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Comment by quill_mcgee on Meetup : MIRI paper reading group · 2015-04-30T16:38:05.601Z · LW · GW

Well, it does say '2016', so that seems... Yeah, that isn't plausible, but the fact that it says 2016 makes it more plausible than it would be otherwise.

Comment by quill_mcgee on 16 types of useful predictions · 2015-04-28T17:42:22.301Z · LW · GW

After a bit of thought, I believe I've found a basically permanent solution for this. I use word replacer (not sure how to add links without just posting them, you can google it, it is in the chrome web store) with a bunch of rules to enforce 'they' as default. If you put rules for longer strings at the top they match first ('he is' to 'they are' at the top with 'he' to 'they' lower down, for example)

You will have to put up with some number mismatch unless you want to add a rule for every verb in English ('they puts'), but I feel that that is an acceptable sacrifice.

EDIT: another issue: If you are actually talking about pronouns, you will have to temporarily disable it for things to make any sense whatsoever, and it doesn't seem to have a way to disable it on a specific page unlike the service I was using it to replace, so you have to use the extensions screen in settings.

EDEDIT: Also, and this is bothering me enough that I might actually stop using this, is 'her' as a pronoun versus 'her' as a possessive. for example in 'Get to know her' versus 'I found her wallet'. The first should be 'Get to know them' wheras the second one should be 'I found their wallet', and I'm not sure what to do about that. If I find/build an extension which can interface with a list of english words with part-of-speech tagging and have rules like 'her'->'them', 'her '->'their ', then that'd work, but as is it is bugging me.

Comment by quill_mcgee on For progress to be by accumulation and not by random walk, read great books · 2015-04-27T22:37:52.306Z · LW · GW

Whereas, if I am interpreting them correctly, what they are saying is

(1) People say that high IQ is the reason Newton invented calculus.

(2) High processing speed and copious amounts of RAM don't themselves suffice to invent calculus.

(3) Therefore, "High processing speed and copious amounts of RAM" is not a good description of high IQ.

Personally, I'd say that 'high IQ' is probably most useful when just used to refer to whatever it is that enables people to do stuff like invent calculus, and that 'working memory' already suffices for RAM, and that there probably should be a term for 'high processing speed' but I do not know what it is/should be.

EDIT: that is, I think that Newton scored well along some metric which did immensely increase his chances of inventing calculus, which does extend beyond RAM and processing speed, which I would nonetheless refer to as 'high IQ'

tabooing IQ would almost certainly be helpful here.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Less Wrong Study Hall - Year Two · 2015-04-27T18:44:03.788Z · LW · GW

"[[ My favorite "other" referral was someone who checked the URL on tinychat entirely be coincidence, before it was passworded. ]]"

Yep, that was surprisingly successful. I also had success with that tactic on fimfiction.net, though that produced fewer useful results.

(also, unless there's another 15-year-old, I look to be the youngest.)

Comment by quill_mcgee on Schools Proliferating Without Evidence · 2015-04-19T20:53:57.805Z · LW · GW

The system for generating new fields of research? After all, if it generates other areas that are no longer philosophy reasonably regularly, then that actually creates value.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Hedonium's semantic problem · 2015-04-16T14:27:44.631Z · LW · GW

A way to communicate Exists(N) and not Exists(S) in a way that doesn't depend on the context of the current conversation might be ""Santa" exists but Santa does not." Of course, the existence of "Santa" is granted when "Santa does not exist" is understood by the other person, so this is really just a slightly less ambiguous way of saying "Santa does not exist"

Comment by quill_mcgee on Nash Equilibria and Schelling Points · 2015-04-06T18:56:06.906Z · LW · GW

I was thinking of the "feeling bad and reconsider" meaning. That is, you don't want regret to occur, so if you are systematically regretting your actions it might be time to try something new. Now, perhaps you were acting optimally already and when you changed you got even /more/ regret, but in that case you just switch back.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Nash Equilibria and Schelling Points · 2015-04-05T21:48:44.543Z · LW · GW

In my opinion, one should always regret choices with bad outcomes and never regret choices with good outcomes. For Lo It Is Written ""If you fail to achieve a correct answer, it is futile to protest that you acted with propriety."" As well It Is Written "If it's stupid but it works, it isn't stupid." More explicitly, if you don't regret bad outcomes just because you 'did the right thing,' you will never notice a flaw in your conception of 'the right thing.' This results in a lot of unavoidable regret, and so might not be a good algorithm in practice, but at least in principle it seems to be better.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Rationality Quotes Thread April 2015 · 2015-04-05T02:36:14.066Z · LW · GW

On the contrary, this is what the Litany of Tarski states.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Torture vs. Dust Specks · 2015-03-27T03:09:14.638Z · LW · GW

exactly! No knock-on effects. Perhaps you meant to comment on the grandparent(great-grandparent? do I measure from this post or your post?) instead?

