82 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2022
  2. heathercoxrichardson.substack.com heathercoxrichardson.substack.com
    1. The real danger of this widening schism…lies in this creating the conditions for a future that looks more like present-day Russia or Iran.

      Or like The Handmaid's Tale.... SF accurately predicts the future yet again.

    1. This is a pretty good example of a strawman argument. The author uses the correct exponential growth formula to describe a precise 1% improvement rate. But that's not what the 1% improvement idea is about. For instance, consider https://nextbigideaclub.com/magazine/get-1-better-every-day/19161/ or https://betterhumans.pub/continuous-improvement-how-to-get-1-better-every-day-from-today-a8128c942c61 The argument isn't based on a strict interpretation of 1%.

    1. Did I mention that 92% of prisoners just happen to be fathers?

      Interesting statistic. Is this for USA? Globally? In any case, if true, I strongly suspect it means more fathers per capita are in prison than bachelors. The implications could be quite significant.

    1. In a recent paper published in Nature Climate Change, scientists found that major sea-level rise from the melting of the Greenland ice cap is now ‘inevitable’ even if the burning of fossil fuels were to halt overnight. Using satellite observations of Greenland ice loss and ice cap from 2000 to 2019, the team found the losses will lead to a minimum rise of 27 cm regardless of climate change.

      A great example of the lag that large, complex systems exhibit when responding to significant input changes.

      Lag is something that humans are woefully weak at recognizing and understanding. This, and other systems concepts are what we need to add to the curriculum at all levels of education, to change this very significant shortcoming of "common knowledge".

    1. Furthermore, in extreme cases, any opposition to CRT could be painted as ‘upholding white supremacy’, a view essentially justified on the grounds of Foucaldian postmodern philosophy rather than objective reality.

      In addition to the concerns about CRT generally, this popularization, and bastardization, of CRT speaks to the danger of releasing too much information from academia into the popular sphere. When incompletely considered theories, arguments, and models are made widely available, they will be taken advantage of by unscrupulous and malicious people.

  3. Sep 2022
    1. which is why we model the future as something we can influence.

      Yeah, but those who would model the future for the sake of influencing it are driven to do so because they have no free well. And similarly, there are people who will patently refuse to pursue such an approach because they are driven to it by their lack of free will.

    2. Given our lack of complete microscopic information, the question we should be asking is, "does the best theory of human beings include an element of free choice?"

      This is a good question. And we don't need to be able to predict the future to answer it.

    3. The problem with this is that it mixes levels of description. If we know the exact quantum state of all of our atoms and forces, in principle Laplace's Demon can predict our future. But we don't know that, and we never will, and therefore who cares? What we are trying to do is to construct an effective understanding of human beings, not of electrons and nuclei.

      This is a non-sequitur. Being able to predict the future is irrelevant. What matters is that whatever we do will be "determined" by the laws of physics and the state of the system at the moment of a decision.

    4. The consequence argument points out that deterministic laws imply that the future isn't really up for grabs; it's determined by the present state just as surely as the past is. So we don't really have choices about anything.

      Yup, that makes sense to me. I'm fine with that too.

      Still, however, everyone is ignoring the influence of learning on our future state.

    5. while we can still influence later times

      But can we? If there's no libertarian free will, then we cannot influence the future because we cannot choose to do differently than we will have done.

    6. Of course, just because it can be compatible with the laws of nature, doesn't mean that the concept of free will actually is the best way to talk about emergent human behaviors.

      And that's the crux of the matter. Knowing that free will is only constructed, we can decide it would be best to not base certain decisions on its existence. For instance, how we deal with crime and punishment.

      Of course, if there's no free will, then there are some people who will never accept it's non-existence.

    7. The concept of baseball is emergent rather than fundamental, but it's no less real for all of that. Likewise for free will. We can be perfectly orthodox materialists and yet believe in free will, if what we mean by that is that there is a level of description that is useful in certain contexts and that includes "autonomous agents with free will" as crucial ingredients.

      Again, the problem here is that we can define and characterize baseball such that we can unequivocally say that a given entity either is or is not "baseball".

      But we cannot do that for free will - because we cannot measure it.

