How do you solicit feedback effectively? 2021-04-30T00:16:07.211Z
How do you deal with decision paralysis? 2021-04-13T06:01:10.274Z
How do you build resilient personal systems? 2021-01-25T09:56:42.445Z
Raj Thimmiah's Shortform 2021-01-16T03:45:08.312Z
How can you find the best information out of all information? 2020-06-03T06:40:57.501Z


Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-27T11:00:06.795Z · LW · GW

Do any of you have systems you've used to test out which diet you find best for yourself?

I'm also curious: how did you manage confounders such as life changes/sleep and other things

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on On Sleep Procrastination: Going To Bed At A Reasonable Hour · 2021-04-27T10:58:42.395Z · LW · GW

you might find exercise 3 useful if your issue is sleep procrastination. I had to slowly block alllllll kinds of things incrementally till I stopped screwing up my sleep

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Is there software for goal factoring? · 2021-04-27T10:34:17.295Z · LW · GW

Are you still using it now or did you find a better solution?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-27T09:47:38.291Z · LW · GW

Is there still a map of LW community members?

stumbled upon this: and the link it has to map of users is defunct

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-27T03:15:57.493Z · LW · GW

awesome, dm'd you for more details

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-26T01:12:32.980Z · LW · GW

Is anyone interested in being accountability partner for unscrewing sleep?

In the past, I've used a system: which worked pretty well for unscrewing my sleep a few months ago. 

It's pretty simple: when I screw up my sleep and commit to fixing it the next day with willpower, that fails. 

When I fix what screwed my sleep that night, something new comes to screw my sleep. So you basically have to go down a list of things that break your sleep and fix ALL of them. Which I managed to do a few months ago but regressed on after moving.

I want to try it again but I find it hard to take seriously enough to stick to. 

I'm looking for someone willing to do daily check-ins/discuss bugs that also wants to work on fixing their sleep. I dunno if we'd do synchronous or asynchronous communication but in the beginning I'd probably want to try synchronous

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Apps / tools for combatting sleep procrastination? · 2021-04-24T12:49:43.597Z · LW · GW

that's interesting, what were the steps you took to engage with that? I've vaguely wanted to do that but haven't been sure about how to approach it

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-24T02:52:07.300Z · LW · GW

I've generally found quality good for things I've requested and when it isn't it isn't hard to just say 'no this is not what I expected try more'

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-19T13:28:37.497Z · LW · GW

For those that don't know it exists, r/slavelabour (not literal slave labour) is a great place to outsource things (

I've gotten a virtual assistant through it that has saved me massive amounts of time and sanity (at around 5$ per hour at start and 7$ per hour now with base rate of 5$ per week)

I've also gotten scripts made and a translation to Japanese done for my friends thesis

Bountied rationality ( also exists but is much more expensive since less efficient market with fewer people clustered in countries with higher wages. 

if anyone has a thing they're thinking of posting there lemme know and I can probably give advice. If you're interested in getting a virtual assistant, I can point you to the post I made and how you could try to get one too (I offered 5$/hr 4 hours a week and got 20 literally applicants)

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Rationalist horoscopes: A low-hanging utility generator. · 2021-04-18T08:55:43.138Z · LW · GW

What ended up happening to this? seems like an interesting project though site doesn't load now unfortunately

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How do you deal with decision paralysis? · 2021-04-16T23:33:29.705Z · LW · GW

Just tried the consequences thing and it's helpful and different from standard pros/cons as you said. I think I internalized from somewhere that lists and process of elimination don't work which now looks clearly wrong and I want to get into the habit of using more.

make a list of possible consequence-types and your outcome preferences for each type. Maybe rank those preferences.  

missed this part on first read, will try that

okay, that was useful and made choice more certain. Thanks for the suggestion.


Do you have a blog? Maybe consider turning this into a blog post, in line with the idea of generalizing instances of problems to benefit more people

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-04-06T04:22:24.518Z · LW · GW

Have any of you made an effort to apply expected utility theory to all the things you do? If so, how did you find it?

