Arbitrary Notes

By dkl9, as of 2024-184

This was written as plaintext and converted to HTML with a sed-abusing script.

A lot of this is stupid. If you're looking for usually-maybe-smart content, try my documents.

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@1. 2022-213
This file is my second commonplace (or third, or fourth, depending on how you count), "Arbitrary Notes". It's very directly inspired by #soren-bjornstad's I collect references to sources, quotes and summaries of sources, and small ideas I have. The mention, quotation, or summary of a source should not be taken to reliably mean that I endorse its message (tho I often do). Each entry is numbered and classified as public (@ before number) or secret (! before number). In the published form of this, you'll only see the public entries.

@2. "Jigzilla: the automatic puzzle solving machine (part 1)" by Stuff Made Here, 2022-213
0:09 "It's the future. Why would I spend my time having fun, when I can build a robot to have fun for me?" #corrupted-saying #destroyed-by-logic

@3. type of lens that simulates the camera being infinitely far away
this eliminates errors with field-of-view distortion, allowing for better visual 2D measurements #optics

@6. #scott-alexander #drugs
in which a fictionalised form of Scott Alexander takes strange drugs (DMT?) and talks to stubborn hallucinated beings For Science

@7. comments of #6 "Art under rigorous constraints is the original proof-of-work function."

@8. what if i computed a Lebesgue integral over the tape measure? #maths-humour

@10. #scott-alexander #rationality
in which he explains that some things are hard to categorise and turns it into an argument to accept transgenderism

@11. #10
"It’s easy to see that Solomon has a point, and that if he wants to define behemah as four-legged-land-dwellers that’s his right, and no better or worse than your definition of 'creatures in a certain part of the phylogenetic tree'. Indeed, it might even be that if you spent ten years teaching Solomon all about the theory of genetics and evolution (which would be hilarious -- think how annoyed the creationists would get) he might still say 'That’s very interesting, and I can see why we need a word to describe creatures closely related along the phylogenetic tree, but make up your own word, because behemah already means four-legged-land-dweller.'"

@12. #10
"The situation with whales and fish is properly understood in the same context. Fish and mammals differ on a lot of axes. Fish generally live in the water, breathe through gills, have tails and fins, possess a certain hydrodynamic shape, lay eggs, and are in a certain part of the phylogenetic tree. Mammals generally live on land, breathe through lungs, have legs, give live birth, and are in another part of the phylogenetic tree. Most fish conform to all of the fish desiderata, and most mammals conform to all of the mammal desiderata, so there’s no question of how to categorize them. Occasionally you get something weird (a platypus, a lungfish, or a whale) and it’s a judgment call which you have to decide by fiat. In our case, that fiat is 'use genetics and ignore all other characteristics' but some other language, culture, or scientific community might make a different fiat, and then the borders between their categories would look a little bit different."

@13. #10 about the "Hair Dryer Incident"
"Basically, this one obsessive compulsive woman would drive to work every morning and worry she had left the hair dryer on and it was going to burn down her house. So she’d drive back home to check that the hair dryer was off, then drive back to work, then worry that maybe she hadn’t really checked well enough, then drive back, and so on ten or twenty times a day." stuff about this being bad for her and nothing working to cure it "So she came to my hospital and was seen by a colleague of mine, who told her 'Hey, have you thought about just bringing the hair dryer with you?' And it worked." stuff about the good results of the change "And approximately half the psychiatrists at my hospital thought this was absolutely scandalous, and This Is Not How One Treats Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and what if it got out to the broader psychiatric community that instead of giving all of these high-tech medications and sophisticated therapies we were just telling people to put their hair dryers on the front seat of their car? But I think the guy deserved a medal. Here’s someone who was totally untreatable by the normal methods, with a debilitating condition, and a drop-dead simple intervention that nobody else had thought of gave her her life back. If one day I open up my own psychiatric practice, I am half-seriously considering using a picture of a hair dryer as the logo, just to let everyone know where I stand on this issue." cf EliminateVsSatisfy in #quinery

@14. by Eliezer #yudkowsky #rationality 2008-02-09
defines "disguised queries", with a long introductory anecdote, as questions about if a thing qualifies to be in a category, which are disguised queries about various attributes of the thing, inferrable by commonality in the category "The question 'Is this object a blegg?' may stand in for different queries on different occasions. If it weren't standing in for some query, you'd have no reason to care."

@15. by #yudkowsky #rationality 2008-02-11
in which he argues that some cognitive errors come from perceiving arbitrary artifacts of our methods of processing as reflecting objective features of the world (cf The Case Against Reality by Donald Hoffman, 2019, tho that discusses perception rather than thought) "We know where Pluto is, and where it's going; we know Pluto's shape, and Pluto's mass -- but is it a planet? And yes, there were people who said this was a fight over definitions -- but even that is a Network 2 [attributes leading to a categorisation] sort of perspective, because you're arguing about how the central unit ought to be wired up. If you were a mind constructed along the lines of Network 1 [thinking purely based on attributes], you wouldn't say 'It depends on how you define planet,' you would just say, 'Given that we know Pluto's orbit and shape and mass, there is no question left to ask.' Or, rather, that's how it would feel -- it would feel like there was no question left -- if you were a mind constructed along the lines of Network 1. Before you can question your intuitions, you have to realize that what your mind's eye is looking at is an intuition -- some cognitive algorithm, as seen from the inside -- rather than a direct perception of the Way Things Really Are."

@16. by "lukeprog", 2011-04-24
"Hold up a book in front of your face at arm's length, close your eyes, and say something loudly. Can you hear the emptiness of the space in front of you?" i don't recognise it as emptiness, but it sounds normal "Close your eyes again, hold the book directly in front of your face, and say the book's name again. Can you now hear that the book is closer?" oh wow, that does sound different! "I'll bet you can, and thus you may be more bat-like than Nagel seems to think is possible, and more bat-like than you have previously thought. When I discovered this, I realized that not only had I been wrong about my perceptual capabilities, I had also been ignorant of the daily content of my subjective auditory experience." proceeds to elaborate that humans naturally echolocate a bit, and can experience the perception of a bat in a weak sense lukeprog's document here is very similar to one cited on that Wikipedia article Schwitzgebel and Gordon, 2000 the details of lukeprog's document, beyond the ultimate claim that we don't understand our own experiences, about specific examples of confusing perception, are amusing

@17. #yudkowsky 2007-01-21
"A few religions, especially the ones invented or refurbished after Isaac Newton, may profess that 'everything is connected to everything else'. (Since there is a trivial isomorphism between graphs and their complements, this profound wisdom conveys exactly the same useful information as a graph with no edges.)" #destroyed-by-logic #graph-theory

@18. crux of #17 #rationality
"It is easy to be fooled, perhaps, by the fact that people wearing lab coats use the phrase 'causal interaction' and that people wearing gaudy jewelry use the phrase 'spirits speaking'. Discussants wearing different clothing, as we all know, demarcate independent spheres of existence -- 'separate magisteria', in Stephen J. Gould's immortal blunder of a phrase. Actually, 'causal interaction' is just a fancy way of saying, 'Something that makes something else happen', and probability theory doesn't care what clothes you wear. In modern society there is a prevalent notion that spiritual matters can't be settled by logic or observation, and therefore you can have whatever religious beliefs you like. If a scientist falls for this, and decides to live their extralaboratorial life accordingly, then this, to me, says that they only understand the experimental principle as a social convention. They know when they are expected to do experiments and test the results for statistical significance. But put them in a context where it is socially conventional to make up wacky beliefs without looking, and they just as happily do that instead."

@19. alleged in #17, Voltaire said that "a witty saying proves nothing", which is itself a witty saying that, paradoxically, may or may not prove anything

@20. #yudkowsky #rationality 2007-09-22
"This is why rationalists put such a heavy premium on the paradoxical-seeming claim that a belief is only really worthwhile if you could, in principle, be persuaded to believe otherwise. If your retina ended up in the same state regardless of what light entered it, you would be blind. Some belief systems, in a rather obvious trick to reinforce themselves, say that certain beliefs are only really worthwhile if you believe them unconditionally -- no matter what you see, no matter what you think. Your brain is supposed to end up in the same state regardless. Hence the phrase, 'blind faith.' If what you believe doesn’t depend on what you see, you’ve been blinded as effectively as by poking out your eyeballs."

@22. by Ozy Brennan, 2022-094
"But, most of the time, we only think of a menu of a few dozen options -- sometimes much fewer. The rest are sort of grayed out. To a large extent, this is a good thing. Most of the options theoretically available at any given moment are very stupid. (Just ask anyone with intrusive thoughts -- yes, brain, I understand I could put the lightbulb in my mouth, stop bringing it up!) But I think it’s important to think about the ways that grayed out options limit our behavior. You can go outside in pajamas. It isn't illegal. No one will stop you. Most of the time, no one will even comment. Sure, you might run into someone you know, but in many cities that’s not going to happen, and anyway they’re likely to assume you have a stomach flu or otherwise have some perfectly good reason for running around in pajamas. You’re unlikely to face any negative consequences whatsoever." cf xkcd about punching

@24. #scott-alexander
listing groups in which "black people are strongly underrepresented" "Runners (3%). Bikers (6%). Furries (2%). Wall Street senior management (2%). Occupy Wall Street protesters (unknown but low, one source says 1.6% but likely an underestimate). BDSM (unknown but low) ... Unitarian Universalists (1%). Can you see what all of these groups have in common? No. No you can’t. If there’s some hidden factor uniting Wall Street senior management and furries, it is way beyond any of our pay grades."

@26. #scott-alexander
"YOU DO NOT GIVE PSYCHOTHERAPY TO PEOPLE WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT. Psychotherapists treat arachnophobia with exposure therapy, too. They expose people first to cute, little spiders behind a glass cage. Then bigger spiders. Then they take them out of the cage. Finally, in a carefully controlled environment with their very supportive therapist standing by, they make people experience their worst fear, like having a big tarantula crawl all over them. It usually works pretty well. Finding an arachnophobic person, and throwing a bucket full of tarantulas at them while shouting 'I’M HELPING! I’M HELPING!' works less well."

@27. #scott-alexander
"There’s probably someone somewhere who still believes in perfectly intact people, but I bet they’re not a psychiatrist."

@28. 2022-214

@29. "The 4 things you need to be an expert" Veritasium, today or so
0. 10 thousand hours 1. repetition with feedback 2. stable/nonrandom environment 3. quick feedback 4. going into new challenges ("deliberate practice")

@31. at this point, no more #scott-alexander . that'll be clear already from the slatestarcodex domain
this here is a hilarious SF story about eight people who take eight coloured pills granting them various powers "You choose the red pill. BRUTE STRENGTH! That’s what’s important and valuable in this twenty-first-century economy, right? Some people tell you it isn’t, but they don’t seem to have a lot of BRUTE STRENGTH, so what do they know?" "With the help of Orange, who among his many other accomplishments is the current Pope, I have obtained the Shroud of Turin. A perfect photographic representation of Jesus Christ, created by some unknown technology in the first century. And Jesus, I am told, is an incarnation of God."

@32. #yudkowsky #rationality 2007-11-08
"The very fact that a religious person would be afraid of God withdrawing Its threat to punish them for committing murder, shows that they have a revulsion of murder which is independent of whether God punishes murder or not. If they had no sense that murder was wrong independently of divine retribution, the prospect of God not punishing murder would be no more existentially horrifying than the prospect of God not punishing sneezing." "You can simply not do whatever you are afraid God may not punish you for doing. The fear of losing a moral compass is itself a moral compass. Indeed, I suspect you are steering by that compass, and that you always have been. As Piers Anthony once said, 'Only those with souls worry over whether or not they have them.' s/soul/morality/ and the point carries."

@33. #yudkowsky #rationality 2007-11-15
distinction between "expected utility" and "utility": utility goes with an outcome (corresponding to terminal goals) expected utility goes with an action intrumental goals/intrumental values are "purely an aid to the efficient computation of plans"

@34. #yudkowsky #rationality 2007-11-21
the knowledge is only really a part of you if you could have restored it were it deleted

@35. 2022-215

@37. 2022-216

@38. #regexp to find entry headings in this commonplace /^[!@][1-9][0-9]*\./ (all of them), /^![1-9][0-9]*\./ (secret only), /^@[1-9][0-9]*\./ (public only)

@42. 2022-217

@43. citing citing #quantified-self
"The quantified self refers both to the cultural phenomenon of self-tracking with technology and to a community of users and makers of self-tracking tools who share an interest in 'self-knowledge through numbers'."

@45. #javascript to convert a string to a little-endian sum of the bytes (assuming ASCII)
s => s.split("").map(c => c.codePointAt(0)).map((n, i) => n * 256 ** i).reduce((a, b) => a + b)

@47. Ian Fieggen claims to have invented a fast technique for tying shoelaces, the "Ian knot"
this is reshared in many sources (with and without attribution) such as by Numberphile, 2015 (which i saw long ago) "I challenge anyone to show me any publication of this technique in any book or elsewhere prior to my own first illustrations in Jun-1982 and subsequent distribution efforts. Until I'm shown a prior name, I maintain my right to have named it the 'Ian Knot'."

@51. 2022-219

@59. 2022-220

"I enjoy spending time with most of my friends -- that’s why they’re my friends. But with certain friends, the time is so high-quality, so interesting, and so fun that they pass the Traffic Test. The Traffic Test is passed when I’m finishing up a hangout with someone and one of us is driving the other back home or back to their car, and I find myself rooting for traffic. That’s how much I’m enjoying the time with them."

@62. 2022-221

@63. "Why bronze feels better than silver" by Hank Green of SciShow, 2022-140 or so
unsurprisingly (i.e. We All Knew This Already), losing/failing by a lot feels better than losing by a little bit "So to be a little bit happier when we fail, we just need to fail a little worse!"

@65. 2022-222 what a nice-numbered day

@66. "America Always Gets This Wrong (when building transit)" by Not Just Bikes, 2022-170 or so
what America gets wrong is setting up public transit destinations in the middle of boring roads, rather than close to the places people actually want to go encourages solution: build public transit routes into the middle of nowhere, and encourage building (development, specifically mixed-use walkable development) around stops also brings up the term "walkshed" and the analogous "bikeshed"

@67. "Imaginary Numbers Are Real [Part 10: Complex Functions]" by Welch Labs (Stephen Welch), 2016-06-03
part of a long series about complex numbers, at the start of the part where it gets interesting and talks about serious complex analysis the series ends with episode 13

@68. 2022-223

@72. from 2011 or so, about apparently-obvious assertions requiring complicated proofs in maths
- a sequence of real intervals with sum-of-lengths less than 1 cannot have a union of the interval [0, 1] - sphere being the minimal surface to bound a volume also pointed out that some theorems appear obvious but are hard to prove because the proof has to handle obscure near-counterexample edge cases that people don't often think about

@76. a Dutch artist, created the Strandbeest, independently-mobile kinetic structures made of pipes arranged in walking triangles

@77. "A first introduction to p-adic numbers" by David Madore, 2000

@78. 2022-224

@79. "Laws & Causes" by Vsauce, 2019-10-01
"Mathematics is the playing of games. Science is finding out what game you're playing" (21:05) cf InventedByObservation in #quinery

@80. 2022-227

@83. "Holey Plugs, Batman! But... what are they for?" by #technology-connections 2021
apparently the holes in US plugs are there because it's easier to manufacture that way and the location of holes got standardised as an option

@84. "Detergent packs are kinda wishy-washy (Dishwashers Explained)" by #technology-connections 2020
along with its sequel ( ), assuming they're correct, this provides lots of helpful advice on how to use dishwashers more effectively most importantly, dishwashers provide separate main-wash and pre-wash detergent slots, and both should be filled, which detergent packs prevent an attempt at alliterative art (5:58) "The jets are pointed in all sorts of different directions, a definitely deliberate design decision, distributing a deluge of detritus decongestant directly at dirty dishes." an explanation of detergent (16:52) "Detergent helps break down food-things, and helps them mix with the water, which makes the water more effective at getting food-things off plates (and stuff)."

@86. "Why do hurricane lanterns look like that?" by #technology-connections 2021
terrible pun 15:14 "Now, my fellow lantern aficionados and I -- we call ourselves Dietz Nuts ..." in reference to

@87. the Gravity Light, a device powered by slowly-falling weight (gravitational potential energy released over time)

@88. #10 quoting Miyamoto Musashi
"The primary thing when you take a sword in your hands is your intention to cut the enemy, whatever the means. Whenever you parry, hit, spring, strike or touch the enemy’s cutting sword, you must cut the enemy in the same movement. It is essential to attain this. If you think only of hitting, springing, striking or touching the enemy, you will not be able actually to cut him."

@89. "Complex integration, Cauchy and residue theorems | Essence of Complex Analysis #6" by Mathemaniac, 2022-022
- complex definite integrals are done over contours (curves), which are often closed - convert complex integral to real-domain integral with direct parametrisation - Cauchy integral theorem: the integral of a holomorphic function on a closed contour bounding a holomorphic region is 0 - contour integral surrounding the origin of 1/z is 2 pi i - contour integral of z^n for any other integer n is 0 - something something Cauchy integral formula

@90. 2022-229

@91. USB-A to Micro-USB works to connect #chromebook to Nokia feature phone
the phone presents an option to expose phone storage to the Chromebook if accepted, i can access the files from the Chromebook, but this prevents the phone from accessing them #personal-experience

@92. "Wavelets: a mathematical microscope" by Artem Kirsanov, 2022
explains the wavelet transform, a in-some-ways-better analogue of the Fourier transform brings up the functional inner product (`<f, g> := int(-inf, inf, f * g)`), which inspires me to consider a "functional cosine" for vectors, `<u, v> = |u| * |v| * cos(theta)`, so we define the functional cosine `cos(theta) = <f, g> / (sqrt(<f, f>) * sqrt(<g, g>))`

@93. inner product can be notated with `<u, v>`

@94. "Is Civilization on the Brink of Collapse?" by Kurzgesagt, 2022
of course it claims that civilisation is not on the brink of collapse (classic comforting Kurzgesagt) 9:30 "Humanity is like a teenager: speeding around blind corners, drunk, without a seatbelt." as a simile for the dangerous practices of society, such as nuclear weapons, climate destruction, and biotechnology

@95. "There are two types of smoke alarm. One of 'em ain't so good." by #technology-connections , 2022
8:56 "We have two commonly-produced and easily-obtainable smoke detection technologies at hand: one using commodity LEDs, photodetectors, and some plastic, and the other, using some plastic, a bit of electronics, a couple of metal plates, and *an exotic radioisotope of americium*! Why are we still making the second kin-- ?!" main point of the video is that photoelectric smoke detectors more readily detect large smoke particles, whilst ionisation smoke detectors more readily detect small smoke particles and that photoelectric alarms are mostly, but not unambiguously, better, because they detect many types of fires faster and have fewer false positives

@97. 2022-230

"In early 2015, Russia passed a law banning, amongst others, people with 'disorders of sexual preference' from obtaining driving licences." how is restricting them from driving a reasonable response?

@103. according to the corresponding EtymOnline pages, "man" and "woman" are etymologically related (Germanic), but "human" is separate from both (Latin)

@104. , after a change some while ago, requires JavaScript to run a search
it appears that the script changes the query to include a parameter `x=long_hexadecimal_string` re-requesting the search page with the `x` parameter works even without javascript, and the string assigned to `x` is not specific to the query so i might be able to search without javascript by just including one working value of `x` in the URL

@107. 2022-231

@109. the maplet operator, depicted in ASCII as `|->`, `=>`, or `->`, is Unicode U+21A6 "Rightwards Arrow From Bar" ↦

@110. an extension onto #92 , "orthogonal functions" are an established concept that links to other relevant posts like after further experiments

@113. how to prevent a column break within an element #css
break-inside: avoid-column;

@114. i coined a #neologism whilst barely noticing (writing in #quinery ): "isomorph", to change by an isomorphism

@117. #rationality
"The Litany of Tarski is a template to remind oneself that beliefs should stem from reality, from what actually is, as opposed to what we want, or what would be convenient. For any statement X, the litany takes the form 'If X, I desire to believe that X'."

@118. "27 Unhelpful Facts About Category Theory" by Oliver Lugg, 2021
1: the video is a joke 2: definition of a category 3: categories are confusing, explanation in terms of memes, definitely helpful examples 4: invented in 1945, promoting world peace 5: commutative diagrams 6: classes aren't quite sets 7: here's what a functor is, forgetful functors 8: equality, isomorphism, equivalence, natural isomorphism, adjunction 9: reuse of terms "product" and "cone" in radically different contexts 10: opposite of a functor is not defunctor 11: co- = inverse of thing 12: the life of Grothendieck 13: natural transformations, maps between functors 14: Yoneda lemma is confusing 15: higher-order categories 16: have a break 17: coconut = nut 18: Australia joke 19: pentagonator 20: a monad is a monoid in the category of endofunctors 21: initial and terminal objects 22: no real-world applications 23: co-author pun 24: functional programming uses category theory 25: cartegory theory 26: true, false, or bottom trichotomy 27: your mom joke by my count, only 18 of these are actually facts about category theory (rather than jokes or irrelevant comments)

@119. 2022-233

"Would the Czar be corrupt and greedy and tyrannical? Yes, probably. Let's say he decided to use our tax money to build himself a mansion ten times bigger than the Palace of Versailles. The Internet suggests that building Versailles today would cost somewhere between $200M and $1B, so let’s dectuple the high range of that estimate and say the Czar built himself a $10 billion dollar palace. And he wants it plated in solid gold, so that’s another $10 billion. Fine. Corporate welfare is $200B per year. If the Czar were to tell us 'I am going to take your tax money and spend it on a giant palace ten times the size of Versailles covered in solid gold', the proper response would be 'Great, but what are we going to do with the other $180 billion dollars you’re saving us?'"

@122. in comments
"'Go stand in the corner and think about what you've done wrong!' '... Um, no. I'm going to go stand in the corner and think about how you're just a jerk abusing your power on those who can't fight back.' -- Every Kid Who's Ever Been Sent To The Corner."

@123. "i'm hungry"? more like "my ghrelin is yellin'" bio pun

@124. "Your First Day in Japanese Class" by Mattias Pilhede, 2019
a commentary on the difficulty of learning Japanese (for English speakers) and the flawed focus on extreme knowledge of the language beyond what is necessary for actual goals

@125. 2022-235

@128. "Surgeons Should Not Look Like Surgeons" by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, 2017 (part of Skin In The Game) #rationality
"Now if I had to pick, I would overcome my suckerproneness and take the [crude-looking surgeon resembling a butcher] any minute. Even more: I would seek the butcher as a third option if my choice was between two doctors who looked like doctors. Why? Simply the one who doesn’t look the part, conditional of having made a (sort of) successful career in his profession, had to have much to overcome in terms of perception. And if we are lucky enough to have people who do not look the part, it is thanks to the presence of some skin in the game, the contact with reality that filters out incompetence, as reality is blind to looks." i.e. given things of equal measured rank (especially people in an industry), prefer the one which has worse superficial attributes, because it would have higher pressures on it to have better essential attributes the article proceeds with many examples of places to apply this principle in contradiction to what people typically value such as investor skill, scientific research and its presentation, solutions to hunger, formal education, gyms

@129. humourous exaggerated satirical account inspired by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
"DON'T FOLLOW ANY ADVICE YOU CAN'T RECITE WHILE DEADLIFTING" (Taleb apparently deadlifts and is known for his succinct often-pseudo-deep advice) "ANTIFRAGILITY IS MERELY A STEP IN THE PATH TO FREEDOM. ONLY THE SWINDLERS OF STOCHASMS ARE TRULY LIBERATED, FOR IT IS WE WHO FOOL RANDOMNESS" (Taleb has published ideas about antifragility and randomness; this commentary appears to be nonsense inspired by that -- "stochasm" isn't even a word) "UMBERTO ECO WAS NOT AN INSIGHTFUL AUTHOR DESPITE BEING UNABLE TO READ, BUT PRECISELY BECAUSE HE WAS UNABLE TO READ" (Taleb has spoken positively about Eco, and this is reminiscent of an application of the #128 surgeons-shouldn't-look-like-surgeons principle) "ALL MODELS ARE WRONG, BUT SOME LOOK GOOD NAKED" (a paraprosdokian twist on the #corrupted-saying that "all models are wrong, but some are useful") "YOU, CHARLATAN IYI: INCORRECTLY DRESSES FOR WEATHER-JOURNO'S FORECAST ME, ANTIFRAGILE: RUNS THROUGH THE RAIN NAKED" ("IYI" is acronym coined by Taleb for "Intellectual Yet Idiot" i suspect that learning to handle any weather without deliberate preparation would satisfy Taleb's recommendations for "antifragility", much more than preparing based on a possibly-wrong forecast)

@131. "What Everyone Gets WRONG About Spaced Repetition" by Justin Sung, 2022
argues that spaced repetition isn't all its cracked up to be - repetition is only necessary for the information that the brain naturally judges as unimportant - space repetition only helps with basic low-level facts and not high-level understanding as is often necessary ( #soren-bjornstad objects; further research is needed) - i.e. it's only good for "rote learning", which we should avoid - Sung recommends finding other ways of "encoding" information for long-term memory to avoid the need for rote learning (recently developed techniques) - e.g. find analogous representations and connect to existing knowledge - better encoding reduces the load of short space repetition intervals

@132. 2022-236

"I'm no historian, but from the little I know ancient religion seems to bleed seamlessly into every other aspect of the ancient way of life. For example, the Roman religion was a combination of mythology, larger-than-life history, patriotism, holidays, customs, superstitions, rules about the government, beliefs about virtue, and attempts to read the future off the livers of pigs." gives many examples of how Judaism (typically thought of as a strict religion) is not much more strict than Americanism (typically thought of as a weak culture of obvious principles) "So when we think of America as a perfectly natural secular culture, and Jews as following some kind of superstitious draconian law code, we're just saying that our laws feel natural and obvious, but their laws feel like an outside imposition." "Insofar as this isn't obvious to schoolchildren learning about ancient religion, it's because the only thing one ever hears about ancient religion is the crazy mythologies. But I think American culture shows lots of signs of trying to form a crazy mythology, only to be stymied by modernity-specific factors." "That was ancient religion -- culture in a world where culture meant something. It was nothing like modern religion -- which is why you never hear the Greeks complaining that the Egyptians were evil heretics who denied the light of Zeus and needed to be converted by the sword." "The question of the origin of religion comes down to how these cultures evolved into the clearly-defined religions of the modern day. I think a big part of this is ossification and separation from context. The Jewish law perfectly preserves what any right-thinking Israelite in 1000 BC would have considered obvious, natural, and not-even-needing-justification (much as any right-thinking American today considers not eating insects obvious). By the time the Bible was being written this was no longer true -- foreign customs and inevitable social change were making the old law seem less and less relevant, and I think modern scholarship thinks the Bible was written by a conservative faction of priests making their case for adherence to the old ways. The act of writing it down in a book, declaring this book the sort of thing that people might doubt but shouldn't, and then passing that book to their children -- that made it a modern religion, in the sense of something potentially separable from culture that required justification. I think that emphasizing the role of God and the gods provided that justification."