      Carroll is also being quite utilitarian, which is fine. My idea is that considering the utility of a concept only matters for emergent properties because they are constructed and not fundamental. The fundamentals have no utility; they just are.

    8. When we talk about air in a room, we can describe it by listing the properties of each and every molecule, or we speak in coarse-grained terms about things like temperature and pressure. One description is more "fundamental," in that its regime of validity is wider; but both have a regime of validity, and as long as we are in that regime, the relevant concepts have a perfectly good claim to "existing."

      Another way of saying this is that temperature and pressure are emergent properties of the more fundamental properties of the molecules of air.

      The problem with applying this to free will, though, is that unlike temperature, we have no way to measure free will. If we can't measure it, I am quite comfortable in denying this analogy.

    9. But in either event, they believe that our freedom of choice cannot be reduced to our constituent particles evolving according to the laws of physics.

      But why would they believe something so silly?

    10. There are people who do believe in free will in this sense; that we need to invoke a notion of free will as an essential ingredient in reality, over and above the conventional laws of nature. These are libertarians, in the metaphysical sense rather than the political-philosophy sense.

      A good way to characterize free will from a purely scientific point of view.

    11. When people make use of a concept and simultaneously deny its existence, what they typically mean is that the concept in question is nowhere to be found in some "fundamental" description of reality.

      Yes! This is very important. Recognizing that "race" is constructed rather than fundamental is the first step to recognizing the race is irrelevant, and that it can be jettisoned from our reasoning. Similarly, once we can see that "free will" is constructed and not fundamental, we can get past its philosophical shackles.

    12. John Searle has joked that people who deny free will, when ordering at a restaurant, should say "just bring me whatever the laws of nature have determined I will get."

      This is silly and unhelpful. How would the staff know what the laws of nature have determined without knowing more about the patron than even the patron themself know?

    13. Likewise, people who question the existence of free will don't have any trouble making choices.

      And there's the problem: do we really make choices? Or are we just unaware of the deterministic algorithm making the choice for us?

    14. It's possible to deny the existence of something while using it all the time. Julian Barbour doesn't believe time is real, but he is perfectly capable of showing up to a meeting on time.

      This is the difference between a social construct and a distinct physical phenomenon. In this regard, “time” is like “race”.

  4. Aug 2022
    1. It seems to me that they tried to roboticize a manufacturing process for a product that was designed to be manufactured by humans. Rookie mistake.

      If they want to automate construction of Mac products, they'll have to redesign the product to fit the constraints of robotic manufacture.

    1. We should all transition from thinking about logic as a field of great dead white men and as a field of “geniuses”, to recognizing those men for the flawed creatures they were, whose “genius” relied on the subjugation of many women and BIPOC around them, and ensuring that the Wikipedia, SEP, etc., pages for these logicians acknowledge that.

      This is the wrong approach, because it imposes modern norms on past times. It's illogical and superficial.

      It would be appropriate, though, to carefully review the histories of past logicians and to document more fully the roles that others played in their work, with a clinical and factual dispassion, and with the intention of being accurate and attributing progress to whoever actually did the work.

    2. add more diversity to, e.g., the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, by including more entries on Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) folks, and also by acknowledging the work of BIPOC folks in entries which are already present, to compile a list of resources about less studied logics, and to track the number of female and BIPOC participants in logic events. One notable resource that started to develop over the course of the day was a collection of some lived experiences of BIPOC logicians.

      The only reason there wouldn't be enough BIPOC representation in SEP is if people were knowingly excluding that work because they were BIPOC.

      Of course, sometimes you have to know an author is BIPOC to be able to appreciate why their point of view may be different than typical. It can provide context.

      But even then, one must intentionally exclude people because of their background. How can one do that systemically and sleep at night?

    3. Teaching suggestions for diversifying logic courses and suggestions for how to make logic more accessible for students from a wide variety of backgrounds included getting rid of genius culture and stereotypes in logic, focusing on logic as a practical tool which requires practice to get good at, using low-cost materials, implementing mastery grading and providing mentorship opportunities.

      Oh, come on. "Genius culture" exists in all academia to one degree or another. To say that logic is somehow more susceptible to this than other disciplines is stunningly arrogant and cloistered thinking.

