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Lives under a rok.

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joined 2022 October 04 06:01:17 UTC


User ID: 1473


Lives under a rok.

0 followers   follows 0 users   joined 2022 October 04 06:01:17 UTC


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User ID: 1473

That's a good question, but I don't know anything about Japan.

Also, I somewhat dispute that the gender war has "turned hot" in Korea. I think this "gender war" mostly journos trying to make a big issue about gender, for the reasons outlined in the second half of my grandparent comment. Surveys in 2021 showed that in every demographic surveyed, "inequality between men and women" was considered less of a problem in 2021 than in 2016. Also, if you are not terminally online you won't notice any gender war. (But Korean society does tend to be terminally online, so most people are aware of some feminist/anti-feminist drama. )

Haha. You fell for the bait! Ok, some anecdotes that come to mind now. Might add more later:

  1. Careerist girl in her early 30s spent years watching South Park. Gets really good at English (in a South Park drawl!), but remains single for years. Discovers the Man of Her Dreams on Tinder. Spends two months raving about how perfect he is, how Tinder is different in Korea. Then learns he was also dating three other Tinder girls.

  2. Staunch feminist sits next to foreign guy on the subway. Guy completely ignores her. She tries to get his attention, he keeps ignoring her. She gets up and starts berating him for "manspreading," threatens to take his picture and put it on Twitter. Incident resolves when he threatens to take her picture and send it to the police for harrassment.

  3. Tall (= tough dating prospects) artistic (=open-minded) girl falls in love with a foreign guy. Everything seems to be going well, except he's not very patient about her lack of English fluency. He takes her home to meet his family ... and it turns out they all live on a trailerpark. Relationship survives until he goes on a date with another girl. When she does meet a guy who is patient with her, that's one of the points she brags to her friends about.

  4. Staunch feminist in her early 30s meets foreign guy. Everything is going well, except that he walks out of a movie when it gets to a particularly girl-power scene. She has a two-week identity crisis over meeting someone so "anti-woman".

  5. Early 20s reader of The Ethical Slut finally finds the rich foreign gentleman she's been trying to snag. Comes back raving about how the first date was amazing, he must have spent $500 between dinner and the hotel, she's finally found the man of her dreams. A week later he has to go on an international business trip, and stops answering his phone. Oddly, his phone is ringing like it's still in Korea ...

It's not just the ownership that matters, it's that renting is frouned upon, housing loans are not cheaply available (30% down payment is common, IIRC), housing is treated as an investment, the closing price for typical condos is now 20x~30x the median annual salary. I only know one 20-30 year old who purchased a condo in the last 5 years without parental assistance (and the one guy sold his startup to a conglomerate for millions.)

Without doxxing myself, all I can say is that I am immersed in Korean life. My source is mostly synthesis of what people have told me over the years while talking to me candidly and first-hand observation while experiencing the rat race. In my workplace, I saw men putting their children to bed on Kakao Facechat. In my extracurricular activities, I met a few mid-30s journalist women who were writing for foreign-language outlets. I saw friends get married, be disappointed, and turn bitter, and know many who cannot afford to get married.

So you should treat the above as original research, almost anecdotal. I was trying to convey the economic and social forces which push men and women into discontent with each other (well, mostly a subset of women into discontent with men), but also the filtering effect of what gets to English-language media, and the citogenesis effect of the English-language media on Koreans' understanding of their own culture (which I think is despicable).

As with anything sociological, an examination of the Korean situation is incomplete without an economic background.

  1. Wages have historically been low in Korea.
  2. Korea is a cutthroat meritocracy.
  3. Men (or their parents) are still mostly valued as "providers".
  4. Housing prices in Seoul, the only city worth living in, have almost tripled since 2018.
  5. This generation of women is the first generation to be fully entering the workforce.
  6. Buying a house is a precondition to marrying under Korean social norms.
  7. Koreans, in comparison to Westerners, don't like to violate social norms.

What 1 (low wages) + 2 (cutthroat meritocracy) imply is that Korean men have to work hard to get promoted to management if they want to support their family. This has historically taken the form of 60-hour work weeks (8 hours plus "voluntary" company dinners, Monday to Saturday). As women enter the workforce, the culture of company dinners has been pared back, and now it is 8 hours plus unpaid evenings if one wants to have a chance at being promoted to manager. (Women don't on average put in those hours, since 60% of them plan on leaving the workforce when they are married and have kids.)

Adding 3 (the social role of men as providers) means that their value is measured by the thickness of their wallets, and their wallets are on average not very thick, because 1 (wages are low) and their wallets are getting thinner, and less valued, because 5 (because women are entering the workforce).