"So one critique of these accusations [that various things are just religions] is that 'religion' is a broad enough category that anything can be mapped on to it: Does it have well-known figures? Then they're 'gurus' and it's a religion. Are there books about it? Then those are 'scriptures' and it's a religion. Does it recommend doing anything regularly? Then those are 'rituals' and it's a religion. How about just doing anything at all? Then that's a 'commandment' and it's a religion. Does it say something is bad? Then that's 'sin' and it's a religion. Does it hope to improve the world, or worry about the world getting worse? That's an 'eschatology' and it's a religion. Do you disagree with it? Then since you've already determined all the evidence is against it, people must believe it on 'faith' and it's a religion." "Even though it's easy to say that every belief or movement can be analogized to a religion, I still feel an intuition that some are more 'religious' than others." "And if someone says 'I'm fanatical about the environment', I get a whole lot of stereotypes about them -- she probably eats granola, drives a Prius with a dreamcatcher in the window, has a college degree, does yoga. He probably goes hiking a lot, has a beard, takes supplements, is pretty relaxed. If someone says 'I'm fanatical about gun control', I'm stumped. But all of this stuff about stereotypes and art and insularity sounds a little like religion but even more like culture, or at least subculture." "([Yankee Doodle], like all good hymns, uses such archaic language that almost nobody knows what the heck it means)" "[A group of aspects of American culture] gets called American civil religion a lot, but at this point I'm starting to wonder why it should. Maybe instead of accusing every culture of becoming a religion, we should just admit that our current concept of 'religion' actually owes a lot to 'culture'." "But I still think it's unfair to call these communities/cultures 'religions'. 'Religion' is too easy to use as the Worst Argument In The World [see #53 , noncentral fallacy] here. It's supposed to imply all of these other connotations of 'religion' like 'their beliefs are based on magical thinking' and 'they use blind faith instead of reason' and 'instead of coming up with a world-view based on evidence they just played Bible Mad Libs.' If those are the connotations you’ve got with 'religion', then I think the word 'religion' is actively doing harm here, and you should just use 'belief-based community' or 'movement' or whatever."

@136. #rationality
"The authors observe a 'dose-response relationship', which means that the more psychiatric treatment you get, the more likely you are to kill yourself. Now, you're probably asking yourself at this point 'Wait, were they just using perfectly healthy people with no psychiatric problems as a control group?' and the answer is yes. Yes they were. So this study is basically finding that people who get committed to psychiatric hospitals are more likely to be the sort of people who are going to commit suicide than people who do not get committed to psychiatric hospitals. I for one find this result rather reassuring." "The link between murder and previous contact with the police will be strong. For example, previous murderers released from prison have a 1.2% chance of getting arrested for another murder within three years, compared to about a 0.0001% murder rate per three years among the general population. That's a relative risk of 10,000x, which blows Hjorthøj's relative risk of 44x out of the water. The link will be dose-dependent. People who have previously only gotten warnings from the police will be less likely to murder than people who have gotten small fines, who are less likely to murder than people who have gotten probation, who are less likely to murder than people who have gotten short jail sentences, who are less likely to murder than people who have gotten long jail sentences. The link even has a plausible causal mechanism. Contact with the police can seriously disrupt people's lives, making them stressed and anxious and angry and hopeless, all of which are the sort of emotions that predispose someone towards violence. Therefore, the police cause murder? Here are some other links that are non-progressive, strong, dose-dependent, and have plausible causal mechanisms. The link between getting detention and dropping out of school. Therefore, detentions cause students to become demoralized and drop out from school. The link between ice cream sales in a city and heatstroke cases in that city. Therefore, ice cream contains toxic chemicals that cause heatstroke. The link between having lots of bruises and being in an abusive relationship. Therefore, abusers only abuse their victims because they’re angry about how many bruises they have." "This is why the saying is 'correlation doesn't imply causation' and not 'correlation does not imply causation, unless it's really strong correlation, in which case knock yourself out.'" "You can't conclude from an increased murder rate among people with criminal histories that the police cause murder. But the justice system does contribute to murder in its way by sticking hardened criminals together, traumatizing them, and failing to give them enough resources to rebuild their lives. The contribution of the criminal justice system to crime isn't exactly a secret, it's just not accessible with that methodology." "The exact effect of psychiatric care on suicide is a topic worthy of further high-quality research and discussion. But this isn't it."

"It would really really really really bad mind design to allow your own consciously generate-able emotions to feed back into the reinforcement mechanism. ... And over several billion years of evolution, the brain has every incentive to get rid of that behavior if indeed it was ever possible. Imagine a world in which our own thoughts and feelings can be strongly reinforcing. You're a caveman, encountering a saber-toothed tiger. You have two choices. You can either feel fear, which is an unpleasant emotion. Or you can feel happiness, which is a pleasant emotion. First you try feeling fear, but that’s unpleasant! You don’t like fear! The feeling of fear is negatively reinforced and your brain learns to stop feeling it. Then you try happiness! You like happiness! The decision to feel happiness is positively reinforced. Yes, you decide, saber-toothed tigers are wonderful things and you are overjoyed there is one in front of you getting into a pouncing position and licking its lips and ... well, this caveman isn’t going to live very long."

a realisation about how the defining characteristics of a group are only a small subset of all important characteristics "One day I realized that entirely by accident I was fulfilling all the Jewish stereotypes. I'm nerdy, over-educated, good with words, good with money, weird sense of humor, don't get outside much, I like deli sandwiches. And I'm a psychiatrist, which is about the most stereotypically Jewish profession short of maybe stand-up comedian or rabbi." "A disproportionate number of my friends are Jewish, because I meet them at psychiatry conferences or something -- we self-segregate not based on explicit religion but on implicit tribal characteristics. So in the same way, political tribes self-segregate to an impressive extent -- a 1/10^45 extent, I will never tire of hammering in [computed earlier in the article] -- based on their implicit tribal characteristics." and about how the technical meaning of words may not align with their implicit usage to refer to a cultural group "My hunch -- both the Red Tribe [approximately the right-wing, but culturally] and the Blue Tribe [approximately the left-wing, but culturally], for whatever reason, identify 'America' with the Red Tribe. Ask people for typically 'American' things, and you end up with a very Red list of characteristics -- guns, religion, barbecues, American football, NASCAR, cowboys, SUVs, unrestrained capitalism." "[Criticising Fox News more than ISIS] fits my model perfectly. You wouldn't celebrate Osama [bin Laden]'s death, only Thatcher's. And you wouldn’t call ISIS savages, only Fox News. Fox is the outgroup, ISIS is just some random people off in a desert. You hate the outgroup, you don't hate random desert people." the part where the title actually becomes relevant "When a friend of mine heard [Brendan] Eich got fired, she didn't see anything wrong with it. 'I can tolerate anything except intolerance,' she said. 'Intolerance' is starting to look like another one of those words like 'white' and 'American'. 'I can tolerate anything except the outgroup.' Doesn't sound quite so noble now, does it?" "Spending your entire life insulting the other tribe and talking about how terrible they are makes you look, well, tribalistic. It is definitely not high class. So when members of the Blue Tribe [modern American 'left' -- kinda] decide to dedicate their entire life to yelling about how terrible the Red Tribe is, they make sure that instead of saying 'the Red Tribe', they say 'America', or 'white people', or 'straight white men'. That way it's humble self-criticism. They are so interested in justice that they are willing to critique their own beloved side, much as it pains them to do so." cf the law of rationalist irony, old commonplace entry 693 "I should feel bad because I made exactly the mistake I am trying to warn everyone else about, and it wasn't until I was almost done that I noticed." "I had fun writing this article. People do not have fun writing articles savagely criticizing their in-group. People can criticize their in-group, it's not humanly impossible, but it takes nerves of steel, it makes your blood boil, you should sweat blood. It shouldn’t be fun."

@141. 2022-237

@144. #yudkowsky 2007 #rationality
"For every new point of inquiry, for every piece of unseen evidence that you suddenly look at, the expected posterior probability should equal your prior probability. In the microprocess of inquiry, your belief should always be evenly poised to shift in either direction. Not every point may suffice to blow the issue wide open -- to shift belief from 70% to 30% probability -- but if your current belief is 70%, you should be as ready to drop it to 69% as raise it to 71%. You should not think that you know which direction it will go in (on average), because by the laws of probability theory, if you know your destination, you are already there."

@145. bizarre buzzword nonsense from
"The deepest level is kind of hard to explain, but it’s essentially developing & iterating on a new cultural operating system for people to interface with each other in ways that deepen trust and create experiences of collective agency, collective intelligence, and collective consciousness."

a long and painful-to-read part at the beginning about how slow, nasty, and unglamourous aging and death often is "Hospital poetry is notoriously bad. I mean, practically all modern poetry is bad. Modern poetry by complete amateurs could be expected to be even worse. But hospital poetry is in a league all of its own as far as badness goes. When I search 'hospital poetry', Google brings up examples like the following: Pain... searing Belly... throbbing There is no baby. There will be no baby. Endometriosis. I feel bad making fun of it, because it is clearly heartfelt. This is part of the problem with hospital poetry. It is very heartfelt, whereas I think most popular poetry comes from people who have strong emotions but also some distance from them and a little bit of post-processing. And unfortunately doctors, who are on this decades-long quest to prove they are actual people with real feelings and not just arrogant robot-like people in white coats who know a very large number of facts about thyroiditis, just eat this sort of thing up." "Am I calling hospitals hellish? Sure am. It has nothing to do with the decor, which has actually gotten much nicer in your newer hospitals until it's hard to tell them apart from a stylish office building. It's nothing to do with the staff, either -- most doctors and some nurses seem pretty happy and trade banter around the water coolers like everyone else. It's mostly the screams. The screams are coming about 33% from the confused demented old people I mentioned, 33% from people having minor procedures performed without anaesthetics for one or another good reason, and 33% from people who just have very painful diseases (plus 1% from me sitting in the break room looking up examples of hospital poetry for this post)." "[In a hospital] The senses are under constant assault. Smell is the worst. There are some people who can identify different infections by smell. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is supposed to smell fruity. Gardnerella is supposed to smell fishy. Clostridium is supposed to smell like the worst thing you can possibly imagine covered in feces and left to rot on a warm summer day." "I work in a Catholic hospital. People here say the phrase 'culture of life' a lot, as in 'we need to cultivate a culture of life.' They say it almost as often as they say 'patient-centered'. At my hospital orientation, a whole bunch of nuns and executives and people like that got up and told us how we had to do our part to 'cultivate a culture of life.' And now every time I hear that phrase I want to scream. 21st century American hospitals do not need to 'cultivate a culture of life'. We have enough life. We have life up the wazoo. We have more life than we know what to do with. We have life far beyond the point where it becomes a sick caricature of itself. We prolong life until it becomes a sickness, an abomination, a miserable and pathetic flight from death that saps out and mocks everything that made life desirable in the first place. 21st century American hospitals need to cultivate a culture of life the same way that Newcastle needs to cultivate a culture of coal, the same way a man who is burning to death needs to cultivate a culture of fire." a commenter, "Qiaochu Yuan" "I vote that Scott be given all the jobs so he can write about all of them." the comments mention the term "healthspan" for the duration of the subset of lifespan during which one is reasonably healthy

@147. "How Doctors Die" by Ken Murray (a doctor) linked in #146
"Of course, doctors don't want to die; they want to live. But they know enough about modern medicine to know its limits. And they know enough about death to know what all people fear most: dying in pain and dying alone. They've talked about this with their families. They want to be sure, when the time comes, that no heroic measures will happen -- that they will never experience, during their last moments on earth, someone breaking their ribs in an attempt to resuscitate them with CPR (that's what happens if CPR is done right). Almost all medical professionals have seen too much of what we call 'futile care' being performed on people. That's when doctors bring the cutting edge of technology to bear on a grievously ill person near the end of life. The patient will get cut open, perforated with tubes, hooked up to machines, and assaulted with drugs. All of this occurs in the Intensive Care Unit at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars a day. What it buys is misery we would not inflict on a terrorist. I cannot count the number of times fellow physicians have told me, in words that vary only slightly, 'Promise me if you find me like this that you'll kill me.' They mean it. Some medical personnel wear medallions stamped 'NO CODE' to tell physicians not to perform CPR on them. I have even seen it as a tattoo."

@148. and , former linked in comments of
the SRY gene (sex-determining region Y), in humans and some other mammals, encodes a protein which triggers development of the body as male

@149. 2022-238

@150. "Want to learn computer-aided design (CAD)? Play Minecraft" by Tom Cheshire, 2012
"Notch hasn't just built a game. He's tricked 40 million people into learning to use a CAD program." attributed to Cody Sumter

@151. #27 "A Response To Apophemi on Triggers | Slate Star Codex" 2024
"I have been to several yoga classes. The last one I attended consisted of about thirty women, plus me (this was in Ireland; I don't know if American yoga has a different gender balance). We propose two different explanations for this obviously significant result. First, these yoga classes are somehow driving men away. [... proposed solution to that problem] Second, men just don't like yoga as much as women. One could propose a probably hilarious evolutionary genetic explanation for this (how about women being gatherers in the ancestral environment, so they needed lots of flexibility so they could bend down and pick small plants?) but much more likely is just that men and women are socialized differently in a bunch of subtle ways and the interests and values they end up with are more pro-yoga in women and more anti-yoga in men. In this case a yoga class might still benefit by making it super-clear that men are welcome and removing a couple of things that might make men uncomfortable, but short of completely re-ordering society there's not much they can do to get equal gender balance and it shouldn't be held against them that they don't."

@152. excerpt from "Ending Medical Reversal" by Vinayak Prasad and Adam Cifu, 2015
many medical techniques do not really work, but seem reasonable, and are believed to work for a while, leading to their frequent use eventually, in a process known as "medical reversal", an experiment is (often reluctantly) run, which finds that the technique is no better than placebo examples: - flecainide decreases premature ventricular contractions (a bad thing related to cardiac arrest), but increases actual risk of death - atenolol decreases blood pressure, but doesn't actually decrease the main associated risks of hypertension - stents, in the long term, don't help to avoid heart issues - vertebroplasty doesn't help with spine fractures more than placebo - regular mammography doesn't reduce death

@153. #7"> "Protecting Copyright in the Digital World" (Crypto-Gram) by Bruce Schneier, 2001
"Every time I write about the impossibility of effectively protecting digital files on a general-purpose computer, I get responses from people decrying the death of copyright. 'How will authors and artists get paid for their work?' they ask me. Truth be told, I don't know. I feel rather like the physicist who just explained relativity to a group of would-be interstellar travelers, only to be asked: 'How do you expect us to get to the stars, then?' I'm sorry, but I don't know that, either."

@154. quoted in
"Encryptor 4.0 uses a unique in-house developed incremental base shift algorithm. Decryption is practically impossible, even if someone manages to reverse engineer our program to obtain the algorithm, the decryption of a file depends on the exact password (encryption key). Even if someone is guessing the encryption key the file will only be decrypted correctly if the encryption key is 100 percent correct. See the IMPORTANT WARNING on our Web site" oh hey, sounds like you figured out how cryptography is established to work! actual Schneier quotes from same source (which is "Snake Oil" (Crypto-Gram), 1999) "Long noun chains [such as 'incremental base shift algorithm'] don't automatically imply security." "Someone who obviously does not speak the language of cryptography is not conversant with the literature, and is much less likely to have invented something good. It's as if your doctor started talking about 'energy waves and healing vibrations.' You'd worry." "Some companies claim 'military-grade' security. This is a meaningless term. There's no such standard."

"In one of the classics of the Less Wrong Sequences, Eliezer argues that policy debates should not appear one-sided. [ , 2007 #yudkowsky ] College students are pre-selected for 'if they were worse they couldn't get in, if they were better they'd get in somewhere else.' Political debates are pre-selected for 'if it were a stupider idea no one would support it, if it were a better idea everyone would unanimously agree to do it.' We never debate legalizing murder, and we never debate banning glasses. The things we debate are pre-selected to be in a certain range of policy quality. (to give three examples: no one debates banning sunglasses, that is obviously stupid. No one debates banning murder, that is so obviously a good idea that it encounters no objections. People do debate raising the minimum wage, because it has some plausible advantages and some plausible disadvantages. We might be able to squeeze one or two extra utils out of getting the minimum-wage question exactly right, but it's unlikely to matter terribly much.)" "I recently heard a Catholic guy condemn the 'culture of death', which by his telling consisted of abortion, stem cells, euthanasia, and capital punishment. I'm in favor of three of those things, and I avoid a perfect four-out-of-four only on a technicality: I can't support capital punishment until it gets better at sparing the innocent and maybe becomes more cost-effective. My near-unaninimous support for culture-of-death issues seems unlikely to be a coincidence, and indeed it isn't. I have a deep philosophical disagreement with the Catholics here -- they think life is a terminal value, I think life is only valuable insofar as it gives certain goods associated with living. This means from my point of view, the Catholics have a bias in their trade-off arithmetic. They are the equivalent of the anti-Semitic Harvard leadership, who have given me this great gift of trade-off-free students. Just as learning the Harvard leadership is anti-Semitic makes me suddenly want to accept all Jews as a tradeoff-free utility gain, learning that a large portion of the electorate is biased against death means that certain death-related policies can be tradeoff-free utility gains to me." then he explains how lifehacks work parts of this, especially the introduction about college admissions, are reminiscent of #128 (surgeons shouldn't look like surgeons) "I tried to start taking bacopa, but it gave me terrible diarrhea and I had to stop. Another tradeoff! That should just increase its expected psychological benefits!"

@156. and
oral rehydration therapy, invented (or at least advanced) by David Nalin in 1968, consists of the ingestion of a precise mix of water, salt, and sugar to rehydrate from diarrhoea or related conditions i believe this was referenced (without name) in How to Invent Everything by Ryan North, 2018

@157. technical phrasings of ordinary matters can be humourous in how elaborate they are compared to how people might casually speak of the subject
apparently there's a paper (2001) titled "Coitus-induced orgasm stimulates prolactin secretion in healthy subjects" a normal person might call that "Having sex (typically) increases prolactin"

@159. 2022-241

@165. vectors! here's what i know about them
- direction and magnitude - list of numbers, fixed length - complex numbers are like vectors - parametric equations output vectors - i, j, k, unit vectors - dot product and cross product

@166. the right-hand rule of vector cross products:
- orient the base of the hand to point along the first vector - orient the fingers to point along the second vector - thumb points in the direction of the output vector see ../../maths/multivar/right_hand_rule_cross_product.jpg

@168. #multivar uses the convention that the x-direction is depth (positive closer to viewer), y is horizontal, and z is vertical

@169. "Secrets of the lost number walls" by Mathologer, 2022
- start a number wall from the sequence of repeated 1s and an arbitrary number sequence - extend a number wall such that, for any element in the grid, the product of the elements above and below, plus the product of the elements on each side, is equal to the square of the element - rephrased: if the wall has in it abc def ghi then e^2 = b*h + d*f - useful as "oracles" to predict what comes next in a sequence - replace each element a_n in the sequence with a_n - a_{n - 1} * x (polynomial) - extend the grid from there - take the polynomial closest to the inevitable row of zeroes - set equal to zero, solve for the highest-degree term - x^n corresponds to a_n from any starting point (characteristic equation) - a row of zeroes occurs iff the sequence has a linear recurrence formula - these recurrence relations can be far simpler than an explicit formula - zeroes in the wall complicate computation; use a more elaborate formula to handle it (19:00) see also

@170. "Monte Carlo Geometry Processing" by Keenan Crane, 2022
4:44 "To quote Jean-Paul Sartre, 'hell is other people's meshes'." #corrupted-saying the walk-on-spheres stochastic algorithm allows for approximately solving a differential equation (like Laplace equation) from boundary conditions of a geometry the method appears to have been implemented on Shadertoy, such as (by Demofox) the explanation of the shader cites one of the Crane papers cited in the video and that explanation is also a good explanation of the same topic the method (walk-on-spheres) is very analogous to raymarching (sphere tracing) for rendering

@171. 2022-242

@172. contour integral symbol ∮ is represented in latex as \oint

@176. a⃗ U+20D7 COMBINING RIGHT ARROW ABOVE vector hat thing

@178. a bit of an epiphany i had when asked to sign a form saying that i will not hack for evil (where "hack" is used to mean "crack"):
most hacking is done by going thru actions that a system/interface permits (except hardware exploits) these may be very unusual actions, but the system allows it, so hacking requires a subtler definition like "arcane and malicious activity", because just checking whether it's "authorised by the system" will always say "it's fine" this also strengthens the connection between hacking-as-peaceful-eccentric-fun and hacking-as-evil-sneaky-methods: the latter is only differentiated from normal use in that it relies on the methods of the former

@179. 2022-243

@180. "Conlang Critic Episode Two: aUI" by jan Misali, 2016
apparently the language aUI translates "banana" as "one-quantity-above-life-towards"

@182. instead of "parentheses", "brackets", "braces", we can call them various types of "brackets": respectively, "(round brackets)", "[square brackets]", "{curly brackets}", and further "<angle brackets>" and "/slant brackets/" (last one is a #neologism )

@183. notice that the languages Spanish and Portuguese are very similar, and both are similar (but not that similar) to French
notice likewise that Portugal and Spain are right against each other, but France only borders Spain, far from the border between Spain and Portugal might this explain the quantities of language-similarity? #frin linguistic history

@184. #crazy-idea a topologically toroidal variant on the game Boggle
never mind that I don't actually know how Boggle works cf toroidal equivalents of Conway's Game of Life, noughts and crosses, etc

@185. #linalg the row operations of Gaussian elimination in linear equation manipulation:
- swap two rows - scale a row - add to a row the scaled version of another row limiting these operations is important because elementary matrices

@187. 2022-244

apparently Ohio State University trademarked the word "the"

@195. Cade Metz's New York Times article on #scott-alexander
"'They are basically just hippies who talk a lot more about Bayes' theorem than the original hippies,' said Scott Aaronson, a University of Texas professor who has stayed in one of the group houses."

the classification of some males as harmful "nice guys" is misleading and contradictory with other principles of the #139 Blue Tribe those with that description often have good reason for it and should not be dismissed, and their presence explains the "manosphere" "And the people who talk about 'Nice Guys' -- and the people who enable them, praise them, and link to them -- are blurring the already rather thin line between 'feminism' and 'literally Voldemort' EDIT: ARE TOTALLY GREAT, NO NEED TO TAKE THIS ONE SENTENCE OUT OF CONTEXT AND TRY TO SPREAD IT ALL OVER THE INTERNET." "The moral of the story [about Cheng Sheng and the Dazexiang Uprising] is that if you are maximally mean to innocent people, then eventually bad things will happen to you. First, because you have no room to punish people any more for actually hurting you. Second, because people will figure if they're doomed anyway, they can at least get the consolation of feeling like they're doing you some damage on their way down." "When your position commits you to saying 'Love isn't important to humans and we should demand people stop caring about whether or not they have it,' you need to take a really careful look in the mirror -- assuming you even show up in one." "You're seven sections in, and maybe you thought you were going to get through an entire SSC post without a bunch of statistics. Ha ha ha ha ha."

and they are due to differences in interest between gender (males like things, females like people) cf #151 about yoga

the scientific method, at least as society implements it, is broken

@199. #rationality
a trapped prior is a belief that cannot be changed under any normal circumstances (such as, harmfully often, political opinions) because the believer is very close to certain and their rationality is imperfect, so evidence against does not change the opinion at all it is an explanation of confirmation bias

statements of widely-accepted claims, styled as if they are conspiracy theories

@201. 2022-245

@204. a book by Carl Linderholm (1972) which uses absurd proofs for simple things, cf #72

@208. a catchy-for-me "money motto" made as part of a #finance class
"Prioritise purchases by their importance as needs and long-term benefit, bounding above by income or perhaps much less."

@211. "Seven Dimensions (#SoME2 entry)" by Kieran Borovac, 2022
describes a method of dimensional analysis using seven-dimensional vectors, which makes matrices isomorphic to unit-system conversion an example of the generality of vector spaces

@212. 2022-248

@214. 2022-249

@215. #ap-lang discusses "rhetorical situation", aka "rhetorical occasion" or "rhetorical context"
attributes of situation: - speaker/writer - audience - subject - context these intersect to make new attributes: - writer + audience = purpose (what) - writer + subject = exigence (motive for writing about topic, why) - subject + audience = genre (how) this influences rhetorical choices of the message, and we are to understand how goals of this include "reading between the lines" to recognise deceit and such

@216. #rationality
some advice is good for some people and bad for others by adjusting them away from or towards a harmful extreme that people are already near such an extreme may tempt them to seek advice pushing them further towards it therefore, in cases of advice with benefit that varies with respect to user, reverse the advice: given that you saw it, you were probably tempted to it in a vicious cycle, which you should break out of

@220. #crazy-idea Morse code for IPA #phonology
i thought of using X-SAMPA (ASCII representation of IPA), but that requires case distinctions, which Morse code doesn't have

@228. 2022-250

@235. #multivar distance between pairs of simple geometric objects
- point to point: magnitude of point-difference vector - point to line (p to line containing q, with direction a): `abs(q + a * ((p - q) . a) / abs(a) - p)` - point to plane (q to plane containing p, with normal n): `abs((q - p) * ((q - p) . n) / abs(n))` - line to line: construct a plane containing one line and parallel to the other, then compute line-to-plane - line to plane: sample a point from the line and compute point-to-plane (unless intersecting) - plane to plane: sample a point from one plane and compute point-to-plane (unless intersecting) general technique: sample a thing, check if what sample you use matters, and reduce the sample

@236. an enumeration of the ways to nest some number of pairs of brackets (cf #182), which match the Catalan numbers
() ()(), (()) ()()(), ()(()), (())(), (()()), ((())) ()()()(), ()()(()), ()(())(), (())()(), (())(()), ()(()()), ()((())), (()())(), ((()))(), (()()()), ((()())), ((())()), (()(())), (((())))

@239. 2022-251

@242. #psychology #rationality the human mind is corrupted, in that it seeks beauty as an indicator of a condition of the world to favour, but in many cases, people please themselves by going to beautiful places, but the beauty would exist even if they weren't there, so this doesn't really help
then again, i'm just misinterpreting things: the desire for beauty is probably not a utility function

@243. #frin acronymises "Further Research Is Needed"

@244. do the properties of power series generalise to matrices? #frin
e.g. in the real numbers (and complex numbers), within a limited radius, 1 + x + x^2 + x^3 + ... converges to /(1 - x) can we use a matrix for x and converge to (I - x)^-1 (where I is the identity matrix)? furthermore: how do the radii of convergence transfer to the matrix domain? do we use determinants as a magnitude operation? cf #99 about the same power series, discussing an unrelated matter

@249. Walsh functions are a thing that exist
similar to sinusoids, a properly constructed set of them is an orthonormal basis of function-space (cf #110), but for discrete functions hence the corresponding Walsh transform, or Hadamard transform, analogous to the Fourier transform you'll notice the familiar name Hadamard here, which i presume is the same one for whom the Hadamard gate in quantum computing is named

@250. 2022-252

@252. the logical implication operator has similar properties to less-than-or-equal (leq), and thus forms a partial ordering over the poset of logical propositions
logical implication operator is ⇒ U+21D2 Rightwards Double Arrow

@255. #linalg if the higher-dimensional equivalents of a plane from 2D are called "hyperplanes", then a line (or a point) is a "hypoplane" #neologism #destroyed-by-logic

@261. bizarre quote from my #linalg textbook ("Linear Algebra and Its Applications" by David Lay, third edition, 2006), start of chapter 3
"In Cauchy's day, when life was simple and matrices were small, ..."