    1. Every 60 seconds the equivalent of a lorry-load of plastic enters the global ocean. Where does it end up? Right now, researchers simply don’t know. But in a bid to help find out, an ESA-led project developed floating transmitters whose passage can be tracked over time, helping in turn to guide a sophisticated software model of marine plastic litter accumulation.

      Huh? The plastic ends up in the Garbage Patches - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Pacific_garbage_patch

      This is a surprising and disappointing oversight by ESA.

    1. Magie's game was becoming increasingly popular around the Northeastern United States. College students attending Harvard, Columbia, and University of Pennsylvania, left-leaning middle class families, and Quakers were all playing her board game. Three decades after The Landlord's Game was invented in 1904, Parker Brothers published a modified version, known as Monopoly. Charles Darrow claimed the idea as his own, stating that he invented the game in his basement. Magie spoke out against them and reported that she had made a mere $500 from her invention and received none of the credit for Monopoly.[7] In January 1936, an interview with Magie appeared in a Washington, D.C. newspaper, in which she was critical of Parker Brothers. Magie spoke to reporters about the similarities between Monopoly and The Landlord's Game. The article published spoke to the fact that Magie spent more money making her game than she received in earnings, especially with the lack of credit she received after Monopoly was created. After the interviews, Parker Brothers agreed to publish two more of her games but continued to give Darrow the credit for inventing the game itself.[11] Darrow was known as the inventor of Monopoly until Ralph Anspach discovered Magie's patents and her relation to the Monopoly game while fighting a legal battle with the Parker Brothers because of his Anti-Monopoly game. Subsequently, her invention of The Landlord's Game has been given more attention and research. Despite the fact that Darrow and the Parker Brothers capitalized on and were credited with her idea, she posthumously received credit for one of the most popular board games.[3]

      This is a fascinating bit of trivia, and that should be better known by the general public.

    1. A good layperson's overview of one effort to increase cloud albedo to counteract climate change. I think that lowering insolation is somehow missing the point of combatting climate change, but it's a legitimate approach that still needs a lot of research.

      What's particularly good about this article is how it manages to demonstrate how complex the problem is without smothering the reader in technobabble.

    1. I am using Airtable to help keep track of all my relationships.

      Seriously? Does the word "overkill" mean anything to you?

    2. As Tiago Forte writes in his excellent book, ‘Building a Second Brain’, “every bit of energy we spend straining to recall things is energy not spent doing the thinking that only humans can do: inventing new things, crafting stories, recognising patterns, following our intuition, collaborating with others, investigating new subjects, making plans, testing theories”.

      This is exactly the kind of language that is driving people psychotic: that there's only 2 modes - recalling and creating. Yes, there are these 2 modes. But there are others too, the most important of which are "resting", "reflecting", and "gestating". Without these others, which we must visit in balance with recalling and creating, we will end up in a rubber room.

  5. Jul 2022
    1. This is an interesting article. It gives a historical perspective on a societal pattern in which technological changes lead to changes in architecture, which in turn changes how families and communities and societies changes.

      The one thing they seem to have overlooked is the existence of a room called a "study". It was a thing, and now, perhaps, the "home office" will become the modern study.

    1. And what of those who voted for their opponent? Are they now the enemy? Should they be ignored? Or worse, should they be vilified and punished for voting their conscience?

      This is a new reason to support proportional representation of some kind in elections. It doesn't fix the problem of representatives thinking of certain groups of voters as "the enemy", but it does give "the enemy" a sanctioned voice to defend them.

  6. Jun 2022
    1. This reveals that we have the capacity for sustained attention, but persistence is best understood as a disposition, not a capacity. The triadic model of dispositions allows us to understand better what is going on here. A behaviour becomes a disposition when we combine the capabilities it demands with the desire to use them and an awareness of situations where the behaviour is appropriate.

      I guess it depends on what a "disposition" is too. One definition is "a person's inherent qualities of mind and character." But if it's inherent, then it's not something that emerges from behaviours in the right circumstances.

