18 episodes

In Chasing The Wind, Avi and Bugsby host a fast-paced, lightly-scripted discussion on topics ranging all across the ideological firmament. Listen in!

Chasing The Wind Avi and Bugsby

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

In Chasing The Wind, Avi and Bugsby host a fast-paced, lightly-scripted discussion on topics ranging all across the ideological firmament. Listen in!

    Episode 18 - Preliminary Research

    Episode 18 - Preliminary Research

    References
    Adversarial collaboration
    Why do some people parse a space well and others get snowed?
    Energy landscapes Explore/exploit Global optimization Shape of space vs strategy for optimizing in it What are situations where you'll need to integrate a large data burden?
    Either data that you don't understand the structure of, or just too much of it. Quantum mechanics: different representations mastery can not translate Recognition of form Domain shear in programming architecture: components that haven't been designed with each other in mind. Domain Driven Design book. Rationality community's double cruxing. Umbrella topics: not thinking of the whole as the sum of its parts, e.g. Obamacare At what point do you need to do work in the space as opposed to just reading about it?
    Build a thing, visit a place, have an experience? Podcasting on a thing: what bar is needed for sufficient understanding to talk about it? Journalism: you have to actually touch primary source, not just other journalistic products. How? Go places, read textbooks, compute. Run numbers (as done often on Slate Star Codex). Observation vs Randomized Controlled Trial: build the thing to know what biases are built in. Potential topic areas
    Moral philosophy AI risk Visited OpenAI Education My dad Jesse Archery Science fiction and fantasy Physics simulation Should do this! Drug development Preliminary research: How do you do it?
    What to do after first-depth internet search hits limits. Make an actual research plan. Decide if e.g. you need experts, technical documents etc. Start drawing yourself a map. Written out decision tree process. Avi's map: Designing a House
    My goal is to learn what I would need to know to get a house that I would be happy with built. Re-read "A Pattern Language" carefully Find out the typical procedure for working with an architect - communication style, cost, time. Learn what major classes of housing site/lot there are (e.g. terrain type, climate, access, zoning). Find a set of example houses that have at least one thing I like a lot to draw parts from. Ideally, do Habitat for Humanity or in some other way get involved in the process of building a house. Make a list of activities and functions that are important to me for living in a house. Locate and speak with a professional architect and ask them what I should learn before embarking on designing a house. Bugsby's map: Space
    My goal is to learn about the past and present of space exploration enough to present an opinion about the future. Skim my old Astronomy textbook. Read a history of space exploration. Re-read a popular technical analysis of the good and bad things about the shuttle program. Find and read a book about the present state of space exploration. Find some opposing viewpoint articles about private space companies. Learn enough about SpaceX and Blue Origin to say what's different about each of them. Read James Michener's "Space" OR re-read Kim Stanley Robinson's "Red Mars" OR read the sequel "Green Mars".

    • 25 min
    Episode 17 - Tool Making

    Episode 17 - Tool Making

    Avi and Bugsby discuss Bugsby's data science process and brainstorm a design for a tool to improve it. There is a great deal of programming jargon and philosophy.
    References
    Command-line interface (e.g. bash)
    Bugsby's workflow
    Gather data Process data with commands/scripts Feed processed data to model building Produce output which may get piped to something else Python
    Visual programming
    XKCD - is time spent automating a task worth it 
    Semantic web
    GUI ("gooey")
    "repl" (read-evaluate-print loop) command line
    "typed"/"typing"
    Caching
    Pipes
    Macros
    Using Dynalist - store instructions in the form of a work log, be able to "tag" sections of it as "programs"
    Unit testing
    Users/groups/permissions
    Transaction log (in the sense of database or file system)
    Software liberal

    • 47 min
    Episode 16 - Moral Philosophy

    Episode 16 - Moral Philosophy

    We explore what a morality based on "good enough" means, what it would like, and whether we already follow it.  Discussed: genies, strong AI, and tech startups.
    References
    Effective altruism
    Rationalist community
    Satisficing utilitarianism
    Innumeracy
    Consequentialism and Utilitarianism
    Pascal's Wager
    Roko's Basilisk
    Repugnant Conclusion
    Peter Singer

    • 35 min
    Episode 15 - AI Risk

    Episode 15 - AI Risk

    We explore AI Risk, the notion that computer intelligence will cross the human level, start compounding exponentially, and, if not trammelled, mulch everything we hold dear into paperclips.  Why aren't Avi and Bugsby more worried about this?
    References
    Eliezer Yudkowsky
    Public figures who've expressed concern: Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Hillary Clinton
    Machine Intelligence Research Institute
    OpenAI
    Nick Bostrom - Superintelligence
    Value alignment problem
    Hippocratic Oath in software/civil engineering
    Iron Law of Oligarchy
    Superintelligence: the idea that eats smart people
    Principal-agent problem
    SSC AI risk persuasion experiment
    EY AI box escape experiment

    • 25 min
    Episode 14 - Massive Endeavors

    Episode 14 - Massive Endeavors

    References
    Master of the Senate
    Episode 3 - Legacy: the size of a science slice of the pie is shrinking
    Rationalists coordinating people on a project article
    Technical debt
    Kula Sushi LA, Silicon Valley
    Influence - Cialdini
    Things to Hang on your Mental Mug Tree
    Chan Zuckerberg Initiative
    Microsoft research announcement around the same time (note from Avi: Chan Zuckerberg was actually by far the more reasonable of these, the opposite of what I said in the episode.  Apologies!)
    Endeavors
    Moon landing
    Tennessee Valley Authority
    Manhattan Project
    Hoover Dam
    The Pyramids
    Human Genome Project
    Skyscrapers
    Civil Rights Act
    Affordable Care Act
    Standard Oil, Amazon, Google
    SpaceX Blue Origin Dragon
    Going to Mars
    Sea farming
    Growing a city (Bellevue)
    Starting a new country
    Starting a religion
    Starting a movement
    Occupy Wall Street/Tea Party
    Making old age not suck/fighting degeneration

    • 36 min
    Episode 13 - Places

    Episode 13 - Places

    References
    xkcd - ranking people
    Paul Graham cities essay
    Article - The urban archipelago
    Iron law of institutions
    Iron law of oligarchy
    Article about the significance of "again" in "Make America Great Again"
    Places
    The Barbican
    Seguin, Texas
    Sisters, Oregon

    • 45 min

Customer Reviews

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1 Rating

legolas19991 ,

Great

Would listen to again. The dulcet baratone voices of Avi and Bugsby soothes my ears and calms my heart. A must listen.

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