@262. some things i'm wondering about in maths, written down so that i may stop thinking about them: #frin
- boolean correlation (an already-solved problem) - inverse of xor/symmetric difference operation (things are their own inverse) - algebraic properties of the logical poset (see Boolean algebra, as in #abstract-algebra, and related concepts)

@267. 2022-254

@268. "Google’s New AI: Fly INTO Photos! 🐦" by Karoly-Zsolnai Feher (Two Minute Papers), 2022
the Second Law of Papers says that everything is connected; i.e. techniques get combined in new research

@269. "Effective Flashcard Writing: Decomposing half a chapter of Thinking, Fast and Slow" by #soren-bjornstad 2022
points out the benefit of putting things in your own words (17:48): - same effort if you're retyping manually anyway (as i am now!) - connects knowledge to that which exists, which is Basically How All Memory Works - you can only rephrase if you understand, cf MemoriseAfterUnderstanding in #quinery presents the use of "pick an example" flashcards (30:24): ask the reviewer for an example, but don't limit them; show a list of possible good examples on the back and let the compare comments on the need (50:25), when writing cloze cards (which i do), to balance occluding too much and too little: - occlude too much and there are multiple objectively correct answers you might generate, rather than the intended one, and you erroneously fail reviews - occlude too little and the answer is obvious from the rest of the card - occlude really too little, or in weird ways, and you switch to "lexical processing" where you fill in words by what makes sense instead of what matters for the concepts remarks that creating flashcards has never become a System 1 (easy) task for him (1:14:12), despite "10-ish years" of practice, suggesting that he determines a lot of effort to be necessary for good flashcards, probably much more than what i apply also brings up "always/sometimes/never" (A/S/N) card format

@270. #regexp for (video, minute:second)timestamps: /[1-5]?[0-9]:[0-5][0-9]/

@272. #javascript numbers (primitive type) have constructor Number, which has a mysterious empty Number.prototype field, but you can assign an object to that prototype and fill it with methods, and call the methods on numbers
TODO: apply this technique to the RTensor implementation (done) as for that mysterious initial value, it demonstrates the craziness of JavaScript's type system: ```js typeof Number.prototype // "object" Number.prototype == null // false Number.prototype == undefined // false Number.prototype == "" // true Number.prototype == [] // false [] == "" // true, so == fails transitivity Object.keys(Number.prototype) // [] ```

@273. 2022-255

@274. the isomorphism between set theory and boolean logic arises thru characteristic functions:
- union is logical or of characteristic functions - intersection is logical and of characteristic functions - symmetric difference is logical xor of characteristic functions - negation is logical not of characteristic function

@277. today is 8-bit day, the 255th day of the year, -09-12

@280. 2022-256

@284. i observe that #regexp and IPA #phonology both use /slant brackets/ #182
is there anything important about this? probably not

@287. 2022-257

@289. some maths puns (esp. #abstract-algebra) (that i came up with): #maths-humour
- a fan is a set of planes that share a line, but a plane corresponds to a bivector, and bivectors are a type of blade, so a fan is a set of blades - you can't make a lattice (algebraic structure) out of a lattice (physical object), because lattices (physical) are 2-dimensional and have no natural ordering - you can't order a set with more than 10 elements, because then it would be a totally ordered set, or a toset (toe-set)

@291. 2022-258

@297. "Mathematicians Writing Music Be Like" by youtube user qncubed3, 2022 #destroyed-by-logic
a comedic abuse of the similarities between music and mathematical notation

@298. "Topological Spaces: Introduction & Axioms" by youtube user qncubed3, 2021
makes a clever #analogy about topological spaces: - set without topology = bag of sand (points can arbitrarily shuffle around whilst satisfying definitions) - set with topology = jelly (points can move only so long as they remain adjacent to some other given points) - set with metric = biscuit (points are fixed in place, except for rotations of the whole space) explains the significance of topologies: the neighbourhoods around points (defined based on open sets) define how parts of the shape connect to each other, such as the distinction between a cylinder and Mobius strip hence why we view topology as "rubber-sheet geometry" and fail to distinguish coffee mugs and donuts: a topology without a metric only defines what points should be near what other points, but not the exact shape

@299. about open sets vs neighbourhoods in topology, quoting "Abelian Categories" by Peter Freyd (2003)
"If topology were publicly defined as the study of families of sets closed under finite intersection and infinite unions a serious disservice would be perpetrated on embryonic students of topology. The mathematical correctness of such a definition reveals nothing about topology except that its basic axioms can be made quite simple. And with category theory we are confronted with the same pedagogical problem. ... A better (albeit not perfect) description of topology is that it is the study of continuous maps; and category theory is likewise better described as the theory of functors. Both descriptions are logically inadmissible as initial definitions, but they more accurately reflect both the present and the historical motivations of the subjects."

@300. 2022-259
in base 6 (seximal), that's 1111 happy seximal day!

@301. #scott-alexander 2022
"An academic once asked me if I was writing a book. I said no, I was able to communicate just fine by blogging. He looked at me like I was a moron, and explained that writing a book isn't about communicating ideas. Writing a book is an excuse to have a public relations campaign. If you write a book, you can hire a publicist. They can pitch you to talk shows as So-And-So, Author Of An Upcoming Book. Or to journalists looking for news: 'How about reporting on how this guy just published a book?' They can make your book's title trend on Twitter. Fancy people will start talking about you at parties. Ted will ask you to give one of his talks. Senators will invite you to testify before Congress. The book itself can be lorem ipsum text for all anybody cares. It is a ritual object used to power a media blitz that burns a paragraph or so of text into the collective consciousness." i.e. books are a placebo

@305. 2022-261

@307. a pangram in #toki-pona
waso jaki li pan mute

@308. "Conlang Critic Episode Twelve: Toki Pona" by jan Misali, 2017
(3:45) proposes a Greek-alphabet orthography for #toki-pona the pangram #307 in that orthography βασο γακι λι παν μυτε it uses β (beta) for /w/, whilst beta is actually pronounced /v/ (modern Greek), and γ (gamma) for /j/, but gamma is pronounced a tad differently #phonology

@309. #javascript to compress an SVG file text exported from #desmos
b = a.replace(/(?<=\d+\.\d{2})\d+/g, "") c = b.replace(/ paint-order="stroke fill markers"/g, "")

@310. just crashed Caret editor trying to replace all instances of paint-order="stroke fill markers" in a #desmos SVG #oops #personal-experience

@311. 2022-262

@315. #linalg in the definitions of the type of a function (of the form f : A -> B), some notation:
- surjection is indicated with f : A ->> B - injection is indicated with f : A /-> B (little curl on the start of the arrow) - bijection is indicated with f : A /->> B (both indicators) or f : A ⭇ B (tilde on the arrow)

@316. #linalg surjection and injection are directly analogous to consistency and uniqueness of solutions to equations
only square matrices can biject a matrix surjecting is equivalent to the columns spanning the whole conceivable space a matrix injecting is equivalent to the columns being linearly independent a linear transformation injecting is equivalent to the transformation's kernel being only the zero-vector (TODO: prove the darn thing) everything is connected, cf #268

@318. make any direction/command more dramatic by suffixing it with "..., child!"
e.g. "remember your vector hats, child!"

@321. 2022-263

@323. turns out i skipped over note-numbers 323 thru 332, writing them in as empty now










@334. Canvas (web-based school resource/LMS) consumes vast amounts of CPU time on #chromebook , draining battery life
so to make the battery last longer, only keep canvas open when really necessary

@337. 2022-264

@340. maths puns: #maths-humour
- melting water is an isomorphic (ice-o-morph-ic) operation - you can do a particular linear transformation on wool-carrying animals: shearing sheep

@341. Max Planck lived for about 5.24*10^52 Planck time-units

@343. #chromebook battery power efficiency, in my recent experience, varies from 3 to 10 minutes per percentage-point
cf #334

@347. 2022-265

@354. maths pun: how do you drown out music made with primitive drums? #maths-humour
exponentiation (inverse of logarithms/log-rhythms)

@356. 2022-266

@357. saw a humourous shirt "I'm not arguing; I'm just explaining why I'm right"
a similarly-formed joke: "I'm not making a pun; I'm just exploiting similarities between ultimately distinct words in an attempt at contrived humour"

@360. how to apply #linalg (matrix-vector equations and whatever) to various practical fields:
- nutrition: construct matrix where columns correspond to foods and rows correspond to nutrients, then solve A*x = b where b is the required nutrients and x is the balanced diet - population/migration: construct (square) matrix where columns correspond to places-to-live and rows correspond to places-to-move-to, where the elements of each column add to 1, and multiply populations-vector x by matrix A to get A*x, populations at a later time-step - chemistry/reactions: construct matrix where columns correspond to reactant or product compounds and rows correspond to component elements (negate columns for products), and solve homogeneous equation A*x = 0 to get vector x of numbers of instances of compounds - transition networks/Markov chains (ish): construct matrix where columns correspond to edges in the graph and rows corresponding to nodes in the graph, where elements correspond to change in the quantity at a node from objects moving along the edge, and solve equation A*x = b where b is the external input and outputs on nodes #graph-theory - economics (Leontief input-output model): construct (square) matrix where columns correspond to sectors giving resources and rows correspond to sectors consuming resources, and solve (1 - A)*x = 0 (where 1 is the identity matrix)

@361. the derivative of product logarithm (Lambert W function), inverse of x*^x, cf #349:
y = W(x) y*^y = x (y' / y + y') * y*^y = 1 = y' * (/y + 1) * y*^y y' = /((/y + 1) * y*^y) = /((/y + 1) * x) = /((/W(x) + 1) * x)

@364. 2022-268

@365. 2022-271

@368. the Catalan numbers #160 #236
1, 1, 2, 5, 14, 42, 132, 429, 1430, 4862, 16796 "Deutsch and Sagan prove the Catalan number C_n is odd if and only if n = 2^a - 1 for some nonnegative integer a. Lin proves for every odd Catalan number C_n, we have C_n == 1 (mod 4). - Jonathan Vos Post, Dec 09 2010"

@370. "Le Grand oral : Ce qui vous attend" 2022 Baccalaureat

@371. attributed to Ian Stewart's "Does God play dice?"
"To criticize mathematics for its abstraction is to miss the point entirely. Abstraction is what makes mathematics work. If you concentrate too closely on too limited an application of a mathematical idea, you rob the mathematician of his most important tools: analogy, generality, and simplicity."

@372. 2022-272

@375. from (Anneke, quoted in) "The Men We Carry In Our Minds" by Scott Russell Sanders, 1984
"I wouldn't be a man for anything. It's much easier being the victim. All the victim has to do is break free. The persecutor has to live with his past."

@376. from "The 'F Word'" by Firoozeh Dumas, 2003
"My name, Firoozeh, chosen by my mother, means 'Turquoise' in Persian. In America, it means 'Unpronounceable' or 'I'm Not Going to Talk to You Because I Cannot Possibly Learn Your Name and I Just Don't Want to Have to Ask You Again and Again Because You'll Think I'm Dumb or You Might Get Upset or Something.' My father, incidentally, had wanted to name me Sara. I do wish he had won that argument"

@379. at constant (and very low) computation load, increasing brightness appears, counterintuitively, to decrease battery power consumption on the #chromebook

@388. #chromebook Chrome OS interface got radically updated at some point in the past couple days

@392. 2022-275

@393. "20 Mechanical Principles combined in a Useless Lego Machine" by Brick Experiment Channel, 2022
an excellent reference for various mechanical/engineering techniques to achieve particular motion patterns techniques used: - Schmidt coupling - Constant-velocity joint (CV joint) - Universal joint - Bevel gears - Slider-crank linkage - Sun and planet gear - Scotch Yoke - Chebyshev Lambda Linkage - Chain drive - Belt drive - Constant-mesh gearbox - Oscillating direction changer - Torque limiter (Lego clutch) - Winch - Rack and pinion - Offset gears - Uni-directional drive - Camshaft - Intermittent mechanism - Worm gear

@394. "How to Take the Factorial of Any Number" by Lines That Connect, 2022
derives the formula fact(z) = lim(N, inf, N^z * product[(k = 1), N, k / (k + z)]) to continuously extend factorial

@397. 2022-276

@400. Robert Munafo's HyperCalc (as used in #396) is implemented with "level-index arithmetic", which represents numbers as power towers (augmented tetration), storing the height of the tower (constant exponent base) and the number at the "top"

@405. 2022-277

@409. "Mansa Musa and Islam in Africa: Crash Course World History #16" by Crash Course
3:40 "Pastoral North Africans called Berbers had long traded with West Africans, with the Berbers offering salt in exchange for West African gold. That may seem like a bad deal, until you consider that without salt, we die, whereas without gold, we only have to face the universe's depraved indifference to us without the benefit of metallic adornment. That went to an ominous place quickly." #destroyed-by-logic

@412. 2022-279

@414. "Percolation: a Mathematical Phase Transition" by Caio Alves, Aranka Hruskova, and Vilas Winstein, 2022
inspired by this, i implemented the process described in desmos a problem arose in implementation: when spreading a colour-group between connected adjacent nodes, adjacent nodes would swap groups in an alternating, unhelpful pattern fix: instead of picking the neighbour to sample based on some importance-ordering of the edges, pick the neigbour by a property that will favour some groups over others (e.g. maximum of group-index)

@416. 2022-282

@417. "history of the entire world, i guess" by Bill Wurtz, 2017

@418. 2022-285

@419. "CTI Summit Keynote - Cliff Stoll - (Still) Stalking the Wily Hacker" by SANS Digital Forensics, 2017
(18:51) "Our hardware budget: the total hardware and software budget for this was zero ... well ... corrected for inflation, zero million dollars!" #corrupted-saying the rest of the video is funny, in the classic style of Cliff Stoll (who also appears on Numberphile) (45:55) "Wouldn't it be cool to win at chess? Wouldn't it be absolutely sweet to always win at chess? Would it not be wonderful to always win at chess? [presents document 'Ten Tips to Winning Chess' by Arthur Pisguier, 1990] [skip to 47:15] Here's a grandmaster who's gonna teach you how to always win at chess! And all you need to know is rule number 2! Is that cool or what? You wanna win at chess: 'Make the best possible move.'" #destroyed-by-logic

@421. 2022-286


@425. 2022-287

@427. 2022-292

@428. "Optimistic Nihilism" by Kurzgesagt, 2017
(2:43) "Close your eyes. Count to 1. That's how long forever feels." #corrupted-saying

@429. #linalg there is a recursive algorithm to invert block-partitioned matrices which are nonzero below the main diagonal (upper triangular)
in particular, if A = ((a, b), (0, d)) where a, b, d may be matrices and 0 may be the zero-matrix as appropriate, then A^-1 = ((a^-1, -(a^-1)*b*(d^-1)), (0, d^-1)) computational complexity analysis: for an n-by-n matrix (where n = 2^(2\n)), where g(n) is the cost of multiplying two n-by-n matrices f(n) = 2*f(n / 2) + 2*g(n / 2) f(1) = 1 f(n) = 2*f(n / 2) + 2*(n / 2)^2.8 = 2*f(n / 2) + 0.3*n^2.8 f(n) ~= 3^-/n see

@430. 2022-293

@431. #crazy-idea more powerful equivalent of a thesaurus: application in which one searches for words and sees a field around the given words of semantically related words (not just synonyms), as by word2vec or similar
the user should be able to see what words are related to a set of multiple words ideally, extend this to include phrases rather than just words update 2022-317: has a video for "imagining what a color picker for words could look like" and has interesting replies

@432. "Notes Toward a Pragmatics-Based Linguistics" by Peter Schorer, 2019

@433. "Bidirectional Transformations: A Cross-Discipline Perspective" by Czarnecki, Foster, Hu, et al, 2008 a lens is a transformation from an input space to an output space with a weird sort of semi-inverse to handle that the output space contains less information than the input the semi-inverse takes as input an output space element and an input space element, returning an alteration of the input space element to be consistent with the output element keyword: consistency

@435. "What Is The Resolution Of The Eye?" by Vsauce (Michael Stevens), 2014
rather than answering the question, he mostly rambles about the limitations and misguidedness of the question cf #434 for experimental results

@436. 2022-294

@440. #lang-fr
"Circumflexes in French generally stem from Latin and Old French roots where an s has been elided. For example, goûter is from the Old French gouster. However the circumflex does not change the pronunciation of most words containing it when used on the letters i and u, making it 'obsolete', according to the reforms. Therefore it has been removed from nearly all words that contain it. It is kept in cases where it does indicate different pronunciation, as in jeûne (pronounced differently from jeune), and where it distinguishes between two homophones: that is, the masculine singular (but not the feminine or plurals) of the adjectives dû, mûr, and sûr (to distinguish them from the words du, mur, and sur), and the forms of the verb croitre that could be mistaken for parallel forms of the verb croire without a circumflex." "Discours sur les prix littéraires et l’état de la langue 1990" ("Speech on Literary Awards and the State of the Language 1990") by Maurice Druon, 1990 confirms that there was a spelling reform in 1990, tho it does not give the details

@441. some fun with DeepL machine translation (English to #lang-fr) to check how well it understands modern slang and its context requirements - "Your political opinions are very based" goes to "... sont très basées" or "... sont très fondées"; both words are based (haha) on the literal, typical meaning of "based" - "red-pilled" goes to "à bec rouge" (at red mouth? weird) or with "col" (neck, also weird) - "based and red-pilled" (adding some context) goes to "basés et à la tête rouge" ("based (literally) and at the red head") - "political opinions are very based and red-pilled" goes to "... sont très fondées et à la limite de la légalité" ("based (literally) and at the limits of the law") - "skill issue" goes to "J'ai un problème de compétence" (very literal, but the slang is very literal anyway) - "Nathan is very cracked at maths." goes to "Nathan est très doué en maths.", where "doué" means "talented", as the slang intended - "In abstract algebra, the ideal in a ring (such as the even numbers in the integers) is analogous to a subgroup." (trying to give as much abstract algebra context as possible) goes to "... l'idéal d'un anneau ... un sous-groupe." ("anneau" corresponds to the typical meanings of "ring", and is the title of the relevant Francais Wikipedia article)

@442. #crazy-idea make your code readable by making the required variable name length some increasing function of the scope for which the variable is relevant

@445. #neologism "anti-ethos", deliberate statements on the unreliability of the speaker

@446. 2022-297

@447. a resolution to a biology question
why do cloned organisms age (have damaged telomeres) starting from the age of the clone-source, but the equivalent does not happen with "natural" gamete-based reproduction? answer: telomeres can be repaired by telomerase, which is active in gametes but not somatic cells

@448. 2022-298

@449. how many bounded entire functions (globally holomorphic) does it take to change a lightbulb?
they can't do that, because by Liouville's theorem, they can't change at all #maths-humour

@454. PlanetMath, a collection of documents about maths (wow)

@455. #crazy-idea clap with hands in opposite orientation, forming straight line segment of forearms and hands in the middle

@458. 2022-299

@462. a recursive O(n^3) matrix determinant formula (kinda)
row-reduction on the 2x2 matrix ((a, b), (c, d)) leads to the conclusion that it is invertible iff a*d - b*c is invertible (for scalars, nonzero) for larger matrices (of size (n+1)-by-(n+1)): partition into n-by-n matrix on upper left, column vector on upper right, row vector on lower left, and scalar on lower right apply the a*d - b*c formula for 2x2 to that block matrix: sizes match such that the result is an n-by-n matrix the original matrix is invertible iff that resulting smaller matrix is invertible thus, recurse by taking this pseudo-determinant (pseudodet) until the output is a scalar: the zero/nonzero check will work the same as the proper determinant, altho the exact value may be different

@466. 2022-300

@470. #neologism repurpose "Lindy" (back-formation from "Lindy effect") as an adjective (having lasted for a long time and being expected to last for a while longer because of its inherent attributes -- already in use, i believe) and as a verb (to challenge a person/institution/technology/ideology/etc to test its fragility and make its lifespan reflect its fragility or antifragility)

@474. 2022-301

@478. 2022-303

@481. 2022-304

@482. "i know it when i see it" or "you know it when you see it", as a description of pornography, comes from the case Jacobellis v Ohio, spoken by Potter Stewart

@485. Wikipedia uses the term "rhetorical mode" to refer to what i call DocumentNature in #quinery the article provides the same trichotomy as i do, and adds "description" in addition to narration (NarrativeNature), exposition (InformativeNature), and argumentation (ArgumentativeNature)

@489. the all-potato diet
- commentary on feelings of hunger - difficulty with hunger and desire for variety - cooking lots of potatoes is tedious "You may want to plan a response for when the cashier asks just what the hell you're doing. I recommend something confusing and ominous like 'in-laws' or 'raccoon trouble'." "Now, I’m not particularly well-read on weight loss and diets, even by the loose standards of pseudonymous internet autodidacts." "Now, these [criticising doctors] were random specialists, and they often gave incorrect reasons (e.g. that potatoes have no protein). I think it's probably fine for a few weeks. But still: Everyone seems to agree that it's most healthy to eat a varied diet and a single ingredient is not varied. You can't eat potatoes forever."

@490. Matt Lakeman's 2021 review of "The Shadow of the Sun" by Ryszard Kapuscinski, 2001
Kapuscinski was Polish and explored and wrote about Africa

@491. 2022-305

@495. 2022-306

@497. consider the Aesopian "sour grapes": person wants thing, realises thing is hard, then stops wanting thing (or acts as if they don't want thing)
thus, "reverse sour grapes" (or "sweet grapes" #neologism): person doesn't want thing (doesn't oppose, just doesn't really care), realises thing is easy, then starts wanting thing thus, "initially sour grapes" (or "smelly grapes"): person doesn't want thing (doesn't oppose, just doesn't really care), realises thing is hard, then feels vindicated for not wanting thing

@503. "I can't ride a bike. How fast can Mike Boyd teach me?" by Tom Scott, 2021
7:21 Boyd: "He's got balls. This guy's got balls." Scott: "I'm very aware of that, thanks to the saddle!" #corrupted-saying

@504. "How I Learned Bunnyhops in 17 Days" by Mike Boyd, 2021
5:34 "I'm always telling people: don't train when you're hungry and you've had no sleep, because the results will be crap. So what do I do? Train when I'm starving and had about three hours of sleep. And the results are crap." #destroyed-by-logic

@505. 2022-307

@506. Russian theory of inventive problem solving, based around 40 principles

@508. 2022-308

@509. the five stages of bad respiratory illness (joke on five stages of grief)
1. denial: "oh, it's just a little cough" 2. anger: "do i really have to stay out of school? i'm gonna miss so much" 3. bargaining: "i'll come back the next day. i only need one day, right?" 4. depression: "darn, now i have to catch up with all this homework" 5. acceptance: "healthy again, going back to normal, yay"

@513. #crazy-idea modify speech-to-text algorithms by giving them a context/topic input, which indicates what words and phrases would be more common, and thus influence its preferences for how to transcribe ambiguous words
e.g. unless the context was something like "architecture", ['ən] should be interpreted as "salient" ['seɪ.li.ɪnt] rather than "ceiling" ['si.ə.lɪŋ] or if the context is maths, when interpreting [dɪs'kɹit], present "discrete" rather than "discreet"

@517. 2022-310

@518. when conducting a survey/scored multiple choice test, longer is better (more accurate result) for a less obvious reason:
with a short test, it is easy for the taker to simultaneously comprehend the role, contribution, and interaction between the questions, and therefore skew their answers towards a particular result (intentionally or not); longer tests (assuming the surveyed person goes thru it linearly) only let them focus on the current question and a few around it, and they do not think enough about the big picture to bias answers, unless they're very deliberate, in which case you wouldn't get good data from them anyway (this is still significant because you can get a lot of accidental bias in the manner i described, e.g. in a test with a rating for each of a few variables and a score based on their sum, where the taker has an implicit expectation of the vague magnitude of the result)

@520. "1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34,35" (counting) by Vsauce (Michael Stevens), 2015
topics covered: - verbal counting records - "lonely" videos with no views - logarithmic properties of human perception (with many technical mistakes, but gets the general idea) - rapid visual counting by subitizing/subitising and the approximate number system - #psychology development of visual counting at young ages - scale of the universe

@523. "watch this if you’re avoiding work" by Answer in Progress (Taha Khan), 2022
10:10 "Sometimes working isn't about brute-forcing all the tasks that you have to do in the day. Sometimes it's about pacing yourself, getting rest, and eating those tiny, delicious frogs" #corrupted-saying

@524. 2022-313

@529. 2022-314 happy pi day!

@535. 2022-315

@541. 2022-318

@543. "There's Something Wrong With Suburbia (The Orange Pill)" by Not Just Bikes, 2022
a parody of the famous blue pill/red pill scene from The Matrix #corrupted-saying "Unfortunately, nobody can be told what the solution [to automobile dependence] is. You have to see it for yourself. This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill: the story ends, you wake up in your suburb and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the orange pill: you stay in the Netherlands, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes."

