A game designed to beat AI? 2020-03-17T03:51:33.199Z
Long try's Shortform 2020-03-10T10:01:07.894Z
Any systems to rate more abstract things? 2020-03-01T10:16:03.384Z
How does electricity work literally? 2020-02-24T13:27:39.611Z
What is this review feature? 2020-02-08T15:30:51.777Z
What would happen if all the water on Earth were accumulated into spheres & drop on the surface? 2019-11-05T04:55:38.035Z
Where should I ask this particular kind of question? 2019-11-03T11:27:24.478Z
2 small problems with the site... 2019-10-22T04:31:23.468Z
Where to absolutely start? 2019-10-21T02:45:47.562Z


Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-14T02:58:47.421Z · LW · GW

Ah, I see. All of your explanations led to 1 thing: imperfect information. Fogged Markov tiles or coin-like tokens are ways to confuse AI and force it to ramp up the brute power exponentially without much effort from the puzzler &/or much effect in game. And since it doesn't know the info, it can't accurately calculate the value of that info, that's why AI sucks at scouting.

Coincidently, I've already invented a board game that incorporates imperfect info to beat AI back in 2016. I guess I'd need to put some more into it.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-14T02:37:45.585Z · LW · GW

I have to say, appropriate user name at that.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-07T23:51:22.439Z · LW · GW

No, I'm not against that trading money for valuable stuffs part. And while the game can be digital, it does not hurt to have some physical sets for the human elements.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-07T09:26:31.025Z · LW · GW

OK here's an upvote for you ;) Nevertheless, I do think that selling expansion sets is an exploitative way to milk money. Maybe I'm biased by my wanting to protect the environment & avoid too much waste...

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-07T09:23:24.544Z · LW · GW

Of course it's to each their own, but while some children like those games, it doesn't mean they are great. Both Cranium & TP's scores on BGG are really low, indicating the majority of people don't like that approach. Our 2nd biggest goal is to make the game appealing to the population.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-07T09:15:02.081Z · LW · GW

Hmm. Well, anything physical can be a challenge to AI, since we don't have many real-life machines playing games physically. While technically the idea rings true, my question didn't intend to explore much of this approach :)

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-06T04:49:25.279Z · LW · GW

I think this approach tries to use puns to confuse AI... but it'll get old quickly for humans. Once the card is answered, it can no longer be of much value next times.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-05-04T04:50:32.320Z · LW · GW

Thanks a bunch Maxim! I remember you in my hypothetical "drop all water on Earth" question - so, a usually late guy but always arrives with excellent answers :)

1 of the main differences between board & card games that I can discern is that 1 has perfect info, as you pointed out, the other not. Thus if we integrate imperfect info into a board game, can programmers just combine the 2 algorithms to solve it, or they will have to find another approach?

Unlike the Earth water question, I have some difficulties understanding the technical terms fully:

  • I don't really know SC2 but played Civ4, so by 'scouting' did you mean fogbusting? And the cost is to spend a unit to do it? What does it have to do with Markov property? Is fogbusting even possible in a real life board game?
  • Lengthy gameplay, IMHO, is bad when our 2nd goal is to attract people. Especially in this age of distraction, where youngsters can't concentrate for 20 minutes.
  • I learnt in a Crash course that computer science is essentially many layers of abstracting, so I'm a bit surprised when it turns out that AIs can't see the obvious 101 pigeons in 100 holes. Can we conclude that what separate us humans from AIs is that ability of insight? Also, I'm curious as to how you'd apply this last element in a real game example.
  • BTW, what is RL? Real-life? :)

Video games has some advantages regarding AI over board games. While boards are restricted by real life physics & amount of materials (1 can't have 9 pawns in chess!), software offers virtually endless options & things to add. The amount of variations & positions are also tremendous, thus brute force is inefficient. The examples you linked show that. Therefore, it is in board games that we have to apply our ingenious the most to fuck those AIs up.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-03-19T04:40:39.899Z · LW · GW

Er... I'm not sure I follow. In the sentence, if the word "you" means "the individual me" then no, I don't think the AI box ex is a game. It's merely a thought experiment, and actually a pretty stupid one. If a box is designed to completely separate an AI from the real world then allowing it to interact with outside personnel destroys the purpose of the box in the 1st place. It's about as much a game to me as Roko's basilisk.

