Comment by quantumental on Living in the shadow of superintelligence · 2013-06-27T22:14:40.897Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I find it highly unlikely that a superintelligence would care to create a medieval simulation with tons of suffering

Comment by quantumental on Privileging the Hypothesis · 2013-03-06T21:11:23.779Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

EHeller: what if the decision-theoretic approach by Wallace et al. turns out to work? Would you consider MWI "heavily" favoured then?

Comment by quantumental on Open Thread, January 16-31, 2013 · 2013-02-06T14:19:57.560Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Because most determinists aren't everettians? Quite simple

Comment by quantumental on The ongoing transformation of quantum field theory · 2013-01-13T08:46:15.996Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

So it's enough to establish a quasi-classical preferred basis, but you still have the Born Rule problem? But one is solved ?

Comment by quantumental on If MWI is correct, should we expect to experience Quantum Torment? · 2012-11-12T16:13:22.906Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I'm not sure how I am going to cite that, there has never been conducted a gigantic poll on this matter, but the fact that the leading "experts" in the field who are the only ones doing work on Everett says that it's less than 10% (Deutsch's new book Beginning of infinity) should be revealing enough.

As for branching and divergence, Alastair Wilson and Simon Saunders disagrees:

Comment by quantumental on If MWI is correct, should we expect to experience Quantum Torment? · 2012-11-11T16:43:11.292Z · score: -3 (5 votes) · LW · GW

Tips: figure out if MWI is correct before you start worrying about these things. The existential crisis that can be brought on by thoughts surrounding QTI and QTorment can induce suicide and other bizarre behaviour. This is the reason that Jacques Mallah wrote a paper on the fallacy of quantum immortality, because he estimates the risk is too high that people will start dying over this interpretation.

Now as Mitchell Porter says, MWI got some problems, mainly the Born Rule and Preferred Basis, aswell as problems with having wavefunction realism in configuration space/relativity (prompting proponents of MWI such as Wallace to postulate Space-Time state realism) this is enough for the vast majority of physicists to reject MWI, even some of the early supporters like Weinberg has turned his back on the hypothesis.

But even if you do believe Many Worlds is true, you have to factor in another thing: we don't know whether worlds branch or diverge. Alastair Wilson and Simon Saunders have written about this, the math doesn't decide, so we can't know. It could be that once two outcomes can occur you "branch" into both worlds, or it could be that we are already on 2 separate, but identical worlds and when two outcomes occur, only one occur in the branch you are already isolated on. If this is the case, then quantum immortality is falsified 100% bcause you will forever remain on a single branch until the end of time... This also solves the "incoherence" problem with probability and lets us keep our episteomology.

Last, but not least I want to raise some criticism of Yudkowsky and Tegmark for introducing such ideas as fact, when there are severe problems facing it. It may have caused a lot of suicides from mentally unstable people, existential crisis and people who just thought quantum roulette would be a good way to get a better life, people who don't care about the overall measure. All because of something that is highly speculative with seemingly insoluble problems.

Comment by quantumental on Open Thread, August 16-31, 2012 · 2012-08-31T11:31:12.826Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Dude you are looking at numbers through some 9/11 Truther eyes, you definitely got a long way to go if you plan on travelling the world "working towards life extension". It's great that you are donating money to these funds, but please don't use your story as a "The SAI might be God" thingy. It will only make people look at transhumanism as a religion (like plenty already do).


Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-25T18:30:07.030Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

You say there are objective facts, yet you claim it depends on ones perspective...this is contradictory. Have you read any of Wilson's papers? Or Saunders, Lawhead, Ismael etc.? All have written papers clearly indicating the OBJECTIVE difference.

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-25T11:43:44.120Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

So you see no objective facts about mwi? non-overlap vs overlap is nonsense in your opinion?

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-21T21:14:33.907Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Sure I can accept that I might have overestimated how well you should've been able to interpret my post.

Solipsism vs Realism is indeed a metaphor. If you are saying what I think you are saying, then it is quite equivalent.

I do not think that your example of a diagonal line is the same as overlap vs non-overlap at all. In overlap vs non-overlap the ontological differences matter. In a overlapping world, if you are shot, you are guaranteed to survive in another branch, so QI has to be true. In non-overlap, if you get shot, you just die. There is no consciousness that continue on in another branch that it was never connected to...

Also it makes away with the incoherence problem, which is HUGE if you are in the "Born Rule can be derived from decision-theoretic camp".

It is metaphysics, I've already said this in the first post. There is no experiment that can ever distinguish either, just like no experiment can ever tell us if solipsism or realism is true. But obviously (assuming MWI is right) one of them are, only one, not both.