Comment by quill_mcgee on Torture vs. Dust Specks · 2015-03-26T14:33:36.572Z · LW · GW

In the Least Convenient Possible World of this hypothetical, each and every dust speck causes a small constant amount of harm, with no knock-on effects(no increasing one's appreciation of the moments when one does not have dust in ones eye, no preventing a 'boring painless existence,' nothing of the sort). Now it may be argued whether this would occur with actual dust, but that is not really the question at hand. Dust was just chosen as being a 'seemingly trivial bad thing.' and if you prefer some other trivial bad thing, just replace that in the problem and the question remains the same.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Torture vs. Dust Specks · 2015-03-25T21:43:26.603Z · LW · GW

In the Least Convenient Possible World of this hypothetical, every dust speck causes a constant small amount of harm with no knock-on effects(no avoiding buses, no crashing cars...)

Comment by quill_mcgee on An Introduction to Löb's Theorem in MIRI Research · 2015-03-25T21:42:00.992Z · LW · GW

"if I can prove that if a version of me with unbounded computational resources is consistent then this is good, do it"

In this formalism we generally assume infinite resources anyway. And even if this is not the case, consistent/inconsistent doesn't depend on resources, only on the axioms and rules for deduction. So this still doesn't let you increase in proof strength, although again it should help avoid losing it.

Comment by quill_mcgee on An Introduction to Löb's Theorem in MIRI Research · 2015-03-25T18:31:24.933Z · LW · GW

I don't think he was talking about self-PA, but rather an altered decision criteria, such that rather that "if I can prove this is good, do it" it is "if I can prove that if I am consistent then this is good, do it" which I think doesn't have this particular problem, though it does have others, and it still can't /increase/ in proof strength.

Comment by quill_mcgee on The Problem with AIXI · 2015-03-25T01:00:51.638Z · LW · GW

That AI doesn't drop an anvil on its head(I think...), but it also doesn't self-improve.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Second-Order Logic: The Controversy · 2015-03-24T17:13:03.879Z · LW · GW

I think that what Joshua was talking about by 'infinite loop' is 'passing through the same state an infinite number of times.' That is, a /loop/, rather than just a line with no endpoint. although this would rule out (some arbitrary-size int type) x = 0; while(true){ x++; } on a machine with infinite memory, as it would never pass through the same state twice. So maybe I'm still misunderstanding.

Comment by quill_mcgee on An Introduction to Löb's Theorem in MIRI Research · 2015-03-24T17:11:04.241Z · LW · GW

Wasn't Löb's theorem ∀ A (Provable(Provable(A) → A) → Provable(A))? So you get Provable(⊥) directly, rather than passing through ⊥ first. This is good, as, of course, ⊥ is always false, even if it is provable.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Rationality: From AI to Zombies · 2015-03-19T23:51:19.325Z · LW · GW

Darn it, and I counted like five times to make sure there really were 10 visible before I said anything. I didn't realize that the stone the middle-top stone was on top of was one stone, not two.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Rationality: From AI to Zombies · 2015-03-13T18:30:11.410Z · LW · GW

There might be one more stone not visible?

Comment by quill_mcgee on Innate Mathematical Ability · 2015-02-20T19:02:35.186Z · LW · GW

It should be noted that if measured IQ is fat-tailed, this is because there is something wrong with IQ tests. IQ is defined to be normally distributed with a mean of 100 and a standard deviation of either 15 or 16 depending on which definition you're using. So if measured IQ is fat-tailed, then the tests aren't calibrated properly(of course, if your test goes all the way up to 160, it is almost inevitably miscalibrated, because there just aren't enough people to calibrate it with).

Comment by quill_mcgee on Uncategories and empty categories · 2015-02-19T03:30:04.137Z · LW · GW

I would disagree with the phrasing you use regarding 'human terminal values.' Now, I don't disagree that evolution optimized humans according to those criteria, but I am not evolution, and evolution's values are not my values. I would expect that only a tiny fraction of humans would say that evolution's values should be our values(I'd like to say 'none,' but radical neo-darwinians might exist). Now, if you were just saying that those are the values of the optimization process that produced humanity, I agree, but that was not what I interpreted you as saying.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Logics for Mind-Building Should Have Computational Meaning · 2014-10-02T04:45:38.621Z · LW · GW

I assume you either linked to this in the post, or it has been mentioned in the comments, but I did not catch it in either location if it was present, so I'm linking to it anyway: http://intelligence.org/files/Non-Omniscience.pdf contains a not merely computable but tractable algorithm for assigning probabilities to a given set of first-order sentences.

