Non-replicability of Some Behavioral Economics Research Across Cultures 2013-03-10T22:04:47.275Z
Temporary Housing in the Boston area 2012-08-19T21:51:01.464Z


Comment by realitygrill on Meetup : Ann Arbor meetup · 2015-07-29T13:54:53.293Z · LW · GW


See you all there.

EDIT: I regret that I won't be able to make this one.

Comment by realitygrill on "Spiritual" techniques that actually work thread · 2015-03-17T17:25:43.676Z · LW · GW

more widespread, "itadakimasu!"

Comment by realitygrill on Understanding Agency · 2015-01-04T20:38:58.191Z · LW · GW

If I get you, you're saying that in practice getting to level 4 generally carries you past that gap. Like the patterns of thought accrete into a sort of momentum.

Comment by realitygrill on Understanding Agency · 2015-01-03T19:21:04.403Z · LW · GW

Interesting, but seems unconvincing and not very motivating.

Assuming the CDT system, I'd presume that most people on LessWrong have hit 4/3; level 4 is simply defined to be the level at which you reliably apply metacognition. Fine, but I don't see that reliably applying metacognition dissolves the problems of akrasia. Right now I'd say that level 4 is necessary, but insufficient. There's a gap. Or, at least I perceive a gap.

So here's my question: Are you unable to imagine someone who holds themselves as object having akrasia, or do you think such people cannot exist?

"I know many folks who have been part of the Less Wrong community for a long time yet have thus far won very little."

This is certainly a concern.

Comment by realitygrill on Cognito Mentoring: An advising service for intellectually curious students · 2014-01-11T04:50:51.034Z · LW · GW

I am out of school, but am an intellectually curious autodidact (not a particularly effective one). I was once considered mathematically gifted but fell off the bandwagon early - no encouragement or mentors. Others I know are in a similar position. This is LW, after all..

A bunch of us would be interested in shoring up and increasing our mathematical abilities, and so would be situationally similar to a homeschooler. Should we still contact you? Otherwise, I'll wait for your wiki of resources. Thanks!

Comment by realitygrill on Non-replicability of Some Behavioral Economics Research Across Cultures · 2013-03-11T03:20:33.412Z · LW · GW

Thanks for the feedback. I haven't participated in a while.

Comment by realitygrill on Roommate interest and coordination thread · 2012-08-20T03:14:49.051Z · LW · GW

Looking for a temporary place in Cambridge starting in September. PM me!

Comment by realitygrill on Temporary Housing in the Boston area · 2012-08-20T02:55:45.125Z · LW · GW

Ahh, did not see that. Thanks.

Comment by realitygrill on To like each other, sing and dance in synchrony · 2012-05-07T01:23:33.064Z · LW · GW

I dance tango a bit and there's definitely people you have affinity for dancing with and not. There's a fair correlation to whom you actually like hanging out with.

Comment by realitygrill on Rationality Quotes April 2012 · 2012-04-29T04:04:25.550Z · LW · GW

I understand this line of thought, but.. strength doesn't have to be developed through weights, strength increase doesn't necessarily mean much hypertrophy, and most importantly strength is a prerequisite/accelerator for increasing pretty much all athletic abilities (power, flexibility, endurance..)

Comment by realitygrill on Individual Deniability, Statistical Honesty · 2012-04-05T05:56:15.674Z · LW · GW

I reinvented this method, except using a coin flip, during an urban economics class. We were going to actually conduct surveys in the Detroit area and thus had to learn about the problems with surveys. However my professor didn't seem very excited and pointed out some incentive shortcomings (I was too disappointed to listen too closely), and I got the impression that this is a known method with known limitations.

Comment by realitygrill on Rationality and Decorating · 2012-04-05T03:29:53.453Z · LW · GW

The reason I've been cited for the dimly lit preference is pupil dilation, a sign of attraction.

Comment by realitygrill on The Best Textbooks on Every Subject · 2012-03-28T07:57:52.117Z · LW · GW

There's, which I found helpful during ai-class

Comment by realitygrill on Teaching Bayesian statistics? Looking for advice. · 2012-03-25T04:01:52.333Z · LW · GW


Comment by realitygrill on DAGGRE group forecasting workshop · 2012-03-22T02:11:29.517Z · LW · GW

I found it quite interesting also, especially meeting all those intelligence studies folks.

Comment by realitygrill on DAGGRE group forecasting workshop · 2012-03-11T20:47:56.064Z · LW · GW

How did you know the offer wasn't honored?

