Posts

Meetup : Research Triangle Less Wrong Meetup 2011-07-05T12:26:19.994Z · score: 1 (2 votes)
Research Triangle, NC, Meetup - Saturday, June 18th, 2 p.m. 2011-06-15T11:36:52.863Z · score: 2 (3 votes)

Comments

Comment by hwc on The Robots, AI, and Unemployment Anti-FAQ · 2013-07-24T23:47:30.233Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

They have one in the lab next to mine. I love my job.

Comment by hwc on Beyond the Reach of God · 2013-07-21T15:34:57.002Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I think I meant “interesting” in a sarcastic tone.

Another way of putting it: “You (theists) claim a high level of belief in this hypothesis. Because so many people (including close family members) take this position, I have though about this hypothesis and find it too complex to have anything but a small prior. Then I asked myself what observations are more likely if the hypothesis is true and which would be less likely. Then I looked around and found no evidence in favor of your hypothesis.”

Comment by hwc on Meetup : Durham NC/Triangle Area: Value of Information/Curiosity · 2013-07-21T15:19:14.434Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

And a map link, just to make it clear: http://goo.gl/6eFGj

Comment by hwc on Beyond the Reach of God · 2013-07-06T17:36:33.838Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Eliezer (I think) feels the same way about the necessity of souls as about the Judeo-Christian god. Interesting hypothesis, but too complex to have anything but a small prior. Then no supporting evidence shows up, despite millennia of looking, reducing the likelihood further.

Comment by hwc on Beyond the Reach of God · 2013-07-06T17:17:21.085Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW · GW

if God exists then consciousness depends on having an immaterial soul.

I translate that into logical notation:

(God exists) -> For all X (X is conscious -> X has an immaterial soul)

I don't concede this conditional. I can imagine a universe with a personal creator, where consciousness is a material property of certain types of complex systems, but souls don't exist.

Comment by hwc on Post ridiculous munchkin ideas! · 2013-05-11T20:13:36.205Z · score: 3 (5 votes) · LW · GW

Work at a desk facing your boss. It does wonders keeping you productive. My boss happens to make this possible by bringing his work into the lab for several hours a day.

Comment by hwc on Post ridiculous munchkin ideas! · 2013-05-11T20:07:06.332Z · score: 2 (6 votes) · LW · GW

invest in inflation-indexed bonds.

Comment by hwc on Causal Reference · 2012-10-22T21:06:24.905Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Or, a Boltzmann brain that flickered into existence with memories of a past that never happened.

Comment by hwc on Meetup : Durham NC HPMoR Discussion, chapters 4-7 · 2012-10-03T16:48:23.397Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Like it's possible to re-read only four chapters. Ha!

Comment by hwc on [LINK] The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness · 2012-08-15T15:42:35.932Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Is there a comprehensive list of science declarations anywhere?

Comment by hwc on The High Impact Network (THINK) - Launching Now · 2012-08-09T13:21:08.510Z · score: 1 (3 votes) · LW · GW

You might attract a broader audience if you removed references to Existential Risk and Transhumanism from your web page.

Comment by hwc on Which College Major? · 2012-02-06T11:25:45.248Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I always advise in favor of a double major with one major being something sciencey and quantitative (math, natural science, engineering, computer science, et cetera) and the other being something you care about. If those categories overlap, then you have less work to do.

Comment by hwc on Holiday giving thread · 2011-12-31T15:11:13.946Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I just donated $300 to Givewell for AMF.

Comment by hwc on Beyond the Reach of God · 2011-12-07T12:39:37.445Z · score: 7 (7 votes) · LW · GW

The leap is that the Church–Turing thesis applies to human (“sentient”) cognition. Many theists deny this.

Comment by hwc on Polyhacking · 2011-08-30T12:33:07.085Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

It's a conceit of our current sensibilities that we even use the same word to refer to how we feel about those, our siblings, our pets, and ice cream.

Which is why I sometimes taboo that word and try and explain exactly how I feel about my S.O. in other, more concrete, terms.

Comment by hwc on Polyhacking · 2011-08-30T12:16:06.227Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

sounds like my weekend.

Comment by hwc on Meetup : Research Triangle Less Wrong Meetup · 2011-07-07T02:29:17.408Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Sound like I'm missing a good meeting. Instead I was at a party with scientists.