@547. various online sources describe the distinction between "computer programmer" and "software developer" as follows:
programmers work on the small-scale specialised programming, whilst developers oversee development and planning on a larger scale and may or may not do much actual programming

@550. 2022-319

@554. 2022-320

@557. #unintentional-humour
"Risk factors for video game addiction include: - Male - Psychopathologies (e.g. ADHD or MDD) - Social anxiety"

@561. based on "dyslexia", coin by analogy #neologism "eulexia" /juˈlεə/ (condition of being unusually skilled with reading and words) and "merolexia" (condition of being worse-than-average, but not distinctly terrible as in dyslexia, with reading and words)

@562. Wikipedia documents addiction to Wikipedia

@564. 2022-321

@569. 2022-322

@570. it appears that quantities with units, such as "1 metre", are elements of ℝ[m], based on adjoining the unit to real numbers
logarithms and exponents as such arise naturally, which will include irreducible logarithms of the unit variables

@571. 2022-324

@572. turns out that HedgeDoc is a very good Markdown editor/renderer and includes LaTeX-style maths

@573. 2022-325

@575. "history of japan" by Bill Wurtz, 2016, cf #417

@577. 2022-326

@578. some confusion from #fot: the moon apparently has a greater contribution to the tides than the sun, but it intuitively seems that the sun should have a greater gravitational force on Earth
WolframAlpha confirms this (the sun provides the stronger force by a factor of ~175), so why should the moon have a greater effect? #frin answer: the tides come not from sheer gravitational magnitude but from variation in gravity, and since the moon is closer, its gravity on the earth varies more over the nearer distances, mostly balancing the overall difference in strength

@581. when using room light status as an indicator of human presence, take into account that there may be light sources besides the room lights; there may be humans present (and active) but lights off because they get light from outside sources
keyword: smart home

@582. "On proof and progress in mathematics" by William Thurston, 1994
"Could the difficulty in giving a good direct definition of mathematics be an essential one, indicating that mathematics has an essential recursive quality? Along these lines we might say that mathematics is the smallest subject satisfying the following: - Mathematics includes the natural numbers and plane and solid geometry. - Mathematics is that which mathematicians study. - Mathematicians are those humans who advance human understanding of mathematics." "People have very different ways of understanding particular pieces of mathematics. To illustrate this, it is best to take an example that practicing mathematicians understand in multiple ways, but that we see our students struggling with. The derivative of a function fits well. The derivative can be thought of as [any of seven given interpretations]. This is a list of different ways of thinking about or conceiving of the derivative, rather than a list of different logical definitions. Unless great efforts are made to maintain the tone and flavor of the original human insights, the differences start to evaporate as soon as the mental concepts are translated into precise, formal and explicit definitions. ... We may think we know all there is to say about a certain subject, but new insights are around the corner. Furthermore, one person’s clear mental image is another person’s intimidation: [crazy topological definition of derivative]"

@584. answer to "Different ways of thinking about the derivative" on MathOverflow, 2010 citing "The Derivative of a Regular Type is its Type of One-Hole Contexts" by Conor McBride, presumably between 2000 and 2010 presents an overwhelmingly brilliant/mindblowing application of derivatives to type theory/set theory: view set union as addition and concatenation as multiplication, consistent with the usage of the terms "sum type" and "product type", and then a type defined in terms of another type is a familiar symbolic expresion (and hence a function, kinda) of that type natural numbers in these expressions correspond to a type consisting of any of that many abstract objects, so 0 is the bottom type/empty type and 1 is the unit type examples: - a type of either an object of type X or a 3-element tuple (X,X,Y) is X + X^2*Y - a list, recursively, is L(X) = 1 + X*L(X) -- either nothing (the unit type) - a list, intuitively, is L(X) = 1 + X + X^2 + X^3 + etc -- tuples of n X-elements for any n = 0, 1, 2, 3, etc (this also arises from the recursive definition by a reverse Horner's method/recursive expansion) - a map/dictionary is M(K, V) = 1 + K*V*M(K, V) or M(K, V) = 1 + K*V + K^2*V^2 + etc (we also need a constraint that the Ks used are unique, but that's not terribly important) tho subtraction and division don't make much sense for sets, we may equate the power series for lists/dictionaries to /(1 - X) and /(1 - K*V), respectively now for derivatives: the derivative of a type, with respect to X, is that type, with an object of type X omitted somewhere in its construction ("having a hole") - derivative wrt X of X + X^2*Y is 1 + 2*X*Y -- removing X from X gives nothing (unit type), and removing an X from (X,X,Y) gives either (X,_,Y) or (_,X,Y), and we need a 2-type to indicate which - derivative wrt X of /(1 - X) is /(1 - X)^2 = (/(1 - X))^2 -- a list with one element omitted is two lists, with the separation into two lists implying where the omission is - derivative wrt K of /(1 - K*V) is V/(1 - K*V)^2 = V*(/(1 - K*V))^2 -- a dictionary with one key removed is two dictionaries, with a value between them (should have just one dictionary, because dictionaries are unordered, but i included ordering in the symbolic construction of the dictionary) other answers give more views of the derivative, but this was mindblowing enough for today

@585. answer to "What's a mathematician to do?" on MathOverflow, 2010
quotes Richard Feynman on theoretical physics answers to the question mostly boil down to one of - just keep studying, you'll discover something new, even if you don't think you're that good - a lot of maths is about communication and clarification rather than invention and proof another answer from Joe Silverman: "I think the difficulty [with determining the significance of one's research] is that after working hard on a problem for a year or two and making enough progress to write a paper, one understands the problem so well that everything that one can prove seems trivial, while everything that's left undone seems hopeless."

@587. "On Consensus and Humming in the IETF" (RFC 7282) by Pete Resnick, 2014
describes the "rough consensus" procedure in IETF decision-making, which includes "humming" in place of voting

@588. #neologism repurpose "crux" as a verb, meaning "make, with a given thing as the crux", as in "i cruxed my multiplicative closure proof with induction" ("on" can go in place of "with" if you like)

@589. elaboration on #584: more algebraic type theory -- prior art is obscure (TODO: make a serious write-up?)
an unordered set Set<T> with an object of type T removed is just another Set<T>; so d/dT Set<T> = Set<T>, making Set analogous to the exponential function (by being its own derivative) other interpretations of the matter: - Set<T> = Bool^abs(T), that is, since a set corresponds to a characteristic function, which is a list of booleans for each plausible element (taken from the type), there's an exponential here (base 2) - Set<T> is like List<T> in that it can be any of 1 (unit type), T (one element), T^2 (two elements), etc, but tuples like T^2 implicitly order the elements, which is specifically irrelevant in sets -- aligning with Set<T> = ^T, we may consider the unordering as removing permutation information, or dividing by the permutation type (as multiplying adds information), which is a factorial of the size of the tuple, so Set<T> = 1 + T + /2 * T^2 + /6 * T^3 + etc said prior art: for a binary tree with values only at leaves: BinaryTree<T> = T + BinaryTree<T> + BinaryTree<T>^2, so (recklessly proceeding with algebra as if these types were numbers) 0 = T + BinaryTree<T>^2, and BinaryTree<T> = -/-T -- the square root of a negative? never mind that complexity, d/dT BinaryTree<T> = -(/(2 -/-T)) = -(/(2*BinaryTree<T>)), yay for algebra!

@590. 2022-327

@593. 2022-328

@595. "why Japan's internet is weirdly designed" by Answer in Progress (Sabrina Cruz), 2022 (note 2022-329)
9:55 "But what about culture? This was a tricky one, because I was a STEM student, so I don't have a lot of the domain knowledge necessary to accurately identify and compare global cultures. However, being a STEM student also means that that didn't stop me from trying."

@598. Aaron Haspel on Twitter, an author of many clever/witty aphorisms #destroyed-by-logic, apparently one a day

@599. "Why Nerds are Unpopular" by #paul-graham, 2003
"What bothers me is not that the kids are kept in prisons, but that (a) they aren't told about it, and (b) the prisons are run mostly by the inmates. Kids are sent off to spend six years memorizing meaningless facts in a world ruled by a caste of giants who run after an oblong brown ball, as if this were the most natural thing in the world. And if they balk at this surreal cocktail, they're called misfits." "I'm suspicious of this theory that thirteen-year-old kids are intrinsically messed up. If it's physiological, it should be universal. Are Mongol nomads all nihilists at thirteen? I've read a lot of history, and I have not seen a single reference to this supposedly universal fact before the twentieth century." "The stated purpose of schools is to educate the kids. But there is no external pressure to do this well. And so most schools do such a bad job of teaching that the kids don't really take it seriously-- not even the smart kids." "If life seems awful to kids, it's neither because hormones are turning you all into monsters (as your parents believe), nor because life actually is awful (as you believe). It's because the adults, who no longer have any economic use for you, have abandoned you to spend years cooped up together with nothing real to do. Any society of that type is awful to live in. You don't have to look any further to explain why teenage kids are unhappy."

@600. 2022-331

@601. "Local Maximums and the Highest Point in Florida (video 1 of 1)" and "Edges Cases and the Highest Point in Florida (video 1 of 1)", both by #matt-parker, 2022
weirdly similar (deliberately contrived) pair of videos, both 7:46 duration, with lots of shared footage and lots of footage/video structure which is not identical but deliberately extremely similar

@603. "A Complete Definition of Badness" by #soren-bjornstad, 2020
provides formula badness = t_p + t_nw*p_nw + f + e, where - t_p is "how long it takes to perform tasks with this solution when everything works perfectly" - t_nw is "the average time wasted if the tool is not working" - p_nw is "the probability of it not working during any given task" - f corresponds to frustration - e corresponds to externalities/side effects of using the system, but negated "The intention [of the above formula] is not necessarily to assign numeric scores, although if you're left with a lot of options or a complex set of tradeoffs, that can be a useful technique. Maybe I'm weird and mathy, but I find formulas to be a nice summary of things even when I never use any actual numbers with them." "In general, more complicated technologies tend to have vastly more potential negative externalities. A pen and paper may cause a little bit of environmental damage to produce, and you could give yourself a paper cut or get writer's cramp, but they're virtually free of meaningful unintended consequences, at least in the context of today's society (Socrates might disagree [see #407]). Writing with Google Docs, on the other hand, introduces hundreds -- probably thousands -- of new ways things can go wrong! (Enumerating these is left as an exercise for the reader.) Of course, Google Docs can also do a lot more than a pen can – but it's not always worth it, especially if you have no particular use for the extra features. Today's culture tends to assume that Google Docs is better just because it's Google Docs and it's new and high-tech, but once you weigh in all the externalities, it doesn't seem quite so shiny anymore." "I once heard someone describe the true result of WYSIWYG as 'WYSIWYGPALOES' -- What You See Is What You Get, Plus a Lot of Extra Shit." "Word processors are, of course, just one example. If you hate using some software, service, device, or other technological artifact because it doesn't ever work right, seriously consider whether you actually have to use it. It's easy enough to assume that 'everyone does it this way now' and that tool is the only game in town, but that's often not true at all."

@604. comment by Keith McClary, 2019
"If biologists don't know what something is for, they say it is for attracting mates. If archaeologists don't know what something is for, they say it is a religious object. If mathematicians can't do an integral, they call it a 'special function' (preferably named after themselves)." #destroyed-by-logic

@606. "The Derivative of a Regular Type is its Type of One-Hole Contexts" by Conor McBride see #584
"As I wrote down the rules corresponding to the empty type, the unit type, sums and products, I was astonished to find that Leibniz had beaten me to them by several centuries: they were exactly the rules of differentiation I had learned as a child." emphasis on his bizarre usage of "as a child" another example: (complete) BinaryTree<X> = 1 + X*BinaryTree<X>^2, just differentiate implicitly for the one-whole context, and solve the quadratic (BinaryTree as unknown) with formula for closed form

@607. 2022-333

@609. #unintentional-humour

@611. category theory course by Steve Awodey "lecture notes" which are really the files of a textbook, "Category Theory" by Steve Awodey, 2006

@612. 2022-334

@613. weakened FizzBuzz program in Befunge (esoteric programming language): outputs multiples of 3
v 1 @ >:"d"`| + 1 ^ < . |%3:< ^:<

@615. 2022-335

@618. #linalg contrary to my conjecture, the determinant of a matrix consisting solely of 0s and 1s can be a value other than -1, 0, or 1
for example, det(((0, 1, 1), (1, 0, 1), (1, 1, 0))) = 2

@621. 2022-336

@624. #linalg #crazy-idea what if we made a matrix with a row for every real number and a column for every natural number, which maps power series (with real coefficients) to real-to-real functions
since this matrix is non-square, it is noninvertible, so there does not exist a transformation from real-to-real functions to power series, so not every real-to-real function is a power series, QED (cf #204)

@625. 2022-338

@629. "Petition of Michael Herbert Dengler to Change His Name to 1069." by the Supreme Court of North Dakota, 1976
"If the proposed change is written or printed it would simply appear in Arabic symbols, 1069; but if it is verbalized would it be 'one thousand sixty-nine,' 'one naught six nine,' 'one zero six nine,' or would it be 'ten sixty-nine'? Petitioner, during the oral argument, stated how he would verbalize it, but this would not eliminate the problem because other persons will not know this."

@630. 2022-339

@632. joke: i was going to join minimalism club, but then i realised that membership would be an unnecessary hassle and addition to my life
somehow, this joke is both actually funny and original, in contradiction to the widely-accepted premise of Isaac Asimov's "Jokester"

@634. 2022-340

@640. 2022-341

@645. 2022-342

@647. "Remeber that?" by Saul Shiffman, Michael Hufford, et al, 1997
"The implications for research and for clinical practice are sobering." a pun in a research paper?

@651. 2022-343

@655. a deliberately complicated/scary (and probably correct) equation in LaTeX
\huge\gamma = \left\{\overset{\infty}{\underset{n}{\Huge\Lambda}}\sum_{k = 0}^n{\frac{(it)^k}{k!}}{\Huge|}t \in [0, \tau)\right\} \Rightarrow \Gamma(\pi) = {\Huge\oint_\gamma}\frac{\Gamma(z+\pi)}{z}dz

@656. 2022-346

@662. "All about David Alexander Madore" by David A. Madore, after 2007 but not known exactly
much detail and humour "Some things I dislike: ... People who take me for an idiot without admitting it (there's nothing wrong with taking me for an idiot so long as you admit it)." "An Introspection of David Madore", a detailed self-description of his personality skimming thru it, it seems to match me in many aspects (but this may be a Barnum effect situation)

@665. a collection of quotes
"Your conscience never stops you from doing anything. It just stops you from enjoying it." "If you are going to walk on thin ice, you may as well dance."

@666. 2022-347

@673. 2022-350

@674. it seems to require exact matches, so it's hard to get the query quite right, but you can use Wiktionary search to find a word by its pronunciation (in IPA) #phonology

@675. #frin consider the function f(z) = 1 + z + z^2 / 4 + z^3 / 36 + etc = sum[(k = 0), infinity, z^k / fact(k)^2]
related to the exponential function ... vaguely i believe this, similarly, to have no input resulting in the output 0 relevant because of Picard's little theorem in complex analysis and my exponential composition theorem (this would provide an opportunity to generalise it)

@679. 2022-353

@683. "The RSA Cryptosystem: History, Algorithm, Primes" by Michael Calderbank, 2007
"In April 1977, Rivest, Shamir, and Adleman spent Passover at the house of a student and consumed liberal quantities of Manischewitz wine before returning to their respective homes sometime around midnight." so RSA was literally invented by drunk mathematicians?

@685. #desmos undocumented feature: with query parameter "substitutions", you can make expressions of the form "f(u) with u = k", to redefine a local variable when it has already been defined further out
unfortunately, you can't nest, them, but you can specify multiple variables also, you can make expressions of the form "ans_k" to get the value of the kth expression (indexed from 0) also, there are hints in the code at a "graphing3d" mode, but there is no apparent way to access it (... yet)

@686. 2022-354

@690. 2022-355

"To understand the definition of a universal construction, it is important to look at examples. Universal constructions were not defined out of thin air, but were rather defined after mathematicians began noticing a pattern in many mathematical constructions (see Examples below). Hence, the definition may not make sense to one at first, but will become clear when one reconciles it with concrete examples." this is actually accurate for learning very many maths topics, especially the more abstract ones; you could replace "universal construction" with any of several other terms and find it to still be accurate

@693. according to Wiktionary, "psychoactive" means "affecting the mind", and "drug" can mean "substance used to ... relieve a symptom", so bread is a psychoactive drug, because it relieves the symptom of hunger and leads to the presence of blood glucose, which affects the mind by making it function #destroyed-by-logic

@697. 2022-356

@699. a (poorly-formed) idea regarding calculus: typical calculus notation and methods are based, but inconsistently, around the idea of a collection of variables and equations (often describing one variable in terms of some others)
the linear integral notation int[a, b, f(x)*dx] is really a misnomer for int[R, f(x)*dx], where R is the region over which x varies from a to b dy/dx is actually very logical under this interpretation in extreme generality, an integral over a domain is the limit as pieces of the domain get arbitrarily small of the sum of the function (which includes dx, dA, or whatever) over all pieces in the domain, sampling the variables accordingly (some of which directly correspond to location of the pieces, as in the case of x and y) dx, dy, dA, etc are actual variables -- they just can't be used (they're infinitesimal limits) outside of a fraction or integral, as appropriate f'(x) confusingly mixes into this by the equivalence that, if y = f(x), then dy/dx = f'(x), where f' is derived from f by some procedure and is ignorant of the variable-space we could view calculus entirely in terms of the network of variables, but then our typical methods of differentiation and antidifferentiation could not apply effectively we could view calculus entirely in terms of transformations of functions (cf differintegrals), but then we would miss out on the meaning of derivatives and integrals so we combine the two perspectives, and it kinda works, but everyone gets confused (except me, now that i figured out) but maybe all this is obvious and everyone (who knows calculus, that is) already knew it the whole time, but never explicitly said it

@702. "How can my society have 100% employment rate when all the fodder jobs are done by animated skeletons?" by Vistro and other StackExchange contributors, 2022
an amusing question with serious answers

@703. some examples of sentences (in English) that use all the main parts of speech/lexical classes
"Well, I left angrily because of several insults." "I backflipped poorly and without proper preparation, ouch!" keywords: linguistics, grammar

@704. how ironic #unintentional-humour that Grammarly, a product meant to automate grammar/writing help, gives documents for humans to read and learn how to improve their grammar, defeating the point of their product #destroyed-by-logic

@708. 2022-360

@711. people often complain about wikis/learning resources being deficient, so the wiki asks the readers to improve the articles to be sufficient
problem: people read the wiki to learn, and if they can't find what they're looking for, they don't know enough about it to contribute #crazy-idea solution: when you are dissatisfied with an article, before you go looking in alternative, harder sources, you will be set an obligating reminder in some system, and later will be asked to, having learned the subject, write about it into the wiki you complained about

@714. 2022-362

@715. programming pun: why do so many programmers hate LisP?
because they can see all of its cons

@720. 2022-363

@721. "Napkin project" by Evan Chen, in which he tries to explain abstract maths to high school students
TODO: read the darn thing

@722. "poem: Quandary" by Evan Chen, 2022 #rationality
"So you have a fair coin that you found on the ground, or at least that’s what everyone says. But on each of N times that you’ve tossed it around, you see every flip has been heads. For which value of N should you start to suspect that the coin isn’t actually fair? For which values of N can you firmly declare that the tails side is not even there?" rhyme scheme ABABCDDD

@723. 2022-364

@724. "Hackers and Painters" by #paul-graham, 2003
"Everyone in the sciences secretly believes that mathematicians are smarter than they are. I think mathematicians also believe this. At any rate, the result is that scientists tend to make their work look as mathematical as possible. In a field like physics this probably doesn't do much harm, but the further you get from the natural sciences, the more of a problem it becomes. A page of formulas just looks so impressive. (Tip: for extra impressiveness, use Greek variables.) And so there is a great temptation to work on problems you can treat formally, rather than problems that are, say, important." "Scientists don't learn science by doing it, but by doing labs and problem sets. Scientists start out doing work that's perfect, in the sense that they're just trying to reproduce work someone else has already done for them. Eventually, they get to the point where they can do original work. Whereas hackers, from the start, are doing original work; it's just very bad. So hackers start original, and get good, and scientists start good, and get original." "The way to make programs easy to read is not to stuff them with comments. I would take Abelson and Sussman's quote a step further. Programming languages should be designed to express algorithms, and only incidentally to tell computers how to execute them. A good programming language ought to be better for explaining software than English. You should only need comments when there is some kind of kludge you need to warn readers about, just as on a road there are only arrows on parts with unexpectedly sharp curves."

@726. by #paul-graham, 2002
"In art, the highest place has traditionally been given to paintings of people. There is something to this tradition, and not just because pictures of faces get to press buttons in our brains that other pictures don't. We are so good at looking at faces that we force anyone who draws them to work hard to satisfy us. If you draw a tree and you change the angle of a branch five degrees, no one will know. When you change the angle of someone's eye five degrees, people notice."

@727. 2023-002

@729. "Fingerprint databases for theorems" by Sara Billey and Bridget Tenner, 2013
references several methods of theorem-fingerprinting (producing a small summary of a theorem and all its equivalent formulations, searchably), as implicitly available in e.g. the OEIS

@731. "The experience of mathematical beauty and its neural correlates" by Semir Zeki, John Paul Romaya, et al, 2014
in which they had mathematicians rate the beauty of mathematical formulae and analysed brain activity #psychology

@732. 2023-003

@734. #scott-alexander #rationality
"Statistics is what tells us that almost everybody feels stimulated on amphetamines. Reality is my patient who consistently goes to sleep every time she takes Adderall. Neither the statistics nor the lived experience are wrong -- but if you use one when you need the other, you're going to have a bad time."

@735. regarding HTTPS and the "not secure" warning on self-signed certificates
HTTPS serves to encrypt messages between the website-server and your browser, and to verify that what you get from the server matches what the proper website-owner intends digital certificates indicate that the encryption keys used in HTTPS match those of the proper website-owner, as authorised by a certificate authority the "not secure" warning means that there is no external authority to assert that the certificate is the right one for the website (rather than one made up by an impersonator), so the connection will still be encrypted, but you might send or receive data to/from someone who isn't the real website owner in some cases (as for M. Orlitzky) this doesn't much matter

@737. #neologism "pinnacular" /pɪnˈæk.jəˌləɹ/, adjectival form of "pinnacle", coined by analogy to "spectacular"
(oops, this already exists)

@739. "concept handle" is a concept handle, and therefore homological/autological

@740. 2023-004

@743. from 4chan (presumably), reposted on Twitter
"What is the point in lifting [weights] when one day we will all be dead?" "What is the point of anything you retard? Just lift the iron and shut the FUCK up."

@744. 2023-005

@745. #neologism "nyctophagy" /nɪkˈtɒ.fəˌdʒi/ (and analogously "nyctophagous", "nyctophage", etc), eating in the night, from nyct- and -phagy, both from Greek
e.g. "i am nyctophagous"

@747. #unintentional-humour linguistics article
"Even when in a hurry, English speakers do not say 'I'm gonna London' -- the contraction is restricted to the job of specifying tense." "In Romeo and Juliet, Romeo declares 'Juliet is the sun!'. Juliet is a woman, not a ball of plasma in the sky, but human listeners are not (or not usually) pedants insistent on point-by-point factual accuracy."

@748. #crazy-idea alternative history #ap-world: Britain could have prevented the 1700s American Revolution by moving the rule of Britain and the colonies to America (and dropping the importance of the original British islands)

@749. #neologism "meta-fallacy", an incorrect assumption that someone used a fallacy to come to some conclusion
e.g. a student said that some emperors would want to keep their empire because they had fought so hard for it (sunk cost fallacy), but they'd probably want to keep their empires because it's nice to have empires

@751. 2023-006

@753. #neologism "surgicate" /ˈsɜɹ.dʒɪˌkeɪt/, verb form of "surgery" (i.e. "to perform surgery")
e.g. "i had to surgicate her back"

@755. 2023-008

@757. "The Right to Control One's Name" by J. Shear Kushner (see #628), in contrast with old commonplace entry 747
"As a side note, although this Comment raises important and serious questions, it is an inescapable fact that some of the names cited and the legal reasoning are funny. I have found that attempts to ignore this humor are both undesirable and futile. Thus, I have tried to balance the entertainment value of the subject with the importance of the questions addressed. I have also tried to acknowledge humor in a way that respects the choices of the individuals whose petitions are examined. I apologize for any unintended offense and hope it will be mitigated by my esteem and respect for those choices."

@758. 2023-009

@759. acronymisation is a catamorphism, whilst acrostic poems are an anamorphism (from phrases to words and back), cf #716

@760. 2023-010

@762. three reasons why music is bad:
- addictively runs thru the mind (earworms and such), clouding thought - assigns undue significance and truth-status to oft-misleading lyrics - the production of music, especially at its current scale, diverts resources from what matters

@766. the "energy star" rating means that the device is one of "energ", "energy", "energyy", "energyyy", etc #regexp

@768. 2023-011

@770. a concision of a sample essay given in #ap-lang, cf #586
original: "Gardening is quickly becoming the most common contemporary hobby, especially in urban settings. Many individuals in cities are turning their typical brick edifices into 'green walls': structures that rely on specialised shelving that will allow gardeners to create intricate, aesthetic displays of greenery. Gardening itself has remarkable mental health benefits. One, in particular, is the ability to relieve stress. This may in fact be due to the inherent patience that gardening requires. When an individual commits to the hobby, they are purposefully making the choice to accept the need to wait for desired outcomes. Individuals also tacitly agree to embrace some failure, especially if a particular planting project doesn't work out, whether aesthetically or naturally. Because individuals also have limited ability to govern natural elements, people involved in gardening are also required to give up a sense of control in the outcome. When doing so, this mindset helps remind all involved that they can't control everything. Essentially, the greater appreciation of gardening may be exactly what culture needs: the literal chance to stop and smell the roses." revised: "Many people these days are quickly taking up gardening, especially in cities. Those in cities turn their ordinary brick walls into 'green walls', which use specific shelving to help them create beautifully detailed plant layouts. Gardening often benefits mental health, most notably by relieving stress. This might come from the patience which gardening inherently demands, in that gardeners must wait for the outcome they want. Gardeners also accept some failure, such as from planting project not working out aesthetically or naturally. They give up a sense of control in results, for they cannot govern nature, reminding them in general that they can't control life. Our culture needs to appreciate gardening, for it gives us the literal chance to stop and smell the roses."

@771. "Integrating social media inspired features into a personalized normative feedback intervention combats social media-based alcohol influence" by Sarah C. Boyle et al, 2021 #unintentional-humour
"To avoid potential confounds, all participants in this condition were presented the same set of 136 stock photo avatars of college students. The stock images selected were those rated by our undergraduate research assistants to look most like the avatars typical college students would select to represent them on social media." "Descriptive bio statements varied in terms of writing/communication style and were informed by a previous pilot study in which first-year students created browsable social media like profiles to be displayed in a virtual class yearbook. Consistent with the proportion of student profiles that made references to alcohol or partying in our virtual yearbook pilot study (10 %), one of the nine faux profiles contained a reference to alcohol (i.e., 'booze') in its bio statement."

@773. 2023-012

@777. 2023-013

@780. 2023-015

@784. 2023-016

@785. "Don't Write Comments" by CodeAesthetic, 2023
5:31 "Code is a much better way to express intent than comments about code. If you feel like you need human language to describe your code, see if you could make your code more human."

@787. 2023-017

@789. #frin #crazy-idea we need to figure out ways (#psychology, etc) -- and we probably already know some, but consolidate that research -- to learn what people think without influencing their thoughts by the asking
e.g. i want to ask my teacher "will we do $UNPLEASANT_ACTIVITY", but by asking, she will think of $UNPLEASANT_ACTIVITY more and maybe plan to do it more, thereby influencing her thoughts rather than merely reading them

@792. #crazy-idea if you participate in multiple scientific studies/experiments on the same subject, you get to skew the meta-analyses, because the probably don't (and probably can't) take into account the identity of individual participants, so your results get double-counted
(the effect would be tiny, tho)

@795. 2023-018

@796. #neologism "patho-logical", portmanteau of "pathological" and "logical", with the appropriate combination of meaning (pathologically logical), e.g. me

@800. 2023-019

@803. #frin #abstract-algebra consider the relation between the correspondence of rectangular coordinates to projective space of the same dimension and the correspondence between polynomials (in terms of coefficients) and polynomials (in terms of roots, which are the same for those that are equal up to a scalar multiple)

@805. thousand most common words in French #lang-fr

@807. 2023-020

@810. 2023-022

@811. by David Cain
"But [the notion of non-free time] is only a mental boundary. The truth is, you always have the choice of what to do with that time. Instead of working from nine to five, you could play mini golf between the cubicles. Instead of going to bed at eleven, you could wander the streets in your pyjamas and bare feet. These aren't necessarily the smartest or most rewarding choices, but you do always have full liberty as to how you spend your time. The world will not come to an end if you do something unexpected with time that isn't previously labeled 'free.'" "But as we've learned from countless unproductive workdays and boring meetings, the buying power of time fluctuates much more wildly than that of money. Imagine being confined to an empty concrete cell for one year. How much value would you place on your time then? You'd probably wish you had less time, because in that dismal situation, there are few ways to exchange that time for something you value."