Comment by realitygrill on DAGGRE group forecasting workshop · 2012-03-11T20:47:24.566Z · LW · GW

I registered and bought air tickets, but some of the details are confusing me. I'm calling them tomorrow to straighten it out.

Comment by realitygrill on Online Course in Evidence-Based Medicine · 2011-12-03T06:18:05.652Z · LW · GW

Interested, though 10-12 hours seems quite short.

Comment by realitygrill on Quixey - startup applying LW-style rationality - hiring engineers · 2011-09-28T16:41:57.505Z · LW · GW

They wouldn't be open to this currently, would they?

Comment by realitygrill on Welcome to Less Wrong! (2010-2011) · 2011-08-30T20:41:03.623Z · LW · GW

upvoted, because I've been wondering how the QM sequence is looked upon by physicists :)

Comment by realitygrill on A Crash Course in the Neuroscience of Human Motivation · 2011-08-19T22:09:25.264Z · LW · GW

So, your earlier posts were basically lemmas? Certainly I appreciate all the reference notes.

Comment by realitygrill on Rationality Quotes August 2011 · 2011-08-19T18:46:10.933Z · LW · GW

"The biggest problem we have as human beings is that we confuse our beliefs with reality."

-- Alan Kay, Programming and Scaling

Comment by realitygrill on People who want to save the world · 2011-05-15T20:38:06.074Z · LW · GW

Oh Rain, I praise thou so that your status may soar (temporarily) for your right action!

Comment by realitygrill on I want a better memory. · 2011-04-03T18:23:30.327Z · LW · GW

I had ADD diagnosed before, then retracted. Currently I am working on convergence insufficiency, which is significantly co-morbid with ADD.

Comment by realitygrill on I want a better memory. · 2011-04-03T18:16:56.120Z · LW · GW

I would just like to chime in that you're not alone. My memory problems are horrendous, and I've had too much akrasia trouble to consistently do things like Mnemosyne or dual n-back.

As for memory techniques, I dislike mnemonics and my brain does not seem to be the type that can visualize things easily.

Comment by realitygrill on I want a better memory. · 2011-04-03T18:12:38.377Z · LW · GW

Yes, it's been shown that you remember facts better if you think it will be tested later on.

Comment by realitygrill on Rationality Boot Camp · 2011-04-03T01:34:51.817Z · LW · GW

I also resubmitted, having realized I signed up a year ago. Please use my new app!

Comment by realitygrill on Making money with Bitcoin? · 2011-02-25T17:38:50.148Z · LW · GW

I'd like to create one of these for evaluating the usefulness of information products (which by and large, suck).

Comment by realitygrill on Ability to react · 2011-02-22T20:13:50.857Z · LW · GW

Well, let's hope you never have to. I didn't think I'd have a situation like that, either.

That experience itself is similar to the hyperfocus state of ADD/ADHD - can anyone corroborate? I have had that diagnosis, then had it revoked. I have my own self-theories, including having low WM (which is why I recall that study), but I should really go try something like

May I ask what you plan on studying? School was extremely easy for me once, and then extremely difficult (to complete).

Comment by realitygrill on Research methods · 2011-02-22T19:59:17.180Z · LW · GW

The medical field (especially research) realizes that informatics is extremely important, but there's not much consensus on implementation. I just caught a talk last week on the topic, and the speaker estimated that there were well over 200 "adjectivehere informatics" terms he found in a quick Google search - people just take whatever they originally did and add 'informatics' to it. Thus, terms like 'pediatric endocrinology informatics' abound in the literature...

You should also know that medicine, healthcare, and medical research as fields especially tend to be complex webs of conservatism, legalities, and other nasty little problems that must be overcome for change to occur (tip: check the cynicality on OvercomingBias). I think many technical people realize the cross-disciplinary opportunities available, but they just run aground.

Comment by realitygrill on Farmington Hills, MI Less Wrong meetup: Sunday, February 20 · 2011-02-22T19:18:48.959Z · LW · GW

Cool to meet you all :)

I think we need a venue in which it's easier to talk. As for how often, I don't know..

Comment by realitygrill on Farmington Hills, MI Less Wrong meetup: Sunday, February 20 · 2011-02-20T19:39:23.592Z · LW · GW

So, I was the incentive guy.

