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Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 120 · 2015-03-15T00:58:40.136Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Ah. Even ignoring that the context is from when they are children, I don't consider the black sheep disowned from the family as having a bearing on where the House stands, but alright. Semantics, I suppose.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 119 · 2015-03-13T15:37:07.356Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

He also made no fewer than four posts just a few threads ago, and one in the thread after that.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 120 · 2015-03-13T15:20:21.833Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

The Black House isn't 100% in the pure-blood faction?

What HPMOR fact am I forgetting?

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 120 · 2015-03-13T15:17:05.093Z · score: 2 (4 votes) · LW · GW

"This explains why it is so important to shoot missionaries on sight."

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 119 · 2015-03-11T16:11:24.146Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

So, this is the single change that makes this story an AU?

From chapter 1:

This is not a strict single-point-of-departure fic - There exists a primary point of departure, at some point in the past, but also other alterations. The best term I've heard for this fic is "parallel universe."

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 116 · 2015-03-06T15:49:34.729Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Above is the Doyalist reason, and almost certainly the root reason.

The Watsonian reason was that it would force Voldemort to waste an hour in the preparation, making any attempt to steal the Stone take an hour longer. As traps go, it's reasonably clever.

The potion did serve its in-story purpose of banishing the flames blocking the doorway, after all, so it's not like Voldemort spent that time on the potion and then used his wand to take care of the flames.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 114 + chapter 115 · 2015-03-05T17:51:44.977Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

The doom-sense could have a lot to do with both the strength of the magic and the degree to which it inherently clashes with the senser's inclinations or goals.

To me, it seemed that it scaled with their current mindsets and actions, with stronger being the more they contrasted.

Consider how strongly it was felt when Harry's "anti-death-ness" was particularly strong (e.g. after Harry killed his first Dementor) or when Voldemort's desecration of death was higher than normal (e.g. when he makes Inferi).

Inversely, look at weak the feeling is when their current mindsets are not so opposed (e.g. when Quirrell was in zombie-mode in ch 49, because he practically lacked a mind at those times). Though, the zombie-mode in ch 26 was still fairly strong, which could imply that zombie-mode isn't as big of a determinant as I initially suspected. It might well be another piece of evidence towards the importance mindset, however, as that ride ends with Quirrell leaving to "set something into motion," which is certainly ominous coming from Lord Voldemort and may well have been something Harry was inherently set against. I don't remember if we found/figured out what he was doing there.

Taking this into account, the lack of doom-sense during the transfiguration would simply be there not being much of a mindset left.

Though I fear I may have strayed from the original thrust of your post.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 116 · 2015-03-05T17:22:02.876Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I can see him believing that it would be very difficult to get them to agree regardless.

Though, given the Drought of Living Death...

Naw, they still wouldn't want to leave him in Harry's care. Plus, then they might get all of his magical secrets (including Harry's (soul/mind's) magical heritage, rather than leaving them for Harry to use. Or they might Obliviate everything, depending on whether their paranoia wins over their greed.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 116 · 2015-03-05T01:29:33.454Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

But then there wouldn't be continued speculation that this is still the bad end.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 116 · 2015-03-05T00:21:42.441Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Yes in HPMOR

Chapter 79:

“Born the 26th of September, 1955, to Quondia Quirrell, of an acknowledged tryst with Lirinus Lumblung...” intoned the Auror. “Sorted into Ravenclaw..."

The disparity is one of the reasons that the Aurors are sure he's not actually Quirinus Quirrell.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 116 · 2015-03-04T21:16:09.533Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Would you risk going back to a live LV just to check it out? Take the risk that Harry didn't notice some annoying bystander get dispatched, or just didn't mention it? A lot of those revelations only came out when the subject came up, after all. Using a Pensieve would be much safer.

You assume Snape isn't one of the headless minions on the ground...

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 114 + chapter 115 · 2015-03-04T20:54:23.539Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Considering the only DE to raise shields also tried to kill LV and attempted to enlist the rest of them to join him...

The persona of LV might well have considered it a betrayal, to have their shields up around their lord. For why would you need them, if you were not plotting treachery?

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 114 + chapter 115 · 2015-03-04T20:50:41.106Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

… this is highly unusual for an obliviation, so I think it is very likely that V has not left his body.

It appeared to be clear to me that this was some sort of sign that the Prophesy had been completed.

