The thing about Eric is, he balances a sparkling intellect with an openness to carry out enquiries, into spaces where rational thinking alone isn’t enough.
Sure, he's the MD of Thiel Capital, but there's so much more driving him. And these are the very things for which he doesn't get his due.
The multiverse of topics he can traverse is quite something. As his brother @BretWeinstein says: ‘He's good at evolutionary thinking in a way I'll never be good at mathematical thinking'
If there’s lack of context in the topics below, the expanded themes (& more) are linked up at the end of the thread.
Right, here we go:
We must embrace the inconsistency of our own minds, not as a bug, but as a feature. We are in essence brought here by forces of selection: Products of systems of selective pressures. What they seem to do is create the ability to run many
Imagine running another mind in emulation, maybe not as well as its original owner, but we can run it well enough to understand, empathize, to argue / spar with it, to achieve some kind of better outcome
People wish to be part of the consensus. They wish to be excellent in their behavior and in their hope for excellent outcomes. The problem is theres a tradeoff.. that excellence is really about quality control.
For example in Jazz, if an improviser takes few risks, the music may be pleasant enough as background music, but it's scarcely the sort of thing that would've animated the bebop generation.
But we've blinded ourselves to the role, that a different thought process is also involved, which I would associate with genius.
The key question is who are these high variance individuals? Why are our schools filled with dyslexics? Why so many kids diagnosed with ADHD? My claim is that these are giant, under-served populations, not meant for the 'excellence' model.
We've created a system which effectively demonizes these different patterns, and makes these people feel less than.
Most of us who wind up using these sort of strange high-agency hacks to negotiate the world, have some kind of a traumatic birth. We may flatter ourselves that were in touch with reality, but in fact, reality is a second best strategy.
When you're told that something is impossible, is that the end of the conversation? Or does that start a second dialogue in ur mind, how to get around whoever it is that's just told you that you can't do something?
The issue that I felt almost defines my my quest is : Why can't a self teacher leave pupils?
My claim is that the original innovator in the film is a Turtle which is an even more inappropriate KungFu archetype than a Panda, bcos they r obviously slow-moving
But all the turtle has to go on,
From this humble beginning the magic unfolds, & its really about the magic of how one self-teacher leaves a successor, & solves the problem.
Theres nothing I like about umbrellas. They blow up in wind, so they're easily wrecked under conditions in which they're supposed to be used. They have long metal spikes at about eye level, so they're clearly a safety hazard.
it’s situation by situation. So for example in science I try to use various intellectual arbitrage techniques where if you have a bunch of smart people who have been focused on a problem, I try to look at what as a group their weaknesses are.
So u start to look at what causes, what should be a diverse portfolio of ideas, to collapse in terms of
Let's look at nature. There's a great virus called T4 bacteriophage. If u look it up it looks like a lunar lander - it’s really cool. The genetic material is held in a capsule, called the capsid, that has the form of an icosahedron.
Or recent discovery of grasshoppers using gear mechanisms for jumping. You'd think we'd invented gears but in fact gears are such a natural idea that natural selection founded long before we did
When I'm going to do deep work, very often it has this kind of very powerful aggressive energy to it. It's not easy to be around. It's very exacting. I think I would probably look very autistic, to people who know me to be social, if they were to
Relatively recently, & it was bcos I had been propagandized so thoroughly, that even to this day I don't like the association. There were all sorts of confusions, that the power of one of these substances must come from killing brain cells,
It wasn't until I started meeting some of the most intellectually gifted people in the sciences & beyond, & I realized that this was sort of the open secret of what I call the hallucinogenic elite.
In essence u are zagging when others zigging. U r not even thinking outside the box; u haven't seen the box in years. If thats who u are, my feeling is u shud get here. I can't promise the 1st wk/month will b the greatest of ur life, but u will fall in w/ ppl
But even if this is a bubble, I think it'll re-inflate in the same place, because fundamentally we've run out of all
So it's grow or die, & that means we'll have another bubble. These aren't terrible things. Lots of wonderful things happen during them
It's disturbing is to watch people reading it, not realizing the whole thing is predicated on the idea that you must have a secret.
Imagine somebody building a car with no engine. Doesn't matter how nice u get the upholstery it's not going to work
The real reason most people shouldn't start a company is they don't know or believe anything the rest of the world knows/ thinks as being nonsense
In a sense, if u choose the path of the dissident / heterodox / crank, u will find the only hope or chance u got is having a really novel idea about how this game goes, so u have some time & some breathing room for everyone else
The fact is, the traditional community is also stalled out.
I paid close attention to how Einstein talked about the Creator.
Now if I couldn't posit some version of the Creator, I can't solve the question of why theres something rather than nothing?
