Pinned toot

I know a decent amount about

Existential risks
Passive cybersecurity
Data science careers
Insurance
Python, SciPy, Spark
ML
Numerical methods
Development economics
Nietzsche, Frege, Wittgenstein
Economic history
History of computing
History of philosophy
The replication crisis and social science
Quantified self
Biochemistry (esp. veganism & nootropics)
Analytic philosophy (esp. science, ethics)
Contemporary scifi
UK poetry
Scotland
Punk, jazz, ambient music

and I like answering questions, AMA.

It's possible that the oligopolists could become scary, rather than irritating and mildly risky. Dyson gave me a shudder with this:

"The genius — sometimes deliberate, sometimes accidental — of the enterprises is that they have emerged as something else. Their models are no longer models... No one is at the controls... The successful social network is no longer a model of the social graph, it is the social graph. This is why it is a winner-take-all game."

edge.org/conversation/george_d

“there was no way that we could have imagined [surveillance capitalism’s] action, any more than the early peoples of the Caribbean could have foreseen the rivers of blood that would flow from their hospitality toward the [Conquistadores]”

- Shoshana Zuboff

I'm a privacy fan; I distrust most internet services; I don't use a smartphone. But this overheated language makes me cringe. In what way is Google an Outside Context Problem, a qualitatively superior invasion? In what way is it violence?

Another angle is that, to the extent that Eva *is* dishonest, detached, and self-serving (but accidentally correct about her parenting effect), these characteristics could well have been passed to Kevin genetically.

spoilers Show more

Yesterday I learned that I don't actually dislike conversations about religion - just rote apologetics.

Talking about someone's deeply held theological positions, when you have none, is fun in the way that talking to a clever ranter in a fandom you don't care about is fun.

(Both would no doubt feel insulted by this comparison.)

"Heaven and Earth are not benevolent:
they treat everything like straw dogs."

- Daodejing

天地不仁以
万物为刍狗

I don't really understand. Could be

1) Irony. But are their corporate customers capable of it?
2) Bad Fans - completely missing the point
3) Most likely? - never seen the film.

newyorker.com/magazine/2014/04

"Gattaca - Helping companies realise their people potential"

www.gattacaplc.com

"the absence of unambiguously altruistic characters is almost one of the things that marks highbrow fiction as such... genre fiction is filled with far more heroism than higher culture...

 I talked about this with a novelist. I said, “What is wrong with you novelists? Why don’t you write about heroic characters who are moved by a sense of moral duty?”

He gave me this look of total contempt like I had asked him to write about bunnies or butterflies."

medium.com/conversations-with-

"As striking as are the varieties of religious experience, they pale beside the variety of material things that can possibly exist...

Using electrons, protons, and neutrons, it is possible to build: a waterfall; a superconductor; a living cell; a Bose-Einstein condensate; a conscious mind; a black hole; a tree; an iPhone; a Jupiter Brain; a working economy; a von Neumann replicator; an artificial general intelligence; a Drexlerian universal constructor; and much, much else."

- Michael Nielsen

Beautiful line from the Vulgate Psalms: "ferrum pertransit animam ejus", "the iron entered into his soul".

i.e. You are placed in irons, and eventually the irons are placed in you. (Psychologically disfigured by imprisonment.)

But this is a simple mistranslation from the Hebrew meaning "he was placed in irons".

"I was voted 'best bants' in the data science team!"
"Ah yes - the handsomest man on Mars."

If it survives (which it can, since it's immune to most taxes and all takeovers), can imagine one of the wilder billionaires setting up an actual DAO with it as precedent.

forbes.com/sites/robertwood/20

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