Comment by quill_mcgee on A model of UDT with a halting oracle · 2014-06-08T15:29:50.114Z · LW · GW

"S proves that A()=1 ⇒ U()=42. But S also proves that A()=1 ⇒ U()=1000000, therefore S proves that A()≠1" I don't see how this follows. Perhaps it is because, if the system was sound, it would never prove more than one value for U() for a given a, therefore by the principle of explosion it proves A()≠1? But that doesn't seem to actually follow. I'm aware that this is an old post, but on the off chance that anyone ever actually sees this comment, help would be appreciated.

Comment by quill_mcgee on [Meta] The Decline of Discussion: Now With Charts! · 2014-06-06T01:20:11.071Z · LW · GW

Personally, I fall on the 'all of the above(except idea A)' side of the fence. I primarily use LessWrong for the Main board, as it is an excellent source of well-edited, well-considered articles, containing interesting or useful ideas. I want the remainder of the site to thrive because if there is not a large, active userbase and new users being attracted, then I would expect to see the types of content I want to see become less frequent. All of these ideas seem like good things to do, keeping in mind that if these do not actually support the goal of making good Main articles more frequent, then they are not good things, and it seems possible that some of these could backfire.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Counterfactual Mugging · 2014-05-31T07:37:17.269Z · LW · GW

Well, this comes up different ways under different interpretations. If there is a chance that I am being simulated, that is this is part of his determining my choice, then I give him $100. If the coin is quantum, that is there will exist other mes getting the money, I give him $100. If there is a chance that I will encounter similar situations again, I give him $100. If I were informed of the deal beforehand, I give him $100. Given that I am not simulated, given that the coin is deterministic, and given that I will never again encounter Omega, I don't think I give him $100. Seeing as I can treat this entirely in isolation due to these conditions, I have the choice between -$100 and $0, of which two options the second is better. Now, this runs into some problems. If I were informed of it beforehand, I should have precommitted. Seeing as my choices given all information shouldn't change, this presents difficulty. However, due to the uniqueness of this deal, there really does seem to be no benefit to any mes from giving him the money, and so it is purely a loss.

Comment by quill_mcgee on The Allais Paradox · 2014-04-14T01:20:46.060Z · LW · GW

My resolution to this, without changing my intuitions to pick things that I currently perceive as 'simply wrong', would be that I value certainty. A 9/10 chance of winning x dollars is worth much less to me than a 10/10 chance of winning 9x/10 dollars. However, a 2/10 chance of winning x dollars is worth only barely less than a 4/10 chance of winning x/2 dollars, because as far as I can tell the added utility of the lack of worrying increases massively as the more certain option approaches 100%. Now, this becomes less powerful the closer the odds, are, but slower than the dollar difference between the two change. So a 99% chance of x is barely effected by this compared to a 100% chance of .99x, but still by a greater value than .01x, and the more likely option still dominates. I might take a 99% chance of x over a 100% chance of .9x, however, and I would definitely prefer a 99% chance of x over a 100% chance of 0.8x.

EDIT: Upon further consideration, this is wrong. If presented with the actual choice, I would still prefer 1A to 1B, but to maintain consistency I will now choose 2A > 2B.

Comment by quill_mcgee on Siren worlds and the perils of over-optimised search · 2014-04-09T06:08:43.068Z · LW · GW

http://www.fungible.com/respect/index.html This looks to be very related to the idea of "Observe someone's actions. Assume they are trying to accomplish something. Work out what they are trying to accomplish." Which seems to be what you are talking about.

Comment by quill_mcgee on You Are Likely To Be Eaten By A Grue · 2012-10-03T09:28:15.614Z · LW · GW

(aware that this is 2 years late, just decided to post) I find that I work, on average,somewhere between 2-3 times as fast when I am right up next to a deadline,than when I have plenty of time.

Comment by quill_mcgee on The Crackpot Offer · 2012-10-03T08:11:38.135Z · LW · GW

Does it count if the state of trying lasted for a long(but now ended) time? because if so, I kept on trying to create a bijection between the reals and the wholes, until I was about 13 and found an actual number that I could actually write down that none of my obvious ideas could reach, and find an equivalent for all the non obvious ones.( 0.21111111..., by the way)