Comment by hwc on Meetup : Research Triangle Less Wrong Meetup · 2011-07-05T12:46:03.548Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I'm going to be out of town this week, but I'm pretty sure curiousepic will be there. Does anyone else want to commit to being there?

Comment by hwc on Recent site changes · 2011-06-26T16:58:23.569Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I think I just broke the meetup submission function. Sorry.

Comment by hwc on Overcoming Suffering & Buddhism · 2011-06-01T11:33:08.673Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Break down the claims of Buddhism and test them individually against evidence. Bring me what's left.

Comment by hwc on Upcoming meet-ups: Bangalore, Minneapolis, Edinburgh, Melbourne, Houston, Dublin · 2011-05-29T13:33:00.128Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks! How can we ensure that we don't get missed next time?

Comment by hwc on Talk about your research · 2011-05-29T13:32:05.479Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I just started a summer position researching scientific visualization. The challenge is to be able to deal with ensembles of large datasets that result from simulations run with varying parameters.

Comment by hwc on Advice request: Homeownership · 2011-05-29T13:19:45.734Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

It was much, much worse than that in Florida, where they overbuilt and there was a glut. As far as I know, there was not as much excessive building in Adelene's city.

Comment by hwc on Upcoming meet-ups: Bangalore, Minneapolis, Edinburgh, Melbourne, Houston, Dublin · 2011-05-29T13:14:53.518Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Can you please add us as well? link

Comment by hwc on NC Triangle LW meetup: Wed June 1, 7:00PM · 2011-05-28T15:44:44.284Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I am committing to being there.

Comment by hwc on Triangle NC Meetup - May 20th 6pm · 2011-05-20T11:37:44.998Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

If you can't make it at 6:00, feel free to show up a bit late. I promise to stick around until at least 8:30.

Comment by hwc on First Triangle LW Meetup 5/4 7pm (Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill) [Repost] · 2011-05-05T02:08:22.761Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Join the mailing list! http://groups.google.com/group/RTLW

Comment by hwc on First Triangle LW Meetup 5/4 7pm (Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill) · 2011-05-05T02:08:02.274Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Join the mailing list! http://groups.google.com/group/RTLW

Comment by hwc on First Triangle LW Meetup 5/4 7pm (Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill) [Repost] · 2011-05-04T21:54:08.981Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I'll be there!

Comment by hwc on Epistle to the New York Less Wrongians · 2011-04-27T11:20:38.607Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

I don't actually want to discuss politics. I realize that I hate politics. But I love talking about public policy. But discussing (e.g.) tax policy or monetary policy seems to automatically shift the conversation into politics. And then the yelling begins.

Comment by hwc on [deleted post] 2011-04-26T19:01:23.914Z

Decision – The selection of a course of action by the player.

The game of Candyland involves no decision-making. I have always maintained that the game is broken as a result.

Comment by hwc on Elitist Jerks: A Well-Kept Garden · 2011-04-26T02:54:45.052Z · score: 4 (6 votes) · LW · GW

What are you doing blogging about your WoW community? You're on your honeymoon!

Comment by hwc on Is Kiryas Joel an Unhappy Place? · 2011-04-24T22:46:30.004Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

It makes for a good story, but I really doubt that's the case.

Comment by hwc on Is Kiryas Joel an Unhappy Place? · 2011-04-24T22:36:36.085Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I wonder when consciousness evolved in our ancestors? 4 Mya? 2Mya? 500 kya?

Comment by hwc on Is Kiryas Joel an Unhappy Place? · 2011-04-24T22:20:53.586Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

In Blindsight, a close relative of Homo sapiens sapiens is described as not consciously sentient but able to intelligently interact socially with humans. This seems unlikely.

The not-conscious ET aliens were much more believable, since they were not a close relative. You got the feeling that their interactions with humans had a Chinese room feel to them.

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-24T01:42:34.559Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

The default font is much less readable than other fonts...

I prefer sans-serif fonts for reading on any kind of screen. Why not try specifying no font face or font size at all and use the browser default?

Text is too small.

I do not normally notice this, since I have set an absolute minimum font size on my browser. I agree it looks awful under the default settings.

Comment by hwc on Is Kiryas Joel an Unhappy Place? · 2011-04-24T01:30:17.284Z · score: 6 (8 votes) · LW · GW

I'm not certain that that book made a good argument for that position. It was after all, fiction.