@814. #unintentional-humour
"Complimentary responses are governed by two contradictory conditions that must be met simultaneously, according to Pomerantz (1978). 1. Agree with the complimenter 2. Avoid self-praise While trying to meet one condition, the complimentee will inevitably conflict with the other."

@815. from #813 by Julianna Raye, 2016 or so
"When you thoroughly understand a concept or technique, you can recognize it even when it is described using different words. If you don't quite understand it though, you may be fooled into thinking that an answer is right when it contains key words or terms, even if they don't add up to something that makes sense."

@816. 2023-023

@818. 2023-024

@820. "Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality" by Eliezer #yudkowsky #rationality, 2010s

@821. 2023-025

@822. #graph-theory graph isomorphism problem, as currently understood, is Hard: for a pair of n-node graphs, we must check the ~n! permutations mapping one graph to another to find the one permutation that works
but it's easy to check: given a permutation and two graphs, we can check if the permutation correctly describes their correspondence so this raises some questions: #frin - is this NP-complete (i.e. equivalent to the other NP-complete problems)? - is this useful for cryptography (i.e. using graphs as public information and permutations as secret keys)?

@823. on the serious psychology of the Hogwarts Sorting-Hat from Harry Potter, 2019 #unintentional-humour
"Of the 988 participants who took part in our study, 91 participants were excluded for not meeting the age criterion of 18 years, and one for indicating an age of 122."

@824. #frin figure out a precise system of geometric dimensional analysis to determine if a geometry problem gives too little/just enough/too much information to be solvable

@825. 2023-026

@826. when using a proportional font, Caret editor appears to match the cursor-movement width to the width of the character "X"

@827. #multivar you can use projective coordinates to set up a polar double integral, resulting in the corrective factor (2*r)/(p^2+1) (where p is projective angle and r is radius)
this totally does work, but it seems to often end up requiring a trigonometric substitution due to intense rational functions, which typical polar integrals avoid

@829. 2023-029

@830. serious life hacks, 2020 and later #rationality
- quit a harmful food (or smoking, or any of similar things) by focusing on the experience when you do it and forcing yourself to perceive some aspect of that experience as disgusting (e.g. "i hate processed food now, because it's too greasy")

@832. 2023-030

@833. #desmos you can use max() and min() functions on boolean values (0 or 1) as an equivalent of logical or, logical and
apparently these also work on lists

@835. amusing to read this thru spectacles that give a bit of chromatic aberration

@837. #neologism "will issue" for a problem of insufficient willpower/self-control/akrasia, coined by analogy to "skill issue"

@838. a self-description, written for an assignment #personal-experience
I appreciate most human endeavours (exception: music, destroyed by my ruthless and in-other-ways-imperfect attempts at rationality), but my competence and the reliability of my interest varies between subjects, being highest in maths, computing, linguistics, psychology, and puns. I hope, in the future, to focus on activities based on those (in practice, one of the first four ...).

@843. #frin evaluate the difficulty of breaking contiguous text into words (without spaces available beforehand) as done by various human brains and computer programs, considering especially the effect of the familiarity of the language/words
e.g. could i effectively figure out the word boundaries in Bulgarian?

@845. 2023-032

@846. #crazy-idea when italicising text, further italics within the italics typically get reverted to the main font, but that's confusing; we might instead put the double-italics as reverse-slant italics to remain distinct and quickly understandable

@848. #chromebook at some point in the process:
1. copy files from Linux device to USB drive (ext4 to fat32?) 2. copy from USB drive to Chromebook (fat32 to ext4?) the timezone indicators in the modification timestamps get messed up (an absurd software bug) confirming observation: 1. manipulate file on Linux device (set to UTC, 11:41 there) 2. copy file as described 3. access file on Chromebook (set to local time zone, 10:22 there) 4. examine file, notice apparent time travel (modified later than current time?) this messes with Caret, because it notices the modification "later" than my current edits and suggests that i reload the file

@849. #frin what good is an opinion unexpressed? what is the distinction between an opinion and an uncertain belief? (philosophy, #rationality)

@852. #rationality part of the problem with fiction is that it, by reasonable convention, makes claims and assertions of fact (often false) without justifications/evidence, assuming the reader to accept it to move on with a narrative, tempting one to do the same in other domains (all other rhetorical modes rely on justification), cf #850, #485
(would be amusing -- tho rapidly boring -- to see a document with a non-fiction rhetorical mode but completely avoiding justifications and instead going thru a list of unelaborated claims)

@853. #neologism "pagochrony", freezing of time, from Greek "pago-" (ice) and "-chrony" (time), cf #736

@855. 2023-033

@857. #multivar the sort function can be regarded as a vector-to-vector function, input and output same size, so we can construct a Jacobian matrix of its derivatives
in particular, that matrix is a permutation matrix: it has one 1 in each row and column, and 0s otherwise it does appear to be defined for all inputs, rather than being undefined at boundaries (but it is "piecewise"/discontinuous)

@860. "A Qualitative Study of Agricultural Literacy in Urban Youth: What Do Elementary Students Understand about the Agri–food System?" by Alexander Hess and Cary Trexler, 2011
"OK, how about the pickles, [you said] they come from lions and tigers or was it lions? [Shook head affirmatively]"

@861. 2023-034

@865. 2023-037.

@867. 2023-038

@869. 2023-039

@870. Katz's Law of Quotative Variation: if you quote someone to express a distinctive idea, you should quote from someone who expressed the idea thruout their life, meaning that you should not worry about exact wording, for they would have expressed it in a variety of ways anyway

@873. #crazy-idea #frin a proposal for more effective mechanical pencils (writing utensil): parallel the pen-click closure mechanism by making a click at the top toggle whether the graphite-stick is extended or retracted, and rotate whilst pushing the clicker down to adjust the protrusion of the graphite (such that the extended-state is actually extended by a good amount, and the retracted-state fits it entirely in the pencil-shell)
the ideal mechanical pencil would be Smart and auto-adjust the protrusion and retract automatically after disuse, but that's Very Hard, and this compromise i just described would (probably? don't know how it would work) be practically viable whilst also a huge Improvement over the current typical mechanism

@874. 2023-040

@877. 2023-041

@882. 2023-044

@885. #vocab haircut? more like truncating cephalokeratin #destroyed-by-logic #etym

@888. 2023-047

@891. 2023-048

@893. philosophy of #rationality: every correct statement is irrefutable; people have limits on how well they can come up with refutation, but if you progress thru assertion-rebuttal-rebuttal-etc chains long enough, you will reach something you cannot refute, either because it is the truth, or (more likely for our wimpy human brains) because you cannot think of the rebuttal

@894. #crazy-idea what if Health classes were actually graded based on how healthy you were being?

@895. 2023-050

@896. appears to be what i'm looking for: browser spyware/privacy evaluations, including lynx, GNU IceCat, Firefox, Chromium, etc

comparison of the foot of one who has never worn shoes (barefoot) with the foot of one who wore shoes a bunch notice the natural spreading of the toes versus the distortion of the shoe-wearer this makes a compelling argument in favour of going barefoot

my English vocabulary has been estimated at 23542 words (way more precise than reasonable), compared to the fact that "Most adult fluent English speakers have around 20,000-35,000 words in their vocabulary." (i might be considered an adult and i am a native English speaker) #quantified-self

@900. 2023-052

@904. #820 HPMoR on the feeling of a correct explanation for all the evidence #rationality
"There is only one reality that generates all of the observations. If different observations seem to point in incompatible directions, it means the true hypothesis is one you haven't thought of yet. And in those cases, when you finally think of the correct hypothesis, everything aligns behind it, beyond denial or horror, tearing away every doubt and every emotion that might stand in its path."

@905. #820 HPMoR on waiting to decide until you get enough information #rationality
"Hessitation iss alwayss eassy, rarely usseful. So the Defense Professor had told him; and while you could quibble about the details of the proverb, Harry understood the weaknesses of Ravenclaws well enough to know that you had to try answering your own quibbles. Did some plans call for waiting? Yes, many plans called for delayed action; but that was not the same as hesitating to choose. Not delaying because you knew the right moment to do what was necessary, but delaying because you couldn't make up your mind -- there was no cunning plan which called for that. Did you sometimes need more information to choose? Yes, but that could also turn into an excuse for delaying; and it would be tempting to delay, when you were faced with a choice between two painful alternatives, and not choosing would avoid the mental pain for a time. So you would pick a piece of information you couldn't easily obtain, and claim that you couldn't possibly decide without it; that would be your excuse. Although if you knew what information you needed, knew when and how you would obtain that information, and knew what you would do depending on each possible observation, then that was less suspicious as an excuse for hesitating. If you weren't just hesitating, you ought to be able to choose in advance what you would do, once you had the extra information you claimed you needed."

@907. 2023-053

@909. 2023-054

@911. you can get better friends by picking later in life (or at least, later in school/college), because the later you go, the more people specialise, thus making the interests of those people around you (those people who you naturally meet) closer to yours

@912. #multivar #866 proof-by-reality of the fundamental theorem of path integration (FToPI): conservative implies potential function exists; potential function corresponds to landscape that could exist; by directional derivatives, change in height over a path is path integral of F . dr; between any two points, the change in height must be the same over any paths between them

@913. 2023-055

@914. an advert at the bottom of the page
"It's not just any app! It's an AI-powered app for researchers. R Discovery takes the search out of research." thus, it creates "re"? #destroyed-by-logic

@916. "Category Theory: an abstract setting for analogy and comparison" by Ronald Brown and T. Porter, 2006
"The Poet’s eye in a fine frenzy rolling / Doth glance from heaven to earth and from earth to heaven / And as imagination bodies forth the form of things unknown / The Poet’s pen turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing / A local habitation and a name. [from Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream'] We feel many mathematicians would liken this description of the role of the Poet to their own attitudes to Mathematics. Undoubtedly, mathematics has coined many names for the forms of things previously unknown."

@919. "I hired 5 people to sit behind me and make me productive for a month" by Simon Berens, 2023
"At one point I had to take a call so I stepped out of my room. Coming back, she slammed her laptop shut. Laughing, I asked what she was doing that she needed to close it so frantically. She retorted coldly that she was watching porn. I instantly replied 'makes sense' as if it were a reflex, and sat down at my desk. I must have been in some sort of a daze from my call, because only once I sat down I thought 'wait WHAT?' I proceeded to stare blankly into my screen, afraid to turn around and look at her, as I processed the situation."

@922. "Please don't throw your mind away" by LessWrong user TsviBT, 2023
on the importance of intense playful thinking: its benefits and frequent harmful discouragement

@923. 2023-057

@925. a quantum #physics joke, novel to me
Heisenberg and Schrödinger in a car speeding down the freeway. Predictably, they are stopped by a traffic policeman. "Do you know how fast you were going?" asked the cop. "No, but I know exactly where I was," replied Heisenberg. "You were actually travelling at 85 miles per hour," admonished the cop, sternly. "Oh great," replied Heisenberg, angrily. "Now I'm lost!" (in reference to Heisenberg's uncertainty principle) Deciding to give the car an inspection, the cop opens the trunk. "Did you know you've got a dead cat in here?" he asks. "Well, I do now!" replied Schrödinger.

@927. 2023-058

@929. "The Replacing Guilt Series" by Nate Soares, 2015 or so, a series of articles on how to replace guilt of inaction as a motive towards action with better motives #rationality
summaries of what i've read: - "Half-assing it with everything you've got": most people act as "slackers" or "tryers", who, respectively, do as little as they can get away with, or overachieve until they're suffering, but both ways are wrong; you should pick a proper goal, and achieve it in full (but no more) with as little effort as possible - "Failing with abandon": you don't need to give up on your goal entirely when you fail a bit - "Replacing guilt": how guilt-based motivation works and why you should replace it (contrasts listless and targeted/pointed forms) - "The stamp collector": by the allegory of philosophers examining a stamp-collecting robot, establishes that humans do more than seek pleasure, and they have goals actually based on the world-state - "You're allowed to fight for something": applies previous point to indicate that you should figure out what you care about changing in the world (because surely there's something) and thereby sharpening your guilt (or actually getting towards that goal!) - "Caring about something larger than yourself": we may decide to care about everyone (distinctly from feeling that they matter) based on resolving an inconsistency between feelings (only caring about friends) and aesthetics (wanting fairness), and it can help to view humans as innocent animals, turning off our social instincts to perceive them morally - "You don't get to know what you're fighting for": human motives are complicated and you probably haven't figured them out exactly (even your own, even after some effort); people change their apparent terminal goals (despite the orthogonality thesis) because their understanding of what they really want changes - "'Should' considered harmful": statements about what one "should" do (e.g. "i should do my homework") are misleading and harmful, in that they prevent one from considering the consequences of the alternative path of action, separating the reason for action from the intent to act, and forcing one to do things a certain way or just Be a Bad Person, rather than knowingly accepting the consequences of some other action - "Not because you 'should'": motivation towards good ends is more effective when based on serious consideration and decision, using "should" as a descriptor after-the-fact rather than an initial judgment by which to criticise everything in the future - "Your 'shoulds' are not a duty": people overuse "should" in statements of external, tedious obligation, and would act more effectively and feel better about it by limiting use of "should" to describe deep, voluntarily appealing, self-moralised obligations - "Working yourself ragged is not a virtue": people overwork in relatively short bursts (associated with guilt-based motivation) because they're worried about doing as much as they conceivably can, but it's less efficient in the long run, and the long run is what you should care about - "Rest in motion": don't try to rest by not doing anything, because, typically, you will have infinite tasks; instead, interleave tasks from different domains/streams, one of which is rest/personal health - "Shifting guilt": you can shift guilt to make it more directly replaceable by refining (considering what to do instead when facing listless guilt), internalising (consider what happens with the alternative in a "should"-statement to understand your real motives), and checking realism (would it be reasonable to have done the better thing?) - "Don't steer with guilt": guilt originates as a practical mechanism to discourage you from bad behaviours, and it works for extreme behaviours, but if you do something bad often, guilt won't help you (the idea is that guilt should never activate); instead, try to update your behaviour as much as it's worth it when you notice guilt, and move on - "Update from the suckerpunch": preserve guilt for extreme errors, and correct yourself from them quickly, rather than persisting in suffering - "Be a new homunculus": when overwhelmed by guilt, interpret your feelings from the outside, realising that guilt is a special case of sunk-cost fallacy and should be dropped once processed - "Altruistic motivations": arguing in favour of effective altruism by guilt (you should save the dying children in Africa!) and by "opportunity" (look at how cheap it is to save lives!) are wrong, because guilt is harmful and the cheap saving-of-lives is symbolic of a bad situation that should be fixed - "Not yet gods": people overestimate the feasibility of choosing to act differently and unreasonably punish themselves for akrasia, thinking that they can change their mental patterns at will despite being, effectively, monkeys - "Where coulds go": it is impractical to apply willpower (cf #712) just before a bad behaviour, so we must analyse what leads up to those behaviours to find the real choice-points to act upon - "Self compassion": you must recognise your limitations and not beat yourself up, redirecting the compassion you can feel towards the struggles of others onto yourself - "There are no 'bad people'": asserting that if you don't do specific things, you're bad, is wrong (or at least a misleading abbreviation) -- more accurately, you're failing to achieve your goals, and you should consider what, exactly, those goals are, to avoid guilting yourself with fear of beeing intrinsically bad - "Residing in the mortal realm": people, such as yourself, have limitations (akrasia, etc), and you need to stop beating yourself up about mistakes, and work according to your limitations; interpret failures as a way to revise future action, rather than as an indicator that you're bad; recognise that eliminating guilt leaves a dangerous gap to fill - "Being unable to despair": recognise that there is no way to uniquely "do nothing" and that doing nothing is just another choice, which contrasts with meaningful action, but this is the practical thing to do in some cases anyway; serious progress requires you to recognise your challenges - "See the dark world": people naturally "tolerify" the badness in the world, coming up with reasons why it's acceptable, but to increase your intrinsic motivation, you might try to resist that temptation and notice how much the world really sucks - "Choose without suffering": people reluct to choose bad against worse, because that instinct (reasonably) pressures them to find a better third option, but sometimes, after a bunch of searching, you find that there is no such better option, in which case, go with the least bad one, and do so without guilt - "Detach the grim-o-meter": recognising the badness in the world does not require being miserably serious all the time; it just requires figuring out the best action, which may involve more playful emotions at times - "Simply locate yourself": interpret your situation, however unfortunate, as a matter of your place in a multiverse, rather than a progression in a universe, and figure out the best action from there instead of being miserable at misfortune - "Have no excuses": play to win, not to excuse your loss; when you fail, do not attribute it to an outside cause, because that could also be interpreted (almost always) as a personal failure to prepare for that outside cause; admit that you have erred and figure out how to avoid similar mistakes in the future - "Come to your terms": you can improve large-scale decision-making by properly visualising the worst-case scenario you infinitely fear instead of blocking it away and letting your inability to imagine it control you - "Transmute guilt into resolve": recognising suffering causes pain and guilt, but you should, instead of turning away from it, notice that feeling, and let it motivate you towards changing things - "The best you can": stop worrying about figuring out the best action, and just take the best action among what you've figured out (which may include figuring out more) "Insofar as there is an 'actually best' sequence of motor outputs your brain could produce, it's a mad convoluted dance that leverages butterfly effects to reforge the world overnight." - "Dark, Not Colorless": the world sucks, but we can fix it; don't assume the suffering means it's hopeless, but that it needs your efforts to fix it

@930. part of #929 Replacing Guilt
"Humans are the sort of creature that sees lightning and postulates an angry sky-god, because angry sky-gods seem much more plausible to us than Maxwell's equations -- this despite the fact that Maxwell's equations are far simpler to describe (by a mathematical standard) than a generally intelligent sky-god. Think about it: we can write down Maxwell's equations in four lines, and we can't yet describe how a general intelligence works. Thor feels easier for us to understand, but only because we have so much built-in hardware for psychologically modeling humans."

@933. 2023-059

@937. 2023-060

@938. "GTD: Priorities Don't Exist In A Vacuum" by Merlin Mann, 2006
on reasons why task importance/priorities are not a reliable way to figure out what to do next, such as resource availability (which appears to encompass a principle i devised myself: if one task relies on a particular resource/condition, when that condition is satisfied, you should prefer that task)

@940. #frin is there a drug (pharmacology) that acts as a painkiller, but only for specific body parts (despite delivery by ingestion, rather than application to the area), or only for specific types/sources of pain?

@941. by David Cain
"I have the urge to say 'sorry' a lot, I noticed." this from the guy who, in another of his articles, mentioned that he's Canadian, a group who stereotypically apologise too much #unintentional-humour

@942. "On Gifts" by Alicorn (pseudonym), 2010

@943. #rationality on things to buy for around $100 to greatly improve one's life (efficient purchases)

@944. 2023-061

@946. #crazy-idea vision, spectacles: instead of bifocal lenses, make one lens with a refractive power midway between the distance-prescription and the near-prescription, and a second lens with a power equal to that difference to each of the proper prescriptions, which attaches to the first but can be taken off and flipped to invert that contribution
e.g. your reading/near prescription is -1 dioptres, and far vision needs -5 dioptres, make the base lens -3 dioptres and add another one that's 2 dioptres (but can flip to -2) actually this might not work: i tried flipping my glasses and it seems to give the same refraction rather than the opposite refraction conclusion: take optics!

@947. 2023-062

@950. Metaphor, an AI-based service (with a suspiciously anonymous creator -- not even pseudonymous) that autocompletes natural-language text with related links, like a more semantic version of a search engine
i see an unanticipated use: validate the quality of a brief summary of a webpage by entering the summary as the search term and check if the page to summarise is in the first few results

@951. 2023-064

@952. and other sources on the matter of intermittent-fasting/OMAD tend to remark that it introduces a risk of muscle loss if not balanced with strength training and lots of protein

@953. "Inside Silicon Valley’s Dangerous Game of Occasionally Not Eating" by Sasha Chapin, 2021
"Sometimes, I wish there were a Big Nothing lobby [joke on 'Big Pharma' and the like] -- some sort of agency devoted to studying what would happen if we did less. For example, let's say the government became fixated on some problem with social welfare. Is there anyone to study what would happen if we did nothing? Would it just get better on its own? Similarly, what would happen if, in response to population-level health issues, instead of taking supplements or treatments, we just ate nothing for an interval?" "Perhaps one reason that fasting has become popular in Silicon Valley is that it's an applied crash course in First Principles Thinking. This term has only become a tired cliche in tech circles because it's a principle that’s served so effectively in the past. The best (and worst) technological innovations have come from asking questions so basic only a curious child or a frenzied entrepreneur would think to ask them, and the process continues today. We don't live on Mars. Why? [hence, SpaceX] We have to drive our cars. Why? [hence, self-driving cars] We should eat a shit-ton of food every day, without interruption. Why? [hence, fasting]" "To state the obvious, as a civilization, we’ve done everything we can to remove any form of resistance or discomfort in our lives [i.e. gone against the ways of nature/changed away from the ancestral environment], and the results have often been disastrous. Somehow, it turns out that nearly every time we remove one of the thousand natural shocks of existence, we find out that we needed it, and we have to replace it somehow. Exercise, Vitamin D supplementation, Slack channels -- these are all contrivances designed to replicate things we've lost."

@954. 2023-065

@958. since my arm (plus a bit) is ~0.85 metres, and my finger (minus a bit) is ~0.085 metres, holding out my finger with an extended arm produces a useful visual angle of the height of my finger: i can compare the finger to a distant object, and if the object takes the same visual angle, it is about ten times as far away as it is tall (letting me figure out distance from height, or vice versa) #personal-experience
this still works if you count a couple multiples of finger-height-angle taking the width of the finger instead of height should give about one-fifth of the angle (50 times as far as wide) cf old commonplace entry 94

@961. #scott-alexander
"On the other hand, consider spitting in a stranger's face. In the grand scheme of things, this isn't so serious -- certainly not as serious as emitting a million tons of carbon. But I would feel uncomfortable offsetting this with a donation to my local Prevent Others From Spitting In Strangers' Face fund, even if the fund worked." #destroyed-by-logic

@962. 2023-066

@965. 2023-067

@968. philosophical conjecture: the difficulty of answering a "why"-question is inversely proportional to the difficulty of answering a yes-or-no-question that leads to it (e.g. "is X important?" is easy, but "why is X important?" is hard)

@969. 2023-068

@973. gestures (deliberate body language) and their meaning (but not quite sign language) on Wiktionary

@974. "Home Electrification: There's not a lot to do, and it doesn't have to be hard (Part 1)" by #technology-connections, 2023
4:03 "[The use of fossil-fuels for heating] presents some challenges to completely electrifying those homes. How many challenges, you ask? Four. 4. Seriously, it's just four." #corrupted-saying 14:54 "Right now, Span's [company selling smart/IoT breaker panels] main customers are folks interested in things like solar energy and battery storage integration, who want to be able to track and optimise their energy production and use with the data the panel can provide. So, in other words, nerds! I say that with affection, of course, because that very much includes me."

@977. PsyToolkit, a software system for easily making #psychology experiments

@979. 2023-069

@982. 2023-071

@985. 2023-072

@986. Piotr Wozniak (and probably others) argue that for optimal health, just keep sleeping without interruption for as long as your body naturally guides you, sith it should be well-calibrated to sleep the right amount in the ancestral environment
objection: the evolutionary pressure to stay awake more comes from the safety/active-guard-ability of wakefulness (which isn't that important, for if you can find a place to sleep for a while, why not sleep more?), and from how sleep detracts from awake activities (which isn't that important, sith there wasn't that much terribly important stuff to do in the ancestral environment) thus, the natural, evolution-guided sleep-quantities are not right for the modern environment, where there is far more to do (not just finding food, reproducing, etc -- at least, not directly), hence, alarm-clocks and such are not absurd does this deserve a recreational essay? maybe

@988. 2023-073

@991. "Clowns to the Left of me, Jokers to the Right: Dissecting Data Structures" by Conor McBride, around 2008, on derivatives of types, cf #606
"But if there is a broader message for programmers and programming language designers here, it is this: the miserablist position that types exist only to police errors is thankfully no longer sustainable, once we start writing programs like this. By permitting calculations of types and from types, we discover what programs we can have, just for the price of structuring our data. What joy!"

@992. #scott-alexander
"Autism rates were sky-high in every category [of a survey run on Scott's website] -- it's almost as if the sorts of people who like reading blogs about how gender is all just NMDA receptors skew more autistic than average -- but there was a remarkable difference across gender identities." "First, the research into NMDA receptors is too interesting. ... On the one hand, explaining everything sounds sort of good. On the other hand, it also sounds like what would happen if a field was getting kind of overhyped and slipping into methodology loose enough to prove anything it wanted. Maybe a vague link between a receptor which is literally everywhere in the brain and some psychiatric disease isn't that interesting." "Remember to consult your doctor before trying any weird supplements since they may cause unintended side effects, like becoming a Republican." (in comment by "Speaker To Animals") "Sometimes it feels like I'm the only solipsist left."

@993. #scott-alexander
"[Wikipedia] isn't perfect, but compared to anything you'd find on a major news site, it's like night and day. ... Do you know why you can trust Wikipedia better than news sites? Because Wikipedia doesn't obsess over the single most recent study. Are you starting to notice a theme?"

@994. 2023-075

@996. a major-system mnemonic for the digits of pi: my turtle, punch all my life. pick up many mover, John. cheer, mama: famine copula (sniff) ...
breakdown: 3 1415 926 5 3 58 97 9 32 384 62 64 33 832 795 028 841971

@999. 2023-076

@1002. 2023-078

@1004. 2023-079

@1006. "Much Ado About Nothing" by Morris Marden, 1976
"Let me begin by explaining my use of the Shakespearean title for this talk. Ever since I have been studying the zeroes of functions, some of my non-mathematical friends have poked fun at me as being the world's expert on nothing."

@1007. 2023-080

@1012. "Why Mathematicians Should Stop Naming Things After Each Other" by Laura Ball, 2020
presenting the same argument i thought of myself for why eponymy is bad: names of people have nothing to do with the concepts they name (with exceptions noted as follows), meaning that studying stuff in terms of eponymous objects takes huge apparently-pointless memorisation effort - exception: usually, eponymous objects in maths use the name as an adjective and have a primary noun, giving some information, as in "Hermitian matrix" or "Fermat prime" - exception: mathematicians tend to focus on a limited topic, so if a thing is named after them, it gives you some hint of the topic, assuming you're familiar with the mathematician, such as inferring that a "Riemann sphere" is part of complex analysis

@1013. WolframAlpha tells me "Oops, you've exceeded the maximum number of characters." (sith i did paste in a very long question), and, in its infinite wisdom #destroyed-by-logic, gives me two options: "Got it" and "Got it"
the second button is bigger and red

@1015. 2023-082

@1016. the character Bill Cipher of Gravity Falls famously said "remember, reality's an illusion, the universe is a hologram, buy gold, bye!"
from this, a parody inspired by the #yudkowsky Sequences: "remember, logic is neuroscience, everything is uncertain, one-box on Newcomb's, bye!"

