This is the bi-weekly visible open thread (there are also hidden open threads twice a week you can reach through the Open Thread tab on the top of the page). Post about anything you want, but please try to avoid hot-button political and social topics. You can also talk at the SSC subreddit or the SSC Discord server – and also check out the SSC Podcast. Also:
1. Thanks to everyone who’s helped organize upcoming meetups. I still need people to volunteer for the following cities: Cambridge (UK), Detroit, Dublin, Munich, Oxford, Pittsburgh. If you live in those cities and are willing to host an SSC meetup, please post below and/or email me with location, date, and time. I’ll try to have the big list of times and locations up later this week.
2. Related: the Less Wrong team now has a feature where you can add your location onto a world map and see if there are other people in your area interested in meeting up (or get notifications if someone else organizes for your area). See the thing on the top of https://www.lesswrong.com/community.
3. I’ve previously been refraining from enforcing the comment policies too hard on people who otherwise produce good content. And when conversations degenerate and everyone breaks the comment policies in a way where it’s hard to disentangle who started it, I’ve been leaving most of the people involved alone. But I think discussion quality has been degenerating here lately, so I’m revoking both those policies. The following people are now banned for multiple violations of the comment policy (linked after their names):
– Conrad Honcho indefinitely (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
– Dick indefinitely (1, 2, 3, 4)
– Matt M for three months (1, 2)
– Deiseach for three months or until you guys whine at me to reinstate her enough (1, 2, 3)
The following people are on thin ice and should consider themselves warned:
– Le Maistre Chat
5. I got a chance to talk to the author of the Times article I reviewed in Don’t Fear The Simulators. He wants to clarify that the presentation in the Times was necessarily condensed and simplified, and that if you’re really interested in this topic he has a paper, The Termination Risks Of Simulation Science, which explains his arguments in more detail.