It seemed strange, but that was my reading of the text.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 116 · 2015-03-04T20:35:09.341Z · score: 13 (13 votes) · LW · GW

Well, that's certainly one way to explain away all of the strange aspects. Establish them as fact, through the mysterious bond between LV and HP, and do so in front of a huge crowd so that the word can spread and mutate on its own. By the time anyone comes to investigate or question, they will already be influenced by the show or rumors they've heard, promoting that hypothesis to their attention rather than coming to it naturally.

It's pointing the police at Mortimer Snodgrass, from chapter 17, as it were.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 114 + chapter 115 · 2015-03-04T19:58:12.366Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Edit: I mean talked about drugs in a school.

After Gnlybe orpbzrf n Jneq, fur unf gb qb n choyvpvgl ovg ng n tenqr fpubby.

She told them that taking drugs was fun, and felt great...until it wasn't, and ruined everything good about your life. It's in chapter 23.04

ETA: Dang, didn't notice someone below me already posted much the same. Oh well.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-03-02T16:41:53.602Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Which is amusing, and also means that it's the last thing he should tell LV.

It is clearly a spell that is practically guaranteed to work against LV, since it could appear to miss only to swing back and hit either him or his shields.

I would not be surprised in the slightest if it was essential to passing the test, given how perfectly it would work in this situation of magical resonance.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-03-02T16:35:25.059Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Do note that Voldemort cannot actually use Legilimency on Harry, due to magical resonance.

Not only would this be expected due to how the effect has manifested in the past, but EY has also confirmed that this was the original reason for the resonance in the first place.

It could be possible for a Death Eater to do so in his stead, but I do not think it at all likely without further orders from Voldemort, given his explicit desire for privacy in their conversation.

Regarding Dumbledore's decision, it could simply be that (due to the prophesy) he believed Harry the only one who could defeat Voldemort, and so the loss of Harry would mean that his own presence would be useless in that regard. Better a minuscule chance of saving the world than none at all.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-03-01T00:05:24.647Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I'm not too sure about your #4, but #2 definitely cannot be counted upon to be true.

In Chapter 92, in a conversation between McG and LV:

“Are you mad? You think that Mr. Potter could—this is ridiculous. Mr. Potter cannot possibly—” A wordless image crossed her mind of a patch of glass on a steel ball. “—Mr. Potter would not do such a thing!”

It has been pointed out that if LV discarded treating this as a game, which does appear to be the case, then he may well have been using Legilimency on McG, in which case he would know of it, at least.

Which isn't to say that we couldn't use it to bargain for the lives of others, or whatnot. But you can't trust that it's still unknown to LV.

Furthermore, have we seen Harry transfigure the air? I remember him speculating that he could, trying, and failing. I don't remember him succeeding at a different time.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-02-28T21:01:48.183Z · score: 1 (3 votes) · LW · GW

It clearly stipulates 12:01 am to avoid just this kind of confusion.

Further, the chapter will be posted at 10:00 am on Tuesday.

So the deadline is Monday night.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-02-28T20:46:25.363Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW · GW

I was wondering how much retroactive power we would have.

Harry would know, or be able to look up, any number of chemicals that would react very poorly to the open air. It would be exceedingly foolish to carry one on his person, transfigured, such that he would simply have to negate the tranfiguration to have a distraction or attack, but would such a thing be in our power to suggest into existence, if we thought of a sufficiently non-foolish way for Harry to carry this?

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-02-28T20:39:07.082Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · LW · GW

Do you not remember the Courtroom, where something similar to this was done?

People speculated at the time that it was a practice run for something later. It looks like they were right.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, February 2015, chapter 113 · 2015-02-28T20:37:35.774Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

Keep in mind the following:

  1. Harry must succeed via his own efforts. The cavalry is not coming. Everyone who might want to help Harry thinks he is at a Quidditch game.
  2. Harry may only use capabilities the story has already mentioned; he cannot develop wordless wandless Legilimency in the next 60 seconds. Of course, Harry may find more clever ways to use abilities he has already been established to have.
  3. Voldemort is evil and cannot be persuaded to be good; the Dark Lord’s utility function cannot be changed by talking to him.
  4. If Harry raises his wand or speaks in anything except Parseltongue, the Death Eaters will fire on him immediately.
  5. If the simples timeline is otherwise one where Harry dies – if Harry cannot reach his Time-Turner without Time-Turned help – then the Time-Turner will not come into play.
  6. It is impossible to tell lies in Parseltongue.

Within these constraints, Harry is allowed to attain his fully potential as a rationalist, now in this moment or never, regardless of his previous flaws.