I'm guessing there are constraints that make routine application difficult but it seems like you could take those into account too

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-03-30T03:53:44.448Z · LW · GW

Okay nice, I think this answers half my question: can I do things that make a difference? Where answers seems to be: just think about it, there isn’t a black magic answer

though I still want to get a better idea of what makes GDP/income/wealth of a nation increase

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-03-29T12:13:51.851Z · LW · GW

Something that's bothered me for a while is: how is wealth created and value added to society? If I start a software company which marginally makes some people's lives better, does this actually contribute to society? How zero sum are our efforts?

I know the answer to this is somewhere in economics but I'm not really sure where and the 1 course I took on macro wasn't really enough to answer this for me. 

Any recommendations/people willing to talk me through this?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-03-29T12:10:38.923Z · LW · GW

definition on tag already helping a ton:

Mistake theorists think problems in society are caused by people being bad at achieving common goals. 

Conflict theorists think problems in society are caused by adversaries with incompatible goals.

Thanks for pointing me to those, will give them a read!

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-03-29T11:57:53.700Z · LW · GW listened to this episode of the clearer thinking podcast with michael vassar. Mistake theory and conflict theory get thrown around a lot but I don't really get what they are nor how to figure out what the are. I'm not interested in in depth learning on them, does anyone have suggestions on concise summaries/sources to get a good enough idea of what they are?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-03-28T01:18:16.023Z · LW · GW

I've put off making a post on it for a while but something I've wanted to offer to anyone interested is free teaching to learn SuperMemo and incremental reading

A big part of why I put it off is that it's a pain to explain. Instead of explaining it, I'll give a top level overview and a link to a video that explains it in more detail. 

tl;dr: with SuperMemo/incremental reading, you can manage reading hundreds of articles in parallel (incrementally) without going insane, with long-term retention using spaced repetition. It's a lot of fun, seriously. Unlike say Anki where you slog through reps, incremental reading intersperses learning making it highly novel and not monotonous.

If you want to try it, check out, download SuperMemo 18 here (no, you don't want and schedule a call with me (I've taught 30+ people over the last year, in ~1 hour can get you far enough to be able to start using it enjoyably). Possibly also join the supermemo discord server to ask questions. 


Q: I'm on mac/linux/not windows what do I do?

A: Scroll down to mac and linux section here.

Q: SuperMemo UI is terrible!

A: yes. true. at some point though you stop caring and the lack of decent alternatives + fun will pull you through. Unless it doesn't, in which case you could just not use it. Though I think giving it a try for at least a week is worth it. 

Q: if it's so great why does no one use it?

A: it's a big pain to start using. it took me 5 months to start incremental reading after buying SM because I couldn't figure out the documentation. That's why I'm offering to teach anyone interested: I can get you to being able to use it fine after an hour. 

While it's still smallish, it's much bigger than it was a year ago with around ~1,200 people on the SM discord server (and some amount of rat adjacent people). 

If you have other questions feel free to ask. If you have insane expectations of very quick returns, probably don't try it. I've taught a lot of people and the people who do consistently worst are people with high expectations and no patience for both getting better at learning/getting used to SuperMemo itself. If you don't have insane expectations, try it and potentially get easy 10%+ long-term boost to life (or at least that's conservatively what I've found. though there are massive benefits for me since ADHD renders me practically incapable of normal modes of declarative learning)

thanks for reading. seriously. 

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on TurnTrout's shortform feed · 2021-03-27T02:04:00.372Z · LW · GW

You able to link to it now?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on "You and Your Research" – Hamming Watch/Discuss Party · 2021-03-22T13:14:14.278Z · LW · GW

I'll keep an eye out for any US evening events then, completely understandable to focus on americas/europe since most people there

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on "You and Your Research" – Hamming Watch/Discuss Party · 2021-03-20T06:16:40.728Z · LW · GW

Unfortunately this is a bit too early for me at 4 am japan time but I'd be interested in similar future events. What's a good way to be alerted on future discussion events?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on What metrics should I track when experimenting with sleep? · 2021-02-09T03:38:26.884Z · LW · GW

You might find some of the writings on regarding sleep interesting. 

