in the real world, the mathematical "paradox" is resolved by identifying the transformation group (and thereby prior) that in reality is applicable.

My take on this is that "non-informative priors" and "principle of indifference" are huge misnomers. Priors are assertions of information, of transformation groups or equivalence classes believed appropriate to the problem. If your prior is "gee I don't know and don't care", then you're just making shit up.

Comment by buybuydandavis on What is it like to understand advanced mathematics? · 2016-08-15T00:47:19.911Z · LW · GW

What is it like to understand advanced mathematics?

Mathematics is our language for understanding quantitative relationships. Most people are simply illiterate in that language, and are basically reduced to magical thinking where quantitative relationships are concerned. They just don't have the concepts to deal with the problem domain, so they use the inapplicable concepts they do have instead.