What types of compute/processing could we distinguish? 2020-01-18T10:04:03.380Z · score: 2 (1 votes)
Multiple conditions must be met to gain causal effect 2019-12-05T10:15:05.640Z · score: 9 (5 votes)
This sometimes helps to expose assumptions 2019-08-28T18:42:57.271Z · score: 2 (3 votes)
Limits of and to (artificial) Intelligence 2019-08-25T22:16:33.108Z · score: 1 (1 votes)


Comment by moritzg on Have epistemic conditions always been this bad? · 2020-01-28T00:04:59.792Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I observe a radicalization that is driven by what I call the concept of "counter crazy". It let to Trump but I have been aware of it for longer on the left. The idea is that by being more radical in the way, that you think the world needs to be, you could achieve that. It is compounded by the tribalism and identity culture.

The idea of "you can not speak on this because you are not a woman / ..." is recent to me. But has been expressed by the most intelligent female I know. It is a scary idea.

The idea of cushioning life is a generational thing and related to U.S. product liability law. No matter how dumb, misinterpreting, interpreting in bad faith or sensitive you are, others are responsible for your feelings no matter how unjustified. The Snowflake generation can not surprise anyone, we were watching as they were raised to be what they have become.

There is much more awareness of the issue thanks to the members of the "intellectual dark web" and comedians such as Ricky Gervais, Bill Maher, Joe Rogan.

The PC culture is nothing new. It has been impossible to talk about many topics for four decades. And obviously there are "good" reasons. People are unable to talk about these issues without confusing separate issues, values, preferences. To me it is painful to listen to the arguments because they are so confused and old. Most (including scholars and journalists) are simply unable and should indeed not talk on these issues because it does lead nowhere. What we have now is a result of not having talked about important topics for decades, massive preference falsification/concealment and having generations growing up in that environment.

Comment by moritzg on Limits of and to (artificial) Intelligence · 2020-01-27T09:19:13.843Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I found this recent Dilbert cartoon to be a good summery of the issue with being smart in a complex random world:

Comment by moritzg on Summary of "The Straw Vulcan" · 2020-01-23T17:21:06.319Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

The way you commented it is not clear what you are referring to. I did not understand your comment because I did not get "where you were coming from".

Comment by moritzg on Summary of "The Straw Vulcan" · 2020-01-23T12:16:51.783Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Straw_Vulcan is an example of an attack of two of the three types of thinkers on another.

The moral-thinkers try to show their superiority. In Star Trek this is ever present. In all the stories morality and principles always win over rational compromise. The captains usually favor the best possible short term outcome over risk minimization and the long term. As it is fiction this always works out.

The three thinking types as formalized/categorized (to my knowledge) by Rao Venkatesh of ribbonfarm.

Venkatesh Rao: The Three Types of Decision Makers [The Knowledge Project Ep. #7]

I can hardly express how useful I found this to make sense of the world.

Comment by moritzg on What types of compute/processing could we distinguish? · 2020-01-22T09:34:18.430Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Put that way I completely agree.

Comment by moritzg on What types of compute/processing could we distinguish? · 2020-01-21T09:59:24.734Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thank you, I should have thought of it in that (Time complexity) context. Time complexity is not just about how long it takes but also about the nature of the problem. Chess is neither P nor NP, but the question of complexity is certainly related.

Maybe my question is: Why can there be a Heuristic that does fairly well and is nowhere near exponential? Even a count of the pieces left on the board usually says something that only a full search can prove.

Comment by moritzg on What types of compute/processing could we distinguish? · 2020-01-20T12:29:31.946Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Then you are wrong because since the search usually does not reach the chess mate state, there is always a scoring heuristic replacing the further exploration search at some dept.

I know and had read chessprogramming prior to your post, you are wrong to assume that I am a total idiot just because I got myself confused.

Comment by moritzg on What types of compute/processing could we distinguish? · 2020-01-19T20:24:37.360Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Ok, let's go with chess. For that game there is an optimal balance between the tree search and the evaluation function. The search is exploratory. The evaluation is a score.

The evaluation can obviously predict the search to some degree. Humans are very bad at searching, still some can win against computers.

The search is decompressing the information to something more easily evaluated by a computer. A human can do it with much less expansion. Just a matter of Hardware or is it because the information was there all along and just needed a "smarter" analysis?

Comment by moritzg on Key Decision Analysis - a fundamental rationality technique · 2020-01-14T14:29:32.662Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

This reminds me of another issue. If you do make informed complicated decisions, the basis of these decisions might change over time. I struggle with that problem professionally. As an engineer I have to make complicated compromises/decisions. The trouble is that the situation changes all the time. The requirements and the means change. Without tracking why I made decisions there is no way to tell if those decisions still hold, because I do not even remember myself. The project becomes a zombie even before there are true legacy and hand-over issues. Usually decisions are incomprehensible later. We all know this and have though everyone else is an idiot, but often people had good reason to do it that way or lost track as described. Making changes to often reveals that there were reasons, but too late.