Is there a serious non-fiction treatment of the question?

Comment by hwc on Epistle to the New York Less Wrongians · 2011-04-23T15:09:33.681Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Maybe after we all become measurably more rational, we can start to talk about politics without mind-killing?

Under those circumstances, maybe we'll find that the socialists and libertarians can find more common ground?

Comment by hwc on Epistle to the New York Less Wrongians · 2011-04-21T22:26:28.250Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

In other words, the “Special Committee” will result in slow evaporative cooling?

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-21T14:16:17.694Z · score: 8 (8 votes) · LW · GW

I don't trust geolocation.

Also, there's an advantage in a new user seeing all the meetups, since it accurately tells them how active we are.

And what about people who travel a lot and might check out a meetup in another city if they were reminded about it?

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-21T13:42:43.015Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

The most straightforward way to have this would be to have a new database table with the following fields: date, location, and hyperlink. A set of trusted users (including one or two from each regular group) could add, edit, or delete records. Periodically, records with dates more one day in the past will be automatically purged.

There's no need to automate this, since maintaining it takes a small amount of effort relative to the effort of organizing the meetup.

Comment by hwc on Things That Shouldn't Need Pointing Out · 2011-04-21T01:23:53.828Z · score: 17 (17 votes) · LW · GW

That's dangerous knowledge. It's kept secret for a reason. Now that you've let the cat out of the bag, campfires have lost some of their magical power.

Also, my family had a recipe for sweet potato casserole that included toasted marshmallows on top. But it was a special thing you could only cook Christmas and Thanksgiving.

Comment by hwc on Insufficiently Awesome · 2011-04-21T00:50:36.676Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

what sorts of supergoals are people setting?

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-21T00:40:14.755Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

And what happens when we have a regular weekly or monthly meetup in every English-speaking city of more than two million? I've noticed that the regular meetups (LW/NYC, LW/Bay Area, LW/London, et cetera) don't bother to announce every meeting. New users have to know to look at the wiki page.

Maybe this proposed widget should include these regular meetups (with links to the relevant wiki page) for all events within the next three weeks.

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-21T00:31:36.311Z · score: 18 (18 votes) · LW · GW

Here's another proposal for dealing with meetups: some sort of prominent widget that will show (only upcoming) meetups in chronological order, with links:

Upcoming Meetups

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-21T00:13:31.030Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

FF.net does that, but they do it wrong. They do it as a fixed percentage of the screen, not a fixed max-width.

Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-20T22:24:12.523Z · score: 7 (7 votes) · LW · GW

Radio buttons might work best:

  • she / her / herself / hers / her
  • he / him / himself / his / his
  • it / it / itself / its / its
  • they / them / themselves / theirs / their
  • e / em / eirself / eirs / eir
  • Don't use pronouns on me!
Comment by hwc on Official Less Wrong Redesign: Call for Suggestions · 2011-04-20T21:25:38.943Z · score: 8 (8 votes) · LW · GW

Make it easier to read on a small device. This can be accomplished by making the width of the main column defined as a "max-width" in CSS and setting the viewport meta tag in the HTML.

Comment by hwc on Insufficiently Awesome · 2011-04-20T11:42:51.434Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I studied German in school, since I considered myself "not good at languages" and it was the closest language to my native English. When I entered the real world, I kept wishing I had studied Spanish, since one often meets people who speak much better Spanish than English (here in the US).

So when I started the becoming awesome program, I signed up for a once-a-week adult education class in beginning Spanish. I wish I had had the time and opportunity to take a university-level class, since they tend to be more intense and better taught.

Comment by hwc on Insufficiently Awesome · 2011-04-20T00:33:20.849Z · score: 8 (8 votes) · LW · GW

I've been explicitly working on being awesome for the last few years. A friend introduced me to The Sims and I played long enough to reach my character's life goal, then realized that I should be working that hard on reaching my own goals.

Results:

  • A new and better job, about to move to a much cooler town.
  • A lot closer to my ideal weight and fitness level.
  • A little more comfortable with myself.
  • A lot happier.
  • Several goals temporarily abandoned (learning a language, picking up an instrument). These were difficult to do on my own and consumed time better spent learning other things.

Since joining LW, I've had the nebulous goal of knowing all of the material on the site well enough to teach a semester class on it.