Your Prioritization is Underspecified 2020-07-10T20:48:29.654Z · score: 76 (29 votes)
PSA: Cars don't have 'blindspots' 2020-07-01T17:04:06.690Z · score: 27 (11 votes)
Which facebook groups on covid do you recommend? 2020-03-23T22:34:15.125Z · score: 12 (4 votes)
How to Lurk Less (and benefit others while benefiting yourself) 2020-02-17T06:18:54.978Z · score: 72 (34 votes)
[Link] Ignorance, a skilled practice 2020-01-31T16:21:23.062Z · score: 17 (10 votes)
Is there a website for tracking fads? 2019-12-06T04:48:51.297Z · score: 9 (3 votes)
Schematic Thinking: heuristic generalization using Korzybski's method 2019-10-14T19:29:14.672Z · score: 29 (8 votes)
Towards an Intentional Research Agenda 2019-08-23T05:27:53.843Z · score: 22 (12 votes)
romeostevensit's Shortform 2019-08-07T16:13:55.144Z · score: 2 (1 votes)
Open problems in human rationality: guesses 2019-08-02T18:16:18.342Z · score: 19 (6 votes)
87,000 Hours or: Thoughts on Home Ownership 2019-07-06T08:01:59.092Z · score: 18 (20 votes)
The Hard Work of Translation (Buddhism) 2019-04-07T21:04:11.353Z · score: 97 (44 votes)
Why do Contemplative Practitioners Make so Many Metaphysical Claims? 2018-12-31T19:44:30.358Z · score: 60 (23 votes)
Psycho-cybernetics: experimental notes 2018-09-18T19:21:03.601Z · score: 62 (19 votes)


Comment by romeostevensit on Industrial literacy · 2020-09-30T19:52:27.671Z · score: 6 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Idea for a short story in which everyone has to take such a literacy test and is restricted to a lifestyle of only having the luxuries they understand.

Comment by romeostevensit on "Zero Sum" is a misnomer. · 2020-09-30T19:50:21.071Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Things like ad tech are often called zero-sum, when the speaker actually is trying to say that they are negative sum.

Comment by romeostevensit on Shittests are actually good · 2020-09-26T02:20:34.908Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

It's easier to see if you think of them as coherence and attunement tests.

Comment by romeostevensit on Most People Aren't Fishermen · 2020-09-25T19:52:44.432Z · score: 9 (7 votes) · LW · GW

Acting as if a 40% success rate is low for something declared to be very difficult seems weird.

Comment by romeostevensit on Has anyone written stories happening in Hanson's em world? · 2020-09-22T00:08:43.031Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Not an actual answer but Naruto fanfics are often about exploiting shadow clones and can be highly entertaining. Time Braid and The Waves Arisen in particular.

Comment by romeostevensit on EA Relationship Status · 2020-09-19T03:09:02.778Z · score: 0 (6 votes) · LW · GW

Utilitarians code as defectors to normal people for good reason.

Comment by romeostevensit on Covid 9/17: It’s Worse · 2020-09-18T09:13:35.822Z · score: 4 (3 votes) · LW · GW

also the EU wants you to be deficient and therefore in this pandemic specifically, wants you to die. No one is getting to sufficient d status on 200iu pills. I take 5k a day.

Comment by romeostevensit on Covid 9/17: It’s Worse · 2020-09-18T09:12:40.900Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

my understanding is 60-100k iu on day one then booster shots of 30-50k iu twice more separated by several days. (have to convert from the injection amounts to d3)

Comment by romeostevensit on Some thoughts on criticism · 2020-09-18T05:14:01.810Z · score: 24 (11 votes) · LW · GW
Probably there’s a happy medium here that is better than my current attitude.

There's a false frontier here between security and insecurity. Prioritization is contingent on where you are standing rather than being some global variable, so judging people on the basis of their response to a particular subject at a particular time is fundamental attribution error.