If the word "you" mean "people in general" then no, unsolved AI problems are complicated and boring to the population. Something must be fun for people to consider it a game. Just because a part of LWers are obsessed with AI doesn't mean everyone is, too.

Comment by long-try on A game designed to beat AI? · 2020-03-18T04:54:09.388Z · LW · GW

Tks Kaj. I can see that this designer tried to fuck AIs up by the brute force way, which is not efficient and, well, not elegant. The game also kind of suffers from the same problem as Esperanto, that is it's way too "eurocentric".

Those summaries from the site sound dubious.

On average there are over 17,000 possible moves compared to about 30 for chess; this significantly limits how deep computers can think, but does not seem to affect humans.

Of course that affects humans. This is like sacrificing most of your 2nd goal to get a tiny little bit ahead on your 1st goal.

End game databases are not helpful since a game can end with all pieces still on the board.

Absurd. Many strategy/abstract games, even chess, can end with all pieces alive.

Research papers on Arimaa suggest it is more of a strategic and positional game with less emphasis on tactics.

Reviews I read suggest otherwise. Moreover, the game claims that it's among the highest rated on BGG. Following the link reveals that it's down in the 40ish or 50ish ranks, below Go, Xiangqi, Shogi, and even Chess, which it aspires to improve from.

Besides, there's a pattern I noticed from reading the reviews. Those high scores for Animaa usually come from earlier years, 2000s. Conversely, the recent ones are dominated by negative views. In them we can see those repeated complaints about slow pace, boring feel and stripping off of chess' aesthetics...

So, I'd argue that Animaa isn't really an attempt to do what I asked in the question. It went solely for the 1st goal while completely ignoring the 2nd goal, which weigh about 40-45% of importance IMO. After all, the human element is just something we're having an edge over AIs. And what is a game if it doesn't have people playing??

Comment by long-try on Any systems to rate more abstract things? · 2020-03-13T03:19:50.358Z · LW · GW

Thanks for letting me know about yet another of his projects. JG has an interesting style of presentation, I enjoyed many of his Crash course episodes. Glad that we now have 1 more similarity :)

That said, it seems like the things he reviews in his podcasts are a bit too wide and too spontaneous. My goal for the proposed system is that it get aggregated reviews on only stuffs that help us improve, thus the chosen words of theory, technique, method, model/modus... You know, things that many LWers are crazy about.

Comment by long-try on Long try's Shortform · 2020-03-11T03:17:03.408Z · LW · GW

I guess you guys running the site like monochrome. While it's ok enough to differentiate on the homepage, where blog titles are big and bold, I doubt using that scheme will be effective with hover.

Besides, that will requires readers to reach out and move their mouse over the link for 1 second, squint for a while to find whether it's grey or black, and then move it out and wait another 1 second for the preview to go off; in contrast to just glance at the circle icon to find out. No-brainer IMO.

Comment by long-try on Long try's Shortform · 2020-03-10T10:01:08.075Z · LW · GW

Has anyone suggested it yet? I think LW should have a system to notice users whether they've read a linked article or not when they're reading inside another. That's a basic & universal need, yet I'm surprised it's not implemented. On other sites, it's simply the link's color: blue if unread, violet if read. If you guys decide to opt for a more sophisticated system, then I propose using 8 rainbow colors: black means the user hasn't read it, red indicates once, orange twice... purple 7 times or more. In case you're worried the various long link shades may distract people, then just apply them to that circle indication at the end of the link. You could make it bigger and bold for readers to distinguish the colors.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-03-04T14:59:16.571Z · LW · GW

Yeah, I did have that experience too. But come to think of it, his explanation in the video sounds counter-intuitive for AC & DC. With the bulb connected to the mains via a wire (even though it's the neutral line and that line is severed) like in the better part of the video, as long as the mains is AC the bulb will always at least dim...

TBH I'm a bit more confused :)

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-29T09:27:10.916Z · LW · GW

Holy cow, I've just read to the "poynty" part in his work. Now I have a vague sense of why Tesla wanted to put wireless electricity down into every household. And even Feynmann was afraid of explaining the truth because of its complexity/difficulty.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-28T06:54:30.535Z · LW · GW

I still have not achieved a breakthrough. See, when we broadcast a wave, say radio, then it will propagate into space and will be lost forever. Now as per your words, an AC flow in a wire will radiate energy outward => this means a lot of energy is lost all the time. Since the wattage in a wire is a constant, we lose a big and constant amount of energy no matter what we do. That seems not to be the case in real life.