@1017. 2023-083

@1021. Dutton Quotez #crazy-idea (no context needed)

@1022. 2023-086

@1024. sometimes Caret editor freezes after an unintended key combination, which i have deduced to be ctrl-number for high numbers
ctrl-number switches to numbered tab, but by a bug in Caret, switching to a tab beyond what's open (e.g. tab 6 when only 4 tabs are open) leaves you on the current tab, but unable to act upon it except by switching back

@1025. 2023-087

@1027. 2023-088

@1029. 2023-089

@1031. Édouard Roche (for whom the Roche limit of celestial objects is named) is a bit of aptronym, sith "Roche" comes from #lang-fr for "rock", and he studied celestial objects (many of which are big rocks) #unintentional-humour

@1033. #rationality for proper beliefs, in statements of bounded agents, "X" and "i believe X" are equivalent, and likewise "is X?" and "do you believe X?"

@1034. 2023-095

@1036. 2023-099

@1037. "Valid arguments with invalid conclusions" by Dynomight, 2022
"Are all beliefs fake, the consequences of randomly hearing the right words at the right age to trigger an emotional reaction that will ferment for years and slowly transform us?" #destroyed-by-logic

@1038. by lukeprog and contributors, 2011

@1039. #scott-alexander
"A second student comes to you and says 'Sorry I didn't turn in my report yesterday. My mother died the other day, and I wanted to go to her funeral.' You say 'Like all economics professors, I have no soul, and so am unable to sympathize with your loss. Unless you can make an argument that would apply to all rational actors in my position, I can't grant you an extension.'" the rest of the article is quite funny at times

@1041. unexpected #rationality
"overall I would characterize myself as a conspiracy atheorist i expect that many conspiracies exist and that i am being lied to constantly but i have no particular insight as to how"

@1042. you should learn SEO (search engine optimisation) from the top sources on search results, sith those that get there clearly know how to do SEO (cf Nassim Nicholas Taleb, on, like, everything)

@1044. 2023-101

@1047. 2023-104

@1050. #statistics a sample of size n from the basic normal distribution (mean 0, stddev 1) has a sample-mean normally distributed with mean 0, stddev 1/-/n

@1051. by Xiaoyu He, 2018, on how cool it is to watch someone expose their powerful thought process
"Extraordinary people take ideas with extraordinary seriousness. I will read a paper by skimming the abstract. 'Huh, that sounds vaguely true.' Scott Alexander will read the paper and write three detailed criticisms, each longer than the paper itself. Me on the other hand, in the last five years I've read more words in Scott's book reviews than in books themselves. What I'm after is that gripping but elusive experience of watching a mind take ideas seriously and completely synthesize them into a vast ocean of knowledge."

@1052. by Xiaoyu He, 2018
"There are also plenty of names that deserve to be syllabled. [i.e. abbreviated] Sometimes, I think the only reason I'm not a topologist is the word cohomology."

@1053. 2023-106

@1055. #crazy-idea very clever program (which may or may not be considered AI) which converts sloppy-but-correctly-thought-out maths notation like e^-t (A cos 10^-n t + B sin 10^-n t) to precise/well-formed maths notation (listing top guesses if ambiguous) like e^{-t} (A\cos{(10^{-n} t)} + B\sin{10^{-n} t})
(yeah, you could probably do this with ChatGPT or the like ...) keyword: parser

@1056. 2023-107

@1058. 2023-108

@1060. #crazy-idea we should reform history education towards rationality by teaching "predictive history classes"
i.e. instead of teaching about historical events, and testing knowledge of those events, and knowledge of how to analyse historical records (which only historians will really care about/use), think about why we want to know history (so we don't repeat it!) the typical person needs to know history so they can understand the future, and you test that by having them predict (given some aspects of a sequence of events, predict the other stuff that happens), and you get objective answers by testing them on obscure-but-past events, forcing them to find patterns in the history they're taught and figure out how to generalise and predict and of course they can't get perfect scores, except by studying all of history (or cheating), but that's fine, sith you can't predict perfectly when applying history anyway update: see my essay "Predictive history classes"

@1062. "Pausing AI Developments Isn't Enough. We Need to Shut it All Down" by #yudkowsky, 2023, in which he rants about how AI will kill us all and we really need to just stop

@1063. 2023-109

@1065. 2023-110

@1068. 2023-114

@1070. 2023-115

@1072. 2023-116

@1074. for general jocular phrases such as "make X Y again", "what is this X of which you speak?", "X with a capital Y"

@1076. #neologism "inferiorequentist", a derogatory synonym of "frequentist" (philosophy of probability, opposed to Bayesian)

@1077. 2023-117

@1080. 2023-118

@1081. #820 HPMoR on the effects of a proper prank, in that it makes you question your sanity
"The Boy-Who-Lived had said that he had important work for the Order of Chaos, something serious and secret, more significant and difficult than their usual run of pranks. And then Harry Potter had launched into a speech that was inspiring, yet vague. A speech to the effect that Fred and George and Lee had tremendous potential if they could just learn to be weirder. To make people's lives surreal, instead of just surprising them with the equivalents of buckets of water propped above doors. (Fred and George had exchanged interested looks, they'd never thought of that one.) Harry Potter had invoked a picture of the prank they'd pulled on Neville -- which, Harry had mentioned with some remorse, the Sorting Hat had chewed him out on -- but which must have made Neville doubt his own sanity. For Neville it would have felt like being suddenly transported into an alternate universe. The same way everyone else had felt when they'd seen Snape apologize. That was the true power of pranking."

@1082. 2023-120

@1084. "Pain is the unit of Effort", a parody mostly consisting of dramatic anecdotes, by lsusr, 2020
"That wasn't a real disaster. Neither was that time I got threatened with a gun while trapped under a motorcycle in the rain. Real disasters don't threaten to hurt you. You simply die." "I don't have time for doorknobs. I don't even turn on lights. I just memorize my home's layout and then fumble about in the dark. On the one hand, this is stupid. On the other hand, I don't need a flashlight when I'm out in the wilderness."

@1085. by Xiaoyu He, 2020, on how prediction/compression is the essential sign of intelligence, and that learning effectively (especially in maths) means that you can predict the rest
that probably inspired #1060

@1086. it's often said (very falsely) that "humans only use 10% of their brain"
the good response being (when someone asserts that): "well, clearly YOU do!" #destroyed-by-logic

@1087. 2023-121

@1089. 2023-122

@1090. #psychology TIL about the predictive coding theory of autism: perhaps all the symptoms of autism are based around a brain with tighter confidence intervals (higher believed precision) regarding its predicted sensory experience, which doesn't respond well to the variation of everyday life (especially from interactions with other people)
this assumes the predictive coding theory of cognition in general: the brain mainly functions to predict its sensory inputs, and from those predictions examines the conflict with what actually happens to understand the world and direct attention

@1091. "How to Interpret Vitamin D Dosage Using Numbers" by Benquo, 2022
"The colon cancer link is broken but the breast cancer study reports a dosage of 400 IU/day [of extra vitamin D]. On the exercise scale that's FIVE MINUTES of brisk walking. FIVE MINUTES is not very long at all compared with FOUR HOURS. If you went to see Lord of the Rings and only saw the first five minutes you would not be satisfied with a partial refund. If you showed up fasted to Thanksgiving dinner in the expectation of a full day's calories (the official US ration is 2000), this is like getting a single banana." #destroyed-by-logic

@1092. 2023-123

@1094. 2023-124

@1096. 2023-125

@1098. 2023-128

@1099. "100 Tips for a Better Life" by Ideopunk, 2020 #rationality
some very good(-sounding) and compact life advice in various domains, some a summary of stuff i've read elsewhere, some a reasonable extrapolation, some just totally new and great

@1100. 2023-129

@1102. 2023-130

@1104. 2023-131

@1105. #frin #psychology what is it, exactly, about boredom that makes the time seem slower? isolate the cause by experiment!

@1106. #frin #crazy-idea #linalg eigenvalues with fractional multiplicity

@1107. 2023-132

@1109. by lukeprog
"The dating books told me to swallow my fear and talk to women. I couldn't swallow my fear, so I tried swallowing brandy instead. That worked." #corrupted-saying

@1110. 2023-134

@1112. 2023-135

@1114. "Organic Chemistry", second edition, by Jonathan Clayden, Nick Greeves, and Stuart Warren, 2012 from #1038 textbook list #chemistry

@1117. 2023-136

@1128. i, and others, have previously used the metric "number of languages in which Wikipedia article is available" as a proxy variable for the importance/ubiquity of a topic
a similar principle can be used where s/Wikipedia article/Wiktionary page/ and s/topic/word/, but we might modify it to use the proxy variable "number of languages in which page is available"/"number of languages using that word (documented on the English version)" (division), for words used distinctly in many languages will be documented by the writers of more languages independent of their importance

@1129. #820 HPMoR on people making plans with a terrifying number of levels of recursion/indirection
"Draco didn't have words to describe exactly what was wrong with Harry's mind -- (since Draco had never heard the term depth of recursion) -- but he could guess what sort of plots it implied. ...unless all that was exactly what Harry wanted Draco to do as part of some even larger plot which Draco would play right into by trying to foil this one, Harry might even know that his plan was unworkable, it might have no purpose except luring Draco to thwart it -- No. That way lay madness. There had to be a limit. The Dark Lord himself hadn't been that twisty. That sort of thing didn't happen in real life, only in Father's silly bedtime stories about foolish gargoyles who always ended up furthering the hero's plans every time they tried to stop him."

@1130. #820 HPMoR on the practical limit that a plan can only depend on at most three things going right
"That was when Father had told Draco about the Rule of Three, which was that any plot which required more than three different things to happen would never work in real life. Father had further explained that since only a fool would attempt a plot that was as complicated as possible, the real limit was two. Draco couldn't even find words to describe the sheer gargantuan unworkability of Harry's master plan."

@1135. 2023-149 there exists a mildly interesting dichotomy (or perhaps a spectrum) between tasks for which effective training closely matches the goal-task (e.g. writing, puzzle-solving) and tasks for which effective training seriously differs from the goal-task (e.g. drawing, practical programming) cf CFAR's 2022 "Turbocharging", which applies very clearly to the former class and not the latter

@1143. 2023-155

@1144. "I sent robot forgeries to a handwriting expert" by Stuff Made Here, 2023
2:47 "I can't wait to pack this [new workshop] full of stuff that I should have thrown out ten years ago." 2:55 "Buying a robot is so much easier than building it. I should do this more often." 5:34 "If you're wondering if [writing out 676 letter pairs to train automated handwriting] is more work than just writing out the cards -- we don't talk about that around here." 6:23 "You know what this whole exercise reminds me of?" "Afraid to ask." "Have you ever heard that you can't get to the moon by climbing successively taller trees? We need to stick the monkey in a rocket, if we want to get to the moon. If you get what I'm getting at." "Am I the monkey?"

@1146. "Do a cost-benefit analysis of your technology usage" by Alex Turner/TurnTrout, 2022
banger first line "If an unaligned entity invests billions of dollars into an application which you use, where they benefit from wasting your time, and you haven't at least done a cost-benefit analysis so that your usage minimizes your costs and maximizes your benefits -- You are probably getting fucked over." a part which nicely expresses part of my objection to music (cf my music_harm.txt and music_harm_v2.txt) "I think music generally makes me subtly dumber but feel cooler while I'm listening to it, so I listen to it a lot. Music imposes its own form on my thoughts. My thinking and mood becomes governed by the song which happens to be playing, and less by the substance of my own thoughts. I don't want my reasoning to hinge on 'will Spotify shuffle to Attack on Titan or Coldplay next?'."

"When I argue with reality, I lose... but only 100% of the time!"

@1151. 2023-159 most English words ending with the letter I are abbreviations (like "uni"), acronyms (like "ANSI"), or clipped prefixes (like "semi-")
this may be useful for e.g. crosswords

@1152. "Stuck In The Middle With Bruce" by John Rizzo, 2001
on Magic: The Gathering and how some people just need to lose (hence, self-sabotage), generalising it to many domains of life, i.e. you need to lose sith you have an "inner Bruce"

@1154. by #yudkowsky, 2009
in comment by Scott Alexander "I tried to start a Hofstadter cult once. The first commandment was 'Thou shalt follow the first commandment.' The second commandment was 'Thou shalt follow only those even-numbered commandments that do not exhort thee to follow themselves.' I forget the other eight. Needless to say it didn't catch on."

@1157. 2023-162

@1158. "Hacking your brain with elaborate coping mechanisms" by No Boilerplate (Tris), 2023, on mental health and life advice
3:55 "What you're going to do is, at the first hint of confusion or misunderstanding, say, 'I'm sorry, I don't understand', and let them try again. If they continue to give you incomplete, confusing information, you are going to say again -- patiently -- 'I don't understand'. Don't worry; they won't mind repeating themselves; [neurotypical people] all love talking; it'll help them too; trust me. And if, on the third utterance, they still don't make sense, you say, 'I'm sorry, I don't think you understand', because half the time, they don't, and it's not you're responsibility to teach them how to communicate." #destroyed-by-logic

@1162. philosophy: functional decision theory (evaluate that function which, if consistently executed, gives the best results) is basically Kant's categorical imperative, applied to an individual over time (for practical goals) rather than many distinct agents in a society (for moral goals)

@1166. 2023-167 original joke (cf #632): a person-walking-into-a-bar joke walks into a bar.
the bartender says "hey, you can't clone yourself in here. get out!"

@1168. 2023-170 Vim keypresses (macro) to turn a text into a sequence of first letters, starting with cursor on the first letter (cf #1111)
0qqxPPhdf q<num>@q

@1170. 2023-172

@1171. "Strong Evidence is Common" by Mark Xu #rationality on Bayesian evidence, 2021
in comments #destroyed-by-logic "Well, yes, if you interpret a lot of thought experiments literally, the proper response is more like 'I think I'm having a stroke or that I overdosed on potent psychoactive substances or am asphyxiating.' than anything 'in the spirit' of the experiments."

@1173. #neologism "nepotise", to favour relatives in the manner of nepotism

@1174. let's see how long the laptop lasts, closed but on (sleeping), cf #1169
start: 21:20, 70% battery end: 18:29 next day, 69% battery

@1176. 2023-176

@1177. in which i get scooped wrt my intent to describe sexual orientation by target rather than similarity/opposition
they don't mention one extra point i have on the matter: in an information-theoretic sense, androphile/gynephile is more informative (higher entropy) than homosexual/heterosexual, sith the former is close to a 50/50 split in the population, whilst the latter is more like 3/97

@1186. "My '2.9 trauma limit'" by LessWrong user "Raemon", 2023
"I came into work Monday morning and say 'Hey, Oliver Habryka, I now I have 2.9 traumas, and I have an intuition that if I gain a total of 3 traumas I will become a broken shell of a person. So, uh, be aware that might suddenly happen?' Five days later, there was some minor fight on the LessWrong team about how to build a piece of software, and I gained .1 traumas from it, and then I became a broken shell of a person."

@1187. 2023-185 #neologism "stuff" + "such" = "stuch", used as in "quarks and stuch"

@1188. 2023-186 #neologism proverb in response to "i hope ...": "don't hope; predict and act!"

@1189. Zen koans are just glorified antijokes? #destroyed-by-logic

@1191. 2023-196 long delay sith i was too busy touching grass to write here

@1192. asexual person, to straight person: "do you ever get frustraighted?"
straight person: "yes, if people replACE parts of words too much"

@1194. 2023-205 facts don't care about your feelings, logic doesn't care about your laments, maths doesn't care about your morals, science doesn't care about your sadness #destroyed-by-logic
(this should not be taken to mean i agree with Ben Shapiro; i just find these phrases funny)

@1195. #neologism "karmer" /kɑɹ.mɚ/, one who acts with the intent of collecting positive karma, rather than directly being good (karma in either the religious reality sense or online voting sense), portmanteau of "karma" and "farmer"

@1196. what to say to the annoying pedant: technically, a pedant is someone who starts at least 30% of their sentences with "technically" #destroyed-by-logic
and if they reply that the proportion isn't really that high (it probably isn't): technically, a pedant is someone who does the maths to explicitly show that they don't satisfy the definition of a pedant

@1199. the largest Wikipedias (language versions) by number of articles
English (en): 6.69 million German (de): 2.82 million Swedish (sv): 2.57 million French (fr): 2.54 million Dutch (nl): 2.13 million Russian (ru): 1.93 million Spanish (es): 1.88 million Italian (it): 1.82 million Polish (pl): 1.57 million Japanese (ja): 1.38 million Chinese (zh): 1.37 million Vietnamese (vi): 1.29 million Ukrainian (uk): 1.28 million Arabic (ar): 1.21 million Portuguese (pt): 1.11 million

@1202. 2023-211 it appears to me that a large part of the plot of "Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH" (1971 book) is unrealistic
the smart rats want to stop depending on theft from humans, but such a desire would not naturally arise the moral instinct is peculiar to humans, and a method of increasing the rats' intelligence (as done at NIMH) would probably not bring moral instincts unless it closely mirrored the development of human intelligence (on the evolutionary scale, not the childhood scale)

@1203. 2023-212 saw a sign saying "illegal dumping is a crime", never mind that "illegal" anything is necessarily a crime #unintentional-humour

@1204. dark joke: don't need to deal with your dog's feces if you starve it! (cf #1079, kinda)

@1210. 2023-222 some Tom Swifty jokes (all by my own invention), inspired by Scott Alexander's
"i should go review that restaurant" Tom yelped "we can prove the existence of eating sounds from first principles" Tom said ergonomically "i base my identity around my support for a major Ohio city" Tom said anachronistically "look at that small body of water" Tom pondered "i'll sue you a second time" Tom retorted "my old hearing mechanism usually cuts off what you're saying" Tom said with a veneer of tenderness "villager, can we help you for gold again?" Tom requested "om nom nom, crunch crunch, slurp" Tom said in jest "let's ride waves on playing cards" Tom surfaced "you can only be tardy twice" Tom dilated "maybe keep your desires clean" Tom said wishy-washily "the donkey has its blood vessels obstructed by clots" Tom said during assembly "this'll be the story of the logarithm's inverse, conveyed by onion routing" Tom said exploratorily "everything was destroyed" Tom recalled "that food was for Bob, who'll probably transition" Tom appreciated "what if famous German mathematicians were athletic?" Tom said jocularly "sometimes common insects on the ground just ... disappear into the abyss?" Tom said avoidantly "that place used to be an empty field, but then it was bombed by the British" Tom explained "we all went to the cliff when we saw what the hens were producing" Tom said egregiously "Ellenberg and Mac Lane are playing tennis" Tom observed

@1211. 2023-223 more Tom Swifty jokes, as in #1210
"every section of this song discusses a different death" Tom said diversely "the country has switched to using kilograms to measure weight" Tom expounded "Katherine works alone" Tom indicated "my old computer had 4 GB of memory" Tom said while eating pastrami "those flowers are probably simulated on a computer" Tom said evasively "everyone in Virginia is stupid" Tom dissolved "that church instrument sounds kinda like a nasal consonant" Tom embellished ".txt, .jpg, .mp4, .doc, .xls -- wait, i should have said .xls earlier" Tom extrapolated "i'm really enthusiastic about that" Tom said intuitively "further research is needed regarded the availability of information" Tom said arbitrarily "i shouldn't cut my heart with that large tool" Tom accepted "there's a demon behind you" Tom implied "look at the markings that weird leftist left on her playing card" Tom interfaced

@1213. 2023-225 #1210 of course there's more
"i'll help the police in other countries" Tom interpolated "we dug a tunnel, and, in the process, ingested them" Tom said at the arboretum "my dagger wound is exposed to oxygen" Tom said precariously

@1216. 2023-228 #psychology if you're going to talk to someone extensively, it is better to do it while moving in a large, intricate space (e.g. a park, or many streets) -- perhaps better in-person than over the phone, but over the phone might work if you're moving -- for then you will more readily remember what was discussed by associations with the exact places at which they were discussed (or at least i do)
cf memory palace technique also something something hippocampus abstract spaces something something moving in a videogame might also work -- wait, is that why VRchat and its analogues are popular?

@1218. "How to Grow Up: A Guide to Being Human" by Mark Manson, 2018, presumably #psychology
"A young child who is abused also does not develop beyond their pain/pleasure-driven values because their punishment follows no logical pattern and doesn't reinforce deeper, more thoughtful values. It's just random and cruel. Stealing ice cream sometimes results in harsh pain. Other times it results in nothing. Therefore, no lesson is learned. No higher values are produced."

@1219. 2023-230 #crazy-idea #frin what antidiuretic drugs/supplements exist?
can we improve on the state of the art by just ingesting vasopression, the body's natural ADH?

@1220. #1210 Tom Swifty joke
"the prisoners are speaking very carefully and wisely" Tom said when he contacted me "Ian is no longer my equal" Tom said about his experience "everyone expects each item" Tom alliterated

@1221. 2023-233 joke/pun: from the esoteric programming language (esolang) Befunge, the obvious next step is Befungible, in which you sell your soul on the free market in order to run your programs

@1222. funky proverb: there is much to hear in silence if you bother to listen
(there are probably many interpretations, but the one i was thinking is "go and meditate, listen to your mind; when your mind quiets, that will be replaced with insight to listen to")

@1223. Grignard vineyard #chemistry (no context needed)

@1224. #1210
"i'm assigning numbers for the quality of different organisations that oppose abortion" Tom proliferated

@1225. Undertale joke/pun: the travelling salesman problem fills you with nondetermination #maths-humour
(sith the TSP is NP-hard, i.e. non-deterministic polynomial time)

@1231. 2023-240 i saw some modern rephrasing/representation/repackaging of meditation describe "box breathing", in which you visualise a box, going up one edge as you inhale, moving across the top as you hold, and going down the other side as you exhale
observation 1: this appears to completely miss the point of meditation, for it forces the raw experience of breathing into a potentially-misguided, definitely-indirect conceptual framework observation 2: this is very reminiscent of the Carnot cycle diagram, cf #1193

@1232. by analogy to Antelope Canyon, consider Cantaloupe Anion (no context needed)

@1234. #lang-ase #crazy-idea fingerspelling style, i suppose, would be analogous to accents, among the deaf

@1235. #crazy-idea #rationality very few ontologies are correct, but many more are useful
(by analogy to "all models are wrong, but some are useful")

@1236. if we want degrees, in a temperature scale, to be intuitively meaningful, we need the start and end calibrations to be within intuitive human experience
celsius uses water freezing to water boiling, which is kinda reasonable, but past around 40 celsius, the temperatures are indistinguishably like "oh that's really hot get away" so maybe we'd make a better temperature scale where 0 = water freezing (very cold) to 100 = body temperature (reasonable standard for maximum vaguely-comfortable heat) but, no one uses this, so it falls into the "15 competing standards" problem

@1238. what if a bunch of students sign up for a class, then the class runs, and then they all coordinate to switch out of the class simultaneously?

@1242. a list of pretty much every human endeavour!
probably very useful to figure out what things there are to be studied, in relation to other things you study cf #838

@1245. the (moderately abstracted) structure of a phospholipid molecule is kinda reminiscent of an LED, what with its two wires coming out, one longer and bent

@1251. #neuro joke: how do bicycles conduct signals so fast?
they're myelinated by Schwinn cells (Schwinn is a bicycle company, and Schwann cells myelinate PNS axons)

@1255. #neuro joke (cf #1251): who's the smartest knight at Arthur's Round Table?
Sir Ebrum (a pun on "cerebrum")

@1259. #neuro joke, followup to #1255: the best-physically-coordinated knight at Arthur's Round Table is Sir Ebellum
(i.e. cerebellum)

@1261. the logical symbols ∧ (and) and ∨ (or) may be hard to remember, so here's a mnemonic: the wedge for "and" looks like a mountain, and thus symbolises difficulty, with which we associate the "and" operation (it's a strict condition)
likewise, the vee for "or" looks like a valley, which is easy to get to, and "or" is an easy operator to fulfill this just serves to reify what i subconsciously go thru to remember it myself

@1264. 2023-252 by analogy to #1222: there is much to see in darkness if you bother to look
(no explaining that one)

@1265. some notes in the 1200s, i incorrectly numbered as being in the 1100s, which is now fixed, but some references may be wrong
hence, to automate it, Vim keypresses (macro): G{jyE}o<Esc>p0<Ctrl-A>A

@1266. "Developing Business Mindset" by lsusr, 2020
"... your total intelligence will go up over time insofar as your crystallized intelligence increases more than your fluid intelligence decreases. My friends often think I am being creative when I am just borrowing ideas from overlooked domains of knowledge. If you can steal ideas faster than your imagination stiffens then your vision will keep increasing as you age. The only catch is your vision must be tempered by implementation. Imagination without implementation is empty fantasy. Implementation without imagination is empty toil."

@1267. 1,3,13,75 etc are the "Fubini numbers", the number of weak orders on n labelled elements, which i applied as the number of distinct syllable stress patterns in a word of a given length

@1269. if you're taking a Likert-scale test, with many questions visible at once, and you can change your answers before submitting, if you notice all your answers clustered on one side or subrange, try to deliberately spread them out to be more informative

@1278. "The impossible chessboard puzzle" by Grant Sanderson/3Blue1Brown, 2020
"I've been told that not everyone is as interested in symmetrical ways to paint a 64-dimensional cube as I am, but reliable data transmission? I think we can all agree that's universally sexy."

@1283. if anyone is confused by my laughing when there's nothing clearly funny, my response henceforth is "i don't need humour to laugh" (ideally said in a portentous tone)

@1284. #psychology addiction vs dependence is analogous to wanting vs liking (cf #915)

@1285. 2023-260 #chemistry pun/joke: if i injure my ankle ligaments, carbon monoxide'll fall from the sky
i.e. carbon and oxygen in carbon monoxide are sp-hybridised (cf #1185), and "sprain" (ankle ligament injury) breaks down as "sp-rain"

@1286. "what's black and white and red all over?"
there are many answers to that joke (which Wikipedia calls the "newspaper riddle"), but i came up with some more: - the barcode on a partly-used can of tomato sauce - an interracial knife fight - a game of Go on a mahogany board - a recently-erupted volcano with some igneous rock - accounting work - an old Communist film

@1287. a friend (K.D.T.) suggested using a ceramic model of a white elephant as a gift-wrapper, by analogy to a piggy bank and the idiom "white elephant"

@1288. 2023-261 sound vs complete (mathematical logic) is analogous to safe vs effective (in drug regulation)
cf #1284

@1292. "What Is the Most Average Thing?" by Be Smart (Joe Hanson), 2023
9:32 "Now we have to figure out what we mean by a 'thing'. If you thought we'd opened a can of worms when it came to defining averages and measurements -- well, trying to define what a 'thing' is is like opening a whole truckload of cans of worms, except the worms are all philosophers, and all they seem to do is ask questions and argue about what words mean."

