Profile for Khoth


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Slarty Does Spidweb in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #13
You massacred a whole extended family of innocent saws.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Peer Review Process (was Evolution Stuff (was What is Religion, exactly?)) in General
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Member # 67
Profile Homepage #180
quote:
Originally written by Axem Ranger Six:

If the ID people would just attach "from our religious perspective" to their views, and the evolution people would jsut attach "from a scientific perspective" to theirs, there wouldn't be any conflict.
Yes, there would. Both sides are disagreeing about what actually happened. You wouldn't say "from a scientific perspective my front door is blue, but from a religious perspective it's green".

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Reputation system in BoA? in Blades of Avernum Editor
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Member # 67
Profile Homepage #7
Thuryl: You're missing a "social" reputation (things like politeness, and generally being nice to be around)

And it has to be scenario-specific, but I don't think you mentioned the "how much you like serviles" reputation.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

New Mac BoE
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Reputation system in BoA? in Blades of Avernum
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #7
Thuryl: You're missing a "social" reputation (things like politeness, and generally being nice to be around)

And it has to be scenario-specific, but I don't think you mentioned the "how much you like serviles" reputation.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

New Mac BoE
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Peer Review Process (was Evolution Stuff (was What is Religion, exactly?)) in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #165
An example of something that looks "organised" that wasn't designed: Evolving on a FPGA
There isn't a huge amount of information in that link, but my computer is being annoying and making it hard for me to find a better one.

Basically, someone set up a programmable chip to "evolve" a circuit that could tell the difference between two different frequencies of input. The thing was set up to try random circuits, then take the better ones and randomly combine bits and add mutations, and try again. I seem to remember from reading an article about it at the time that it took about 4000 generations to perfect.

What I'm bringing this up for is although set in an articifial "universe" and with an artificial goal, the resulting circuit wasn't actually designed by a human. In fact, it used less of the chip than a human would and nobody understands how it actually works.

It clearly meets any reasonable definition of "organised complexity", but nobody actually designed it.

If you are about to say "but someone designed the setup, so that doesn't count", then you have completely missed the point.

[ Friday, June 02, 2006 09:51: Message edited by: Khoth ]

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Peer Review Process (was Evolution Stuff (was What is Religion, exactly?)) in General
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Member # 67
Profile Homepage #98
I haven't read all of that article about information, but I've had a reasonable look at it.

It cheats.

It takes a reasonably good outline of information as defined in maths (although I'd still recommend reading about it from a textbook or something if you really want to understand it)

It then adds five "hierarchical levels" of refinements to what counts as information. If you want to use a definition of information that isn't Shannon's, fine. However, if you do invent your own, you can't use your definition interchangably with the mathematical one.

It appears that information as per Shannon doesn't really have anything to do with the point of the article, even though it takes up almost half the space.

It's at his second level that it starts getting dodgy. Shannon's chains of symbols are not the information, they are just one way of transmitting information, a way which is easy to work with and prove theorems about (by which I mean mathematical theorems, not the "theorems" used in the article, the naming of which is an abuse of the term). However, the article conflates this representation of information transmission with the actual information, leading to the whole hierarchy of syntax, semantics, purpose and whatever.

He writes:
quote:
Theorem 4: A code is an absolutely necessary condition for the representation of information.

Theorem 5: The assignment of the symbol set is based on convention and constitutes a mental process.
I don't know why he calls these theorems. You prove theorems from axioms, not derive them from observations, or assume them. For convenience, I'll go along with that terminology for now.
Anyway, theorem 4 is wrong. If you want to write some information down, a code is rather useful, but most information doesn't get written down. If I want to tell you how long a piece of string is, I could encode it using numbers and established conventions of length, and say "4.5 inches". Alternatively, I could give you the piece of string, and you could see for yourself how long it was, without using any kind of code.
Theorem 5 looks to me like the crux of the argument. People aren't likely to argue against a claim that DNA uses a code and contains information, so saying that the assignment of a symbol set constitutes a mental process is pretty close to saying "God created life", which is what the guy is trying to prove. This "theorem", therefore, requires actual justification, and some of the irrelevant stuff about information in mathematics could maybe have been cut out to make room for something that really has to be the central point of the argument.