Of course, ‘the rational solution’, if you are using the word ‘rational’ correctly, is just a needlessly fancy way of ‘the best solution’ of ‘the solution I like’ or ‘the solution I think we should use’, and you usually say one of the latter instead. (We only need the word ‘rational’ to talk about ways of thinking, considered apart from any particular solutions.)

And by Vinge’s Principle, if you know exactly what a smart mind would do, you must be at least that smart yourself.

So what I mean in practice, when I say Harry is allowed to attain his fully potential as a rationalist, is that Harry is allowed to solve this problem any way YOU would solve it. If you can tell me exactly how to do something, Harry is allowed to think of it.

But it does not serve as a solution to say, for example, “Harry should persuade Voldemort to let him out of the box” if you can’t yourself figure out how.

I wish you all the best of luck, or rather the best of skill.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 28, chapter 99-101 · 2014-01-04T03:46:40.732Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

It's likely observation bias, but the whole of the wizarding society seems to lack empathy; I join you in doubting that much research on the subject has been done.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 28, chapter 99-101 · 2014-01-04T03:28:20.559Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Quirrell has been killing unicorns and storing away their flesh.

http://hpmor.com/chapter/100

Then a final gesture from Professor Quirrell ripped a huge chunk out of the unicorn's side, leaving behind ragged edges; the raw meat hovered in the air, then wavered in Vanishment and was gone.

Though unreliable narration is always possible.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 28, chapter 99-101 · 2014-01-04T03:02:10.669Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

http://hpmor.com/chapter/28

Those dreadful words, spoken in that terrible booming voice, didn’t seem to fit something like partial Transfiguration.

http://hpmor.com/chapter/86

it will be something stranger to him than Muggle artifacts. Something perhaps that he cannot comprehend at all, even having seen it...

Still, good catch.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 27, chapter 98 · 2014-01-04T02:41:56.590Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

http://hpmor.com/chapter/15

Her wand came down and tapped her desk, which smoothly reshaped itself into a pig.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 16, chapter 85 · 2014-01-04T02:13:41.605Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Speaking in terms of significance:

The Dugbogs were not crushed by a strong Re'em, but by a Re'em's strength. The strength was used to crush them, and the strength was what you got out of it.

The knuts were not forged by a hot forge, but by the forge's heat. The heat was used to forge them, and the heat was what you got out out it.

In your scenario, the immortality of the phoenix was not used to burn the corpse, so you cannot get immortality out of it.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 27, chapter 98 · 2013-09-05T22:50:10.826Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Freely acknowledged. I was just pointing out that they didn't react with aplomb.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 27, chapter 98 · 2013-09-05T02:33:58.442Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Erm, to be fair, they most certainly do blink an eye:

the roar of simultaneous gasps from the Wizengamot.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 27, chapter 98 · 2013-09-05T02:21:59.675Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

This makes sense, but thinking along the same lines, I would see a lot of the upperclassmen getting upset at being told what to do by firsties.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-05T02:15:26.745Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I don't really have very much respect for the plots, or really the cunning, that go on in Rowling's books. Those weren't really the lure of the series.

Doing it? Not a whole lot. Coming up with it? Tracking them down closely enough that it could be implemented? Maybe.

I've seen that in a fic as well. Even assuming that the boundary is the house itself rather than the surrounding property, why wouldn't they be able to Apparate into the house proper? Isn't that what they did with the whole Yaxley debacle?

Though, on further reflection, since the charm seems to work by messing with perception rather than actually making something invisible, it's possible the person wouldn't be able to perceive that the ball was missing--forgetting its existence or not realizing that it hadn't been retrieved.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-05T01:53:56.605Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I interpreted their failure to do such a thing not as being illogical--they did have Lily, after all--but as part of a downside to the spell. As in, yes, the Secret Keeper being in the hidden area would destabilize the spell given enough time. It couldn't be too little of time, or Dumbledore wouldn't risk coming in, but as I recall he just popped in and out. This is what I mean, when I say that it's not perfect--a perfect hiding spell would have allowed the weakness to be hidden inside with it.

That kind of limitation actually makes sense from an in-universe stance. When you designate a Secret-Keeper, you are entrusting someone with your life and safety--deliberately placing your lives in the hands of another. How much trust does it take, to ask someone to protect themselves? At least to me, it seems to match up fairly well with the kinds of sacrifices required for the Unbreakable Vow. The reasoning for why it doesn't work for other Secrets is shakier, but it could be along the same vein, or perhaps the charms can't really tell the difference between Keepers. Hrm.