I think 5 of those papers are directly about non-overlap vs overlap, and I can't remember which makes the point best right now, so read any of them you'd like. Or you can read Simon Saunders paper which was in a chapter of the Many Worlds? 2010 book here:

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-21T14:36:52.466Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I understand what you are saying, which I think my last post showed quite clearly, but this still does not answer the actual question at hand. What you are saying really amounts to saying that "realism and solipsism are the same", because we cannot really distinguish either through science, all we can do is use logic and metaphysical "reasoning".

Obviously both overlap and non-overlap cannot be true, they are ontologically different, yet you seem to say that "because the equations doesn't decide, reality isn't decided" which is some sort of extreme positivism.

Have you read any of the papers that outline this? Alastair Wilson have written several:

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-20T21:22:25.085Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

To be perfectly honest, I do not see an answer to my question here.

You do explain some, but it seems that you end up indirectly stating that it is "semantics" whether the worlds overlap or not overlap. From what you say here it all depends on how you look at it, but that there is no "truth" of the matter. But that cannot be, either the worlds are overlapping or they are not. That is just the very fact of objective reality.

So while "both pictures are valid" in terms of math, not both can be the same. Metaphysically they are not the same and they got very different effects on episteomology. Also in terms of for instance quantum suicide. In overlap, it's hard to argue against some sort of Quantum Immortality, whilst in non-overlap death is just as in a classical one world theory.

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-20T03:52:52.643Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Although they do not "split off" in the same envisioned early on by DeWitt, there is definitely some unanswered questions here. Alastair Wilson and Simon Saunders has raised this issue. Are all the worlds in the wavefunction from the beginning of time or do they somehow spring out from one world? This is called overlap vs non-overlap (first discussed by David Lewis).

Since you are the expert, by all means answer this for us.

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-19T10:45:32.100Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

But obviously reality is not about non-relativistic quantum mechanics. So whenever a discussion about interpretations is brought up, I think it is dishonest to argue FOR a partial version of it that really has nothing to do with reality

Comment by quantumental on Scott Aaronson's cautious optimism for the MWI · 2012-08-19T10:19:47.984Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I was quite certain that Wallace et al (Oxfordians) dismissed pure WF realism in favour of state space realism when attempting to make it relativistic?

Comment by quantumental on Cult impressions of Less Wrong/Singularity Institute · 2012-08-17T15:41:54.168Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

I just can't ignore this. If you take a minute to actually look at the talk section of that wikipedia page you will see those polls being thorn to pieces.

David Deutsch himself has stated that less than 10% of the people doing quantum fundamentals believe in MWI and then within that minority there are a lot of diverging views. So this is still not by any means a "majority interpretation".

As Mitchell_Porter has pointed out Gell-Mann certainly do not believe in MWI. Nor do Steven Weinberg, he denounced his 'faith' in it in a paper last year. Feynman certainly did never talk about it, which to me is more than enough indication that he did not endorse it. Hawking is a bit harder, he is on record seemingly being pro and con it, so I guess he is a fence sitter.

But more importantly is the fact that none of the proponents agree on what MWI they support. (This includes you Eliezer)

Zurek is another fence sitter, partly pro-some-sort-of-MWI, partly pro-It-from-Bit. Also his way of getting the Born Rule in MWI is quite a bit different. From what I understand, only the worlds that are "persistent" are actualized. This reminds me of Robin Hanson's mangled worlds where only some worlds are real and the rest gets "cancelled" out somehow. Yet they are completley different ways of looking at MWI. Then you got David Deutsch's fungible worlds which is slightly different from David Wallace's worlds. Tegmark got his own views etc.

There seems to be no single MWI and there has been no answer to the Born Rule.

So I want to know why you keep on talking about it as it is a slam dunk?

Comment by quantumental on Cult impressions of Less Wrong/Singularity Institute · 2012-08-08T12:00:15.980Z · score: 3 (5 votes) · LW · GW

I still wonder why you haven't written a update in 4 years regarding this topic. Especially in regards to the Born Rule probability not having a solution yet + the other problems.

You also have the issue of overlap vs non-overlapping of worlds, which again is a relevant issue in the Many Worlds interpretation. Overlap = the typical 1 world branching into 2 worlds. Non-overlap = 2 identical worlds diverging (Saunders 2010, Wilson 2005-present)

Also I feel like the QM sequence is a bit incomplete when you do not give any thought to things like Gerard 't Hoofts proposal of a local deterministic reality giving rise to quantum mechanics from a cellular automaton at the planck scale? It's misleading to say the MWI is "a slam dunk" winner when there are so many unanswered questions. Mitchell Porter is one of the few persons here who seem to have a deep understanding of the subject before reading your sequence, so he has raised some interesting points...

Comment by quantumental on Should I believe what the SIAI claims? · 2012-08-04T12:12:33.484Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

His monologue on color, for instance.