SuperMemo is a spaced repetition app (it was the very first in fact) that has a thing called sleepchart built in. It lets you both track sleep for finding interesting patterns alongside getting altertness/cogniti8ve data from correlation of say hour of day vs. average grades:

There are a bunch of confounders (they could be eliminated were I more rigorous) but I think it's interesting and even without SRS data I get some useful data:

Basically red line is how long sleep episodes are, blue line is how frequent they are around that time. You can see there's a peak around 6 hours from waking and around 16/17 hours from waking. The green line shows breakeven (if I sleep at that time, for the amount of hours on the left, it'll add up to 24).


It's probably really complicated looking but if you want to try it let me know and i'm happy to show you how. Doesn't take long to learn and takes very little time to add track in a new sleep episode. 

(this is from my own data)

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How do you build resilient personal systems? · 2021-02-04T08:33:27.606Z · LW · GW

Perhaps the proper way to think about this is that if you keep following your plans for ten days, and then fail on one day, those ten days still did something useful, and they also helped to establish a habit... not perfectly, but better than when you started from zero. That is, instead of feeling disappointed, you should focus on the fact that the second start will probably be easier than the first one (unless you needlessly make it difficult for yourself by overly focusing on the failure).

Huh. I forgot this. Over time, I internalized the opposite: if I keep failing to keep up habits, it'll be harder to get the habit going the next time. But my habits are lasting much longer than they used to and instead of downward spiral, I'm going on an upward one. 

focus on the fact that your average day in 2021 is quite productive, and that whatever you did once, you can do again

I used to think this: I had clear time I was productive and I could envision getting back to it. Current system might not be perfect but it is definitely much clearer that I can get back to current state, enjoyably.

One thing you alluded to is that breaks are good. I've generally found this confusing because I generally enjoy what I'm doing and aside from tasklists, everything else I'd be happy doing every day. But I checked out some of the posts you linked and they were interesting. I'm gonna go through this meaningful rest post with a friend .


Thanks for the comment

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on The True Face of the Enemy · 2021-01-27T04:23:13.411Z · LW · GW

I think you can separate out responses to 'school is not good' to:
-school is inherently useful
-school is hard to replace and serves a function (even if not perfect) in current equilibrium

I strongly recommend reading:

-The Case Against Education (I liked this summary by Zvi)
-Free to Learn by Peter Gray (unfortunately I don't know a good summary but shouldn't be hard to find one)

Case against education basically demolishes idea that we go to school for inherent value rather than signaling.

Free to learn demolishes idea that there aren't good alternatives (you can naggle about specifics of implementation but I think it makes a decent enough case for 80% of things)

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How do you build resilient personal systems? · 2021-01-26T09:46:52.207Z · LW · GW

Didn't realize you were the author of that post, read it a few days ago!

So what do all 5 of these oscillation patterns have in common? A lack of congruency. The tendency to ignore some needs in order to focus on others. A sense of inner conflict, instead of alignment.

In each and every case, the solution involves welcoming and acknowledging all parts of yourself, before plotting a way forward. Transitioning from forcing yourself to choosing what you want to do.

Honestly, I could do another 100 tweets on what this looks like in each case. The delicate dance of beliefs, emotions, strategies, behaviors, and tools that can be combined to internalize a new way of being.

But the start is just self acknowledgement. Letting all your feelings, values, desires in, and going from there.

This seems accurate and like my current equilibrium is great because I got lucky enough to have done a few things that ended up aligning things that previously were not aligned without me realizing it. 

Do you have a way that you manually worked out your incongruencies and made them congruent? I think it might be useful if you added a hammertime style exercise for practical implementation since idea seems solid but it still seems hard to practice directly. 

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How do you build resilient personal systems? · 2021-01-26T09:42:38.073Z · LW · GW

In general, I like to use the stages of change model when trying to make a change. The research basically says that if people try to change when they're ready to change, they'll do it the first time, but if they try to change before they're ready, it will take multiple attempts.

Oh MAN this makes too much sense. The stuff that's working now, I've tried for like a year plus with incomplete success but now it's just working, without having to apply extra effort. Could you give a source for this?

