Posts

A Rationalist's Bookshelf: The Mind's I (Douglas Hofstadter and Daniel Dennett, 1981) 2009-08-26T19:08:30.789Z · score: 17 (19 votes)
It's all in your head-land 2009-07-22T19:41:03.478Z · score: 34 (50 votes)

Comments

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-23T21:31:19.395Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Sounds like the concept of "agility" could be generalized richly indeed.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-23T18:42:20.079Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

This is an important consideration. I just can't figure out how to test it.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-23T18:41:32.404Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Furthermore, it is possible to let the head-land simulations run and remain emotionally abstracted from the results.

This is wise. Getting the necessary distance would indeed work, as would improving head-land accuracy, though I'm dubious about the extent to which it can be improved. In any case, I'm not quite to either goal myself yet. And if your own head-land making accurate predictions, that's a good thing; I just can't get those kinds of results out of mine. Yet.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-23T18:38:13.033Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I second this request.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-23T14:54:22.447Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I'd like to make it that, but we'll see what I can do.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-22T22:51:11.822Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Nah; it was supposed to read "in which I construct." I just fumbled the editing.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-22T22:46:46.799Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Thank y'kindly. I upvote any and all comments that correct mistakes that would've made me look like a sub-lingual doof otherwise.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-22T22:42:44.941Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Glad to hear it. I aim to please.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-22T22:35:05.343Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks; duly noted. I plan to write a few posts on the "road testing" of Less Wrong and Less Wrong-y theories about rationality and the defeat of akrasia, so these are helpful pointers.

Comment by colinmarshall on It's all in your head-land · 2009-07-22T21:33:53.324Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks. I expect most of my posts here will be more Useful Practice than True Theory, but only just; my hope is that the Less Wrong community won't spare the downvotes if I stray too far from rationality and too close to self-help territory.

Comment by colinmarshall on Missing the Trees for the Forest · 2009-07-22T14:59:38.005Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

You're absolutely right; it's the overuse of narrative we need to be concerned about. Humanity can't get by without it, but one inch too much and we're in self-delusion territory.

Comment by colinmarshall on Deciding on our rationality focus · 2009-07-22T13:40:12.816Z · score: 7 (7 votes) · LW · GW

We seem to have a population here that already cares, and deeply, about rationality. I do trust them to upvote whatever has a lot to do with rationality and downvote whatever has too little to do with it. In fact, I'd go so far as to submit that we're doing something wrong if there aren't enough off-topic-ish, net-negative-karma posts; it would show that posters aren't taking quite enough risks as regards widening rationality's domain. I'm weary of the PUA and overly self-help-y talk, sure, but seeing nothing like it around here would be the dead canary in the coal mine.

Comment by colinmarshall on Missing the Trees for the Forest · 2009-07-22T05:10:51.169Z · score: 3 (5 votes) · LW · GW

The more time I spend thinking about it, the more I come to realize that Narrative Is the Enemy, at least where attempts to see and reason clearly are concerned. One heuristic has proven surprisingly useful time and time again, in efforts of rationality as well as creativity: don't try to deliberately tell a story.

Comment by colinmarshall on Debate: Is short term planning in humans due to a short life or due to bias? · 2009-07-12T02:36:54.340Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I would submit that it's less an issue of the biologically-imposed limit to our life spans than the biologically-imposed limit to our predictive abilities, to the amount of "moving part" data our brains can work with simultaneously. Considering that we only seem to achieve anything like accuracy when predicting events on a very, very small scale of both time and complexity, one might argue that we actually plan in too long a term.

Comment by colinmarshall on Formalized math: dream vs reality · 2009-07-09T20:58:39.141Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

More expansion on the possibilities of such a solved computational might be in order here; even mathematicians will have to crank their imaginations a bit to think through the specific advantages afforded by the formalized-computer-mathematics future.

Comment by colinmarshall on Recommended reading for new rationalists · 2009-07-09T20:33:22.022Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

For rationalist polymaths out there, Isaac Asimov's The Roving Mind

Comment by colinmarshall on Recommended reading for new rationalists · 2009-07-09T20:30:23.692Z · score: 13 (15 votes) · LW · GW

Paul Graham's "Lies We Tell Kids"

Comment by colinmarshall on Rationality Quotes - July 2009 · 2009-07-09T20:22:37.734Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I used to be a terrible hypochondriac when I was young and a great reader of medical dictionaries. One day I realised that I was not actually frightened of terminal illness but of not getting done the things I wanted to get done.

(My interpretation: remember that our various seemingly nonsensical personality tics can mask other, more addressable concerns.)

Comment by colinmarshall on Avoiding Failure: Fallacy Finding · 2009-07-09T20:16:13.484Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Seconded and extended: it's going to need to be made very, very clear that there's no political slant at work. I'd even recommend going completely sans political subject matter for a little while; poke a few holes in some pundit's argument and you'll be assumed to have an ironclad agenda to promote the opposite (and probably also bad) position.