@1295. i often say, as if it were a proverb, "how does the nothing work?"
by which i mean: you are giving some simple, "unifying" "explanation" about some large topic, like "everything is water" (cf ancient Greek philosophy), but by being so simple, you can't directly get any useful understanding/prediction; in trying to simplify, you missed the point of usefully understanding things the classic example which most directly prompts it is radical solipsism, i.e. "the world is all a big hallucination in my mind" that's cool and all, but the world seems to follow a bunch of interesting patterns, so that "reduction" doesn't excuse you from actually understanding it and talking about serious science (i take the phrase from its offhand usage by #yudkowsky: )

@1296. #yudkowsky cf #1295
"James, if the universe doesn't exist, it would still be nice to know whether it's an infinite or a finite universe that doesn't exist. Ha! You think pulling that old 'universe doesn't exist' trick will stop me? It won't even slow me down! It's not that I'm ruling out the possibility that the universe doesn’t exist. It's just that, even if nothing exists, I still want to understand the nothing as best I can. My curiosity doesn't suddenly go away just because there’s no reality, you know! The nature of 'reality' is something about which I'm still confused, which leaves open the possibility that there isn't any such thing. But Egan's Law still applies: 'It all adds up to normality.' Apples didn't stop falling when Einstein disproved Newton's theory of gravity. Sure, when the dust settles, it could turn out that apples don't exist, Earth doesn't exist, reality doesn't exist. But the nonexistent apples will still fall toward the nonexistent ground at a meaningless rate of 9.8 m/s^2."

@1299. 2023-264 #desmos apparently (according to some funky experiments i just did) replacing an element in a list is done faster/more efficiently (by a factor of 1.5 to 2) with [{i=k:x,L[i]} for i=[1...N]] than with the piecewise list-joining mess i used to use

@1308. #javascript to generate a string of first letters of words (cf #1168):
s.split("\n").map(l => l.split(" ").map(w => w.charAt(0)).join("")).join("\n")

@1310. cockroach (insect) habits include:
- they aggregate - they leave behind trails of where they went, distinct enough to influence others - they find food with the help of the group, under simple rules - they avoid light - they produce sound by rubbing body parts together

@1312. 2023-272

@1313. "Compressing and enhancing hand-written notes" by Matt Zucker, 2016
explains a program which converts paper/handwritten note scans to a more efficient, clearer form, increasing contrast and quantising colours

@1315. #neologism #chemistry abbreviate the annoyingly 8-syllabled, 17-lettered "electronegativity" to "elneg"

@1316. 2023-274 Donald Hoffman's theory of mind, consciousness, and perception, as in "The Case Against Reality", etc, paraphrased by Wikipedia
he is claimed to claim, roughly, that reality we perceive is deeply made up by the mind, guided by evolution to have us perceive things in ways that are useful, independent of their "physical" "accuracy" now i'm very confused, tho: if he really believes this, then he should distrust the structure of the world shown to him by his senses, and not rely (as he does) on the premise of evolution-of-organisms in ultimate reality

@1318. the distinctive accent/phonetic character of Standard Mandarin Chinese, as perceived by an English-native American, seems to come specifically from the use of elaborate tones, especially the low/dipping tone

@1319. #neologism "in festinatione veritas", i.e. "in hurry/rush, there is truth", coined by analogy to "in vino veritas", using the ablative singular of Latin "festinatio"

"Technetium-99m [listed price over a trillion dollars per kilogram] has half-life of 6 hours, which limits its ability to be directly traded." #unintentional-humour

@1330. procedure to generate a random string of English words #javascript, where s is a line-separated wordlist string:
const g = l => l[Math.floor(l.length * Math.random())]; const wl = s.split("\n"); console.log((new Array(1000)).fill(0).map(x => g(wl)).join(" "));

@1332. the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems have opposed functions; it may be hard to remember which is which, so here's a mnemonic: sympathetic = stimulated, parasympathetic = peaceful

@1337. cf #1286, we can extend the newspaper riddle ("what's black and white and red all over?") to #lang-ase (glossed in english)
the answer would be "a person in a generic suit": suits are usually black and white, and if they're in a generic suit, they're not readily identifiable, so you wonder who, and the sign for WHO is very close to that for RED

@1349. 2023-291 #crazy-idea make the ultimate unspyable language (well, maybe) by building sentences that use subjects from a spoken language and objects from a written/signed language (or vice versa); then the adversary would have to be able to spy on both sound and vision to make any sense of what you're saying

@1353. 2023-292 #neologism "on rhabdo" (rhabdomyolysis), the natural opposite of "on steroids", i.e. weaker, smaller, simpler, less intense
e.g. "#toki-pona is like #lang-zh on rhabdo"

@1355. 2023-293 pickup line joke: "are you a large hyperbolic triangle?
sith you're almost ideal and all your angles are acute" (a joke on "ideal triangle" in hyperbolic geometry)

@1365. 2023-302 #1210 Tom Swifty jokes
"should we kick Theodore off of IRC?" Tom deliberated "this stick of metal was in so many now-demolished buildings before this one" Tom said, bemused

@1370. #1210 Tom Swifty jokes
"wow, that plate so nicely conforms to national measurement standards" Tom said dishonestly

@1375. #crazy-idea imitation: copying another mind's outputs to your outputs
emulation: copying another mind's process in place of your own simulation: running another mind's process as part of your own conventional wisdom says emulation is better than imitation, which it is, but simulation is better than both this is very much like something something Vingean reflection and probably showed up in #yudkowsky Sequences and/or #820 HPMoR

@1380. "Anatomy and Physiology" OpenStax textbook, section 1.6 (Anatomical Terminology)
"However, the purpose of [anatomical terminology] is not to confuse, but rather to increase precision and reduce medical errors. For example, is a scar 'above the wrist' located on the forearm two or three inches away from the hand? Or is it at the base of the hand? Is it on the palm-side or back-side? By using precise anatomical terminology, we eliminate ambiguity."

@1381. 2023-316 #1210 Tom Swifty jokes
"i camp surrounded by wood-eating insects" Tom said intermittently "Cain's brother was far from any cliffs" Tom said knowledgeably "i ingested partly-decayed plants in the bog" Tom repeated

@1383. from #1382, on the teachability of intelligence
19:00 "[Descartes] is about 40 when he writes this, so all these kinds of achievements that he's famous for, in physics and maths, he's kind of already achieved them now. And, now, in some ways, his work is kinda bragging about all of the stuff that he's accomplished, and he's trying to convince you that, actually, the reason why he accomplished all this is not sith he's some kind of genius, but sith he has a method. And if you will simply follow this method, you can arrive at the truth in all spheres, just as he has."

@1390. today i encountered this kid (surname starting with O), whose name i knew via sketchy methods, but who didn't know me in the slightest
they were with (presumed) friends, who also didn't know me so i asked "is your surname Owhatever?" (they said no) and then, upon seeing me much later, they followed me and yelled at me when i refused to explain this is by far the most extreme response i've gotten to knowing people's names

@1391. some #chemistry jokes/puns i came up with today:
- "if isopropyl alcohol (propan-2-ol) wore pants, would it wear them like this? or like this?" (J.P. came up with a better version in terms of benzene) - precise: carefully drawn cis-2-butene; pretranse: crudely drawn trans-2-butene - according to the fundamental theorem of calculus, integrals are desivatives (like derivatives, but S in place of R, by inversion)

@1397. "Energy expenditure of genuine laughter" (exactly what it says on the tin), by M.S. Buchowski et al, 2006
i looked for this after D.W.'s remarks about the intensity of my laughter they report that the most intense laughter among the experiment subjects laughed at "9.67 kJ/min" higher than resting energy expenditure which, in typical units, is 161 watts assuming i'm twice as intense as That Guy, my laughter is 322 watts if my laughter lasts for a minute, that's 19.3 kJ WolframAlpha responds to "19.3 kJ to moment magnitude" with a seismic moment magnitude (like earthquake) of -0.34

@1402. from "Neuroscience: Exploring the Brain" by Mark Bear, Barry Connors, Michael Paradiso, 2016, box 10.1
"Many of you are familiar with the famous story of David and Goliath, which appears in the Hebrew scriptures (Old Testament). ... If you consider that a cubit is the distance from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger, about 20 inches, this guy was more than 10 feet tall! ... Now why, you might ask, are we giving a theology les￾son in a neuroscience textbook?"

@1403. 2023-324 "i can't work; i'm too busy being unemployed"

@1404. "no botching, only bodging"

@1407. 2023-325 organic #chemistry road map problem of my own design
compounds A, B, C, D all have formula C6H10O a one-gram sample of B reacts with 0.02 grams of diatomic hydrogen in the presence of a Lindlar catalyst, but A, C, and D do not react in those conditions 1 gram of B reacts with 0.04 grams of diatomic hydrogen to give E, as do C and D, but to give F A reacts with HCl to give two distinct compounds and two diastereomers B reacts with HCl to give two distinct compounds, the more frequent one being G C reacts with HCl to give two distinct compounds, one more frequent D reacts with HCl in a way complicated enough to confuse the problem-writer A reacts with ozone followed by zinc and water to give the dialdehyde form of F B reacts with ozone followed by water to give acetic acid and another carboxylic acid C reacts with ozone followed by zinc and water to give formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, and a carboxylic ketone D reacts unders the same conditions to give a formaldehyde and a diketone solve for A, B, C, D, E, F, G

@1413. some "essential phrases" to know in every language, and my crude attempts to translate them into #lang-zh (cf #1412):
- "hello" -> "你好" - "how are you?" -> "你好吗?" - "my name is X" -> "我叫X" - "please" -> "请" - "thank you" -> "谢谢" - "can you please roll up my sleeves" -> ??? - "look out; there's a car coming!" -> ??? - "help!" -> "帮助"

@1420. an interesting coincidence in #psychology pharmacology:
- fluoxetine (Prozac) is an antidepressant, with anaphrodisiac side effects - flibanserin (Addyi) is an aphrodisiac, originally developed as an antidepressant - the two have chemical similarities (most obviously, a trifluoromethylbenzene segment), and one effect the same, and another effect opposed

@1421. a game i spontaneously invented today:
- one player pulls up a Wikipedia article, and picks a figure in it - that player shows the figure (with caption, without the rest of the article) to the other player - the other player looks at the figure and guesses the article (accept fuzzy answers) obviously you can cheat by editing Wikipedia, please don't do that this is fun insofar as figures in articles vary widely in how obviously they reflect the main subject of the article

@1423. "why do you laugh so maniacally loud?" i am often asked (cf #1283, #1397)
my answer, now: "life amuses me at maniacal intensity"

@1425. 2023-333 one-liner original joke (not a pun): the status-blind community can't keep track of who their leaders are

@1426. original funky proverb: "you are not exempt from the laws of physics"
i.e. if you understand some rule of the material world, recognise and apply that it applies to you too (this approximate phrasing has probably been independently discovered many times)

@1428. by Scott Alexander, 2023 #statistics
a list of effect sizes and correlation coefficients to calibrate how intuitively significant they are

@1429. just Did The Science and measured my speaking spead with a mostly-natural reading of a semi-formal argumentative essay, written by someone else
results: over two minutes (120 seconds), i spoke ~430 words (~3.5 words/second), which an online counter tells me (i'm not counting myself) is ~700 syllables (~5.5 syllables/second)

@1430. biology haiku (poem), devised in conversation with M.G. (cf #1454):
big or small heart? mid! / but the change between the two / is needed for life

@1431. parody of "why use many word when few word do trick?" (cf #1454):
"why use a minimum of verbiage when a relative excess works marginally better?"

@1434. #lang-ase casually coined a logical sign for "conjoined twin": single U, palm left, on each side of chin, slid down twice
by analogy to the sign for "twin", which is the same except handshape (the twins are visually conjoined in my version) a native signer (B.S.) tells me that this sign is not in use for any existing meaning, but that there is already a sign for "conjoined"

@1435. "History - The World Factbook" by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
"The Intelligence Cycle is the process by which information is acquired, converted into intelligence, and made available to policymakers. Information is raw data from any source, data that may be fragmentary, contradictory, unreliable, ambiguous, deceptive, or wrong. Intelligence is information that has been collected, integrated, evaluated, analyzed, and interpreted."

@1437. #neologism "lie-from-children", by analogy to "lie-to-children": an inaccurate/oversimplified explanation or remark, made not to deceive (as in just-lying) or support a less-educated audience (as in lying-to-children), but made sith the speaker does not fully understand what they're saying

@1440. 2023-335 "For potential Ph.D. students" by Ravi Vakil (algebraic geometry/maths), probably 2010s
"I like to meet my students every week (except for exceptional weeks, of which there are many). You may prefer not to meet in a given week if you have nothing much to report, but those weeks are particularly important to meet." "... mathematics is so rich and infinite that it is impossible to learn it systematically, and if you wait to master one topic before moving on to the next, you'll never get anywhere. Instead, you'll have tendrils of knowledge extending far from your comfort zone. Then you can later backfill from these tendrils, and extend your comfort zone; this is much easier to do than learning 'forwards'."

@1444. by which i can now understand what the kids these days are saying

@1445. 2023-338 my lifestyle/philosophy in one plausible nutshell #rationality: "predictive processing good, superstimuli bad; all the rest is commentary"
(by analogy to another classic "summary": "love your neighbour as yourself; all the rest is commentary")

@1451. #crazy-idea economics analogy: investment is arbitrage, but between markets separated by time instead of space

@1459. original pun: nephew -> nefew -> nemany -> nemhany

@1460. 2023-344 "but humans are so predictable -- it'd be depressing to take them seriously"
(hopefully the most condescendingly misanthropic thing you hear all day)

@1462. 2023-345 original joke #rationality: "sure, i succumb to the typical mind fallacy sometimes, but doesn't everyone?"

@1463. Swerlenmeyer flask #chemistry (no context needed)

@1465. "Napoleon's Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History" by Jay Burreson and Penny Le Couteur, 2003, chapter 5 ("Nitro compounds")
"Though the cause of [a laboratory explosion] was never precisely determined, Stockholm officials banned the production of nitroglycerin. Not one to be deterred, Nobel built a new laboratory on pontoons and anchored it in Lake Malaren, just beyond the Stockholm city limits."

@1469. 2023-347 "Born a Crime: stories from a South African childhood" by Trevor Noah, 2016, chapter 2 ("Born a crime")
"Imagine being thrown out of an airplane. You hit the ground and break all your bones, you go to the hospital and you heal and you move on and finally put the whole thing behind you -- and then one day someone tells you about parachutes."

@1470. "Born a Crime" (Noah, 2016) #1469, chapter 8 ("Robert")
"'So,' he said, 'in the time we've spent together, what would you say you've learned about your dad?' 'Nothing. All I know is that you're extremely secretive.' 'You see? You're getting to know me already.'" ` @1471. "Born a Crime" (Noah, 2016) #1469, chapter 11 ("Outsider")
"I was like a weed dealer, but of food. ... As the outsider, you can retreat into a shell, be anonymous, be invisible. Or you can go the other way. You protect yourself by opening up. You don't ask to be accepted for everything you are, just the one part of yourself that you're willing to share. ... I'd catch a bit of their conversation, learn more about their group, and then leave. I never overstayed my welcome. I wasn't popular, but I wasn't an outcast. I was everywhere with everybody, and at the same time I was all by myself."

@1472. "Born a Crime" (Noah, 2016) #1469, chapter 15 ("Go Hitler!")
"People love to say 'give a man a fish, and he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he'll eat for a lifetime.' What they don't say is 'and it would be nice if you gave him a fishing rod.'"

@1474. #neologism "antihobby", something that one habitually and intentionally avoids (cf #1445)

@1475. original joke/pun: the ultimate fate of cats (felines) is for their bodies to be configured as to make sounds of contentment, sith that fulfills their purr-pose (purpose)

@1476. original joke/pun #lang-zh: "五为什么怕六?因为六七了八。"
literally, "why does five fear six? sith six sevened eight.", based on the near-homophony of "七" (qī, "seven") and "吃" (chī, "eat") meant as a translation of the English equivalent "why was six afraid of seven? sith seven eight nine." (based on "eight" and "ate")

@1478. #crazy-idea nothing i do is for exactly one reason:
many things, i do for no reason; everything else, i do for two or more reasons (ulterior motives?)

@1480. 2023-352 "Born a Crime" (Noah, 2016) #1469, chapter 17 ("The world doesn't love you")
"Nelson Mandela once said, 'If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.' He was so right. When you make the effort to speak someone else's language, even if it's just basic phrases here and there, you are saying to them, 'I understand that you have a culture and identity that exists beyond me. I see you as a human being.'"

@1484. 2023-354 #lang-zh original joke/pun: to write Chinese characters (汉字), you need to repeatedly (又) put your son (子) on a wet (氵) roof (宀)

@1486. the logical symbols ⊥ (bottom/contradiction), ∀ (for all), and ∃ (there exists), in that order (⊥∀∃), seen upside-down (rotated by a half-turn), read as "EAT" #unintentional-humour

@1488. #crazy-idea "i will deceive and manipulate you, but be very honest and transparent about it in the process"

@1489. fascinating coincidence, which is maybe not a coincidence: i was writing a little essay in response to a long prompt, and the parts of my response were out-of-order relative to the parts of the prompt they addressed
later, i judged my original answer as wrong/suboptimal and kinda rewrote it, and the better answer lined up way better with the arrangement of the prompt

@1490. 2023-356 another fascinating coincidence, which is probably an actual coincidence: i overheard someone talking about a movie, then looked up the movie, only to find out that the plot is loosely isomorphic to something happening in real life, with me and the person overheard as two of the main characters

@1491. 2023-358 #rationality conventional wisdom says that you learn more from mistakes than successes
this is only partly true: you learn more from your mistakes than your successes, but you learn more from other's successes than other's mistakes cf reversed stupidity is not intelligence

@1492. original joke/pun: "are you dense?" "no, only about as much as water"

@1493. 2023-360 the difference between eating and drinking, in a way that handles edge cases like "eating (liquid) soup" and "drinking rice" (as G.L. memorably did), is that eating divides the food (or "food") into discrete bites, whereas drinking treats the substance as continuous

@1494. original joke/analogy, which may or may not be offensive and/or misleading: "transgender people are the gender assigned at birth in the same sense that cucumbers are fruit"

@1496. 2023-361 "infinite series form of definite integral" by me, 2023
in particular, int[a, b, dx * f(x)] = (b - a) * sum[(k = 1), infinity, (-1)^(k+1) * 2^-j * f(a + 2^-j * (k - 2^j) * (b - a))] with j = floor(2\k)

@1501. took a Myers-Briggs test, silly as they are, and got ESTJ, with small margins for all but T #quantified-self

@1510. 2024-009 syntax and semantics for Memoire cys (cyclic sequence) card type:
- note separated into clauses separated by double-semicolon (;;) - end of note is a terminal double-semicolon, possibly followed by an integer (and nothing else) - that integer is n, which may be negative, and defaults to 1 if not given - one prompt for each clause, which consists of the abs(n) clauses before it (looping back from the end if needed), and asks for the missing clause - another prompt for each clause, using the abs(n) clauses after it (i.e. backwards sequence), iff n is negative - perhaps this is way more complex than needed and i should drop the whole number thing

@1515. #crazy-idea deep insight meditation and complex agentic work are two extremes, each particularly good in their own way, of a spectrum we swing across all the time

@1516. original joke/pun about Buddhism: what thought process leads to loving everyone?
metta-cognition (joke on metacognition)

@1517. #statistics #crazy-idea #frin given a partial ordering that hides the numbers and treats two items as "basically equal"/not compared if they're within a threshold distance of each other, how precisely/accurately can we figure out the real numbers from just these ternary results?
that kind of data is what we get most easily with a lot of subjective comparisons

@1520. 2024-012 analogy: "insofar" is to "sith" as correlation is to causation

@1521. #crazy-idea which is obviously false, but could be a good premise for a story or a fictional essay: the true cause of myopia is a subliminal expectation that the person affected would be information-overloaded at full visual acuity, and corrective lenses (spectacles, etc) violate that natural process and damage the mind
(more precisely, this is art: a lie that will make you realise truth)

@1522. a person's "potential" to do something is really a function of a duration/timescale, i.e. the probability by which they could do the thing given that much time to change their ways towards doing it more effectively
where "could" here means "will or only won't by a counterfactual difference of persuasion" cf possibility arises from the model

@1523. "Typical American" by Gish Jen, 1991, chapter 5 ("In the basement")
"[Ralph] felt his neck for the vein he had slit countless times before. How easy to cross the line. One moment, one step, and a person was there, thru the curtain to another world. How tempting. How amazing that the line wasn't crossed more often, if only out of curiosity. That curtain, it was like something someone made up. How could it be, in the real world, that a knife moved an inch in the wrong direction could -- presto -- transform everything?"

@1525. #quantified-self took Myers-Briggs again, cf #1501, and got ENTP-T, but really close to the middle for all but T vs F (51/49 for some)
in both cases it was according to the test at given inter-rater unreliability, my personality is ESTJ, or ESTP, or ENTJ, or ENTP

@1527. #crazy-idea if, in place of a word, you use a pair of words separated by slash or hyphen (as in "mathematical/philosophical", the example that prompted this), usually, you're targeting an idea which should have a word of its own, but is approximately factorable as two other, known words
wait, this is maybe just how adjectives work in general

@1528. it'd be kinda funny to use "paragon" in a negative-connotation phrase, like "paragon of insanity"

@1529. examples of linguistic valence in English and #toki-pona:
- nullary = rain (as in "it's raining"), telo sewi (sama "li telo sewi" pi linja nimi ike) - unary = die (as in "i die"), moli (sama "mi moli") - binary = eat (as in "i eat bread"), moku (sama "mi moku e pan") - ternary = give (as in "i give you bread"), pana (sama "mi pana e pan tawa sina") - quaternary = say (as in "i say words to you in English"), toki (sama "mi toki e nimi mute tawa sina kepeken toki pona")

@1530. 2024-016 by analogy to "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery": #rationality "prediction is the sincerest form of understanding"

@1531. #crazy-idea Infinite Jest (Wallace) is the Rick and Morty of novels
(i have not actually watched Rick and Morty)

@1532. 2024-017 #rationality introducing the reverse sunk cost fallacy, in which one avoids investing in a direction sith they haven't invested in it before (implicitly equivalent to a sunk cost on everything else)

@1541. a possible formula/algorithm to get the "gold standard of trolling" (according to lsusr):
- get asked a question you know about (and on which the interlocutor is ignorant) - give an ambiguous/unconfident (but correct) answer - wait for the interlocutor to doubt your response - enthusiastically insist you're speaking the truth and give clear (but doubtable) evidence for your answer cf ../../quotations/2024-018_2024-026

@1542. 2024-023 #crazy-idea #frin use body-position-tracking sensors in real-time comparison to a recorded pattern to help one practise a dance, maybe by advancing the music iff the user is making the right moves, go silent if they stop, and buzz annoyingly if they make the wrong move

@1554. 2024-030 original joke for programmers/Linux users: "oh, you use Linux?
do you do your soul-searching with grep?"

@1555. quasi-Buddhist anarcho-minimalism (no context needed)

@1557. #crazy-idea the circle-arrow in the middle of a commutative diagram (abstract algebra) loosely resembles the circular stroke of an enso (Zen Buddhism), so one might draw an enso in the middle of a commutative diagram as appropriate

@1558. #neologism "apeironomial", a polynomial-like object with infinite terms, i.e. power series

@1563. if i could selectively erase memories, what sorts of things would i want to remove first?
- Roko's Basilisk (and other infohazards) - conspiracy theories - suicide methods (that aren't equally effective as homocide) - most music - deadnames

@1564. 2024-033 the metres/stress patterns HLH or HHLH may make for good #toki-pona poetry, according to my calculations
example: "mi mute li jo taso e ma kili sin e telo lon", translating as "we have only an orchard and real water"

@1566. novel and maybe clever strategy to incentivise readers of a textbook (or whatever) you write to find and report errata:
declare a monetary reward, 2^n dollars for each error (exponentially increasing as you get more reported), but it resets each time you publish a new edition to correct those reported so far this encourages the author to make few mistakes, the readers to find mistakes, and the author to correct mistakes quickly

@1567. 2024-036 a clock in a state is a street-sign along the time dimension

@1568. #frin among typos (spelling errors from typing too fast or sloppily, rather than ignorance), are the more common ones formed as letter-sequences that show up often among different words?
e.g. i've typoed "abstract" as "abstarct": "sta", "tar", "arc" are all reasonable 3-grams whereas maybe the typo "abtsract" is less common, just as "bts", "tsr", "sra" are rare experiment: have people type up dictated text, allowing only adding letters, rather than backspace, and record what they type, and do statistics on the mistakes

@1570. #toki-pona #complex-analysis poem, based on HHLH metre as in #1564: "ma nanpa pi / ken tawa tu / la, sike li / lon tawa sin / kon Jole mun"
possible translation (but remember that poetry is hard to translate!): "in the land of numbers with two movement abilities (complex), circles arise in the astral/ethereal Euler function", an allusion to the behaviour of the exponential function on imaginary inputs, forming a circle in output space breakdown: "ma nanpa ... la" = "under the number system", "pi ken tawa tu" = "having two ways to go", "sike li lon tawa" = "circles arise under", "sin kon" = "function/abstract newness", "Jole mun" = "of Euler, of the heavens"

"If I suspected that a student had got a tattoo in order to help them in an exam, I would not be treating that as misconduct. I'd be treating it as prima facie evidence of a mental health crisis. It's not a practical way to cheat. Tattoos are painful, they take weeks to heal, professional tattoos are expensive, amateur tattoos are dangerous, visible tattoos are stigmatised in many circles, and it's not a tactic you can reuse more than a couple of times because there's only so much skin on your arms. It's less trouble just to memorise the damn thing. If a student is actually trying this, there's something seriously wrong in their life and they need help."

@1578. #neologism (by J.R.S. rather than me) "conservation of detail", roughly a more general and deeponymised synonym of "Chekhov's gun"

@1583. #quantified-self straightforward experiment shows that i can write about 30 characters (English letters and spaces) per line with my right hand and about 24 characters per line with my left hand (trying hard) in the 3-inch (7.6 cm) lines of my notepad

@1585. a delightfully thorough outline of human activity, comparable to #1242

@1586. #crazy-idea organise books (and chapters, and documents in general) as binary trees, splitting into exactly two subdivisions at each level, enabling us to work with the organisation very consistently and systematically

@1589. if you combine the grammars of Latin and #lang-zh you can put question-words absolutely wherever in the sentence you like, which seems fun

@1591. texts to try translating in any new conlang you make (or natural language you learn, for that matter):
- Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article One ("All human beings are born free and equal ...") - Babel text ("And the whole earth was of one language ...") - The North Wind and the Sun ("The North Wind and the Sun disputed ...")