Learning to forgive yourself is HUGE here. Research says that people who forgive themselves for procrastinating are less likely to procrastinate in the future, and I'm pretty sure this generalizes. Expect adjustments and forgive yourself for needing to make them.

Any chance I could bother you for source on this? I'd like to read more on it, also seems cool as hell. 

I've vaguely moved towards this with issue of forgiveness/not forgiveness moving more towards: oh no, have I screwed myself into a downward spiral?? Which is mainly just because I'm not confident yet in my ability to recover from disruptions (not that I have strong evidence of it being a big problem this year but more based on outside view and past data).

MurphyJitsu is a great tool to use here. There's a bunch of good exanations on LW, but the basic tool is to imagine you failed, ask yourself why, then patch your approach until it's very surprising that you failed.

Thanks, forgot about this. Will try out the plan-bot

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How do you build resilient personal systems? · 2021-01-26T09:38:10.936Z · LW · GW

I agree that generally a single miss is alright as long as I get back on track. I'm mainly just worried though about exactly that: how do I make sure I actually start again? Or at least reflect and iterate on whatever system failed?

Right now, I'm generally okay, I'm alright with a miss or two (did nothing over weekend because of Unsong but have been fine today) but I'm thinking more about long-term future me

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Lessons I've Learned from Self-Teaching · 2021-01-25T03:16:10.418Z · LW · GW

In general, when I first started using SRS I had this issue too. Over time, I got a fair bit better of it with 1 or 2 rules:

-I should be able to make at least 1 connection from the idea to something else (filter out only shallowly understood things)

-I should be able to either connect it to a situation of real life applicability or a goal

I didn't make it only: I need to be able to figure out applicability when making card, because a lot of useful knowledge might not that have it as obvious. But at the least, I should be learning it in a real context. E.g. some of my main goals now are:

-learn UX design

-understand how SRS/IR can be used to create genius

-get better at teaching

-become more resillient to disruption (emotionally)

Those are specific-ish and learning in context of those instead of I can use this sometime in the next decade is a useful filter

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Lessons I've Learned from Self-Teaching · 2021-01-25T03:13:00.855Z · LW · GW

The creator of spaced repetition has talked about how usage in children of SRS is not a great idea here


Roughly idea is that self-direct learn drive based learning is needed for coherent, well connected models.

It's sort of like how I learned trig in high school and I can't apply it to a real world problem to save my life. If I'd learned trig for myself, when I thought it'd be useful, it'd be way more applicable and not be so siloed to 'this is how you use trig to solve math problems on a test'

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-01-17T23:33:09.677Z · LW · GW

Anyone have recommendations on good non-swiveling chairs? Unfortunately I end up fidgeting and moving around way too much with them (maybe some of my ADHD?). I'm using a normal chair now but I wonder if there's something better for my back

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on The True Face of the Enemy · 2021-01-17T23:31:59.245Z · LW · GW

is a ted talk from Sugata Mitra about it 

Basically, Mitra installed a computer in a wall with free, unrestrained access to local children. 

Fairly quickly they got acclimated to it. I know I read a good description of it somewhere but can't remember where for the life of me

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on The True Face of the Enemy · 2021-01-17T00:17:29.663Z · LW · GW

I'm not saying it makes it impossible for people to learn for themselves. I'm saying that your argument that bottom 20% couldn't learn for themselves is flawed because for the majority of people in coerced learning environments it's not obvious that they could learn by themselves. 

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on The True Face of the Enemy · 2021-01-16T03:49:40.939Z · LW · GW

I think the assumption that people can't learn for themselves is sort of a catch 22. If you put people in a place where they're taught to learn from being taught, how can you expect them to be able to learn for themselves?

In terms of suggestions, me and author of this post have started on a project related to that and should hopefully have something in not too far future. 

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Raj Thimmiah's Shortform · 2021-01-16T03:45:08.753Z · LW · GW

How do you effectively represent knowledge in learning?

how do you effectively apply recognition primed decision making rather than lesswrong biases?

Is breadth of knowledge, depth of knowledge or applicability of knowledge more important? Whatever the answer is, how do you more dakka the hell out of it? 