Privately you might find yourself in a place that you had reason to go into but those reasons went away without you noticing.

Comment by moritzg on Markets are Anti-Inductive · 2019-12-18T10:56:51.303Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

In reality there are smart penguins and dumb penguins and penguin news papers. The professional penguins will tell other penguins how great it has been going so they can get out before the ledge breaks of and they all fall into the water.

To realize those booked earnings you have to sell without causing the crash, so you have to setup potential buyers first. That is why I consider articles about investing into something in major papers the last warning before the crash. When I read that the only smart thing to do, is to invest into ... I know not too.

Comment by moritzg on Is the "business cycle" an actual economic principle? · 2019-12-13T19:31:30.867Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

You seem to think that the economy and markets are random without memory or state. You are the one with a fallacy called: "the map is not the territory".

Comment by moritzg on Is the "business cycle" an actual economic principle? · 2019-12-13T19:24:14.545Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I think Liron only meant the times of growth with those 10%. Looking at the recent stock market you will clearly find growth that is much higher than the long term rate and higher than economy + inflation + "risk free return". In the last 10 years the annual rate was indeed 10.5% pa

Comment by moritzg on Causal Diagrams and Causal Models · 2019-12-12T18:53:10.301Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

There are two issues with it.

You can not figure out how something works by only looking at some aspect. Think of the blind people and elephant story.

But it still has a point because with a subsystem that makes predictions the understanding of a system by pure observation becomes impossible.

Comment by moritzg on Multiple conditions must be met to gain causal effect · 2019-12-09T19:16:22.478Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Right, one could expand the clause indefinitely, that is kind of what I meant by "can only find what you are looking for". But that only means it is hard, not that it is bad to think that way.

I do neither think of it as logic nor as causal diagrams nor Bayesian nor Markov diagrams but simply as sets of some member type that may have any number of features/properties/attributes that make them a member of some subset.

When I wrote "A AND B" I wanted you to understand it as a dual logic clause, but only for simplicity.

The way I really think about it is: attribute magnitude to impact function and then some form of interaction function that is neither only AND nor OR but possibly both to some degree. We have to deal with negative correlation in some way, I do not see how that is possible if it is always OR.

right "language" in which to think [is] causal diagrams

They are nice on paper but I can not see how they are useful. To me they seem like some synthetic made up way to get the result, unfit to model the world. "If the world would not be as it is, it would be mathematically correct to do this." is so academic. As far as I understand it, the graph can not be cyclic. Since you do not know if the graph is cyclic and what factors are in the cycle you do not know which factors you must treat as an aggregate. The only directions known are those that go into the graph.

There is only one joint probability for cases where there were multiple causal paths to one feature/property.

Think of a hospital. Sick people go to hospitals, but sometimes people in a hospital will catch an infection that is only typical in hospitals.

A= person is sick
B= person is in hospital
C= person has hospital infection
C is a subset of A
A causes B
B causes C

How do you work with that?

"the fix is not to look for a giant and-clause of conditions [but] to build a gears-level model of the system, figure out the whole internal cause-and-effect graph"

I thought that was what I was suggesting. Instead of stopping at: "It has to do with gears." keep going to get more specific, find subsets of things with gears: "gear AND oval-shape AND a sprocket is missing AND there is a cardan shaft AND ..." But if indeed only things with gears are affected do not expand with "gears AND needs oil" because that already follows from gears.

Comment by moritzg on How good is a human's gut judgement at guessing someone's IQ? · 2019-12-08T20:39:06.400Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

" Does anyone know of any similar experiments that have been run? "

I can say with certainty that it has been done on a small scale, because I once saw a German TV documentary for which they had also gotten a small group (6-10) of both males and females and gotten them tested and then shown them the pictures of the others. Later they also gave them some facts, showed videos and asked them again.

The outcome was that there was a clear correlation between the guesses and the IQ-Test results and it got better the more information people had.

But the people were not representative but of above average education. In my own experience it is not the case that people always have a good intuition. I would guess that people are bad as soon as the person judged is much more intelligent than the judge. I think very smart people are much better at recognizing each other.