Anyway, blah, blah, blah, skip to the end, or nobody at all will read this post. The article helpfully provides a summary.

quote:
1. No information can exist without a code.
Wrong. Most information exists without a code. Examples include the temperature of the sun, the number of ants under my house and whether or not a lion is trying to eat you.
quote:
2. No code can exist without a free and deliberate convention.
Wrong. A code can be formed in an arbitrary and ad-hoc way. (Fun fact: A code chosen at random will almost certainly be able to transmit information over a lossy channel with better transmission rate and error rate than the best codes a human can design)
quote:
3. No information can exist without the five hierarchical levels: statistics, syntax, semantics, pragmatics and apobetics.
Well, if you make up your own definition of information, you can say all sorts of things about it.

quote:
etc...
etc...

Quick summary
The article defines the mathematical concept of information, which to avoid confusion I'll call information1. It then shows that life stores and transmits information1.

It then redefines information using his own criteria. I'll call that definition information2. Then, it shows (rather shakily) that information2 requires intelligence.

It then acts as if it has shown that life requires intelligence. However, even accepting that information2 requires intelligence, the whole thing falls apart because information1 is not the same thing as information2, and because the definition of information2 is more restrictive than that of information1, it is not the case that having information1 implies having information2.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Peer Review Process (was Evolution Stuff (was What is Religion, exactly?)) in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #37
I read the link about Godel's proof, and I'm extremely unconvinced.
The definition of "Positive properties" is very wooly, in particular lacking an objective sense of what is good, no way of evaluating trade-offs and assuming that whether a property is positive is independent of what it is applied to.

Then we get, as an assumption,
Pos(F) -> [(F => H) -> Pos(H)] (called G2 in the link)
ie, if F is positive, and F implies H, then H is positive.
This is simply not true. Counterexample: let F = "going to save my life and poke me in the eye", H="going to poke me in the eye"

There are other problems, but that is the most glaring one that I find at 1:30am.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
My God can beat up your God! in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #142
I think I've worked out what god GremlinJoe worships and why he seems to say such weird things about it:
quote:
Originally written by GremlinJoe:

The great light bulb converses its thoughts in a fashion most particular to its complicated nature.



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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
My God can beat up your God! in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #139
quote:
Originally written by Cacothanasia:

—Alorael, who is entertained by atheists who specifically reject the red or green apple gods. If you are not believing, must you pick a specific entity in which not to believe over all other potential entities?
I don't know any atheists like that, although it can seem that way because our non-belief in ancient reptile gods is immediately accepted by everyone without argument or surprise, so you never hear about it again. However, our non-belief in popular gods is much more often argued against, often in specific terms, and so defending our position tends to end up being arguing against specific gods.

[ Sunday, May 28, 2006 23:21: Message edited by: Khoth ]

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
My God can beat up your God! in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #120
It would, however, be too likely to get a response like "No, I'm not a member of Opus Dei"

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
My God can beat up your God! in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #118
What's ef supposed to write?
"There's a Catholic movement called That Which Must Not Be Named. Are you a member?"?

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
My God can beat up your God! in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #115
quote:
Originally written by GremlinJoe:

I'd appreciate no one pretending to know what I'm talking about
As far as I can tell, the only person pretending to know what you're talking about is you.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
BUGS! in Blades of Avernum Editor
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #61
Be nice, people.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
BUGS! in Blades of Avernum
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #61
Be nice, people.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

New Mac BoE
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Dan Brown Book... in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #11
I read Digital Fortress. Absolutely everything that could be wrong, was wrong.

I saw the DVC movie, and thought it was almost entirely made of plot holes strung together. I don't know as much ancient history as I do cryptography, but what I did know was (unsurprising) pretty wrong.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
The Ultimate Survey in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #12
What did you do last night?
Went to a friend's birthday meal at a noodle bar
The last thing you downloaded onto your computer?
Nana
Have you ever licked a 9 volt battery?
Yes, and I'm surprised so many people haven't
Type of music you dislike most?
Rap and/or hip-hop
Are you registered to vote?
Yes
Ever made a prank phone call?
No
Would you go bungee jumping or sky diving?
Yes
Furthest place you ever traveled?
Arizona
What's your favorite comic strip?
The Par.. bah, stopped. Sexyl...bah, stopped. Calvi.. bah, stopped. The Far.. bah, stopped. Slu..bah, awful now. I'll say Order of the Stick.
Best movie you've seen in the past month?
Not sure. Maybe it was The Squid and the Whale.
Favorite chocolate bar?
Galaxy Double Cream
Have you ever won a trophy?
No. The stuff I've won didn't give out trophies
Favorite arcade game?
I seem to remember Golden Axe existing on arcades
Ever thrown up in public?
No
Would you prefer being a millionaire or finding true love?
Whichever
If you had to spend a romantic evening with any sw member, who would you pick?
#66
Do you believe in love at first sight?
No, but I believe in lust at first sight.
Who do you think about most?
That would be telling.
Which celebrity do you think is hot, both female and male?
Both female and male? The only one I can think of is Michael Jackson
What's the worst medical problem you've ever had?
I've not had anything particularly serious.
What's your favorite sitcom?
I don't sitcom.
Hottest sw male
Thuryl
Last computer/video game you played
Starcraft
Last movie you rented
I've never rented a movie.
Would you rather dump someone or be dumped?
Dumping.
Which sw member has the dirties mind?
I don't know, I'd have to ask them all.
Have you ever kissed someone and regretted it?
No.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Native Americans in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #85
I wouldn't have a problem with people changing culture, if there was no coercion involved. However, taking people's land (you don't take land from a culture) is distinctly coercive, and it's the thing PoD said he had no problem with, and is what I was replying to.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Native Americans in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #83
quote:
Originally written by PoD person:

I do think, though, that Western Europeans were not committing some horrible crime against humanity in taking the Native Americans' land.
So if you want something someone else has, and you don't like the way they're using it, it's okay to take it for yourself by force?

quote:
No one would raise an uproar today if developers displaced a hippie commune to build housing, particularly if it were low-income housing or some worthy project of that nature
Since it's the same thing, I take it then that you also wouldn't have a problem with a group of hippies knocking down your neighbourhood so they could have a commune there (so long as they give you the option of joining the commune, of course).

quote:
If a culture can be destroyed, it shouldn't be around anyways
Do you mind if I come into your house and smash up your stuff? If you have anything that can be destroyed, it shouldn't be around anyways.

quote:
TNR, though, cited several studies, and the only ones which spring to mind were weight-guessing contests, but there were others, which showed the aggregate guesses of crowds with some interest in getting the right answer often yielded estimates very close to the truth. I feel like the collective wisdom of a populace with more or less identical interests will always trump bureacracy.
Except that weight-guessing is nothing like predicting terrorist attacks. Guessing someone's weight, everyone can judge roughly how heavy someone is relative to others, and people's systematic errors in converting that to an absolute scale can cancel out somewhat when you take an average.

Terrorism is different. Nobody has a clue where terrorists are going to strike next, and taking the average of several million "no ideas" (if you can even meaningfully extract such an average) doesn't help you at all.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
United 93 in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #24
I've come across some nutters on the internet who think Iran should be nuked before they can build nukes of their own. Could someone from the US please reassure me that it's just a few lunatics who spend too much time online who think that?

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Fluffy Turtles : The origins in General
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Member # 67
Profile Homepage #3
Ahh, the good old days.

I miss the people too, I never seem to talk to them any more.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Question 3: Disease in General
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Member # 67
Profile Homepage #34
And there was me thinking that the discussion was more "how should we avoid masses of people dying horribly?" than "should we avoid masses of people dying horribly?". The former is not a particularly philosophical question, and the latter is one that I think there will be widespread consensus on.

Before you start letting the weak die for the good of the species, you might want to note that large diversity will be better than a group selected for a few narrow traits.

[ Sunday, May 07, 2006 09:46: Message edited by: Khoth ]

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
The Abominable Photo Thread IV: A New Hope in General
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Member # 67
Profile Homepage #203
It will be interesting to see whether that remains true.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Best Bad Guy in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #21
IMAGE(http://turtles-itch.com/monster/screencaps/ep27_4.jpg)
The best villains realise that politeness costs nothing.

[ Thursday, May 04, 2006 22:51: Message edited by: Khoth ]

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
The new armor system. (50% + 50% = 75%!?!?) in Avernum 4
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #2
I like the new way much better than the old one. However, one request for next time:
Make it so that if I wear two 50% protection items, it says 75% rather than 100%.

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

New Mac BoE
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00
Question 2: Imbalance of Wealth in General
Post Navel Trauma ^_^
Member # 67
Profile Homepage #25
I wasn't thinking you meant inflation, I was taking it to be increasing the available resources by X%, and increasing what everyone has by the same factor. If it was possible, I'd say it was a good thing. It sounds like you'd be against a (hypothetical) scheme that would give everyone enough to live on if it meant that the richest 5% became twice as rich.

I don't think having an imbalance is an intrinsically good thing, but I do think "everyone has X except for 5% who have 10X" is better than "everyone has X".

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Barcoorah: I even did it to a big dorset ram.

desperance.net - Don't follow this link
Posts: 1798 | Registered: Thursday, October 4 2001 07:00

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