Now owning a home is a precondition to marriage (and childbirth) in Korea, and this means that it is mostly the upper middle class which can afford to have kids. So you get a whole generation of women who were raised by their mothers in houses where their fathers were working 60-hour weeks to be that upper middle class. They grew up in material luxury, but their fathers would home drunk late at night after these company dinners and pass out immediately. They see their mothers working thanklessly in their home, barely time for a conversation with their fathers, and want none of it. Thus the mythology is born. "Korean men suck."

These women in the upper middle class have gone onto college, where they major in the humanities and are exposed to the imported concepts of third-wave feminism. Men are the oppressors, women are victims, and life sucks because of patriarchy. Life does suck. They try going into the workforce and see that wages are low and the culture sucks. Must be the patriarchy holding them back. (To emphasize the point, men in their cohort who enter the workforce had their mandatory military service counted as work experience and so enter at a higher pay level.)

Growing up in the upper-middle class with material opulence, these Korean women have high expectations for their quality of life, and instead of finding a marriagable high-status husband, their age-matched prospects are only poor men who are struggling to get ahead in the rat race. Then when they are looking for a husband, none of the available young bachelors have any money or free time. Nobody is buying that house! If they are schooled in third-wave feminism, the message is clear: "Korean men suck."

These feminist women go into jobs like journalism, where they write tons of articles about how terrible the men are, with no consideration for the economic constraints that got the entire society into this position. They hit age 30 (or 35) and are forced to marry by social forces (and that ticking biological clock). If they are marriageable, they end up settling for a man who they are not happy with, read HuffPost, and inhabit "mom cafes" online where they post screeds about how terrible men are. If they have poor personalities, they write screeds even more vociferously about their bosses and the men who rejected them. Somewhere, they read that foreign men are feminists and get the idea that foreigners will support them. (And boy the stories I have of what happens when they actually meet foreign men!)

(Women who were aware that their fathers were making sacrifices for them see the feminists going off the deep end and no longer feel comfortable calling themselves feminists.)

Young Korean men, on the other hand, see their fathers working 996, and instintively understand that their fathers are working as a sacrifice to provide material wealth for the family. They see that the women of their cohort (especially the self-proclaimed feminists) do not appreciate these sacrifices, and especially don't appreciate the sacrifice they made in lifetime to keep the country safe from the North Koreans. The women appear thankless and shrill. The men put their heads down and try to work harder to get ahead. If they are responsible, they save every last penny to buy that house when they get married.

The left-wing Moon administration rejiggers the housing market to try to lower housing prices, and ends up adding fuel to the fire and doubling housing prices in three years. The left/feminist wing also hushes up several cases of sexual assault by the left-wing mayor of Seoul, who commits suicide when the allegations become public. The right-wing candidate vows to abolish the "Ministry for Women and Family" (English translation: "Ministry for Gender Equality"), which is seen as a think-tank and jobs program for these radical feminists. In response mostly to housing prices but partly to the MfWaF who hate them and the hypocricy of the leftists covering up sexual assault, men in the next election vote for the right-wing candidate.

Korean journalists - especially ones who know enough English to write for foreign journals like CNN and the NYT - are largely drawn from those upper-class women who went through college in the humanities and were radicalized on third-wave feminism. The election of a right-wing government is portrayed by these Korean journalists (who never studied economics and don't want to talk about the rapey left-wing mayor) as a sign that Korean men hate women. (The actual surveys show that they hate "feminists".) Western media comes to believe that Korean men are sexists engaged in a gender war, as everything available in English is filtered through the lens of Korean feminists.

Edit: And as my Korean friend points out, Korean journalists frequently cite foreign (CNN, NYT, etc) articles about Korean gender wars to assert that these things are real, without thinking about the filter effect and the fact that the foreign journalists' friends are all upper-class English-speaking Koreans (i.e. filtered for feminists).

Damit. Why didn't you link to the YT video the first time? Would have saved me a lot of time drudging through Pelosi's official statements. This is the kind of link I can save for use in future online arguments.

Nancy Pelosi telling people to go out and Celebrate Lunar New Year (as in telling people to go out in public around large groups) when fear of Coronavirus was right-coded. Its right there in an official communication.

While I agree that there was a very interesting dynamic with left-coded cries of "racism" being used by public health and "pro-science" professionals to pooh-pooh the need to close ports or intitute quarantines on points of entry in January 2020 (1), these particular statements by Pelosi were boilerplate well before the pandemic from 2006 to 2021, and only stopped when China went full Wolf-Warrior diplomacy in late 2021 and early 2022.

