Comment by hey on Rationality Quotes November 2011 · 2011-11-04T15:26:38.748Z · LW · GW

Thanks, I was not aware of this. I would like to create something like this, but generic so every online community can use it.

Comment by hey on Rationality Quotes November 2011 · 2011-11-02T09:01:09.381Z · LW · GW

I am thinking of coding up a web app for accumulating, voting, and commenting on quotes. Kind of like but much fancier.

Is that something you guys would be interested in? If so, what features would you want?

This would be free to use of course, and the site would not lock down the data (ie it would be exportable to various formats).

I am thinking there are a lot of communities that post quotes for internal use, and might be interested in a kind of unified web site for this. My initial thought is that it would be like Reddit, where each tribe/community/subculture/topic/etc gets its own subdirectory.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-20T12:03:41.973Z · LW · GW

Heh, you understood my intent perfectly. I'm pretty pig-headed on my own, but thanks for the encouragement :)

I propose that we create an open thread called "Fringe topics we should research for potential usefulness". In this thread, the usual downvoting norms would be somewhat laxer.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-18T14:56:25.009Z · LW · GW

Absolutely agree with that. Was not suggesting wholesale acceptance of NLP (which is quite non-monolithic mind you) either, merely pointing at something and saying "let's find out if there's some value to that thing there".

The way I figure it, NLP is about hacking the psyche through manipulating the individual experience at a lower level than mainstream psychology (although there seems to be some overlap with eg CBT in the linguistic part of NLP). I can't think of any other therapy form that asks the subject to manipulate their mental images in order to achieve results, for instance. That part alone makes NLP very interesting to me.

I may be biased since I'm not so interested in eg quantum physics, Bayes probability, or AI theory, as many here are. My main interests lie in my own personal development/improvement. Hence my openness to checking out somewhat fringe topics.

Ordinarily, "great claims require great evidence" is a great attitude, but in the field of self help my heuristic is a little bit more liberal. In this area, I tend to think "great claims are worth investigating even if the evidence is a bit lacking".

So now you guys know where I'm coming from, and that I really meant no harm, and you may now continue wrecking my karma *sulk* :-)

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T19:18:37.528Z · LW · GW


Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T19:16:47.225Z · LW · GW

Interesting video:

Follow up 25 years later:

I suspect the efficacy of this method depends a lot on the subject's ability to really bring forth the internal representations of the phobia (ie mental images, feelings, etc) so that they can be changed.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T16:52:47.369Z · LW · GW

I might read that later tonight. Do you have a TLDR for now?

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T16:42:53.912Z · LW · GW

I found some info on research:

Disclaimer: the author of that post is a major NLP persona.

Keep in mind that formal science is not the totality of research, see for example the writings of Seth Roberts on self-experimentation (the guy who invented the Shangri La diet and Morning Faces Therapy, among other hacks).

Comment by hey on The Optimizer's Curse and How to Beat It · 2011-09-16T16:31:51.721Z · LW · GW

Agreed, but it takes a high degree of luminosity to distinguish between tactical use of status to attain a specific objective, and getting emotionally involved and reactive to the signals of other (inducing this state of confusion is pretty much the function of status-signals for most humans, though).

Tactical = dress up, display "irrational confidence", and play up your achievements to maximize attraction in potential romantic partners, or do well at a job interview.

Emotional-reactive = seeking, and worrying about, the approval of perceived social betters even though there is no logical reason.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T16:16:17.001Z · LW · GW

A lot of LWites (including you based on your mention of LoveSystems) seem to be interested in PUA, which is similar to NLP in that it contains a LOT of scammers and creepy people, but also has a group of genuinely useful and non-scammy people (eg Rob Judge and Mark Manson). I think our quest for scientific stringency should not ALWAYS get in the way of investigating cool new stuff. I'm sure NLP could be tested. If it's possible to prove eg the existence of synesthesia in a lab setting then it should be possible to prove the stuff NLP talks about. But I'll admit the lack of scientific founding is fishy.

Here's another book I'm reading, btw. It's about NLP concepts of mirroring and rapport:

In essence, mirroring is about finding out how the other person's mind is wired to think (ie visual, auditory or kinesthetic for instance) and adapting your communications to that. It's like initiating a handshake with a server and choosing a protocol that it supports, I guess.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T15:55:40.855Z · LW · GW

Yes, there is some of that attitude which you describe. However, it's hardly descriptive of ALL neuro-linguistic programmers.

NLP people would say you are Generalizing, Distorting and Deleting :)

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T15:54:12.293Z · LW · GW

Agreed. There are plenty of minor names in the field though, who don't give me this impression. The NLP Mind Fest Event was apparently designed to bring out a lot of these lesser known people.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T15:53:03.871Z · LW · GW

Here are some common patterns:

Again, I am NOT an expert on NLP. I simply find it to be intriguing and full of potential. Coming here and talking about should not be construed as advocacy, merely "hey guys, this looks neat, could it be useful?" :)

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T15:51:54.360Z · LW · GW

Haven't dicked around much with it yet. But one thing I can tell is that a lot of the self-hacking stuff I came up with myself over the years has been laid out in much clearer form in NLP. Always cool to get those "ah! so that's what I was doing" moments.

One thing I'm going to be experimenting with is changing my chunking and anchoring around exercise. In other words, trying to change the number of steps I perceive it to be, and the mental images and feelings it evokes when I think about it.