    2. Contrary to popular belief, students don’t have short attention spans. They can focus for hours on a single project. But it has to feel relevant and meaningful to them, and they need to have the time and the space to accomplish it. It’s not easy in a world of school bells and curriculum maps. However, it’s something we should strive for. We should draw students into the deeper, slower work of creativity — because when that happens, learning feels like magic. - “Myth and Mystery of Shrinking Attention Span” - Dr K. R. Subramanian

      This should be motivation enough for instructors to take the time - assuming their bureaucratic overloads allow it - to find ways to make education relevant. This is something, however, that must be baked into people at a young age. And that's the real problem.

    3. We are used to instant gratification. Multiple opportunities for engagement and distraction surround us. If the result we are after does not come immediately, it is easy to seek an alternate path. An economy built on fast food, same-day home delivery, open all hours service model feeds our desire for instant results. Buy now, pay later, why wait when you can have it now.?

      We need to slow down - in every aspect of our lives - so we can attend to the present more thoughtfully, seriously, and appreciatively. Now will never happen again.

    4. “Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.” - Calvin Coolidge

      This is clearly a political statement intended to get more people to contribute to the country's economy. It is, however, woefully wrong in the broader sense.

      Persistence does matter, but it isn't "omnipotent". Persistence, like education, can and should be acquired. But without talent and intelligence (and curiosity, and honour, and truthfulness, and...), persistence alone will not suffice.

    1. The evidence is in: working from home is a failed experiment

      Nowhere in this article is any attention paid to how "hybrid work" would be implemented, the variable implementations that might be offered by different organizations, and the influence of corporate culture on the success of a hybrid work implementation.

    2. That’s because there’s this illusion of more independence, flexibility and control over one’s life which is probably why 70% of the workers who participated in the Microsoft survey, despite all their concerns, still desire some type of flexible work options in the future.

      The use of the word "illusion" is a bald assertion. None of the studies I've seen have examined "independence, flexibility and control" to see (a) what workers mean by these terms, and (b) how they measured those terms, and (c) whether there's any factual basis in calling it an "illusion".

    1. Research is messy and full of failed attempts. Trying to protect students from that reality does them a disservice.

      Yup. This is basically a version of "don't coddle your students".

    1. But it is perhaps the work of Benjamin Bloom, another distinguished American educationist working in the 1980s, that gives the most pause for thought and underscores the idea that family is intrinsically important to the concept of high performance.Bloom’s team looked at a group of extraordinarily high achieving people in disciplines as varied as ballet, swimming, piano, tennis, maths, sculpture and neurology, and interviewed not only the individuals but their parents, too.How to raise a brilliant child without screwing them upRead moreHe found a pattern of parents encouraging and supporting their children, in particular in areas they enjoyed themselves. Bloom’s outstanding adults had worked very hard and consistently at something they had become hooked on young, and their parents all emerged as having strong work ethics themselves.

      Bloom's work suggests that good parenting involves follows the child's natural proclivities and preferences. This runs contrary to the over-scheduling, helicopter-parenting approach of many modern parents.

    2. Deliberate practice, that stretches you every step of the way, and around 10,000 hours of it, is what produces the expert.

      Hasn't the 10,000 hour rule been debunked? See https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/10000-hour-rule-not-real-180952410/ for instance.

    3. According to my colleague, Prof Deborah Eyre, with whom I’ve collaborated on the book Great Minds and How to Grow Them, the latest neuroscience and psychological research suggests most people, unless they are cognitively impaired, can reach standards of performance associated in school with the gifted and talented. However, they must be taught the right attitudes and approaches to their learning and develop the attributes of high performers – curiosity, persistence and hard work, for example – an approach Eyre calls “high performance learning”. Critically, they need the right support in developing those approaches at home as well as at school.

      There is an implication here that "high performance" is a desirable goal for parents to attain in raising their children, as well as goals for schools to shape their curricula.

      The question is: Why is high performance so desirable? And since high performance is a relative term, isn't this just a slippery slope that leads in the long run to utterly untenable expectations on children?

    4. Lewis Terman, a pioneering American educational psychologist, set up a study in 1921 following 1,470 Californians, who excelled in the newly available IQ tests, throughout their lives. None ended up as the great thinkers of their age that Terman expected they would. But he did miss two future Nobel prize winners – Luis Alvarez and William Shockley, both physicists – whom he dismissed from the study as their test scores were not high enough.

      All this tells us is that IQ isn't necessary for "high performance".