Furthermore, if we accept that electrical energy actually flows in the field around the line, then why do we even need outlets and sockets? Just put a device near the wire, like those cordless chargers. Besides, electric thieves can be easy since almost everyone can put a specialized stealing device near a public line.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-27T09:31:21.813Z · LW · GW

Oh, I was too focused on the system function while forgetting that safety can primarily apply to human health too :)

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-27T09:26:18.059Z · LW · GW

I think using the water as an analogy to electricity is still somehow not adequate to the task. For example, to make it slosh back & forth would require a tremendous amount of energy, which seems not to be the case with electricity.

But still, I also think that if a device consumes electricity, no matter what way - say, using electromagnetic field, then it must reflect into the lifeline in the wire (electrons) in some way. Since the power source propagate energy using the jiggling of electrons then by using them up, the device must impede that movement. This slowing in jiggling will then propagate back and display as the slowing of the turbine...

... which is to say, actually we convert kinetic energy into whatever type of energy we use, that's the essence of "electricity"?

BTW, thank you for your explanations on fans & stuffs! Though the bits with computers & fridges are gloss-over, but I guess I can have a vague understanding.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-27T07:06:25.211Z · LW · GW

Woah, it's a thought that never occurred to me: turbines slow down when we use electricity. Makes sense when 1 thinks hard about it. Did you work in a power plant or something?

There's another relevant question. When turbines rotate, they must be doing it inside a set of huge magnets; or they must themselves rotate the magnets inside a huge coil. In either case, there's a need for magnets. As per my understanding, they can't be electric magnets because it will destroy the purpose of generating electricity in the 1st place. So they must be natural ones. Those will decay over time because their field energy is being used all day. Therefore... theoretically, if humans exist long enough then we will run out of magnets and thus no electricity? For now I have no idea what is the Earth's capacity for magnetic materials.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-26T06:59:51.572Z · LW · GW

My appreciation - that's really helpful, especially point 2. I was a bit hesitating when I saw the amount of links in cousin_it's link, but point 3 encourages me to do it, even slowly.

Point 4 is kinda hard from my POV. I admit I'm too lazy to dig all the sources to display in a post. But then, if a question is formatted like that, wouldn't it be way too long? I thought titles should be concise & provoking.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-25T12:02:01.886Z · LW · GW

Thank you. Using the water pipe analogy, 1 can see some obvious flaws with AC system. What if something needs power right at the moment the water is in the middle state between to & fro, i.e. standstill? How about installing a converter device at the beginning of each household? Surely it'd be better to provide continuous flow to devices, not to mention there's no need to manufacture trillions of small relays or rectifiers that are needed inside devices.

If what devices do is get fast water and release slow water, then it can be understood that in reality, they use the kinetic energy of electrons. Or maybe some devices make use of the magnetic field too? Can somebody detail how exactly a fan gets a flow of electrons and ends up moving its rotor? And how does a computer use electricity? A fridge?

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-25T11:49:52.380Z · LW · GW

The wiki Currents war article ends with a brief mention of HVDC. China utilizes it in 2019, and they certainly are not stupid, so...

The HVDC article lists some pros & cons of it over AC. At a quick glance, there are more pros. And what of the biggest disadvantage? Converter stations cost. And what do they do? They convert that DC into AC, so it can be distributed into households and then switched back to DC inside the devices so they can use electricity! All of this clusterfuck nonsense can be avoided if they use all-out DC system in the 1st place!

I guess using a war more than 120 years ago to justify current (pun intended) situation is not very good.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-25T11:33:42.973Z · LW · GW

Tks. You mentioned isolation is important for safety. Can you elaborate some specific examples? As per my imagination, unless the threat has been predicted then the AC transformers are useless against sudden issues. Say, an abrupt surge will still propagate via its magnetic field before we can do anything.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-25T04:58:51.119Z · LW · GW

Oh come on, many says one can't rely on wiki. On higher topics like quantum & maybe electricity, wiki uses high words that confuse the hell out of me. For example, it uses the term "drifting speed" to describe "electrons' velocity in wires" - how can I know to find it to read in the 1st place?