Comment by realitygrill on Ability to react · 2011-02-20T04:43:11.547Z · LW · GW

I loosely suspect this has to do with how you've conditioned your use of working memory and your amount of it. I've heard of a study where they found that some people with high IQ and high WM do poorly on standardized tests, because the situation narrowed and shrunk their WM temporarily. High IQ/low WMers did not appear to suffer this effect.

The analogy given was that you're used to working on a nice executive desk, and suddenly you have to do the same tasks but with a clipboard and sheet of paper. Whereas if you have low WM, you're already used to working with little space. In this crowd monitor size is probably a better analogy.

The chunking strategy puts more of your skills on autopilot, allowing you to do more higher level function rather than stalling out (see Sian Beilock's new book Choke). I don't really know what to think of those who are TOO open to stimuli, though.

As for my own experiences:

The most relevant situation I can think of is when I was in my first and only car accident. It was a two lane road, and in the opposite lane, a car was intending to turn left. Just before we would pass it that car was hit from behind and propelled into our car. Things went spinning; the car stopped. I was in the passenger seat and both my dad and I were dazed from the impact.

I had the strangest experience of being absolutely clear and focused - which I would kill to be able to activate at will, by the way. I was not able to move very fast, being slightly injured and whiplashed, and had lost my glasses. But my mind went clicking - even though I felt like I was moving through molasses, I saw smoke in the car and assessed it as dangerous to stay, roused my dad from semi-consciousness, unbuckled him and myself, pried open my door, got out and around and dragged my dad out to the opposite curb. Just no hesitation, one step after another, boom boom boom. This held for the rest of the day and allowed me to coordinate logistics before going off in the ambulance with my dad.

Like I said, strange, as if some 'alert and analytical' switch in my brain had been jammed for a few hours.

Comment by realitygrill on Farmington Hills, MI Less Wrong meetup: Sunday, February 20 · 2011-02-20T02:50:56.054Z · LW · GW

I don't know if it's cost effective, but the Ann Arbor-ites could try ZipCar.

Comment by realitygrill on Farmington Hills, MI Less Wrong meetup: Sunday, February 20 · 2011-02-16T04:26:12.646Z · LW · GW

I think I will be able to make it, also. Excellent!

Comment by realitygrill on The Best Textbooks on Every Subject · 2011-01-17T22:10:06.443Z · LW · GW

Subject: Economics

Recommendation: Introduction to Economic Analysis (

This is a very readable (and free) microecon book, and I recommend it for clarity and concision, analyzing interesting issues, and generally taking a more sophisticated approach - you know, when someone further ahead of you treats you as an intelligent but uninformed equal. It could easily carry someone through 75% of a typical bachelor's in economics. I've also read Case & Fair and Mankiw, which were fine but stolid, uninspiring texts.

I'd also recommend Wilkinson's An Introduction to Behavioral Economics as being quite lucid. Unfortunately it is the only textbook out on behavioral econ as of last year, so I can't say it's better than others.

Comment by realitygrill on The Best Textbooks on Every Subject · 2011-01-17T21:34:06.589Z · LW · GW

Have you ever read Group Theory and Its Applications in Physics by Inui, Tanabe, Onodera? I have never been able to find this book and it's been recommended to me several times as the pedagogically best math/physics book they've ever read.

Comment by realitygrill on A LessWrong "rationality workbook" idea · 2011-01-14T06:05:24.848Z · LW · GW

I imagine something like Lovasz' Combinatorial Problems and Exercises, maybe also in a format amenable to spaced repetition. How many of us are qualified to contribute though? I certainly am not.

We could also write separate exercise books for different topics, and then each of us could specialize and sort of distributed pair-teach-learn in Bittorrent style. For example, Patrick has been helping me a lot (and I think he enjoys teaching me). I'd obviously like to return the favor, perhaps in another subject.

Comment by realitygrill on Startups · 2010-12-01T02:50:35.027Z · LW · GW

Sure. Unlike you guys, I'm not really a programmer at all.

Comment by realitygrill on Depression and Rationality · 2010-11-30T17:39:38.171Z · LW · GW

Sure. I think some cognitive-behavioral therapy approaches also stress changing your situation alongside your thought processes.

Could you clarify? I realize what you mean by the software/hardware divide, but I find it hard to think that most depressed people have corrupt hardware in the sense there's something actually wrong with the physical substrate rather than how it's working or wired itself (of course there is a connection in terms of susceptibility).

