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Author Archives: Scott Alexander

Open Thread 82.25

This is the twice-weekly hidden open thread. Post about anything you want, ask random questions, whatever. You can also talk at the SSC subreddit, or the SSC Discord server.

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Fear And Loathing At Effective Altruism Global 2017

San Francisco in the middle sixties was a very special time and place to be a part of. Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long run – but no explanation, no mix of words or music or memories … Continue reading

OT82: Threado Quia Absurdum

This is the bi-weekly visible open thread. Post about anything you want, ask random questions, whatever. You can also talk at the SSC subreddit, the SSC Discord server. Also: 1. Comments of the week: CatCube on how organizations change over … Continue reading

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Brief Cautionary Notes On Branded Combination Nootropics

I. Taking nootropics is an inherently questionable decision. The risk isn’t zero, and the benefits are usually subtle at best. On the other hand, mountain-climbing also has risks, and is so devoid of benefit that the only excuse mountaineers can … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 93 Comments

Open Thread 81.75

This is the twice-weekly hidden open thread. Post about anything you want, ask random questions, whatever. You can also talk at the SSC subreddit, the SSC Discord server, or the Cafe Chesscourt forum.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 975 Comments

The Lizard People Of Alpha Draconis 1 Decided To Build An Ansible

I. The lizard people of Alpha Draconis 1 decided to build an ansible. The transmitter was a colossal tower of silksteel, doorless and windowless. Inside were millions of modular silksteel cubes, each filled with beetles, a different species in every … Continue reading

Links 8/17: On The Site Of The Angels

Benjamin Lay was a four-foot-tall Quaker abolitionist who, among other unusual forms of activism, kidnapped a slaveowner’s child to give them a taste of what slaves had to go through. ProPublica: The Myth Of Drug Expiration Dates. Most drugs (strong … Continue reading

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Contra Grant On Exaggerated Differences

I. An article by Adam Grant called Differences Between Men And Women Are Vastly Exaggerated is going viral, thanks in part to a share by Facebook exec Sheryl Sandberg. It’s a response to an email by a Google employee saying … Continue reading

Open Thread 81.5

This is the twice-weekly hidden open thread. As the off-weekend thread, this is culture-war-free, so please try try to avoid overly controversial topics. You can also talk at the SSC subreddit, the SSC Discord server, or the Cafe Chesscourt forum.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 648 Comments

Why Not More Excitement About Prediction Aggregation?

There’s a new ad on the sidebar for Metaculus, a crowd-sourced prediction engine that tries to get well-calibrated forecasts on mostly scientific topics. If you’re wondering how likely it is that a genetically-engineered baby will be born in the next … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 170 Comments