More broadly, secure people don't feel superior to the other people in the convo, they are okay with being at a variety of different skill levels on a variety of different dimensions. To such a person a person who is worse along a particular line might be an opportunity to help someone out, and another person being better is an opportunity to pump someone for valuable knowledge.

This sounds like criticism, but I'm writing it because I really like the post. Enough to quote it and broadcast it on FB. If I didn't I wouldn't bother. And I think this is the invisible dark matter of criticism, we don't get to see the criticism that we failed to incentivize.

Comment by romeostevensit on Covid 9/17: It’s Worse · 2020-09-18T04:51:13.280Z · score: 6 (3 votes) · LW · GW

A classic soticism technique is to think about what ill-fortune might befall you, so that if it actually happens it won't stress you out quite so badly. In the spirit of that, consider that the FDA will probably tell people that the correct dose of vitamin D is far too dangerous and must be left in the hands of doctors once you're already extremely ill, rather than at the time it might actually prevent you from developing severe symptoms at all.

I've personally started laying the groundwork with friends and family that no, 10 pills of vitamin D really won't kill you so that if the time comes and they are having symptoms hopefully it will have sunk in enough. You don't want to try to convince people of something new once they're already scared and stressed out.

Comment by romeostevensit on Against Victimhood · 2020-09-18T04:42:39.305Z · score: 13 (9 votes) · LW · GW

In Buddhist psychology, the realm whose primary flavor is victimhood is referred to as either the hell realm or the demon realm and it is the lowest of the 6 realms. This is both because of how terrible it is for the people who live there and how hard it is to escape. To illustrate this, one of the things said of the hell realm is that none of the gates are actually locked. It's the way the hell realm shapes attention away from the gates or convinces you that they're a trick that keeps you in. Trying to help people who are deep in this can be extremely difficult due to this self sealing nature. For more I highly recommend the relevant chapter (4 or 5 IIRC) from Opening the Heart of Compassion (pdf).

Comment by romeostevensit on What Does "Signalling" Mean? · 2020-09-17T05:13:04.196Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Communication under adversarial conditions? i.e. you expect noise with an incentive to ape signal.

Comment by romeostevensit on Low hanging fruits (LWCW 2020) · 2020-09-16T02:19:15.070Z · score: 9 (3 votes) · LW · GW

The most meta low hanging fruit I am aware of sounds simple but is hard:

Do one thing at a time

Do it deliberately and completely

When you are finished and switching tasks, pause to consider and notice things

Sometimes make the one thing you are doing nothing.

Comment by romeostevensit on Low hanging fruits (LWCW 2020) · 2020-09-16T02:16:58.504Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW


Comment by romeostevensit on Low hanging fruits (LWCW 2020) · 2020-09-15T21:55:01.331Z · score: 4 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Cheap kalimbas are actually fairly unpleasant to play and produce a pretty tinny sound because they are small and the keys are stiff. If you want a cheap small instrument to play with I'd recommend a hang drum or mini keyboard.

Comment by romeostevensit on The Axiological Treadmill · 2020-09-15T18:44:01.831Z · score: 10 (9 votes) · LW · GW
Eventually, it’s no longer a dystopia at all.

From my perspective

1. This has already happened

2. It's still dystopian

Comment by romeostevensit on A case study in simulacra levels and the Four Children of the Seder · 2020-09-15T00:20:52.526Z · score: 7 (4 votes) · LW · GW

I believe the west has set itself up with an impossible metaphysics. Make available to everyone the benefits that accrue to high trust networks.

Comment by romeostevensit on Most Prisoner's Dilemmas are Stag Hunts; Most Stag Hunts are Battle of the Sexes · 2020-09-15T00:10:16.462Z · score: 16 (6 votes) · LW · GW

I found these three papers highly useful, especially the first one

1. Statistical physics of human cooperation

2. Evolutionary dynamics of group interactions on structured populations: a review

3. Understanding and Addressing Cultural Variation in Costly Antisocial Punishment

What this means is that two such agents with incompatible notions of fairness can't get all the way to the Pareto frontier, but the closer their notions of fairness are to each other, the closer they can get.

this is helpful for clarifying some thoughts. Thanks.

most collective action problems are bargaining problems.