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on The True Face of the Enemy · 2021-01-13T01:25:18.341Z · LW · GW

This is exactly the kind of sensationalism that would have convinced me to embrace school.

It seems strange to dislike a rhetoric so much that because of the rhetoric alone you embrace a different position. Is there a reason you think the sensationalism pushes you so much?


In fact, if the author *really* wanted to make me think, they shouldn't even portray the enemy as shiny like Ra ( They would portray the enemy as normal. Relatable, in fact; someone you could be best friends with. It is of the greatest importance to this person not to be annoying; not to "cause problems for the sake of causing problems" (i.e. to invite debate about why things are the way they are). This is extremely persuasive to most people; they don't want to be That Guy, whose badness is just to be taken for granted. Anyone with common sense understands. Be Skeet and not Jimmy. 

I am having significant trouble parsing this. Could you try to say the same thing in different words?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Covid 12/31: Meet the New Year · 2021-01-07T05:46:13.261Z · LW · GW

Were you able to find a lead?

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How to eradicate the desire to check time-wasting sites · 2020-12-21T02:36:51.120Z · LW · GW

I like this, will try it myself. Would be interested in an extended post on the idea.


It seems to fit into a class of things I want to try myself: iterated experiments. Too easy to assume many things are net good without actually measuring it and trying to optimize them over time.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on How to eradicate the desire to check time-wasting sites · 2020-12-21T02:35:42.968Z · LW · GW

leechblock also has the power to delay sites apparently

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on The LessWrong 2018 Book is Available for Pre-order · 2020-12-03T01:17:39.761Z · LW · GW

I think gumroad allows you to offer more than 1 format for download

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Are there non-AI projects focused on defeating Moloch globally? · 2020-09-15T03:43:08.031Z · LW · GW

I actually have been wondering about the safety mechanism stuff, if anyone wants to give examples of actually produced things in AI alignment I’d be interested in hearing about them.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on No Really, Why Aren't Rationalists Winning? · 2020-09-08T07:07:36.162Z · LW · GW

Did your friend ever finish that sequence? I'd still be quite interested in seeing it. After reading Chinese Businessmen: Superstition Doesn't Count, I've become very interested in becoming more instrumental.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-04T22:29:59.415Z · LW · GW

Agree on this, memory coherence is pretty important. Cramming leads to results sort of like how you can't combine the trig you learned in highschool with some physics knowledge: there aren't good connections between the subjects, leaving them relatively siloed.

It requires both effort and actually wanting to learn a thing for the thing to integrate well. We tend to forget easily the things we don't care about (see school knowledge).

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-04T08:32:00.343Z · LW · GW

On seeing the title of this post again, I'm reminded of an obvious answer: teach people how to decide what to learn for themselves. Sort of like the feed a man a day vs. teaching fishing thing.

I don't think there's a more useful meta thing to learn since that's what you need to figure out everything else for yourself.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-04T08:30:17.304Z · LW · GW

Haha, thanks for the rewrite, makes much more sense now.

tradeoff cognitive buck

Completely agree: too easy to cram mindlessly with Anki, I think in large part because of how much work it takes to make cards yourself.

I'm a bit skeptical of the drilling idea because cards taking more than 5 seconds to complete tend to become leeches and aren't the kind of thing you could do long-term, especially with Anki's algorithm. Still worth trying though, would be interested to hear if you or anyone else you know has gotten much benefit from it.

With the thoroughness vs. designer complexity, I think all the options with Anki kind of suck (mainly because I don't think they would work for my level of conscientiousness, at least).

If end users make their own cards, they'll give up (or at least most people would, I think. It's not very fun making cards from scratch).

If you design something for end users (possibly with some of the commoncog tacit knowledge stuff) I think it's sort of beneficial but you wouldn't get same coherence boost as making stuff yourself. Too easy to learn cards but not actually integrate them, usably. It also seems like a pain to make.