That...is an interesting possibility. I read a fanfic which had them work like that, except that they started to destabilize after a while, a slow process that made them still very difficult to discover decades later. Kinda makes you wonder anew why Voldemort didn't stash one or two of the horcruxes behind a fidelius and then kill everyone else involved, but eh.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 26, chapter 97 · 2013-09-05T00:28:58.394Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Not to mention this, even before the troll:

Harry had politely declined tea, even knowing that Professor Quirrell would know what it meant. He’d considered bringing his own can of soda—but had decided against that as well, after realizing how easy it would be for the Defense Professor to teleport in a bit of potion, even if the two of them couldn’t touch each other with direct magic.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-04T05:26:04.168Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Sorry, I wasn't clear. Yes, it's referred to as the best they have. But who says it's actually perfect?

If anyone actually said it, they're wrong. If it was perfect, then Lily or James could have been Secret Keeper. Or even Frank/Alice for the Potters and Lily/James for the Longbottoms.

Moody said that the werewolf that he trusts slightly more than usual figured that most Aurors died 8.5 times before 'lucky' became 'prepared.' Assuming he wasn't lying. That doesn't indicate a higher level of competency that many people achieve. Though once you start looking at particulars, it gets difficult to distinguish higher competence in general from higher skill in a particular area.

Tail them. While they can--at least--Apparate. That may prove rather difficult, esp if they are doing so directly into the protected area. That's even assuming they were getting visitors...

And now I can't get the image of a ball-chucking Voldemort getting AKed in the back by the hidden Potters out of my head.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-04T03:15:45.699Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

It occurred long enough afterwards for Quirrell to realize, stop casting Fiendfyre, stop moving, land the broom, and then think for a small time. It wasn't the same instant.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-03T02:26:42.621Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

That is supposition. Reasonable supposition, but supposition nonetheless.

It's worth noting that this quote also occurs in the same chapter.

I simply can’t imagine hearing that you’d hurt someone you had not made a deliberate decision to hurt.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-02T21:39:00.443Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

we don't know certain things like, 'can you be both at the same time?'

WoG says no, for canon.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-02T15:28:58.472Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

The cloak came closer. It was unraveling and shot through with unpatched holes; it had been new that morning, Auror Goryanof had said.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-01T23:49:18.192Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

The Killing Curse is unblockable, unstoppable, and works every single time on anything with a brain.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-01T23:12:24.081Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Oh, absolutely, that is a way to break it. It requires a certain level of logic that most of the wizarding world lacks, but sure.

Did anywhere state that it was perfect?

Or, more on point, do we know if people even remember the general location of the neighborhood? I didn't think that they could. If they don't remember the general location, how would they narrow it down?

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-09-01T22:41:14.731Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

It's just the ones in Britain, I understood.

they are considered national possessions, Harry, weapons in case of war.

Ah. I made an assumption here, but from this I got that they kept their Dementors in reserve so that they would not lose an advantage that their enemies had. But an equally applicable interpretation would be that they did not want to lose an advantage that they had over their enemies.

Keeping that in mind, however, I would rather doubt that other governments would allow Britain to have such an exclusive advantage, not when the weapons are all held out in the middle of the ocean. Though that assumes that all of the other governments don't have their own exclusive weapons...

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-08-31T16:31:59.635Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

...are you seriously that sure that Quirrellmort isn't Mr. Hat & Cloak & thus didn't Obliviate-blast Hermione & didn't set her up for murder & didn't have Draco nearly killed (not to mention that debacle with the Armies), and that he didn't have anything to do with the Troll (despite canon) & Hermione's body disappearing (though there are serious suspicions that Harry dealt with that himself), and that the deal with the Dementor eating Harry wasn't intentional, and that perpetuating the conflict with the bullies via the 100 House Points was accidental, and other things that aren't outright against the protagonists (like revealing Snape to the bullies), and honestly probably more things I'm forgetting--you're seriously that sure that he wasn't behind any of those things that you don't even mention them as possibilities for what he could have done?

Actually, thank you for this post. Forcing myself to think up and list all of the ways that I believe he's acted, contrasted against what we know he's done and given that we know via Eliezer that Dhveeryy vf Ibyqrzbeg, has eliminated some of my doubt that he was involved. It makes no sense for him to be so important and yet do so little.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-08-31T15:43:33.087Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Of course he had that opinion, Rowling was writing themes so deathist that even the me of that time--who had yet to even hear of transhumanism--was thrown by it.