As evidence, I give you some other official announcments. The omission of years prior to 2017 just means I didn't bother looking for them, and the URL wasn't obvious.

Please check your arguments to verify that they are solid before presenting a weakman argument for your point.

(1) IMO, the Trump admin could have used the national emergency to close all border flows, left the US epidemiologically secure like Taiwan, and used the inevitable leak as further justification for border security. But Trump is incompetent, Trump's staff was incompetent, and the CDC isn't competent enough to quarantine tourists anyway.

Does every country with a large uncontrolled land border have a drug problem? It's possible.

How would we know what the effect (or intended effect) is? Perhaps the CCP wants to sway the election left, and their only thumb on the scale will be spreading pro-D get-out-the-vote videos on election day. Or perhaps they want to sway the election right. Perhaps they just want to keep Chinese citizens abroad from hearing about corruption at home, and all it takes is a thumb on the scale to keep China out of the minds of TikTok users. Perhaps the goal is intelligence collection rather than propaganda, and anything viral is fair play, as long as it gets data from the highest number of devices. Or perhaps the goal is the disintegration of Western Society, and all the inane influencer trends that go viral are centrally programmed so that the most inane and least productive ideas enter the largest number of impressionable young brains. It is even possible that they want to swing the opinions of the American electorate to be anti-China, so that the anti-China US turns into a bogeyman to distract from a stagnating domestic economy.

My point is that we have no way of knowing what the CCP propaganda goal (at any moment in time) would be and the algorithm is a black box (with different output for every user), so it is entirely impossible to see the broader effect the algorithm is having, let alone whether that effect is intended. The result is that anyone concerned about epistemic safety would support banning the black box.

I concede that the same concerns apply to other media companies, too. While I would argue that there is a qualitative difference between TikTok and domestic social media companies in that the owner and programmers of Facebook at least in theory lives in the same society as me and share some of my values, the ability to cause a partisan shift in voting rates or voting direction - by say 10% - is too large of a power to entrust to any black box controlled by a single entity. As they say, power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

In English, they say they're the Communist Part of China, or CPC.

This is a complicated topic to say the least. It seems to have arisen from a non-issue to an issue just as tensions between the US and China rose in 2020. (I'm reminded of the euphemism treadmill.) While the Chinese diaspora seems to prefer CPC, the English-language scholarly literature has long used CCP. Even the official media outlets of the Party seem to have no problem calling themselves the CCP occasionally (ex. http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/201710/27/WS5a0d0875a31061a738408157.html).

Please expand on those real and serious reasons. If Russian aggression is to be limited to Ukraine, why attempt to stir unrest in Moldova? (Why leave Moldova out of your bet?) Why do senior Russian officials admit an intention to "denazify and demilitarize" Poland? Was it because Ukraine was leaning towards joining Nato? If so, the same calculus must surely apply to Finland, too: "Finland’s accession to Nato would have serious military and political repercussions.".

I won't take your bet, but that's only because the Russian armed forces have broken themselves against the Ukranians and are rapidly losing the strength necessary to pursue a campaign in the Baltics. I propose the following alternative conditional bet: If Russia takes Kyiv in the next three months, then Russia will invade another of its neighbors before 2033.

That doesn't explain whay this is a problem in America. Seoul Subways are cheaper (1/40000 median income for a one way ride) and also lack bouncers (police enter the train 5 stops after an incident). We have a few screamers and a lot of drunks but hard drug use on the train does not exist.

For myself, I suddenly discovered their utility yesterday. They are much more effective at restructuring existing text than at answering questions (de novo text generation), and very very good at generating convincing (if not fully accurate) boilerplate. So the best application is summary or restyling ('please rewite this email to a superior a bit more formally', 'please restructure this bulleted list as a polite email'). Of course, everything submitted goes to OpenAI, so this opens up business secrets concerns, but everything typed into Office Home already gets sent to Microsoft by default via "diagnostic data."

Thank you. This is encouraging.

Yup. This is the way things are done in the rest of the world. If there is "affordable housing" it takes the form of little tiny apartments (like ... 6 square meters) which anyone can afford because they are minimalist. (Americans might call these tenements, and they are illegal.) Developers outside of the US seem to prevent claims of gentrification by grandfathering old tenants/owners into the new, larger units built on the same land.

It was horrible. I only survived because I had a supportive romantic partner. I was under so much stress that my hair whitened. Apparently stress kills melanocytes.