I came to this conclusion and the nice thing about it is that it collapses a bunch of problems into the signaling landscape problem. (I don't know if there's an academic term for the prevailing state of the signaling landscape at a given time). The frustrating thing about the signaling landscape is that there's a lot of security through obscurity (eg shibboleths).

Comment by romeostevensit on Comparing Utilities · 2020-09-14T21:43:24.834Z · score: 6 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Type theory for utility hypothesis: there are a certain distinct (small) number of pathways in the body that cause physical good feelings. Map those plus the location, duration, intensity, and frequency dimensions and you start to have comparability. This doesn't solve the motivation/meaning structures built on top of those pathways which have more degrees of freedom, but it's still a start. Also, those more complicated things built on top might just be scalar weightings and not change the dimensionality of the space.

Comment by romeostevensit on My computational framework for the brain · 2020-09-14T21:40:32.384Z · score: 15 (8 votes) · LW · GW

Trying to summarize your current beliefs (harder than it looks) is one of the best way to have very novel new thoughts IME.

Comment by romeostevensit on What happens if you drink acetone? · 2020-09-14T21:39:15.793Z · score: 17 (7 votes) · LW · GW

I wish there was more boggling at simple things like this posted to the internet.

Comment by romeostevensit on Egan's Theorem? · 2020-09-14T05:42:12.523Z · score: 4 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Sounds similar to Noether's Theorem in some ways when you take that theorem philosophically and not just mathematically.

Comment by romeostevensit on romeostevensit's Shortform · 2020-09-13T04:04:25.409Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

should be doable without coding as an ITTT with a wireless switch.

Comment by romeostevensit on Social Capital Paradoxes · 2020-09-11T04:10:06.637Z · score: 8 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Just to state the obvious: many of the things that are short term good for you individually likely shred fertility.

Comment by romeostevensit on Capturing Ideas · 2020-09-10T23:33:00.225Z · score: 4 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I'm using a local rather than cloud based system now so it's always an alt-tab away. Then the hot keys for navigating the structure of the notes is also hotkeys so that it can be low latency.

The big change was being able to build on ideas on the timescale of months or years at all. Concretely, the first round of conceptual re-compression I did over my notes on mental models wound up being part of the kegan 4-5 transition.

Comment by romeostevensit on Updates Thread · 2020-09-10T07:50:56.425Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I don't have nearly that much food quality resolution.

Comment by romeostevensit on romeostevensit's Shortform · 2020-09-10T02:29:47.086Z · score: 7 (4 votes) · LW · GW

It would be really cool to link the physical open or closed state of your bedroom door to your digital notifications and 'online' statuses.

Comment by romeostevensit on Updates Thread · 2020-09-10T01:52:32.311Z · score: 7 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Updated even further in the direction that our understanding of 'intentional' behavior is extremely confused and this confusion is why so many downstream areas have difficulty with formalisms (paradoxes, incomputable results, etc.) Sense that this is one of the key bottleneck in designing systems that generate cooperative equilibria among that system's users. We don't have a design language for incentive management.

Updated in the direction that there's a bunch of path dependence baked in to what we learn is safely ignorable early on in life and this contributes to fragility of our transfer learning. Hidden parameter. This is in addition/contrast to, the 'trauma' story of how early childhood affects us.

Updated that ADHD significantly affects my day to day experience.

Updated my sense of how people spend their time on reviewing the top 100 most visited websites.

Updated in the direction that there is no 'cure' for cancer. Not in the sense that there is no cure for any specific cancer, but that cancer is a (universal?) dynamic that can occur at any level of abstraction/optimization.