Well, you didn't link to his view of qualia, but to a link where he explains why MWI is not the "winner" or "preferred" as EY claimed so confidently in his series on QM. You might disagree with him on his stance on qualia ( I do too ) but it would be a logical fallacy to state that therefore all his other opinions are also incoherent.

Mitchell Porter's view on qualia is not non-sense either, it is highly controversial and speculative, no doubt. But his motivation is sound, he think that it is the only way to avoid some sort of dualism, so in that sense his view is even more reductionist than that of Dennett etc. He is also in good company with people like David Deutsch (another famous many world fundamentlist).

As for local hidden variables, obviously there does not exist a local HV that has been ruled out ;p but you claimed there was none in existence in general.

Comment by quantumental on Should I believe what the SIAI claims? · 2012-08-04T11:16:02.864Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

But MWI doesn't get the right calculation in terms of probability

Comment by quantumental on Should I believe what the SIAI claims? · 2012-08-04T11:04:43.951Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Lack of coherence? where? It's true that Bohm requires non-local HV's, but there is a non-local flavor to MWI too. The states are still non-local. Local HV's do exist. Gerard 't Hooft is working on this as we speak:

Comment by quantumental on Open Thread: November 2009 · 2012-07-10T23:31:20.916Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Well the one I watched had like 15 guys in it, 9 pro-MWI. Indicating that this talk definitely attracted more MWI'ers than what is regular

Comment by quantumental on Open Thread: November 2009 · 2012-07-10T22:21:14.278Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I pointed you towards the evidence. One of the guys in the talksection did a survey of his own of 30 or so leading physicists.

But just the fact that David Deutsch himself says less than 10% believe in any kind of MWI speaks volumes. He has been in the community where these matters are discussed for decades

Comment by quantumental on Stupid Questions Open Thread Round 3 · 2012-07-10T20:53:13.718Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Aha, I see. So you do not share EY's view that MWI is "correct" then and the only problem it faces is recovering the Born Rule? I agree that obviously what will end up working will depend on what the foundations are :) I remember that paper by Buosso and Susskind, I even remember sending a mail to Susskind about it, while at the same time asking him about his opinion of 't Hoofts work. If I remember correctly the paper was discussed at some length over at (can't remember the post) and it seemed that the consensus was that the authors have misinterpreted decoherence in some way. I don't remember the details, but the fact that the paper itself has not been mentioned or cited in any article I have read since then indicates to me that there has had to have been some serious error in it. Also Susskinds answer regarding 't Hoofts work was illuminating. To paraphrase he said he felt that 't Hooft might be correct, but due to there not being any predictions it was hard to hold a strong opinion either way on the matter. So it seems Susskind was not very sold on his own idea.

Gerard 't Hooft actually does rely on what people call "superdeterminism", which I just call "full determinism", which I think is also a term 't Hooft likes more. At least that is what his papers indicate. He discuss this some in a article from 2008 in response to Simon Kochen and John Conway's Free Will Theorem. You might want to read the article: After that you might want to head on over to arxiv, 't Hooft has published a 3 papers the last 6 months on this issue and he seem more and more certain of it. He also adress the objections in some notes in those papers. Link:

Comment by quantumental on Open Thread: November 2009 · 2012-07-10T20:38:39.176Z · score: 0 (4 votes) · LW · GW

No. If you even just go to the discussion page you will see that the reception part is one of the most erronous and most objected to in that wiki article. The entire article in itself is a disaster and most Many Worldian proponents does not endorse it at all.

You have to understand that there are literally THOUSANDS of physicists who hold a opinion on the matter, a few polls conducted by proponents do no matter at all. Do you really think that a talk held by Max Tegmark will not attract people who share his views?

If someone where to do a global poll, you would see...

Comment by quantumental on Open Thread: November 2009 · 2012-07-10T20:16:37.385Z · score: -2 (6 votes) · LW · GW

Well.... It does not have a broad support among physicists for being a VERY plausible. A tiny fraction consider it very plausible. The vast majority consider it very unlikely and downright wrong due to it's many problems.

Comment by quantumental on Stupid Questions Open Thread Round 3 · 2012-07-09T03:08:56.984Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

This is a very good post, but I wonder: One of the authors in the paper you cite is David Wallace, perhaps the most prominent proponent of modern Everettian interpretation. He just published a new book called "The Emergent Multiverse" and he claims there is no problem unifying MWI with QFT because interactions within worlds are local and only states are nonlocal. I have yet to hear him mention any need for serious reformulation of anything in terms of MWI.

You said you suspect this is necessary, but that you hope we can recover a similar MWI, but isn't it more reasonable to expect that at the planck scale something else will explain the quantum weirdness? After all if MWI fails both probability and relativity, then there is no good reason to suspect that this interpretation is correct.

Have you given Gerard 't Hoofts idea of cellular automata which he claims salvage determinism, locality and realism any thought?