Voldemort is defined as evil partially just because of his fear of and avoidance of death--if you notice, she explicitly built it so that most of his atrocities occurred after and because of the steps he took to avoid death.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-08-31T15:30:23.180Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I thought about this for a while too, more than five whole minutes by the clock, and eventually I came up with a possible explanation.

It's not that Lily sacrificed herself for her child. As you and uncountable other people pointed out, that must have happened innumerable times throughout history, even just among the witches and wizards. It's that she sacrificed herself for her child when she could have lived.

Think of the oddness of the situation. The murderer arrives to kill the child, but not the mother. How often is that the case, historically? Then the murderer offers the mother a chance to live when she gets in his way, which is still stranger. When she rejects the offer to try to save her child, he does not bother to subdue her, but then chooses to kill her, which invalidates basically all of the explanations that I could think of that fit the above two criteria.

It's not that she sacrificed herself for her child--it's that the killer came with the express purpose of killing the child but sparing the mother, and she deliberately threw away that chance for her child. It never would have worked if he had come with the intent to kill her as well.

Which implies that Snape's request was what was needed to give Lily that opening. Which further implies that Snape really did save Wizarding Britain, if accidentally.

I don't believe I've shared the theory here before, I look forward to seeing if there are holes in the story that I have not yet discovered.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-08-31T14:43:43.098Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

You are underestimating the irrational love that parents have for their children. When a family is in danger, parents constantly work to save their children first, even when doing so is stupid. It's enough that the oxygen masks on planes have explicit instructions for parents to put on their masks first, because they can just put their kids' on next if they are still conscious.

Not that I agree that such a new artifact existed.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 25, chapter 96 · 2013-08-31T14:33:55.646Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I was under the impression that it just appeared to take up no space. It was there, just your brain couldn't actually take notice of that. People do keep describing it in terms of it being impossible to locate, not that it spawned a pocket dimension or anything.

Using your example, the baseball wouldn't vanish at the boundary, you just wouldn't notice that it was passing a house, and couldn't be able to explain why you can't throw it as far in this spot.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 24, chapter 95 · 2013-08-31T01:15:45.441Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Sheerly for the sake of playing devil's advocate (do we have an alternate term here?):

The "fact" that volcanoes and earthquakes occur because of magic doesn't mean that our model is wrong. The tension that is building up for these natural disasters would still be there--the magic would just trigger it earlier that it would have otherwise.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 24, chapter 95 · 2013-08-31T01:00:25.274Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I thought that that would be where Earth was, but at that distance, you're right; the Sun would make much more sense.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 24, chapter 95 · 2013-08-30T15:32:02.695Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I was going to say that it appears that their connection is not symmetrical, because Quirrell was able to track down Harry during the troll event. Further research seemed to reduce this likelihood, however.

Quirrell started burning through the substance of Hogwarts once he realized that Harry had found the troll. He didn't know that the two had met until he read Harry's emotions. That he did not realize that they were getting closer before means that he wasn't tracking both the troll and Harry. I was going to say that it appears clear that Quirrell was tracking Harry (almost certainly via link), because he is not fool enough to leave his magic on his weapon, but not only did he strengthen the troll (and thus must have a method of covering his tracks) but also there is this:

The Defense Professor had felt the boy's horror, through the link that existed between the two of them, the resonance in their magic; and he had realized that the boy had sought the troll and found it.

That does not seem to imply that he could feel Harry zipping all over the place, because I would expect Quirrell, being able to read Harry's emotions in the Great Hall and since, to correctly deduce where Harry was going if he started moving in a hurry. That implies that what he was tracking was indeed the troll, and so reduces the likelihood that he could track Harry with the link.

Though it is still clear that the resonance is not wholly symmetrical, as Harry lacks the emotion-reading aspect.

If he does get even a vague sense of doom at large distances, then he could have triangulated regardless, first with the second set of emotions that would have popped up an hour ago, then with the current ones from a different starting location.

Comment by sheaman3773 on Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 24, chapter 95 · 2013-08-30T15:13:17.126Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

He did specify only the textbooks that Harry deemed safe for Draco, presumably keeping with the wizarding model of "the lesser perils."

...but yes, likely so. Couple "if you know what you're going to think in the future and just think it now" with "any technique which is good enough to defeat me once is good enough to learn myself" and he has every reason to want to figure this out pronto. On top of wanting to be Harry's sole source of information, of course.