Comment by romeostevensit on Updates Thread · 2020-09-10T01:39:15.582Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Instead of thinking of it as a global variable, I tend to think of my reasoning ability as 'good but narrow.' Which is to say can arrive at good local results but prone to missing better optimums even if nearby if along dimensions that that problem domain doesn't highlight. The higher the dimensionality of the problem, the more I view my results as highly provisional and more a function of time:result quality/completeness

Comment by romeostevensit on Updates Thread · 2020-09-10T01:35:44.756Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

>I would like to see a Pareto cookbook.

+1 there are some entries in this genre but I've found them to be low quality and still aimed at a dramatically higher level of effort:results ratios because of the selection effect on the sort of person who would write a cook book and take lots of actions for granted. I want recipes by Musashi. If you make an extra movement you'll lose your arm in a sword fight.

Comment by romeostevensit on Updates Thread · 2020-09-10T01:33:36.883Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

If it weren't for frozen peas and carrots my vegetable consumption would halve.

Comment by romeostevensit on Capturing Ideas · 2020-09-10T01:15:55.805Z · score: 6 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I'll just chime in with reinforcing the core idea. There was a sea-change in my life around getting reliable capture going and this involved solving the trivial inconvenience of having the note taking be a hot-key away instead of a cloud service or some other bigger friction. Speed trumps features by a massive margin in this space.

Comment by romeostevensit on Loneliness and the paradox of choice · 2020-09-10T01:11:52.911Z · score: 6 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Apple is the most valuable company in the world precisely for this reason IMO. They turn ambiguity of resource into colorful series of glyph-choices that you poke.

I really really liked this post. Especially the four bits around

1. "An educational program that can give its participants the experience of a clear decision-making process might attract students even though it provides minimal long-term value. "

2. Observing the neuroticism of inconsequential choices and realizing these dynamics infect everything.

3. "As choices expand, predictability often decreases, meaning that it becomes harder and harder to commit to anything."

4. The constraints of two people's preferences can actually be much more generative than one because of the paradox of choice.

Comment by romeostevensit on Changes in Reality · 2020-09-08T23:13:48.044Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Yeah, makes sense to think of this level of fragmentation as a qualitative difference.

Comment by romeostevensit on Reference Classes · 2020-09-08T05:03:35.859Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

When degrees of freedom in explanatory flexibility go up people wind up cold reading themselves, otherwise known as synchronicity.

Comment by romeostevensit on The Four Children of the Seder as the Simulacra Levels · 2020-09-08T04:12:06.509Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

This is one of my favorite genres of posts.

Maybe this was already talked about but is there an underlying structure to the 4 levels like with kegan being about subject-object distinctions? Do we have a good idea of why there are 4 and not 3 or 5?

Comment by romeostevensit on Changes in Reality · 2020-09-08T04:09:25.064Z · score: 6 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I would change 'some point in the future' to 'the 1960's'

Comment by romeostevensit on Design thoughts for building a better kind of social space with many webs of trust · 2020-09-06T08:52:12.660Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

On the web, the nature and ontology of the interaction is static within certain bounds. In real life, interaction might switch modes depending on the flux of the intention of those present to any particular interaction. Because we don't have a map of the modes of human interaction we also don't have a coherent design target for providing the affordances for people to have a variety of interaction modes that fulfill various needs. And such a map is very hard to make given that the moment that you try one out everyone modifies their behavior to try to meet their needs as best they can using what you've given them. If you base your own design, therefore, on what already exists on the basis that this is good evidence about what people want, you'll be in competition instead of invention for an already existing interaction modality.

I guess what I'm really trying to say is that I want omegle but for idea jamming with intelligent people. Tricky (imagine omegle but with an ELO ranking ladder). When I think about it a bit I think Tumblr was actually the website that most encouraged this sort of 'yes, and' improv.

Comment by romeostevensit on Helping people to solve their problems · 2020-09-01T02:02:52.332Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I strongly recommend Core Transformation as a framework for peer counseling. After trying a dozen different methods with dozens of people over the last five years it has been the clear winner.

Comment by romeostevensit on romeostevensit's Shortform · 2020-08-31T09:37:53.609Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · LW · GW

People object to a doctrine of acceptance as implying non-action, but this objection is a form of the is-ought error. Accepting that the boat currently has a leak does not imply a commitment to sinking.