OTOH, I posted another question here asking where I should ask a question. Some people suggest posting on as many sites as possible, which means LW included. Even the FAQ or some other "official" documents here encourages asking any and all kinds of questions.

If by downvoting you meant the community only accept high-level questions where one must do substantial research (how substantial is defined by those who read the questions) before even considering writing it, then I think you succeeded. I do feel bad seeing my question got downvoted to a rotund 0, and do feel discouraged from asking questions in the future.

Comment by long-try on How does electricity work literally? · 2020-02-24T16:05:23.833Z · LW · GW

Ooh, indeed I didn't know, thanks! The actual snail speed does surprise me. I guess an important hole has been patched.

Comment by long-try on The Intelligent Social Web · 2020-02-21T09:57:39.128Z · LW · GW

Thanks a bunch, Val. I say you saved me dozens if not hundreds of hours, because I was (am) pretty confused about the big picture around here.

The associated Ken Wilber image helps with the understanding a lot. Now, if I don't really get nearly half of the articles on LW, does that mean I'm redder than orange? Are there tests on the internet where I can pretty reliably tell where I'm standing on that scale? Also, I'm quite sure that my goal is to get to the turquoise level. What online resources I should learn and/or what "groups" I should join, in your personal recommendation?

Comment by long-try on The Intelligent Social Web · 2020-02-19T10:54:24.730Z · LW · GW

May be off-topic, but can you elaborate on where LW culture wants to go? Or point to a specific post...

Comment by long-try on Bug Hunt 2 · 2020-02-17T06:20:04.045Z · LW · GW

I will profoundly and immensely change the world for the better from the ground level, by creating and/or modifying the constituent element, the building block of civilization - in other words, the very foundation of society itself.

Why does my heart not laugh hysterically at the thought? Is it because I really do believe it firmly?

Comment by long-try on Open & Welcome Thread - January 2020 · 2020-01-15T05:03:40.252Z · LW · GW

Hola! Been around for a few months, time to move out into the light. My intention was to finish LW's 3 core readings before introducing myself, but then I gave up on RA-Z and yesterday I stopped HPMOR at chapter 59. My expectation is now so low that I won't put my bet on Codex, though I'll definitely try reading it soon. So here I am.

I live in Vietnam. Not to my surprise, none or very few on this platform are from the country. If you are, give me a shout out!

I don't really work now, though I do have some stock exchange accounts. That means I have quite some time to spend during a day. So I learn Spanish and other stuffs. I'm currently in a project to finish all APOD posts during 4 years, and have read up to 2017. I try to find the best online courses to learn day by day, and completed quite some.

It's also my goal to watch the best films or TV shows. Since the rating system for TV is not as extended as movies, I rely on IMDb 250 to filter the shows. And have worked my way up to Breaking Bad now! That means I've completed GoT (was intrigued by people's hype all these years), and man the early seasons were really good. On the other hand, I have a feeling that I've missed many great recent films because the aggregating site flickmetric stopped working properly when I reached around year 1988; so if you have any recommendations, feel free to enlighten me :) My criteria for a good movie are: RT critic score >94%, audience score >89%, letterboxd 5-star votes > 4 star votes, and IMDB score >7.9.

Like most members of LW, I have big ideas. But for now I want to have a better, more accurate view of the world so that when I spring into actions, they will produce expected effects. Also, to wait for a depression to make use of the investment money. In the current situation, earning is not easy. BTW, when do you think it'll happen?

Comment by long-try on What would happen if all the water on Earth were accumulated into spheres & drop on the surface? · 2019-12-08T14:56:47.490Z · LW · GW

This. Is an eye-opening answer. I see now.

Though this particular curiosity will never be satisfactorily quenched, at least I know when to stop pushing it further and try to put it into the back of my mind. You know, acting rationally :)

I think I won't be able to express enough gratitude.

Comment by long-try on What would happen if all the water on Earth were accumulated into spheres & drop on the surface? · 2019-12-08T01:53:34.010Z · LW · GW

Woah, tks a bunch man. But exactly what happens starting from t=0? I suppose that at 1st the water must be falling down, right? How will the Earth's surface be altered by the tremendous force of water? How will the potential energy from height turn 40% of water into vapor? I mean, how will it happen over time? If it takes time, then maybe some people will have a chance to understand what's going on & run into the nearest underground mine, no?

