## Comments

Comment by rpmcruz on Skills training for dating anxiety · 2016-06-29T11:16:30.632Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Furthermore, the environment where you salsa dance is not as prone to social anxiety since everybody is there to dance. There is less anxiety at being rejected. And, as you start dancing or just hearing the beat, it releases some internal chemicals in your brain because you do feel more loose even without drugs.

Anyhow, where I have learned to dance, there were parties where people did drink. But you are probably right that people drank less in that environment.

Comment by rpmcruz on Wrong however unnamed · 2016-05-25T16:27:08.518Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Prove what? That that interpretation is what "they" meant or that it is biologically accurate?

The parent says in his final paragraph that he does not know whether it is biologically accurate or not.

Comment by rpmcruz on Call for information, examples, case studies and analysis: votes and shareholder resolutions v.s. divestment for social and environmental outcomes · 2016-05-10T09:08:33.620Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I am being drained out of karma in this thread because of all the downvotes by defending the poster... :)

But the underlying question about whether not-joining and buying from competitors is also interesting. We all know consumer boycotts work. What he is asking is whether that can be transported into the investment world.

As others replied, there are many more investors than customers, and besides it is a largely anonymous operation, so it is much more difficult to affect a company by making it easier for their competitors to raise capital. I still think it is interesting whether things like Pope calls for people not to invest in arms and oil has had any impact.

Comment by rpmcruz on Call for information, examples, case studies and analysis: votes and shareholder resolutions v.s. divestment for social and environmental outcomes · 2016-05-10T08:58:04.140Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

That is a good point. The stock market is probably more competitive than whatever market the company is in, so, for every one moral investor, there are infinite more that are amoral.

Again, that is a good point, and I already had it in mind when I posted my reply. The person I was replying to did not articulate it correctly.

Still, I do not think the original question should be dismissed outright. The fact is that not even the stock market is perfectly competitive. There are not infinite players in either side. For instance, if you look at Islamic countries, you can find countries where close to 100% are religious https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islam_by_country. I can imagine how a religious figure could possibly bankrupt a company by talking to banks alone and draining the company out of capital (without ever talking to customers). My point is that even in highly competitive markets maybe activists can have an influence. I find it very unlikely. I still think dismissing that question outright is anti-scientific.

Comment by rpmcruz on Call for information, examples, case studies and analysis: votes and shareholder resolutions v.s. divestment for social and environmental outcomes · 2016-05-10T08:50:39.836Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I know. But that discussion is largely irrelevant. Shareholders do care about the price of the stocks and dividends.

That is like saying that in my coffee shop I do not care about whether my customers enjoy their coffee. I already sold them the coffee afterall.

The point is that if you don't care about your shareholders and shootcrap your company, your competitors will find it much easier to raise capital. The original question is whether there are enough "activists" that can change the route of a company by selling their stocks or buying from expensive stock options from their companies.

Comment by rpmcruz on Call for information, examples, case studies and analysis: votes and shareholder resolutions v.s. divestment for social and environmental outcomes · 2016-05-05T08:34:35.789Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

"What, not owning stock of company XYZ makes me a shareholder activist?"

I don't think that is the point at all. If a lot of people buy stocks from one firm and refrain from buying from their competitors, they change the relative costs of raising capital and do benefit one firm instead of the other. It is like a lot of customers buying from one firm and not from others.

Comment by rpmcruz on Call for information, examples, case studies and analysis: votes and shareholder resolutions v.s. divestment for social and environmental outcomes · 2016-05-05T08:28:40.034Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

"If my college refuses to buy from a firm it hurts that firm a little, but if it refuses to buy stock in a firm it does that firm zero harm."

If a lot of people refrain from buying stocks from a given firm, don't they have to raise dividends or capital gains in order to attract capital? Those dividends or capital gains must be financed by cutting costs, raising prices or whatever. Either way, it does harm a firm when capital is not as cheap.

Comment by rpmcruz on [Link] White House announces a series of workshops on AI, expresses interest in safety · 2016-05-04T12:16:41.152Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

It is pretty exciting. :)

I only recently learned about the Brain Initiative (USA) and the Human Brain Project (European Union). As I understand it, both were started in 2013. First the Brain Initiative, and then the European Union responded with the Human Brain Project. Anyone knows what kind of developments have accrued from them so far?

Comment by rpmcruz on Is the average ethical review board ethical from an utilitarian standpoint? · 2016-04-28T09:39:44.722Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Hi Christian, do you have a link to that facebook study and the ensuing controversy? I must have missed that study...

Comment by rpmcruz on Several free CFAR summer programs on rationality and AI safety · 2016-04-16T09:07:50.325Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Sorry for being so impatient. :)

ps: I have received an email, and will submit the information during the weekend!

Comment by rpmcruz on Anthropics and Biased Models · 2016-04-15T17:37:49.850Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I believe you can use latex in less wrong. It says so under "show help". Let me try... $e^{i\pi}+1=0$

EDIT: Forget it. I just reread the help text. You have to use an external website to render the equation into an image...

Comment by rpmcruz on Anthropics and Biased Models · 2016-04-15T08:48:40.194Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks for the incredible essay. I have to read it more thoroughly when I find the time. The point about the priors rejecting the hypothesis is a point I never considered and something that should be hammered to those of us working with data (and only consider hypothesis testing using null hypothesis). I wonder what other more mundane problem this might apply to...