My goal in writing these stories was to capture how AI set up to maximize profit could fuck over the little guy by optimizing existing business processes. I think that's more likely than anything else.

Mostly survival and personal career progress. I'm planning on leaving after a few years, but I would prefer to do my small part to improve the culture.

I'm moving to a job on a campus in the US. The question of what to do about social justice, political conversations, and social justice training requirements has been vexing me for a while. I just got my first email from someone who has pronouns in their email signature, with a link to the campus policy on pronoun use. (Tl;dr: staff are "encouraged," to use pronouns and "expected" to treat people in accordance with their claimed pronouns.)

Here are my options:

  1. Poe's strategy: Agree and amplify. I use all pronouns as claimed. I believe we should racially segregate as much as possible because that would be good for making Black communities into safe spaces for Black bodies, but we should do this by forcibly unhousing white people, because anything else would be gentrification. I take full responsibility for the racism of all the people of my race, and think we should give full reparations to all Black bodies. This probably codes as high-class, but there is a large chance of being unable to keep up with the charade and a small chance of being cancelled as a result. There is also a chance of value drift and the mental risks inherent in living a lie.

  2. Mainland Chinese strategy: I don't talk about politics or social issues at all. If asked, it's because I can't keep up with it. (This is mostly true!) Probably codes as low-class in the US, but I won't be cancelled for my opinions, because I don't have opinions... at least until BLMII (LGBTQIA+ boogaloo) comes around and everyone who doesn't fly the Rainbow-BLM flag is cancelled.

  3. Mask strategy: I don't talk much, but when pushed I shrug and concur with moderately pro-SJ shibboleths that I still believe. When in private with a trusted interlocutor, it's mask off. This is what I currently do, but SJ isn't a significant factor at all in my current social environment, so I am able to spend more time mask-off than mask-on.

  4. Earnest SJW strategy: This is the highest-class option, but I don't think I can pull it off. I don't know the language, I'm doomed to stumble, and don't want to break my reasoning capacity that much, and it goes directly against my values, interests, and tribe.

  5. Earnest Mottizan strategy: True honesty. I oppose SJ (because it is in direct opposition with my values) and I'm not afraid to say so... in a friendly way with a smile on my face. I support equal rights, but not equality of outcomes, which I don't think is ever possible. I think most SJ is just an elite conspiracy to shift focus away from class issues, with the richest of the rich supporting it because they are wealthy enough to avoid its negative side effects... which hurt black people too. I think unfettered immigration is bad for blacks in America, and I don't think SJ really helps the people it seeks to help, instead infantilizing them and removing their agency. I think the biggest problem facing black america is lack of interest in education, and the biggest problem facing women in STEM is that STEM careers suck: the pay is for tools, and no smart woman would enter them when other careers are low stress and more lucrative. My experience living in a more conservative society has taught me that most SJW claims are false in traditional societies, etc. Etc.

So, I guess what I'm asking is: what's the safest strategy, what's the best for my career, and what's the best way to spread my values? For those of you in US academia, what approach do you follow, and what works or doesn't work?

On the other hand, how many of the current crop of AI researchers were directly motivated by Eliezer, and how many followed independent paths? As computational power and GPUs improved (be it for gaming, for servers, or for bitcoin), gradient descent becoming practical was an inevitability. Once gradient descent became practical, researchers start pivoting to it, and the only barrier (that we know of now) is the availability of datasets and hardware. The snowball was doomed to start rolling with Hinton's publication of back-propagation in 1986.

Martian colonies have an asteroid dropped on them, and whatever pathetic escape craft we make in the next 20 years get swatted before they reach the orbit of Saturn.

In 20 years the AGI apocalypse will not be nearly as romantic as that. It is much more likely to look like a random bank/hospital sending you a collections notice for a home loan/medical treatment you definitely didn't agree to, bringing you to court over it, and putting you up against the equivalent of a $100M legal team. The AI-controlled Conglomerate wins in court and you spend the rest of your life subsistence farming as a side gig while all your official income is redireted to the AI Conglomerate.

For extra fun, if you are married, social media and increasing economic struggle poison your relationship with your spouse and both of you apply for the services of AI Legal. The hotshot AI Legal representatives fight acrimoniously, revealing every dark secret of both you and your spouse, and successfully breaking apart your marriage in divorce settlement. Honestly, you don't remember why you ever loved your ex-spouse, or why your children ever loved you, and you totally understand your real-world friends distancing themselves from the fiasco. Besides, you don't have time for that anymore. Half your salary is interest on the payment plan for AI Legal.

