Re: arrogance is illogical

From: BillK (
Date: Thu Jun 03 2004 - 05:40:27 MDT

Metaqualia wrote:
> (2) Elizier is very smart there is no doubt about that. I think
> Elizier can
> go to a local bar and be the brightest guys as can lots of the people on
> this list (but the bar people wouldn't notice, and we could still learn a
> thing or two from them about the "normal world"). However: being arrogant
> about one's brightness with sl4 members who are not only all extremely
> bright but also should be thinking about solving a common problem and
> cooperating, is futile, and can only bring about idle rethoric and IQ
> tournaments and take discussions from a rational level to a personal one. So
> Bayes should condemn display of the theory "I am smarter" as it has a very
> high likelihood of producing negative utility; he also should condemn the
> misguided application of the theory on a very different data set than that
> from which it was generalized.

I agree that one would expect that everyone on SL4 is either a
'whiz-kid' or, if older, an 'ex-whiz-kid'. In their own field of
expertise, of course, not necessarily in AI.
(You better get a move on Eli, being a 'whiz-kid' doesn't last) ;)

But as an ex-whiz-kid myself, my reaction to Elizier is that he should
get out more.

No matter how 'smart' you think you are, there is always someone
smarter. You just haven't met them yet.

Are you sitting comfortably? Let me tell you a story:

At one time I worked for a large multi-national and we developed
software which had to be rolled out around the world. We developed staff
training courses which usually ran for about 5 days. Foreign branches
required more detail because they had to customize the software by
programming in changes for their local laws.

When my managers first came back from the Far East they were
shell-shocked. Especially Singapore and Japan. They reported that they
had never seen anything like the almost feral intelligence of the people
there. 5 day courses were completed in 1 to 2 days. They just sat like
sponges soaking up all the information. The programming done was to a
far higher standard than in the West. Being late on a project meant
'losing face' and they would live in the office rather than get behind
schedule. If a bug was found in something they coded, it was a matter of
'dishonor' and treated really seriously. Culture shock. They had a
completely different attitude to work and business. And, boy, were they

The main point is that we in the West are now a small minority of the
world population. And us 'nice guys' on SL4 a microscopic proportion.
Our volition will disappear in the sum of the world volition. (Unless
you assume that all the disagreeing volitions are primitive and if
educated and advanced would agree with us !?).

The Third World has a ferocious intelligence which is mostly intent on
killing their enemies before their enemies kill them. Individuals will
kill themselves if it kills more of their enemies in the process.
This militaristic, nationalistic outlook has often been the basis of
morality. Spartans, Kamikaze, suicide bombers, etc.
If a summation is taken of world volition, this will be very significant.


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