  7. Apr 2022
    1. Ontario health officials are reporting 807 people in hospital with COVID-19 Thursday, including 166 patients in intensive care, as the provincial positivity rate continues to rise. Thursday’s hospitalizations case count marks an increase over the 778 reported on Wednesday. Of Thursday’s hospitalizations, 182 patients are unvaccinated and 495 are fully vaccinated. The vaccination status of the remaining patients is unknown.

      This is irresponsible journalism. It implies that vaccinated people are more than twice as likely as unvaccinated people to be hospitalized for COVID.

      This totally ignores the fact that more than 4 out of 5 Ontarians are vaccinated.

  8. Mar 2022
    1. That’s all fine and well and good as long as you don’t have a crisis

      Systems that are too efficient will become brittle. Brittle systems collapse catastrophically when conditions vary too far from expectations. The only way to accommodate unforeseeable circumstances is to give up some efficiency for greater flexibility. This produces robust systems that endure where brittle systems collapse.

    1. In 1925, Ronald Fisher advanced the idea of statistical hypothesis testing, which he called "tests of significance", in his publication Statistical Methods for Research Workers.[28][29][30] Fisher suggested a probability of one in twenty (0.05) as a convenient cutoff level to reject the null hypothesis.[31] In a 1933 paper, Jerzy Neyman and Egon Pearson called this cutoff the significance level, which they named α {\displaystyle \alpha } . They recommended that α {\displaystyle \alpha } be set ahead of time, prior to any data collection.[31][32] Despite his initial suggestion of 0.05 as a significance level, Fisher did not intend this cutoff value to be fixed. In his 1956 publication Statistical Methods and Scientific Inference, he recommended that significance levels be set according to specific circumstances.[31]

      The lofty p=0.5 is utter bullshit. It was just an arbitrary, made-up value with no real evidence behind it.

    1. only 2.5 sigma

      That's 99.38% chance of being correct, yet that's considered "weak". Would that we could do that in medicine or the social sciences.

    1. “So far, most trials that have compared COVID-19 mortality between jurisdictions with stringent lockdowns against those with more liberal approaches have not demonstrated any mortality reduction from the more stringent policies,” he said.

      That's bollocks. Even when this article was published it was bollocks. There was evidence from all around the world that lockdowns work.

    1. t can’t be possible, because the texts were from his agent. A senior-aged Asexual woman, and I quote:“so it’s far-from-romantic.”Talk to any Asexual person, and they would be offended at the implication that Asexuals aren’t romantic or don’t date. It’s actually more-in-line with Aphobic rhetoric that Asexuality is born from somebodies lack of ability to form relationships due to looks or personality.

      This is a case of false generalization.

    1. Although the facts are, there. As much as we can applaud the accomplishment of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, that does not take away from the fact that they were slaveholders.

      The world was such that slavery was an accepted practice. Even if a person were against it, one wouldn't be taken seriously if one had no slaves. They were trying to change the system from within. I could live entirely off the grid to "save the environment" but then I'd lack the infrastructure to convince people to be more environmental. Why does Suzuki.org keep sending me paper things in the mail, arguing to save the trees? Why is it legal for women to go topless, but none of them do? So long as CRT advocates are fixated on imposing modern morality on ancient contexts, nothing will change. And so long as they keep up these ad hominem attacks on people with good ideas because they weren't saints, nothing will change.

    2. The truth is many opponents of Critical Race Theory are not even truly familiar with what it is. Yet, their public political opinions have been formed. A recent poll showed that an estimated 80% of Americans have not heard about the term or are unsure of its definition.

      This is not a claim about CRT or its validity. It's a claim about the public. Which means it's irrelevant to the validity of CRT.

  9. Feb 2022
    1. others want large families

      Sure, but why do they want large families? Religious reasons? Ancient traditions? Ensuring continuance of the line? These are all terrible, laughably primitive reasons to have large families. I've yet to come across someone who could offer a good reason for having lots of kids.

    2. It’s the fear that having a kid in this day and age dooms that kid to a miserable life on a miserably hot planet.

      That may be what some people believe, but there are other reasons too. Resource depletion, food shortages, and underemployment are big ones. Having fewer children isn't just about the climate; it's about creating a generally healthier society in the long term.