Assuming theres calculus & linear algebra & nothing else
It was certainly an insane thing for me to start a project like this. So I'd go into a closet in my mind & attempt to speak to this thing that cud
That was my research problem: Is the Creator NOT all-powerful/knowing but in fact all constrained: A custodian whose only job is
I view us in a sense as emergent AI that'll animate the Creator when we turn in the source code, where the universe for the 1st time uses us as AI to contemplate its own reality, which its never been able to do at least in our li'l nbrhood
Theres 4 things I care about: Truth, fitness, meaning, grace. They all trade off among each other.
I find if u think ur way more accurately through a problem, it should increase ur fitness. Maybe grace is something that’s independent and u have to figure
And my belief is a that lot of these things are preset. There’s actually more antagonism between them.
A lot of the agnostics and atheists have more religious leanings than they open up to, & a lot more of
After the Sam Harris podcast many wrote in: 'Oh it shows he doesn’t care about truth'
Now Sam's argument is, more better/rational our thinking, more it can do what
Theres also this atheist critique, which is theres no bearded dude in the cloud granting wishes..
But none of this is the point. The point is deep archetype is its own thing. The mind seeks deep archetype.
@jordanbpeterson's really deep point is: Only archetype of the kind found in religion is sufficiently rich & deep to explain why humans behave the way they do. Theres no scientific theory, no purely logical or philosophical tradition.
For those members of society of a certain age, we think of capitalism as being locked in an ideological battle with socialism perhaps or even communism. But we never really saw it might be defeated by its own child: Technology.
I talked about in an essay: ‘Anthropic Capitalism' that software has some very peculiar features. The problem with software is that software spends most of its time in loops. Almost
Its not just a question of being moved from lower value repetitive behaviors into higher ones. The problem is that all repetitive
So its really important to understand where we are is, we may need a hybrid model in the future thats paradoxically more capitalistic than our capitalism of today & perhaps even more socialistic than our communism of yesteryear.
Many souls will require respect, hope, freedom and choice. They may not be able to defend themselves in the market as our machines & software gets better and better.
Whether or not we leaven our capitalism w/ some communism or start from some sort
We worry plenty about AI but turns out lot of species use the intelligence of target species they're parasitizing: Make the victim do the thinking in service of the predator
We haven’t worried about evolving through artificial
Artificial Out-telligence is where instead of actually having an artificially intelligent species, u can imagine a dumb computer program
With AI I don't think we r there yet. But with AO I can't find anything missing from the equation
So much of our musical system is in math & physics of a vibrating string. Theres one crazy innovation 'even temperament' which has to do with a strange math fact. If u raise the no. 2 for twice the frequency, giving us the octave to
I wrote a tiny computer program in Python and put it in a tweet and it's only purpose was to reproduce the chord
I do think that there’s a very close relationship between algorithms & emotions
We have to be honest: A lot of math has crept in for the purposes of intimidation. To make cryptic which is otherwise simple. To create a kind of interference comp - restrict the field to a smaller no of players. Theres tremendous amount of abuse of math.
One problem is that you are feeding the wrong data types back into the models.
I have a different impression of this. What we are in is a multi decade conspiracy effectively to deny just how good our educational system can be - just how good some of our people are. This has to do
We pretend that we are somehow lagging we are incapable and incompetent.
Its like saying I have a Steinway shortage in my apartment. Its not bcos theres no Steinways to be had; its bcos I don't feel like shelling out 25k for a grand piano.
At some point @nntaleb was the best person to get in front of the house committee on finance, but was blocked.
So I tried to get him onto the House Science/Tech Committee to tell us why the world had blown up during the 2008 crisis. But they launched every
Anti-expert is somebody who has all the right credentials as an expert but has reached radically different conclusions than their community, & still wants to remain in that kind of dialogue to find out if they're right / wrong. Usually
It'll show them the conclusions aren't nearly as strongly ground as they think
Its like someone saying I’m a climate scientist & I have completely different models than u.
Its a presently obscure construction from linguistics, psychology & rhetoric demonstrating how our rational minds r shielded from understanding the junior role factual information generally plays relative to empathy in our formation of opinions.
Bertrand Russell had said this on the BBC: 'Let's look at the construction: I am firm. You are obstinate. He, she or it is a pig headed fool.’
Theres a video of Frank Luntz asking people what they think
If u r trying to silence a small no. of people the thing to do is proximate them to a lot of really terrible stuff. So for people who don’t have time to say I neither condemn or condone, it'll create enough fear & doubt in their minds.
Tag that which u wish to
What u r seeing is the institutions treating us almost like an infection, but their immune system is weakened. The media doesn't like competition & sense making.
And the #IDW is 'an alternative sense making collective'
One interesting pattern is putting a ton of pressure on a large group of people to salute some flag that shouldn't be saluted. Then u have one person who
What can we discus, what can't we discuss. Lot of us may benefit from this notion that we're going to make certain ideas too hot too dangerous to express in polite company. On the other hand, we’ve started to hamstring the cognitive power in our contrarian
Somebody asks the question: ‘Do u believe intelligence is perfectly, evenly distributed between genders or among ethnic groups?’
Statistically it would be crazy to say I believe it's perfectly distributed.