Comment by romeostevensit on Zibbaldone With It All · 2020-08-29T18:54:19.933Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

You have to do aggressive recompression of your past stuff. This takes time but pays off in efficiency gains in your internal representations IME.

Comment by romeostevensit on Zibbaldone With It All · 2020-08-29T18:53:01.191Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

External is becoming more disintegrated, seems reasonable to aim for dramatically higher internal integration to partially make up for it.

Comment by romeostevensit on How to teach things well · 2020-08-29T15:31:18.087Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

It's more scalable with remote learning where each student can access an animation with sliders that they can move themselves. This is extremely valuable for helping math concepts click IME. The intuitions get tuned by directly seeing how some output varies with an input. Otherwise there is manually going through several dimensions, what happens if we vary this vs if we vary that etc.

Comment by romeostevensit on How to teach things well · 2020-08-29T09:12:37.586Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Too many great points to call out. Love this post. My own model for teaching a particular topic from reviewing some pedagogy research was

Pattern break, starting with a vivid hook that gets people's attention by being surprising in some way

Several examples from which the pattern can be inferred

Drawing the student's attention back and forth between the common elements of the examples

Creating a toy example of the core concept that has moving parts the student can then move themselves to see how other parts move (conceptually)

Anchoring the new set of intuitions with a succinct anchor phrase or image that ideally has conceptual hooks into the relevant problem domains so that the concept automatically gets triggered in the situations in which it is useful

This is all much easier said than done, but is a good skeleton for when you really really want people to get something.

Comment by romeostevensit on romeostevensit's Shortform · 2020-08-29T04:54:33.847Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

No, but that's also interesting!

I mean that the reason people find internet arguments compelling is partially that they don't notice how they are being filtered towards exactly the level of discourse that hooks into their brain. Simply, people who want to argue about a particular aspect of politics unsurprisingly wind up on forums and groups dedicated to that. That mind sound so mundane as to be pointless, but the perncious aspect is not in any particular instance but on how this shaped perception over time. We like things we feel we are good at, and once we are over the hump of initial incompetence in an area it will be slightly sticky for us habitually. Then deformation profesionelle kicks in. So, I guess I'm saying people should be careful about what subcultures they get pulled into based on the outcomes of the people in those subcultures.

Comment by romeostevensit on Are We Right about How Effective Mockery Is? · 2020-08-27T23:43:44.420Z · score: 8 (5 votes) · LW · GW

Mockery is not binary. People communicate social norms partially via friendly teasing. This preserves plausible deniability about being dominated by others' preferences.

Comment by romeostevensit on nostalgebraist: Recursive Goodhart's Law · 2020-08-27T00:29:04.808Z · score: 8 (8 votes) · LW · GW

I am fond of describing Buddhism as un-goodharting yourself all the way down.

In brief, you are a Ship of Theseus at sea (or a Ship of Neurath as Quine coined after Otto von Neurath who first made the analogy), navigating by lighthouses that you should not steer directly towards (that's not how lighthouses work!) and avoiding whirlpools (attractors in the space of goal architectures that lock you in to a specific destination).

Comment by romeostevensit on On Suddenly Not Being Able to Work · 2020-08-26T08:18:34.870Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Same situation. Mysterious lack of work starting about a month ago. I made headway today with nicotine gum. The weird part is that the work isn't all that aversive.

Comment by romeostevensit on Investment is a useful societal mechanism for getting new things made. Stock trading shares some functionality with investment, but seems very very inefficient, at that? · 2020-08-24T03:09:05.307Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · LW · GW

v. suprised Bogle of all people didn't understand how spread and liquidity interact for price discovery.

Comment by romeostevensit on Forecasting Thread: AI Timelines · 2020-08-22T09:17:53.940Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Interesting, I would have guessed your big bathtub bottom was something like long ai winter due to current approach stalling and no one finding the needed breakthrough until 2080's.