    3. (For comparison, most organizations can’t avert a metric ton for less than $2. The average American causes around 16 metric tons of emissions per year.)

      So, taxing people, say, $50 per year would allow the government to fund those charities, right? Sounds like an excellent way to facilitate climate change mitigation.

    4. The Founders Pledge report used countries’ climate targets and projected policies to estimate how many metric tons of carbon can be saved by avoiding various lifestyle choices.

      Are there countries that haven't already blown past their own targets and had to reset them? It seems quite naive of them to suggest that any country will be able to meet their targets. Indeed, considering how many countries that produce lots of GHGs have had to step back from their climate change targets, I would expect that accounting for policy changes would actually make population reduction even better.

    1. Try not to have white spaces in your folder and file names

      This would be a useful plugin for freely publishing Obsidian content via Git, except for this problem. I depend on whitespace in filenames. Pity.

    1. creased learning in a college physics course with timelyuse of short multimedia summaries

      I'm forced to wonder if this is actually an instance of coddling. Creating the summaries for students removes the need for the students to learn to summarize what they study & learn on their own. Being able to summarize the work of others is an aspect of life-long learning that is, IMHO, crucial.

  10. Jan 2022
    1. Looking up their net worths, we find that Bill Nye is worth $8 million. That’s great, really. A scientist that is worth $8 million is pretty rare. Even Neil Degrasse Tyson is only worth $5 million. I say “only” with tongue in cheek because $5 million is really a LOT of money. But, it’s only about 63% of Bill Nye’s net worth. So, comparatively speaking, Bill Nye has done very well for a scientist.Let’s compare that with Ken Ham. He has a net worth of $54 million. That ark has made Ken Ham his fabulous wealth. And, if it wasn’t for the Bill Nye debate, it might never have come into existence since the project had stalled out.

      All this demonstrates is the amorality of capitalism. Ham is richer, but also an immoral propagandist for a demented worldview.

  11. Dec 2021
    1. How do I allow students to voice contentious, ugly, or even ignorant views, so that they can learn without fear of recrimination?

      Too broad of a spectrum here. And why should students not fear recrimination? This is coddling, pure and simple.

    2. first-day surveys, name tents, and very brief in-class writing about students’ values or daily lives help students experience a sense of belonging.

      Now imagine it from the students' POV, students who are taken 4 or more courses, and having to do the same engagement exercises over and over again in all their classes.

      I think it would drive them in the opposite direction from that intended by the instructor.

    1. We live in a society whose psychic structure is formulated on the premise of survival of the fittest and you’re either in or you’re out. If you’re in, you must play the game of kill or be killed. One-upmanship and a perpetual ladder-climbing exercise is your lot.

      Quite a pithy remark. Even though some may say it's far too reductionist, I would say reductionism remains the truest mirror of our selves. We're nothing but monkeys, except that we don't throw shit at each other, we throw nukes.

  12. Nov 2021
    1. An interesting thinking exercise. Ask students the question as posed in the title. The critical thinking part is: question the assumptions baked into the title. And see how many students can explain the physics.

    1. The trick here is that the retention seems to be the result of the application of active, IBL/PBL teaching methods. Indeed, the authors suggest that this retention wouldn't happen if conventional, passive teaching methods were used.

      This is really more evidence that IBL actually works.

    1. William James pointed out that, “My experience is what I agree to attend to,”

      I disagree with this rather dated bald assertion. I think our experience includes everything processed by the brain - which is more than what we attend to - as well as the meta-level experiential interconnections our brains form in connecting memories to each other.

    1. "Without competition, a short time into the contract, NASA will find itself with limited options as it attempts to negotiate missed deadlines, design changes, and cost overruns," Bezos' lettter reads. "Without competition, NASA's short-term and long-term lunar ambitions will be delayed, will ultimately cost more, and won't serve the national interest."

      Bezos is failing to recognize the essential and fundamental differences between business and scientific exploration. The basic goals of the 2 types of enterprise are entirely different. We are not in the 15th century, and we cannot treat basic exploration like Queen Isabella treated Columbus's trips.

      Not that Musk is any better than Bezos, of course, but the "competition" Bezos claims is essential is something that only works on paper in capitalist communities. Science and exploration don't work that way any more. Thank goodness.