For declarative knowledge, I think the best balance for learning is curating content really well for incremental reading alongside (very importantly) either coaching* or more material on meta-skills of knowledge selection to prevent people from FOMO memorizing everything. I think with SuperMemo it wouldn't be hard to make a collection of good material for people to go through in a sane, inferential distance order. Still a fair bit of work for makers but not hellish.

I'm very, very, very curious about the tacit knowledge stuff. I still haven't gotten through all of the commoncog articles on tacit knowledge, though I've been going through them for a while, but in terms of instrumental rationality they seem very pragmatic. (I particularly enjoyed his criticism of rationalists in Chinese Businessmen: Superstition Doesn't Count [by which he means, superstition doesn't mess much with instrumentality]. I still have yet to figure out how to put any of it to use.

*while teaching people how to do IR, I've found direct feedback while people are trying it works well. It took me ages to be any good at IR (5 months to even start after buying supermemo and then another like 3 to be sort of proficient) while I can get someone to me after 1-2 month proficiency in a single ~2 hour session. Works wonders in areas where you can do lots of trial/error with quick feedback.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-03T20:24:54.911Z · LW · GW

Could you rewrite some of the first paragraph? I read it 2-3 times and was still kind of confused.

Funny you linked commoncog, was about to link that too. Great blog.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-03T20:23:14.025Z · LW · GW

Inferential distance based knowledge systems would be super cool. There are lots of stats ideas I'd like to engage in but ordering is too much of a pain.

The mentor thing is also true, I think for math in particular. Math/physics are the only subjects where I'd hesitate to just learn them by myself.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-03T09:31:06.810Z · LW · GW

Aside from memorizing declarative knowledge, the question of how to acquire tacit knowledge is very interesting.

I don’t have any current great ideas (other than adding in hammer time like practical tests into things) but I think commoncog’s blog is very interesting, especially the stuff about naturalistic decision making. (Can’t link more specifically, on mobile)

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on If there were an interactive software teaching Yudkowskian rationality, what concepts would you want to see it teach? · 2020-09-03T09:25:42.695Z · LW · GW

Anki deck is a bad idea because as you said: a. formulation b. poor coherence (when you’re stuffing things other people though was cool in your brain it won’t connect with other things in your brain as well as if you’d made the deck

I think incremental reading with supermemo is a decent option. I’ve taught a few rat adjacenct people supermemo and the ones that have spent time on the sequences inside it have said it’s useful. I’m not sure how to summarize it well but basically, anki let’s you memorize stuff algorithmically while incremental reading let’s you learn (algorithmically) then memorize.

I’d be surprised if after day a year of using IR on the sequences you weren’t at least a fair bit more instrumental

(If you want to give it a try I’ll gladly teach you. I don’t think there’s any more efficient way to process declarative information)

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Hammertime Day 1: Bug Hunt · 2020-07-30T16:56:29.622Z · LW · GW

Interesting idea, I will try this. I'd generally been skeptical of the worth of adding rules like that to SuperMemo and memorizing them since there's a difference between knowing and doing but I think a lot of the ones I've memorized have become such a natural part of my thought process that I fail to explicitly recall them as being from a card.

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Longevity interventions when young · 2020-07-26T14:33:36.350Z · LW · GW

>I think it would be great to know the percentage of cards answered at a certain day correctly that get answered correctly the next time the card is shown. 

Sorry but what would you do with that? It's not immediately obvious to me

Comment by Raj Thimmiah (raj-thimmiah) on Longevity interventions when young · 2020-07-26T08:27:28.878Z · LW · GW

re: Anki, I think you might find some of the data the creator of SuperMemo (what anki is based on) very interesting. He's used a combination of repetition data + a thing in SuperMemo called sleepchart to look at how alertness as the day goes on varies with different sleep things.

First graph here shows how recall varies as a function of hours from waking.

As a long-term SM user, Idon't think you could use anki/supermemo to measure cognitive ability (easily). Compared to when I first started, my cards are much better with higher optimum interval. That hasn't been do to anything but just me getting better at the skill of formulating my cards. Changes in skill would create too much noise long-term to see cognitive ability changes. Short term though, I wonder if you could daily recall % as a proxy for cognitively enchanting drugs as long as the time period isn't so long that skill improvements mess things up.