@1592. 2024-051 #frin can someone get a song stuck in their head without ever hearing it?
e.g. if you can read sheet music, maybe you can interpret the sheet music into imagined sounds as you read, and maybe you can memorise and rehearse it all in your head to the point of earworm

@1594. apparently the prefix kilo- (and hence the prefix/suffix "K" meaning "thousand") comes from a Greek word starting with χ, so arguably the abbreviation should be C, or (even better) χ, like χm (kilometres) or χg (kilograms)

@1595. "there's some gratuitous analogy about voltage to be made here" (no context needed)

@1597. #toki-pona #complex-analysis poem, a haiku (by syllables, rather than morae), cf #1570: "ala en ale / li sama, li moku e / nanpa ken moli"
possible translation: "zero and infinity are the same, eating mortal numbers", i.e. they both absorb under multiplication, and form two opposite (but "isomorphic") poles of the Riemann sphere

@1599. original joke about Wittgenstein and web development: "whereof one cannot use JavaScript, thereof one must have a blank page"

@1600. "they told me to come to the dark side, so i did, and i even tried the cookies, and they're not even that good" (no context needed)

@1602. #frin does one need to know a writing system phonetically to reliably distinguish text in different languages with the same orthography?
e.g. must i be able to read the Arabic abjad to tell apart Arabic and Farsi?

@1606. "Confabulation" by lsusr, 2019
"A long time ago, I wanted to understand Christianity, so I asked a Christian a series of 'why?' questions the way I'd ask a physicist. His answers became increasingly confabulated until he eventually accused me of attacking him. I have stayed friends with another Christian from the same church who simply declares 'I don't know'."

@1607. "How I Think About Money" by lsusr
"I wear clothes until they have holes in them. I keep wearing them until my friends and family insist I buy new ones. I wear the holey clothes in private until the sleeves fall off. I use the rags for cleaning."

@1610. 2024-059 lsusr's Shortform on LessWrong, circa 2020
"The Feynman Algorithm [write down the problem, think real hard, write down the solution] works for me sith whoever writes my posts is smarter than me. Whenever I can't solve a problem I just write down the answer and then read it."

@1611. people say they want randomness, when often, really, what matters is just variation, which may follow a pattern

@1613. 2024-060 if, when meeting me, you're led to ask "wait are you that guy who --" the answer is probably "yes, that was me" (up to a point)

@1614. #rationality personal bias on the quality of your own work is really implied by an endogenous efficient market

@1617. original joke: respond to a compliment with "i think you're just projecting", to confuse the interlocutor and implicitly compliment them back

@1618. insofar as people are self-modifying bundles of habits, "personality" is the measurement/summary of those habits which can be quantified continuously and are present in some form in most people

@1621. another #toki-pona #complex-analysis poem, much better than #1597 or #1570: "ma pona la / sina jo e / sewi nanpa / lon ma loje / kili len la / laso ale / li jo e wan / pi supa ken"
possible translation: "in good land (an analytic function), you have numerical height (function values) in red clothed fruit land (interior section), then all the green (exterior extension) has uniqueness of a possible surface", i.e. an analytic complex function is uniquely determined by its values on a subdomain (the red and green being a poetic analogy to melons, with green shell and red interior)

@1624. 2024-064 #crazy-idea #frin thermometre, but indicating temperature via colour rather than a number, so you can read it at a casual glance, and sticky, so you can affix it to an object and follow that object's temperature via conduction
could probably get colour indicator by combining a bunch of materials with binary colour changes over relevant temperature ranges, like how pH indicator strips work make sure all components are solid at all temperatures we care about (which could be very high)

@1625. why would anyone ever hide their more moral actions?
when society disagrees on morality, such that what is seen as more moral by the person hiding and by later observers is seen as bad in surrounding society

@1628. 2024-065 reality is a joke and i'm one of the punchlines (cf #1613)

@1631. "Make me a Hanzi" by Shaunak Kishore, 2018, a database of #lang-zh characters with definitions and visual breakdown into radicals
the main file is downloadable at

@1638. #crazy-idea #frin shoes with retractable cleats, ideally auto-extending or -retracting according to a "passive" moisture/chemical sensor

@1639. 2024-068 noticed yesterday (on a bus, in severe and deliberate boredom) that most of my vision (under ordinary conditions!) is peripheral: i can only really percieve details in an object (or group of obects, or small region of my visual) when i've moved my eyes/gaze to actually focus on it; the rest is essentially blobs of colour (sometimes the wrong colour!) filled in as illusion/extrapolation/memory

@1640. #quantified-self took Myers-Briggs again, cf #1525, and got ISTJ-A, with extraversion being close to the middle, thinking (over feeling) being 80/20 split, and the others being more like 60/40

@1642. paraprosdokian proverb: "cheaters never prosper, but they mess up the statistics"

@1644. #crazy-idea social status is completely subjective, depending entirely on the observer and their cultural subgroup
there absolutely can be (and are) pairs of groups which each view the other as lower-status who's really high-status now?

@1645. #rationality sometimes one may mistake an interval variable as a ratio variable (cf #1282) by implicitly comparing newly-encountered measurements to the typical range with which they're familiar

@1646. #crazy-idea for better mental health/concentration, remove as much text and images of people as possible from display inside buildings, except in storage rooms or as covered up in ways that one can selectively reveal
cf solitude

@1654. i saw someone using an app/website with a textbox that autoscales to fit nicely on-screen but show the text large when there's very little, so i replicated it with a little CSS and JavaScript:
data:text/html,<textarea style="width:100%;height:100%;" autofocus></textarea><script>document.querySelector("textarea").onkeyup=e=>(,4),35)+"vw");</script>

@1656. #neologism "mutually explanatory", and further "TFME" ("the following mutually explain") by analogy to "TFAE" ("the following are equivalent"), used for pairs of truths (esp. in maths) which are most readily explained as corollaries of each other
e.g. the following mutually explain: d/dx x^k is proportional to x^(k-1), d/dx x = 1, and d/dx \x = /x

@1657. the function from [0, 1) to [0, 1)^2 (unit interval to unit square) by de-interleaving bits (0.11010011101... -> 0.100111..., 0.11010...) is kinda cursed
at first i thought it was continuous everywhere, differentiable nowhere (like Weierstrass, but worse), but J.S. pointed out that it breaks on dyadic rationals (and possibly other inputs), e.g. both 0.01, 0.011, 0.0111, etc and 0.11, 0.101, 0.1001, etc converge to 0.1 (1/2), but the former has outputs converging to (1/2, 1), and the latter to (1/2, 0) so maybe it's continuous for all irrational inputs only, or everywhere except at dyadic rational inputs

@1659. trichotomise fear into fear-of-things (or people, or places), fear-of-events (or processes), fear-of-actions

@1661. #crazy-idea operating system/computer configuration that blocks network access and access to a preexisting filesystem, leaving only applications to input information and build up from nothing (nothing visible to the user), and, at the end of a session, export everything the user made and reset the system
cf "Space" by Jarred Filmer? on LessWrong

@1662. linguistics: people seem to phrase binary questions in the positive ("are you going to the event?") more often when their priors favour the answer being "no", and in the negative ("isn't that term usually used in cooking?") more often when their priors favour "yes"
this is eerily analogous to the RISC-V instruction set's practice of branch-predicting one predefined side of jump instructions, such that programmers must arrange if-then conditionals based on what they expect to happen more often for efficiency

@1663. 2024-080 when the truth is stranger than fiction, that's just a sign we should make fiction stranger

@1666. #crazy-idea boarding school that eschews all electronics/computers/phones (except for some limited emergency/practical access by administrators) to cure students of technology/social media/etc addictions by communal separation
... like Alcoholics Anonymous, but more intense, and for the youth, and for phones instead of drugs?

@1667. #crazy-idea combinatorial slide rule, for calculating n-choose-k and such by multiplying and dividing factorials (i have halfway made this, but it's very cumbersome in the current design)

@1674. a maths professor (W.J.R.) on a proof-writing assignment description
"Please refine your solutions, get help from what we did together in class, ignite your creative juices, learn how to type n-choose-k in the word processor of your choice, and put some serious effort into this. I think we can all agree that this is the most important writing assignment of your life so far and the culmination of all the skills you've acquired in your K-12 education.

@1678. trying to teach Pythagoras' truth (explain the Pythagorean theorem) using only words of Germanic root (Anglish), cf #1677:
for a three-straight-sided closed shape with one tip like that of a wonted box, take the length of each side make three rimes, each one a length times itself joining the two rimes from those sides around the dullest corner, you get the same as the other rime of the three (at least one error: "closed" is ultimately from Latin)

@1679. a good tool to write in Anglish

@1685. 2024-094 #multivar and topology, deep analogy: a theorem in multivariable calculus (on conservative vector fields, #871) says that any pair of paths with the same endpoints have the same integral iff any closed loop has path integral zero
likewise, a theorem in topology (on simply-connected spaces) says that any pair of paths with the same endpoints can be continuously deformed to each other iff any closed loop can be contracted to a point elevating this beyond coincidence, that theorem on conservative vector fields has a clause with a precondition about simply-connected regions

@1687. 2024-095 "i need to learn how to telekinetically give people painful electric shocks" (no context needed)

@1689. 2024-096 #crazy-idea laptop that can open from either side, with a touchscreen monitor, detachably hinged to both sides, and a keyboard physically symmetric over the horizontal axis that automatically reprograms to stay useful
extension: four-way symmetric keyboard, automatically reconfiguring when reoriented

@1690. #crazy-idea #frin the joy of sabbath is like the joy of taking exams is the joy of restriction/scheduling in general?

@1692. #crazy-idea i got good at learning names out of idiosyncratic desperation, rather than just innate ability

@1696. 2024-101 #crazy-idea writing is the integral wrt time of talking

@1702. 2024-106 #rationality a possible solution to confusion about "free will" (inspired by conversation with N.M.W.): "free will" is the description we give to events which occur based on objects understood better as agents than causal chains (such as most people)

@1707. a sequence of 36 questions listed by the New York Times as intended to lead one to fall in love when answering them with a partner

@1709. original joke/pun: i should make a company to sell food in the shape of English letter #18
it would be incredible (Edible R, Inc.)

@1716. clever metaphor: insulting/criticising someone for past behaviour, now fully changed, is like burning down a house they've since moved out of
someone else came up with this -- i think i first heard of it from contemporary YouTube, on a day when i actually looked at that -- but internet searches for the metaphor give largely irrelevant results

@1718. 2024-117 #crazy-idea i should meet/familiarise myself with people efficiently via a prepared interview, loosely inspired by the 36 Questions procedure, cf #1707, and by my person_knowledge essay
so here are some maybe-good questions i thought of/found and curated (as yet untested) - what's your name and age? - what's your occupation (or, if a student, favourite broad subject)? - what's your most unexpected hobby (unexpected given what i would know so far)? - what fact that you encountered in the past day most amuses or intrigues you? - what do you value more than the average person? - what event or action in the past year most changed you? - let's play 20 questions (either direction, it should help expose their thinking style, esp. if answers are more detailed than "yes" or "no")

@1721. my "#nerdtrition" project abuses spreadsheets to find simple nutritionally-complete diets
first interesting result is that a daily 500 g whole-wheat bread, 200 g almonds, 100 g carrots seems to give adequate macronutrients (maybe most micronutrients, but i haven't checked and you'd probably need to supplement vitamin B12, maybe others)

@1722. "Discrete Mathematics with Proof" by Eric Gossett, 2003, section 10.2.1 ("Connectivity") #unintentional-humour
"You may already have an intuitive idea of what it means for a graph to be 'connected'. One way to test your intuitive notion is to make up several graphs that you think should be connected and several that you think should not be called connected. Check your definition on each example. Your goal is to put your definition thru a torture test to see if it is really pure gold or still contains impurities. Try to be devious; make your definition fail if possible. Then create a better definition and start over."

@1724. #nerdtrition project, as in #1721, leads me to conclude that the following diet is probably roughly effective:
daily, 300 g tilapia, 250 g scrambled egg, 250 g almond, 200 g potato, 200 g spinach caveats: maybe too much fat, way too much cholesterol, a bit too much magnesium and iron, a bit too little calcium and vitamin C, needs iodine supplement/iodised salt, probably missing some micronutrients i ignored

@1725. 2024-127 when did my maniacal laugh (cf my essay loud_laugh) develop?
fortunately for my investigation, i have lots of eclectic plausibly-relevant dated records - 2022-059: record of me "laughing maniacally", but how maniacal was that, exactly? - 2022-075: record of D.M.M. remarking on my "deranged laughter" - 2022-242: record of P.S.B. noticing me laughing a lot (but was it maniacal?) - 2023-150: record of N.K.H. suggesting she should "record that laugh" (this is what i'm looking for)

@1727. "Peanut Butter" by Jacob Falkovich (Putanumonit) and deluks917
"I remember coming over with a bottle of wine and asking if you had any wine glasses, and you said: 'no, I’m not really into materialism' as if wine glasses were obviously superfluous." "If you just meditate on what it's really like to eat, the signal is pretty sparse. A lot of what happens is created in the mind. This is how you get people drinking fancy wine but they can’t tell it apart from a cheap version in a blind taste test. So as a matter of daily experience, it's not that much better to eat other foods. I enjoy my diet [of dull things like peanut butter and bread] quite a bit. It doesn't get you to 100% of the hedonic enjoyment of eating normal food but it's pretty enjoyable." "Authentic Buddhism is basically a guide to wireheading. If you follow Buddhism really strictly, you become a monk who sits and meditates all day and eats one bowl of rice. There's no magic, you’re not restoring karma to the universe, you have just found a way to be very happy." "Based on [Gendlin's technique of] focusing I have realized some feelings like tiredness are not really 'real'. They're just a felt sense of not wanting to keep programming. If the two of us were about to play a video game or a board game I liked, I wouldn't feel tired. So it's not a real tiredness, just an aversive felt sense." "Stoicism endorses eating peanut butter [seen as a relatively dull food], but not forever -- just long enough to dispel the fear of losing access to a rich diet. Once you realize how great peanut butter is, you can better enjoy the steaks and caviar."

@1728. 2024-128 happy seven-bit day!

@1729. #crazy-idea fix the problem of different students finishing tests at different speeds by making the test so long/time-constrained that most will still be answering questions to the end, then scale scores according to how far each student got, i.e. the last question they answered
questions should be in randomised order to minimise bias

@1730. 2024-129 a friend (D.D.W.) has contrasted "being alive" with "living", first on 2024-108 (see quotations):
- spontaneously dancing alone for happiness, esp. if you get up, is in the direction of living, and the example that first provoked the topic - D.D.W. defined the difference as pursuing maximum utility unaffected by social norms - i defined (and D.D.W. agreed) the difference as pursuing maximum utility unaffected by behavioural inertia, which is roughly a superset of social norms - cf #yudkowsky on competent elites? i know i saw the phrase "feel alive" (used in third-person) in that or something related

@1731. #crazy-idea medicine is human debugging

@1732. #crazy-idea just as personality can be mostly described by a few numeric variables (as in Big Five), maybe we can describe cultures with a few variables (like individualism vs collectivism)

@1733. the true test for ambidexterity (achirality) in handwriting:
- write the same text with each hand - show the samples to other people, in randomised order - let them guess which was written with the dominant hand - check if guesses significantly differ from 50/50 split

@1734. #nerdtrition (cf #1724) finding of the day: another probably-roughly-optimal diet (better than before, but still probably flawed), given as daily quantities of whole foods
300 g cooked salmon, 50 g cheddar cheese, 150 g almonds, 400 g California avocado (!), 250 g whole-wheat bread, 220 g spinach

@1735. 2024-130 "i'm gonna eat a single unadorned baked potato, which would totally be the highlight of my day" (kinda almost true, incidentally)

@1737. #crazy-idea (which has almost surely already been done, i just have to look for it) large bag which can be carried very effectively both as a backpack (around both shoulders, against the back) and a satchel (around one arm, hanging at any side)

@1738. #crazy-idea to spite every major religion at once, go to a church in Mecca to meditate, eat matzo, and pray to Vishnu

@1739. here are #toki-pona titles for all 12 known doctrines of Sewivada (cf #1699 and my Sewivada essay), each in the format "X pi Y Z" with X, Y, and Z all unique thruout the list
- lili pi kipisi ijo (simplicity) - lukin pi insa lon (scrutiny) - kama pi poka ale (consequence) - pilin pi pona kule (enjoyment) - kute pi ante ala (mindfulness) - weka pi nasa lawa (sobriety) - tenpo pi lape wile (sabbath) - kon pi open ma (metaphysics) - awen pi sijelo sama (respect) - toki pi sinpin sona (honesty) - sin pi jan sewi (roles) - utala pi pana nasin (enforcement)

@1740. when turning off #chromebook screen by turning down brightness to zero, the screen actually shuts off some seconds later
if you increase brightness again, the screen flashes very bright for some fraction of a second before returning to normal (mildly interesting)

@1742. new #nerdtrition diet, cf #1734, probably needs vitamin D supplements:
230 g Virginia peanuts (about 1.7 cups), 220 g canned white tuna (a bit more than one can), 330 g romaine lettuce (about half a head), 330 g russet potato (1 to 3 potatoes, depending on size), 330 g plain yoghurt, 280 g yellow bell pepper (about two peppers), 100 g mozzarella cheese

@1746. let's adapt the #nerdtrition diet from #1734 (apparently pretty effective, with iodised salt) for scenarios where any one food it uses is unavailable (whether by price/shortage, strong taste preferences, allergies/intolerances, poisoned supply, etc)
starting point: 100 g cooked salmon, 30 g cheddar cheese, 150 g almonds, 350 g California avocado, 250 g whole-wheat bread, 220 g spinach mathematical criterion: for any nutrient, sort the foods-with-quantities by decreasing amount of that nutrient, add in that order up to the first partial sum that exceeds the RDA, and call all foods included in the partial sum as "needed for" that nutrient - we need salmon for protein, B6, B12, D, so replace it with tilapia (increase to 150 g) and vitamin D supplements - we need cheddar cheese for Ca, so replace it with mozzarella (increase to 50 g) - we need almonds for fat, fibre, protein, Mg, K, Ca, Zn, so replace it with peanuts (decrease to 100 g), increase cheese to 100 g, increase bread to 300 g, increase spinach to 250 g - we need avocado for fibre, K, Zn, B6, C, so replace it with broccoli (increase to 500 g), replace bread with boiled pinto beans (increase to 600 g), replace spinach with carrots (decrease to 100 g), increase salmon to 400 g - we need whole-wheat bread for Ca, Fe, Zn, so use the same alternative as for avocado - we need spinach for K, Ca, Fe, A, B9, C, so use the same alternative as for avocado summary: you can replace salmon, cheddar, and almonds for other fish, cheese, and nuts, respectively, but they're pretty important but, radically different on the other items and also good is, daily: 400 g cooked salmon, 30 g cheddar cheese, 200 g almonds, 300 g boiled broccoli, 600 g boiled pinto beans, 100 g carrots

@1747. just learned the hard way that if a port on a computer (like a USB port) seems to be subtly broken, consider just looking at it to see if there's something stuck in there to dislodge

@1748. 2024-134 more precise and general basic formula for sunrise and sunset, cf #1664:
the sun is up iff cos(t) > tan(a) * tan(L) * sin(T), where t = time of day (angle), a = tilt of Earth (23.44°, 0.409 radians), L = latitude, T = time of year (angle) this implies that the day-length is 2 * arccos(tan(a) * tan(L) * sin(T))

@1751. a parody/extension of Phil Ochs' "Outside of a Small Circle of Friends" i wrote, loosely based on personal experience:
walkin' bout a block away, that kid's sitting alone / hardly movin', maybe scared, and prob'ly has no phone / perhaps i should get them home or make sure they're alright / but my momentum's great just now, and not too long to night / and i'm sure it wouldn't interest anybody / outside of a small circle of friends

@1754. #neologism "lito", "laugh intensely, towards overwhelm", by analogy to "lol", "lmao", etc (cf #1725)

@1755. #toki-pona #complex-analysis poem, as in #1621: "nanpa wan taso / li ken weka tan / kulupu ma jo / pi supa pona"
possible translation: "only one number can be removed from the group of land present of a good surface", i.e. Picard's little theorem that any entire function maps to every complex number except possibly one

@1756. FoodData Central nutrition data, by US Department of Agriculture, helpful for #nerdtrition
Foundation Foods started getting items added on 2019-04-01

@1759. #nerdtrition another diet:
200 g chicken drumsticks, 100 g mozzarella cheese, 300 g flaxseed, 300 g kale, vitamin D and iodine supplements and another diet: 300 g canned white tuna, 400 g kale, 150 g walnut, 700 g pinto beans, vitamin D and iodine supplements

@1760. 2024-143 towards an intuitive proof of Picard's little theorem/holomorphic surjection theorem (cf #1710), with an insight from J.H.S.:
given a set of disjoint closed contours bounding simply-connected regions which cover the interior of an initial contour, we can prove that at least one such contour must be trivial (a mere point), and in context, constant modulus zero, by contradiction assume there is a smallest contour with positive enclosed area then the points within must be in their own contours, which must enclose a smaller area, and are therefore smaller contours, breaking the uniqueness we avoid a contradiction only by supposing that the smallest contour encloses zero area

@1764. "I simply love to put a little 'X' after everything" by Lauren O'Neill, 2023, wittily and accurately describing one form of the decline of the youth
"Like a lot of the online-pilled, my brain has been rotted by memes, which have become cornerstones of the way I talk to my friends who suffer from the same affliction."

@1768. some broad observations developed in #nerdtrition:
- one should consume 0.6 to 2.3 kg of total food per day (but probably closer to the middle of that range is better, like 1 to 1.5 kg) - most foods studied have most (> 95%) of their mass accounted for by water and macronutrients (fats, proteins, carbohydrates), exceptions including cheddar cheese (92.7%), American cheese (94.2%), butter (94%), Virginia peanuts (94.3%), flaxseed (93.7%) - the full-size bowls in my home have volumes around 0.5 or 0.6 L, such that we might call a full bowl 0.2 kg or 0.4 kg, depending on air/spacing - some natural groupings of food by kcal/g: many vegetables around 0.2, many fruits around 0.6, grains/beans (except bread) around 1, poultry/fish/egg/fatty fruit around 1.2, meat/cheese around 2.8, nuts/butter around 6 - many foods studied have densities between 1.05 and 1.1 kg/L, and most exceptions are still between 1 and 1.15 kg/L, except butter, flaxseed, and bread - cost of food is wildly variable by type of food, source, restaurant vs home-cooked, location, etc, but various sources suggest $10 to $25 per person-day in 2020s US - averaging over 7 diets developed so far, one should eat 0.3 to 0.4 kg of animal products, 0.2 to 0.5 kg of fatty plants, 0.4 to 0.7 kg of carby plants, 0.3 to 0.6 kg of fruits/vegetables

@1770. another #nerdtrition diet, of course:
450 g ripe (black?) olive, 450 g cooked tilapia, 200 g romaine lettuce or spinach, 200 g cooked lentils, 400 g whole-wheat bread, 100 g sweet yellow pepper, iodine supplement

@1774. some interviewy questions i thought of, exactly in the spirit of #1718:
- what's your funniest memory associated with this place (where we are now)? - what do you do that no one else you know does? - what caused you to get up this morning?

@1775. 2024-150 #crazy-idea #frin software to help one learn dances, like a weaker version of #1542:
1. split video into moves (maybe automatable via crazy calculus heuristics, like noticing jumps in the centre-of-mass of pixel-change heatmaps) 2. label move clips with lyrics/section of song 3. label move clips with text description 4. create nicely-formatted slideshow (sample frame from middle of each move-clip) by which to study

@1776. among the most popular terminal feed readers (RSS/Atom) is Newsboat

@1777. 2024-151 "Factors associated with hand washing effectiveness: an institution-based observational study" by Chen Shi, Margaret O'Donoghue, et al, 2023

@1778. "Use ffmpeg to create a video from a few images" by Aracem et al, 2018

@1779. 2024-156 more interviewy questions, cf #1774:
- what book did you most recently read and love or hate (skip the mediocre ones)? - how many ants would fit in an automobile? - what can your culture (if they have one distinct from most people nearby) teach us that we don't recognise enough?

@1781. accidentally helpful design: crosswalks across the streets are marked with white paint/tape, which is more reflective than the dark grey of the tarmac, which is less sunlight-sensitive and so more temperature-stable, making it more comfortable to walk on barefoot

@1784. 2024-157 #nerdtrition diets have total daily solid food intake (total food minus water content) of 0.4 to 0.6 kg, cf #1768

@1785. installed ungoogled-chromium today via Flatpak, first modern web browser on shouteinda

@1787. #crazy-idea there's nothing magically distinctive about rubbish that authorises it to go in the rubbish bin: it's just that which we have decided we have no better use for

@1788. #multivar original joke/pun: the existence of neurodivergence implies the existence of neurogradient and neurocurl
inspired by a similar joke about grad students

@1790. after #1785, Chromium interferes with using xdg-open to open some types of files (PDF, JPG, maybe more), sith xdg-mime now considers Chromium the default for those file types
solution: tamper with /var/lib/flatpak/exports/share/applications/ desktop files, including the mimeinfo.cache file to match

@1792. how i set up a scanner on shouteinda:
- install packages sane, sane-backend-escl, sane-utils, avahi - check for scanner with scanimage -L - just works?

@1793. 2024-166 a couple trials suggest that, after a large meal, it takes over 20 hours for me to get actually hungry again, which seems like more than average? #frin

@1794. 2024-168 how i feel as i wake up/get up turns out to be a terrible proxy for how i feel half an hour later, despite how tempting a proxy it seems

@1796. #lang-zh pinyin gets butchered in XTerm with fonts other than default sith multi-syllable words get zero-width spaces inserted

@1797. got Hanzi (and, incidentally, hiragana) to work in dwm by adding "Noto Sans CJK SC:size=12" to config.h

@1798. 2024-173 connected Nokia feature phone storage to shouteinda as if it were a mere USB flash drive:
doas mount -vt vfat /dev/sdc /media/usb/

@1800. #crazy-idea as people get older, interests (on average) shift from specific (like a particular video game or book series) to general (like a genre)

@1803. 2024-182 #crazy-idea computer/operating system run on predictive processing, i.e. it collects memories on patterns of user input and predicts it, acting internally on its predictions

@1805. weirdly useful shell scripting trick i invented: embed multiple script-files into one with an if/elif/else chain checking if [ "$1" = KEYWORD ], so you can call "helper scripts" from the main script by calling "$0" KEYWORD

@1807. GitHub Releases files (for now) hide behind URLs of the form

@1809. little shell script for making archives out of project directories
```sh for A in * do if [ -f $B/$A.tar.bz2 ] then echo "$A archived" elif [ `du -s "$A" | cut -f 1` -gt 1024 ] then echo "$A big" else tar -cjvf $B/$A.tar.bz2 $A fi done ```

@1811. HandSpeak #lang-ase dictionary hosts video files at URLs of the form and expects a User-Agent besides that of curl

@1813. after i accidentally helped someone on IRC ( with an ElasticSearch problem, wildly winging it
"if you ever have a use case where you need to have a lot of text searchable within a system, elasticsearch is your friend. postgresql tsvector, 'LIKE', and pretty much any db which doesn't use an inverted index is slow in comparison"