    1. I do think that if you in fact have a losing ticket, then you know it. And if you have winning ticket then you can justifiably, but incorrectly, think you know you have a losing ticket.I think the only good way to deny knowledge in lottery cases is to demand infallibility from knowledge, which than loses us pretty much all ordinary knowledge.

      This is exactly my problem with "knowledge" and it's inherent vagueness. I think it's far better for us all to admit that we have virtually no knowledge and instead only have beliefs of varying strengths.

  13. Oct 2021
    1. This is a nice introduction to some issues of concern to me. For instance, the absence of pain is good - but why is it good? The empirical reason for this is that it satisfies evolved instinct. So again, what is good tracks to what is natural. But the naturalistic fallacy undermines that. And most importantly, there is no known scientific connection between evolution and instinct on the one hand, and "good" on the other. My answer is: morality is not natural, it is an artifice of humanity. And since it's an artifice, we can make it whatever we want.

    1. Consider what's in Oxford Languages vs what's in Wikipedia. There's quite a difference between them. I suspect this is another term coopted by "emotional extremists" and irrationalists, but I'd have to study it more.

    1. This article fails to recognize the societal benefits of free education. Since the US is all about the individual, this isn't surprising. However, the facts - as evidenced by countries where education is essentially free - is that it increases the societal level of education, which improves so many things, not the least of which is more informed and rational voting.

    1. General relativity implies that information gets destroyed; quantum theory says it’s preserved. Hence the paradox.

      Isn't this an example of the law of the excluded middle? If LoEM doesn't exist (in Gisin's theory), then could there be information that isn't either created or destroyed?

    1. The real conspiracies are hiding in plain sight.

      The big difference between the paranoiac's conspiracy theories and the real ones is that in the fake ones the conspirators are "in it together" and form a like-minded group. In reality, the billionaires would be very happy to through each other under the bus if they could.

      So it's not so much that there are real conspiracies as there are a known set of methods and tools - known to everyone, everywhere - that allow this gross power imbalance to be created. These methods and tools are known to all but can only be used by the rich because they are themselves very costly.

  14. Sep 2021
    1. A potentially interesting task management plugin for obsidian. I'm a little worried about long-term support. I'm going to wait and see what happens.

    1. This is not a published Chrome extension and it uses an odd workaround to circumvent Chrome security. So I'm not sure how safe it is. Keep an eye on it; if it develops enough, it could be quite useful.

    1. This is an excellent example of just how convoluted and brain-numbing statistics can be if you really get into it - yet how vitally important it is to have excellent statisticians working on important problems like determining how exactly COVID is spreading.

    1. Example of how expending a little extra energy creates two more useful outputs (compostable solids, and "cleaner" greywater) as well as lowering sewage system maintenance needs. Possibly, an example of how TRIZ "separation" principle can be applied.

    1. I've got serious reservations about this Gerst fellow. His answers are too vague and contain too many bald assertions. The form of his answers fits what I've noticed to be a "style" of regressives seeking to promote obsolete traditions and social norms.

      Granted, it's difficult to present precise information in "interview format" articles like this one, but education is too important to get get wrong - again.

    1. I use https://hypothes.is/ 55 to annotate web sites and web based pdf’s. I want to easily import them into Obsidian. This script uses the Templater template.

      This is another good possibility to hide most of the machinery of connecting hypothesis to obsidian. I like that it takes advantage of relatively robust existing bits of obsidian.

    1. If the words of legendary samurai Miyamoto Musashi:“If you know the way broadly you will see it in everything.”

      This is analogous to how I see systems everywhere, having studied them for a couple of decades.

    1. exporting hypothesis annotations to obsidian (markdown files)

      CLI-based method for batch exporting hypothesis annotations in markdown suitable for adding to Obsidian. I'm not sure I like it; the idea of batch-filing the process irks me. I would prefer for it to all happen in the background.

    1. This is a plugin for Obsidian (https://obsidian.md). It allows you to open and annotate PDF and EPUB files. The plugin is based on https://web.hypothes.is/, but modified to store the annotations in a local markdown file instead of on the internet.

      This has possibilities because it backgrounds a lot of the heavy lifting by saving the annotation to a local markdown file.