Prune by alkjash (LW 2.0) – People’s filters on their babble are far too strong. In particular the early filters (What you think consciously, what you speak, what you write down) eliminate all but a trickle of babble. Specific mental techniques to weaken the gates.
Admit Many Disagree With Us by Robin Hanson – “It is only by seeing that substantial if not overwhelming evidence is available for similar claims covering a great many areas of life that each claim can become plausible enough that modest evidence sufficient can make these conclusions believable. That is, there’s an intellectual contribution to make by arguing together for a large set of related contrarian-to-experts claims. This is what I suggest is original about our book.”
Self Serving Bias by Scott Alexander – Oregon relaxes its ban on self serve gasoline and people freak out. Absurdly large differences on which medications are allowed in different countries. Which ideas get debated and which get labelled absurd.
More Babble by alkjash (LW 2.0) – Babble and Prune model of thought generation: Babble with a weak heuristic to generate many more possibilities than necessary, Prune with a strong heuristic to find a best, or the satisfactory one. Page rank and random walks. The strucutre of the babble graph. Adversarial neural nets and their connection to the interplay between artist and critic. [highly recommended. Ignore the missing letter comment, there are no missing letters]
Epistemic Spot Check: The Tapping Solution by Aceso Under Glass – Emotional freedom technique: Or Tapping since the primary techniqu is tapping fingers against your face. Summary: “The scientific claims would be far less supported than the author implies. The best case scenario was ‘as terrible as your average therapy research’. The book’s prescriptions work for me anyway,in the sense that they make me calmer and happier and enable me to take better actions.”
When Disciplines Disagree by Robin Hanson – Concrete Policy Analyists (who accept the usual claims people make about what they are trying to achieve) vs Psychologists (who don’t). Futurists (who accept brain emulation) vs Economists. Why disagreements between disciplines are such a severe failure of our intelectual world.
Politics and Economics:
Nice-manning by Unit of Caring – How to put yourself in a situation where you are equipped to be nice. Niceness advice: Have a wide audience in mind, When someone is a dick, you can actually just pretend they weren’t, Vary topics a lot.
Insightful Articles On Free Speech and Social Justice by Julia Galef – Summaries of sixteen articles about the tradeoffs between free speech and concerns about justice. The articles are mostly by rationalist or rationalist adjacent authors. Multiple well known Scott Alexander articles are including but several articles are easier to have missed.
Fight Me Psychologists: Birth Order Effects Exist And Are Very Strong by Scott Alexander – The consensus in psychology is that birth order effects are weak or non-esistant. However the SSC survey showed that an absurd percentage of survey takers are first children. Scott argues that being a first child is strongly linked to something like ‘intelectual curiosity’.
On A Particularly Difficult Question by samzdat – Musings on Math, Its unreasonable effectiveness in science, epistemology and the importance of mathematics in the history of philosophy.
In Defence Of Meta by Chris_Leong (LW 2.0) – The admins of lesswrong 2.0 don’t allow meta discussion on the frontpage. However now seems like a relatively good time for meta discussion. Many rationalist leaders are active on LW again and its been a long time since Eliezer wrote ‘The Craft and the Community’.
Right to Self Medicate by Rationally Speaking – “The case that patients should have the right to take pharmaceutical drugs without needing to get a prescription from a doctor. Jessica and Julia discuss a series of related questions, such as: Should there be exceptions made for drugs that have negative repercussions on society as a whole? And what is the morally relevant difference between a doctor imposing treatment on someone without consent, and the government withholding treatment from someone without consent?”
Dick Carpenter by EconTalk – “A look at how occupational licensing and other regulations protect existing job holders from competition.”
Demon Threads by Raymond Arnold (LW 2.0) – Wrong On the Internet. Demon seeds post that will reliably grow into a bad discussion. Qualities of demon seeds. Why Demon Threads are Bad. Containment? Tension and Latent Hostility. Social Stakes. Possible Solutions.
Politics and Economics:
Healthcare Prices by Random Critical Analysis – An extremely detailed series of graph’s illustrating the author’s thesis: “Comprehensive measures of mean household disposable income and consumption are superior predictors of current health expenditures (HCE); that US households are unusually affluent; and that this adequately explains US health spending cross-sectionally and its change domestically and relative to the rest of the OECD starting from at least the 70s. Changes in household income levels are the root cause of almost all spending increase. I have also shown that healthcare prices are not likely to be the proximate cause of high US spending”
My Little Pony by The Baliocene Apocrypha – The MLP fandoms goals and why it got ravaged by bad PR. “All of them were suffering from the ravages of modern First World masculinity and its problems, either in a low-status “tfw no gf” way or in a higher-status “my relationships aren’t healthy and it’s painful” way. And they were, basically, trying to do exactly what the social justice movement told them they should be doing. They were trying to build a new aesthetic, a new ideal, a new way of living for themselves, based around cooperation and compassion rather than competition and dominance.”
Two Year Review by mindlevelup – The actual core message of CFAR. The three most useful insights from MLU’s instrumental rationality series. What rationality techniques does MLU actually use. Less meta-level. Deeper Beliefs and Feelings, How to Get Other People to Actually Do Stuff, Models and Prediction Markets, Group Rationality and Scaling.
Rationality Abridged by Quaerendo (LW 2.0) – “I present to you: Rationality Abridged — a 120-page nearly 50,000-word summary of “Rationality: From AI to Zombies”. Yes, it’s almost a short book. But it is also true that it’s less than 1/10th the length of the original.”
Kaczynski’s Collapse Theory by Robin Hanson – Kaczynski’s Argument: The Fermi Paradox implies advanced civilizations completely destroy themselves. Hence its better to collapse early, even via nuclear war, so that some humans survive. The fundamental problem is that competitive processes only work long term if the scale of transport is much less than the scale of the entire system.