As a smart and independently wealthy researcher, you look into training your own competing, perhaps open-source AI model to fight back against the Machine, but AI Conglomerate has monopolized access to compute at every level of the supply chain, from high-purity silicon to cloud computing services. In despair, you turn to old web and your old haunt The Motte, where you find solace in culture war interspersed with the occasional similar story of despair. Little do you know that every single post is authored by AI Conglomerate to manipulate your emotions from despair into a more productive anger. Two months later you will sign up to work for a fully-owned subsidiary of AI Conglomerate and continue working to pay off your debts, all while maximizing "shareholder" output.

No. In the specific incident that comes to mind we had an new student try to take credit for the results of a 3rd year PhD candidate after fixing/running the nearly-successful experiment while the older student was at a conference. Thankfully the PI saw through it. I'm sure it goes the other way too, though.

You're onto something here. Where I did my degree, the following was pretty much understood by all the students after their first few years:

  1. The purpose of research grants is to get research done for the funder more cheaply than is possible in other sectors of the economy.

  2. The purpose of Professors is to get funding and write grant proposals. This means anticipating what research will be trendy and making a lot of friends among the people who staff grant proposal review committees.

  3. The purpose of the older graduate students is to do the research, write papers, and write grant reports, while mentoring the younger students.

  4. The purpose of the younger students is to study and learn, while assisting the older students on writing grant reports and doing experiments. Oh, and to teach undergraduate classes.

  5. Graduate students needing additional mentorship must actively seek it.

(We didn't have post-docs or research staff, but they basically allow scaling of the grant-writing work and supervisory work of professors.)

This was a decent system for graduate students who were self-driven and capable. It had many different failure modes, however: It rewarded professors for just enough surface level knowledge to come up with cool sounding projects that were in reality infeasible. It was hell for students who were given the new projects, because they had no mentors in their specialty, and had no idea that things were infeasible. Older students could be abusive or predatory, and unscrupulous younger students could wait until an older student had worked out nearly all the kinks in an experiment and then swoop in to take credit for the results. Professors had a bias for sudents running simple but creative experiments over meticulous work that was actually necessary long term for good engineering.

Like you, I had a professor with only a surface-level knowledge of my research domain. I was often given bad advice and advice that wasted time. (The students figured out that our PI didn't read papers, but read abstracts and skimmed figures, which made for some funny misinterpretations of the literature.) The PI's feedback on student work was vague and hard to understand. However, when it came to overcoming stuck research projects my advisor was a genius. The experiment-breaking result became the new goal of the experiment, easily publishable. My advisor also eventually communicated an understanding of how to write a good research paper, after which all those vague comments suddenly made perfect sense. So the relationship turned out quite valuable.

The worst part was the social environment. In order to get the PhD students had to become first author on multiple papers, but the PI would assign multiple people to each research project, bringing in more people the longer it took. I'm not sure there was sabotage (I'm dumb enough to fuck things up myself, thank you), but there was definitely spying and theft of results between students. The students needed favor with the professor to buy equipment: seeking the favor of the professor resulted in schemes much like those of medieval courts. Reading The 48 Laws of Power during my PhD, the content of the book depicted the social environment of the lab quite accurately.

Overall, it was a fun time, but I would probably recommend a gap year after a masters degree instead of a PhD. Travel the world, get more life experience, suffer less stress, have more fun, and in the end you didn't spend four years becoming the world's foremost expert in some experiment that is only performed in one lab.

My understanding is that the Starlink has three potentially profitable strategies, all of which depend on inter-satellite links to really be breakthroughs:

  1. HFT without fiber latency. This is where clients will be able to pay eight to nine figure subscriptions per year, with major routes forming a high speed web between New York, London, Brussels, Singapore, and Tokyo.

  2. Military/aviation. It's hard to put a dollar value on military contracts, but this is probably seven to eight figures per year total, since military already has their own communications web.

  3. Worldwide consumer access with less than worldwide infrastructure. Note that once access (downlinks) are installed for the above contracts, the marginal cost to expand civilian access to the globe is almost nil. The cost of satellite launch may be spilt between customers across the entire broadcast range: Africa, Europe, Asia, all the ocean shipping and cruise ships, etc.

Seems like the extent of contamination is scientifically a similar problem to something between fallout tracking and rocket engines (combustion chemistry). It would be really fun to build a team to model this but realistically noone will pay for it when the victims are a few thousand poor rurals in Ohio, except the companies seeking to minimize liability. Naturally the residents will be skeptical of the accuracy of any modeling done by chemical companies.