Comment by rpmcruz on Several free CFAR summer programs on rationality and AI safety · 2016-04-14T22:58:05.717Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

By the way, when do we get acceptance/rejection notifications? (And do we? :))

I have applied to the Fellows program. But I would need to know the answer to my application, in order to buy not terribly expensive flights, and to book holidays for that period. It's really useful for those of us who live in the other side of the planet to know. :) (I am not complaining, I appreciate the enormous work you guys are putting out there, including this free workshop, but it would be cool to know something about the application process. It is fine if I was rejected (well, I will be sad :)), but please let us know.)

Comment by rpmcruz on Several free CFAR summer programs on rationality and AI safety · 2016-04-10T11:41:16.181Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

It was unfortunate that the CFAR for ML Researchers workshop collides with the European LW yearly meetup. I am a ML researcher, and I would love to go to San Francisco, but I don't want to miss the European meetup either. :)

Comment by rpmcruz on Update to the list of apps that are useful to me · 2016-04-08T11:20:10.175Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Wow plenty of apps. :) But I did not notice anything to read RSS feeds (blogs and etc).

Personally I use few apps:

1. Feedly (to read blogs)
2. Google News (news and weather)
3. Opera Mini (for fast browsing)
4. YouTube
5. Google Maps (sometimes, for the GPS)

Ah, and I have in the "background" these:

• Google Calendar
• Tasks Free
Comment by rpmcruz on What makes buying insurance rational? · 2016-04-02T09:20:41.280Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I have only glossed over the other answers, but there is a cool way to approach this question that nobody mentioned...

For the sake of this exercise, let's say that you are part of a household with 100 people. All cousins live together, I don't know. You're just one big family who share the budget.

If one family member gets sick, it's alright. The other 99 are still healthy.

Let's say there is a p=0.1 chance any one member of the family is sick for a year. That member cannot take money home during that full year. Let's see how many family members will be sick that year.

The answer is this binomial distribution: http://postimg.org/image/vkn76o9sd/

P(N <= 20) = 0.9991924. There is a 0.9991924 probability that 20 members of the family are sick in a given year. Or, in other words, P(N > 20) = 0.0008. After N>40, my 64-bit does not have enough precision to show the probability. It is effectively zero.

Now, I am going to flip the graphic so that is shows the probability of each person being healthy. I am also adding a x-axis at the top showing how much income each family member has: http://postimg.org/image/cprhxbum9/

Now, contrast that with living alone and having a probability=10% of getting sick where your income drops to 0, which would be this discrete probability distribution: http://postimg.org/image/5tdb44vhr/. (Sorry for the ugly graphics :P)

Nobody lives in huge families anymore. The huge family is the insurance company.

In the real world, this is why big rent-a-car companies do not buy insurance. They are like the big family. If some car goes to the shop, no worries, the other make up the income. But small rent-a-car companies to buy insurance.

Comment by rpmcruz on Purposeful Anti-Rush · 2016-03-22T17:13:01.069Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I enjoyed Elo post, but I think he is committing the following fallacy:

Everytime Elo made a mistake, he was rushing.

Therefore, everytime Elo rushes, he makes a mistake.

I don't know the name of this fallacy, but surely it has one. :)

Comment by rpmcruz on European Community Weekend 2016 · 2016-02-17T16:05:33.643Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I am very much interested, but I will need to confirm closer to the date... I need time to convince my girlfriend... :P

Comment by rpmcruz on To contribute to AI safety, consider doing AI research · 2016-01-31T20:41:24.062Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

The system you described requires someone to be on top.

For a more elaborate response, see Animal Farm. :)

Comment by rpmcruz on [moderator action] The_Lion and The_Lion2 are banned · 2016-01-30T16:55:58.415Z · score: 2 (7 votes) · LW · GW

I am new here. But what about just disable downvoting? Good comments will be voted up, bad comments will not be voted at all, and will rot in the bottom. Why remove them?

Possibly, you could have a "report" button to ask a moderator to review a very offensive comment.

Comment by rpmcruz on Gamified psychiatry · 2016-01-29T19:24:49.118Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

"may return to it if some people with app-building experience and an interest in this raise their hands"

I would be interested. :)

Here is a couple of Android games I did: https://play.google.com/store/apps/developer?id=Ricardo+Magalh%C3%A3es+Cruz

It's something simple done over a weekend for fun. I am a machine learning researcher.

I would be interested - but I would like to know more about the project and the people involved...

Cheers :)

Comment by rpmcruz on To contribute to AI safety, consider doing AI research · 2016-01-29T12:06:28.935Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

"Why is redistributing power between fallible humans ungood? I mean, surely some humans are more fallible than others, some have more information than others, some have incentives to be fallible in particularly harmful ways, etc."

This is what Stalin said as well.

Comment by rpmcruz on To contribute to AI safety, consider doing AI research · 2016-01-29T12:02:49.283Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

It depends on the competitions. All kaggle image-related competitions I have seen have been obliterated by deep neural networks.

I am a researcher, albeit a freshman one, and I completely disagree. Knowing about linear and logistic regressions is interesting because neural networks evolved from there, but it's something you can watch a couple of videos on, maybe another one about maximum likelihood and you are done. Not sure why SVMs are that important.

Comment by rpmcruz on Learning Mathematics in Context · 2016-01-29T11:28:07.202Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I graduated in applied math. Some people mock with me, but I keep prominently in my bookshelf both The Complete Idiot's Guide to Calculus and Statistics. That Calculus book was the one that made me understand math and made me passionate about it.