Comment by moritzg on Multiple conditions must be met to gain causal effect · 2019-12-06T16:20:43.782Z · score: 4 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I made up this story:
In a company there have been head injuries, so they brought in a medical student to investigate/research.
The researcher gathered all employees blood pressure, gender, age, and eye sight data.
The result was that mostly men were affected, with all other factors being what you would expect given the employees.
The company was forced by the insurance company to make helmets mandatory for all men due to their gender being a risk factor.
Because the engineers were all men they were over proportionally affected and did not like to wear the helmets, so they got together and demanded further research into what caused the injuries and how to remove the cause.
This time the secretary was tasked with the follow up because she knew Excel. She took her mail scale and measuring tape and went around asking everyone if they drank coffee or tea, measured the weight of the content of people's pockets and how high they were with and without shoes. To be thorough she did this for every week day separately.
After importing the previous data, she found many correlations between attributes and other attributes variances but what stood out were the correlations between injuries to Friday, pocket weight, gender, height with shoes in ascending order. A histogram of injuries per "height without shoes"-class showed a sharp increase at 6 feet. Being taller than 6' was clearly the cause.
After having presented her findings, one woman stood up and remarked: "But I am not 6', and it happened to me!" Counting the women taller than 6' the secretary found none.
I could go on but I think you get it and we can save us the time. After more searching they found that their 6 foot door frames were the best thing to change and that some women had been wearing higher shoes on Fridays.
My point is that gender was not the cause and especially "too low doors" AND ("over 6' tall" OR ("tall for a woman" AND "high shoes")) was the problem. Neither being a tall woman nor high shoes alone would have been causal in this scenario.
I would have loved to include wheel chairs in this but found it too complicated.

Comment by moritzg on If giving unsolicited feedback was a social norm, what feedback would you often give? · 2019-12-05T11:57:46.054Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

"This will result in unnecessary stress and misery in your life."

LOL, that is very close to what I told a girl once. You would think it is the most sensitive and reasonable thing to tell a person and a good way to put it. She did not call me names, but was not thankful either.

Comment by moritzg on Autism And Intelligence: Much More Than You Wanted To Know · 2019-11-23T19:05:59.237Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

"cases of autism that are caused entirely or mostly by normal genetics are associated with unusually low IQ (80% confidence) "

Only the research correlating genes and IQ-test results are objective.

All correlations between IQ and DIAGNOSED autism are skewed. People who are smart and have good enough speech skills, and thus are not too affected can hide their level of autism. People who are functional will not be diagnosed.

Lets assume, that autism is not an on/off deal but gradual and that there is a positive correlation with general intelligence, then the statistic will not include people who are below a high level of autism because they compensate.

Comment by moritzg on Autism And Intelligence: Much More Than You Wanted To Know · 2019-11-23T18:30:21.527Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

"autistic people ... generally have very low intelligence. One study ... autistic people had an IQ ..."

Unless you positively define intelligence as measured by some IQ-Test, I oppose that statement.

The entire discussion around intelligence would profit, if people would stop casually equating the two.

One is a test that have seen different ones of and some where out right bad others flawed, the other is a concept that can be described, but is much more often used than understood by the public.

Comment by moritzg on Fake Explanations · 2019-11-20T11:13:20.413Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Had the teacher presented a dozen of dice all showing the same number and asked how this could have happened they would have been wiser.
But the situation is similar. In pure theory this could happen naturally, in that case doubting it would be a case of gamblers fallacy or not knowing the Anthropic principle.

If you encounter the impossible you should check your assumptions, but to say that a human like entity has caused this outcome is dangerous.

Comment by moritzg on Fake Explanations · 2019-11-20T10:28:09.288Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

When you are presented with a very unlikely outcome you have to accept it.

Had the teacher shown a dozen dice all showing the same number and asked how he did it, there would have been two answers:

2. You

Comment by moritzg on Stuff That Makes Stuff Happen · 2019-09-09T17:18:44.711Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

"universe is a connected fabric of causes and effects."

I do not think that the universe as a whole is one fabric of causes and effects. There are isolating layers of randomness and chaos upon which there are new layers of emergence. This is why we can model at all without having one unified model.

"Every causally separated group of events would essentially be its own reality."

Places outside our solar system are their own realities in that sense. We have no effect there. Only maybe someone is there to amplify our radio signals.

Comment by moritzg on Limits of and to (artificial) Intelligence · 2019-09-05T20:23:44.431Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I found these two articles on AI's mental health:

"Can Artificial Intelligences Suffer from Mental Illness? A Philosophical Matter to Consider"

Hutan Ashrafian

"Does my algorithm have a mental-health problem?"

Thomas T Hills is professor of psychology at the University of Warwick in Coventry, UK.

Comment by moritzg on Why so much variance in human intelligence? · 2019-08-26T11:37:41.324Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I think intelligence is much like homosexuality ...

... in that, it mostly benefits the tribe/gene-pool, but not the individual.

Being of average intelligence you are more intelligent than a good portion of the population and that helps you, just as being sub-average might be a hindrance in some situations. But being that much more intelligent does not help that individual much.

One does not have to be intelligent to profit from the intelligence of others. "We flew to the moon." No, *we* did not. We did not find Antibiotics, but we have much more breeding success because of it.