Artificially Intelligent

Any mimicry distinguishable from the original is insufficiently advanced.

  • Your Time Might Be More Valuable Than You Think

    | 1909 words

    Summary People often seem to implicitly value their time at the amount they can convert hours to dollars given their current skills. However, the value of saving the marginal hour today is to increase the total number of one’s working hours by one, resulting in a new hour at the...

  • Review: A Really Short History of Nearly Everything

    | 837 words

    I recently finished Bill Bryson’s A Really Short History of Nearly Everything. This book wasn’t very good, and I wouldn’t recommend it. However, I learned some useful things both at the meta and object levels, which I will relay in bullet point form. The book contains a number of factual...

  • Quirks with the Solomonoff Prior

    | 593 words

    A standard formalization of Occam’s razor is to fix some universal turing machine, weight all programs for that machine exponentially inversely related to their complexity, and then say the prior of a given bit string is the sum of all the weights of all programs that output that bit string....

  • Insights from Complications

    | 930 words

    Atul Gawande’s Complications is a tour of the medical system through the lens of a series of case studies. The cases are interspersed with semi-philosophical commentary. The prose is easy to read. Here are some insights that the book gave me (note that the book is from 1999, so some...

  • The Simulation Hypothesis Undercuts the SIA/Great Filter Doomsday Argument

    | 2238 words

    This post was written by Mark Xu based on interviews with Carl Shulman. It was paid for by Open Philanthropy but is not representative of their views. Summary The absence of evidence for extraterrestrial life suggests the existence of a Great Filter, a set of factors that in combination drive...

  • How well can people distinguish tastes?

    | 601 words

    Recently, my friend claimed that he could tell the difference between two brands of sparkling water. I expressed skepticism. After testing, I’m now moderately confident that he can. The reason I was skeptical seems to be downstream of a tendency I have to assign less weight than other people on...

  • TAP Inventory

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    The acronym TAP stands for trigger-action planning/pattern and describes roughly what people think of as “habits.” A particularly interesting application of this concept is to mental habits, patterns of thinking that might robustly cause individuals to have better reasoning and decision-making abilities. Here are some of the mental habits that...

  • Answering Questions Honestly in the Game of Life

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    This post is the result of a week I spent working with Paul Christiano on problem 2 in Answering questions honestly given world-model mismatches. It is incomplete and probably doesn’t make sense, but I’m publishing it anyway because I don’t want to make it better and I don’t want to...

  • Style Guide: How to Sound Like an Evil Robot

    | 594 words

    Epistemic status: shitpost containing many internal contradictions. Some people even say that I talk kind of like a robot. I think this is probably a bad thing, but maybe you think it’s a good thing. If you’re interested in going all the way, here’s a set of best practices for...

  • Signs that Something's Wrong

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    I’m interested in making sure that I can do productive labor, such as thinking and writing. Often, when I find myself unable to function at peak performance, it’s because one of my basic needs hasn’t been met - I haven’t been sleeping well, am dehydrated, etc. Due to a frustrating...