Comment by realitygrill on Depression and Rationality · 2010-11-30T06:49:09.856Z · LW · GW

It's commonly known that depression is often triggered (and maintained) by fundamentally irrational thoughts. Many thoughts associated with depression are simultaneously thoughts that are fundamentally irrational. Feelings of guilt, feelings of hopelessness, and feelings of worthlessness - many of those beliefs assume conceptions that do not correspond with the real world. And so a rational person may ostensibly be less prone to depression.

You sure about this? My psych classes taught about 'depressive realism', or "the proposition that people with depression actually have a more accurate perception of reality, specifically that they are less affected by positive illusions of illusory superiority, the illusion of control and optimism bias." This was of course no consolation to me at the time.

Comment by realitygrill on Theoretical "Target Audience" size of Less Wrong · 2010-11-19T04:23:42.139Z · LW · GW

I felt a bit out of place until I started reading MoR; what was all this cryonics/decision theory stuff?

A couple chapters in I thought, "THAT'S the kind of stuff I'm interested in talking about! Now I feel like I'm in the right place."

Comment by realitygrill on Rationality Quotes: November 2010 · 2010-11-09T16:19:41.288Z · LW · GW

"But building your life's explanations around science isn't a profession. It is, at its core, an emotional contract, an agreement to only derive comfort from rationality."

-Robert Sapolsky, in a essay reply to "Does science make belief in God obsolete?"

Comment by realitygrill on Beauty in Mathematics · 2010-10-14T16:58:51.439Z · LW · GW

Upvoted for that lovely poem, though Li Bai is more aligned with Daoism than Buddhism.

I'm nowhere near being a mathematician, though I do like what little math I've been exposed to. I've always wondered what this 'beauty' meant. Some things seem elegant, clever, insightful - maybe distantly extrapolate-able to sublime or majestic - but 'beauty' eludes me. It doesn't help that mathematicians don't seem to agree on this sense either.

Is finding some relation 'remarkable' or 'intriguing' or 'mysterious' sort of like the baby versions of mathematical beauty?

Comment by realitygrill on Open Thread, September, 2010-- part 2 · 2010-09-24T05:15:10.841Z · LW · GW

More details? I may try to replicate this.

Comment by realitygrill on Open Thread, September, 2010-- part 2 · 2010-09-24T05:13:40.735Z · LW · GW

I would try playing as much as possible on KGS, using 9x9s and 13x13s in the beginner room. Just try to get a feel for (and understand) common patterns. People are quite friendly and willing to do reviews.

Personally, I think 9x9s and Igowin are just boring, and don't teach you much. So try to get past this. Lots of the fun in Go is trying to implement new ideas. 9x9s are generally too constrained for this.

Comment by realitygrill on Open Thread, September, 2010-- part 2 · 2010-09-24T04:52:56.854Z · LW · GW

My particular jumps in Go strength came after reading more new theory, trying to integrate it into my game for a while (and failing), and then frustratedly taking a break. I'd come back a few kyu stronger, and games would consolidate this into maybe another stone or two's increase in strength.

This happened enough that I stopped feeling frustrated (rather just stuck) and proactively took breaks. Usually about a week would do it.

Comment by realitygrill on A Player of Games · 2010-09-24T04:27:15.551Z · LW · GW

I've always wanted to be a Jernau Morat Gurgeh.

By the way, isn't Go a good example of a game that is hard to improvise and do well in? Just a reminder that domain knowledge usually trumps all else.

Comment by realitygrill on Less Wrong: Open Thread, September 2010 · 2010-09-03T04:18:06.969Z · LW · GW

This is perhaps a bit facetious, but I propose we try to contact Alice Taticchi (Miss World Italy 2009) and introduce her to LW. Reason? She cited she'd "bring without any doubt my rationality", among other things, when asked what qualities she would bring to the competition.

Comment by realitygrill on Rationality Lessons in the Game of Go · 2010-08-25T03:35:48.685Z · LW · GW

Two quick comments:

The main aspect to understand for this article is that go is a game of territory.

This was interesting to me, because one of my 'viewquakes' for Go is that it's NOT a game of territory. It's more about the strength, flow, and structure of stones. I hit this around 8kyu while stuck. Territory is just a side-effect and the Japanese standard of measurement (it may be surprising to learn that there are several scoring methods, and they don't significantly change the character of the game).

The other lesson I can think of is that Go taught me viscerally that the small differences matter immensely performance-wise (I tend to like the idea that, with a small set of principles you can derive whatever you need). Janice Kim writes that learning about good shape gives you about 80% of the strength of professional players, but I couldn't even break the 10kyu barrier with just that. Or was it 15kyu? I don't remember.