Regarding the ISS, I suppose that even at the hypothetical altitude of 460km, it will still burn. But as the above paragraph mentioned, I guess that the boiling process will not be instantaneously, or even fast, so the astronauts will have plenty of time to watch the horrors unveil below. With maximum number of ships (I forgot, 4?) on board, can they use them to boost the ISS up to, say, 1000km? Or if time doesn't allow, can they manage to load supplies into a ship & launch it into some orbit far from Earth & return after maybe 2 years? You know, doing whatever to preserve the human race long term.

Comment by long-try on Where should I ask this particular kind of question? · 2019-11-13T04:18:11.072Z · LW · GW

Oh, that very last sentence is something I didn't think about. I also discovered worldbuilding very recently, looks promising too. Thanks!

Comment by long-try on Where should I ask this particular kind of question? · 2019-11-12T04:38:45.504Z · LW · GW

"Pattern"? Hm, may I ask the origin of your nickname and whether it has anything to do with tSA? :)

I tried that spamming method some times in the past. It was better than asking in just 1 place, but the margin was small. Anyway, I've found that asking the question here on LW is not fruitful.

Comment by long-try on Where should I ask this particular kind of question? · 2019-11-05T03:36:28.635Z · LW · GW

Just tried. No responds so far. I think the APOD forum is even less visited than LW, so the reach is really short.

Comment by long-try on Where should I ask this particular kind of question? · 2019-11-04T03:37:27.876Z · LW · GW

Your guess is spot-on. My question needs some details and can hardly be summarized into a neat google query.

OK, so it's hard to describe what X be like; but this picture is the inspiration of my pondering:

The simplest form of my inquiry would be along the line of "What happens next?". In that case, what do you think X is?

Comment by long-try on Where should I ask this particular kind of question? · 2019-11-04T03:31:48.165Z · LW · GW

Yes, your 1st point makes sense. I take it that since it's somewhat difficult to accurately predict whether the question will hook those people, an umbrella approach where I post in many media is the most rational 1?

My scenario is really hypothetical. I forgot to mention xkcd What if? as an option in my list in the OP, but yeah, it will fit very nicely and frankly I think my question belongs there. But unfortunately, it seems that xkcd has stopped answering What if queries, because his latest entry is 2017 or so.

Comment by long-try on Chapter 10: Self Awareness, Part II · 2019-10-28T14:45:30.246Z · LW · GW

OMG this is great. Reading about Harry being outgunned by Hat-Harry is an intense experience. Indeed, facing our self is the greatest challenge - one that I doubt anybody but a very few eminent rationalists can do.

Comment by long-try on Chapter 8: Positive Bias · 2019-10-28T04:15:44.375Z · LW · GW

Wow, I failed the 2-4-6 test.

But then, do you think the way it is presented - that is, the paragraphs of flowing conversations, of Hermione's guesses and Harry's answers - did its part in molding our thinking toward her reasoning? In other words, we (OK, I) were biased by the very literature we were reading and thus couldn't think straight?

Comment by long-try on Chapter 4: The Efficient Market Hypothesis · 2019-10-26T04:12:45.266Z · LW · GW

What a great read! Based on the post score and the amount of comments, I guess I'm pretty alone in appreciating the literary value of the piece.

Comment by long-try on 2 small problems with the site... · 2019-10-25T04:26:25.766Z · LW · GW


Comment by long-try on 2 small problems with the site... · 2019-10-24T13:52:26.374Z · LW · GW

Here you are:

Comment by long-try on Where to absolutely start? · 2019-10-23T09:44:37.827Z · LW · GW

I'm currently in Fake beliefs and, as you correctly said, more than half the times I don't really get them. I think part of this is because EY wrote using such big words and complicated grammar that confuse non-native speakers.

However, I'm not a fan of jumping ships and will try to wade through R:A-Z before committing to another sequence. You convinced me! :) That said, HPMOR seems to be very appealing to beginners since it combine something new & strange (rationality) with something most of us are familiar with already (wizardry, lol).

Comment by long-try on The Cognitive Science of Rationality · 2019-10-19T22:39:26.242Z · LW · GW

Excuse my ignorance, what is OB?