Something I'm currently playing around with is imagining turning down negative self-talk and dimming mental images that I don't wish to have.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T15:49:38.643Z · LW · GW

Yes, I realize that it sets of skepticism alarms. It did so for me as well when I first encountered it. It's a detriment to the field that it looks scammy on the surface :)

Yes, I love his article on happiness. The problem with ONLY going with research-backed stuff is that one might be missing out on potentially useful stuff. My argument here is NOT to take NLP on faith, but rather to perhaps to investigate it further and see what it can offer.

A lot of it seems to be based on introspection and informal experimentation. Which could be said for the father of modern psychology, William James. Not trying to appeal to authority, just making a parallell.

Here's an article about that similarity as well:

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T13:53:17.052Z · LW · GW

(Sorry for replying to my own comments).

NLP can be used for lots of things, one of them being reverse-engineering the minds of other which is called "modeling". Here is an example:

It's very interesting. He goes into how someone who is thinking in Auditory who won't truly understand a person who is thinking in Visual-Kinesthetic, like in this example, and so won't be able to take their success and emulate it. Do as I think, not as I say :)

More on modeling:

Modeling can also be used on yourself. Ie figure out why you are supremely successful in one area of your life and try to map those behaviors/beliefs/capabilities/identity/environment over to to another area of your life which is less successful. I've used this myself with good results. In essence it's about using the concept of design patterns outside of computer programming.

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T13:45:31.941Z · LW · GW

Oh btw, I think there is a lot of stuff that was discovered by the LW community yet was already known by NLP. Take the concept of dissolving your intuitions. NLP would agree that intuitions are not atomic, and would try to look at the compontents from various angles:

Visual representation: mental images and movies

Auditory representation: linguistics/labels/associations/metaphors used to describe the intuition

Kinesthaetic representation: gut feelings, "uggghhh" fields

Chunk size: the level of abstractness, how many other concepts it subsumes

Ecology: how does this affect other parts of the person's psyche? Are there internal conflicts?

Secondary gain: ie the intuition might be harmful/counterproductive but the person gets some benefit from it, even if only a sense of certainty

They would probably go into more factors as well. I am still a neophyte to this. I just wanted to highlight an example of a similarity between NLP and LW. As I said, I think there are lots of these similarities.

Oh one more thing: if you've seen PJ Eby's "How to clean your desk video", then that's pretty much an NLP technique he uses. I think the term is "future-pacing".

Comment by hey on Your inner Google · 2011-09-16T13:25:29.879Z · LW · GW

To my understanding, what you are describing here is what is called a transderivational search in Neuro-Linguistic Programming. It is basically a "satisficing" (suffice+satisfy) fuzzy search.

Here's a pet peeve of mine: I think this site could find A LOT of benefit in delving into NLP. I mean, the whole field is basically a quest to find the machine-code of the human psyche. The version of NLP that is represented on sites like SkepDic seems like a poor representation of the amazing stuff I am always reading about, which is a shame as it turns people off from reading more about it.

Right now I'm reading Shlomo Vaknin's "Patterns of Neuro Linguistic Programming", which is pretty much a spellbook/hacking-manual containing 300+ patterns for doing all kinds of things to your mind.

The reason I bring up this book in particular is because it's a lot more concise and info-packed than any others I've seen, and so could serve as a good introduction.

There's an event going on right now called the NLP Mind Fest, which is proving to be very interesting. It's on day 4 already, though, and you can only listen to the presentations on a day-to-day basis.

Oh, and this concept of asking better questions is something that Anthony Robbins is always talking about as one of the most important factors in self improvement. He says something to the effect of "the quality of your life is determined by the quality of the questions you ask yourself". And Robbins' background is in, you guessed it, NLP :)

TLDR: LessWrong needs to investigate NLP. I am a somewhat smart and non-kooky cookie and I find NLP interesting and worthwhile AND I am a big fan of LW. This might indicate that others could find value in the field as well.

Comment by hey on Defecting by Accident - A Flaw Common to Analytical People · 2010-12-03T18:40:07.122Z · LW · GW

My speculation: people in "our" personspace cluster tend to be pattern mismatchers/polarity responders (NLP lingo, there are probably some googleable descriptions). Whereas "normals" get good emotions from rapport, "we" are the opposite. A lot of nerd awkwardness probably comes from the failure to understand and utilize rapport.

Comment by hey on Reference Points · 2010-11-30T22:41:14.431Z · LW · GW

What you are describing is well known in Neuro Linguistic Programming. I'm not super familiar with the terms (yet) but I THINK this is referred to as "chunking". "Submodalities" and "anchoring" might also be relevant.

More info:

I think LW could do very well to import a lot of knowledge from NLP and try to see what's valid and what's not. I've noticed that people here are often reinventing the wheel.

PJ Eby, please chime in on this.

Comment by hey on Applied Picoeconomics · 2009-06-18T10:20:34.099Z · LW · GW

I have been using this exact method for a few years. It is absolutely the most reliable method for getting something specific and critical done in an intermediate time frame (say 2 weeks to 3 months), but it's kind of the nuclear option of willpower and should be used sparingly since 1) it relies on being the nuclear option, if you ever fail then you would lose faith in the method 2) it absolutely sucks, since it's usually something sucky you decide to do and you have bargained away the usual weaseling out tactics 3) Cthulhu doesn't like it when you break your promises.