Shut Up and Multiply

TagLast edit: 17 Apr 2021 19:55 UTC by Eliezer Yudkowsky

Due to scope neglect, framing effects, and other cognitive biases, the result of an expected utility calculation executed correctly may produce an answer different from first intuition, making it “intuitively unappealing”. If you can tell that it’s probably the intuitions that went wrong and not the calculation, the skill shut up and multiply is the ability to accept that, yes, sometimes the expected utility math is correct and we need to deal with that. Contrast do the math, then go with your gut. If you’re not sure which of these applies, use “do the math, then go what your gut” until you’ve built up more experience.

The specific application of Shut Up and Multiply to the Torture versus Dust Specs case has proven quite contentious. One reason this case was cited as an exemplar of where “shut up and multiply” should apply was a claim that the usual reasoning behind answering “SPECKS” can be reduced to circular preferences.

Blog posts

External links

See also

One Life Against the World

Eliezer Yudkowsky18 May 2007 22:06 UTC
79 points
83 comments3 min readLW link

Cir­cu­lar Altruism

Eliezer Yudkowsky22 Jan 2008 18:00 UTC
57 points
310 comments4 min readLW link

Money: The Unit of Caring

Eliezer Yudkowsky31 Mar 2009 12:35 UTC
150 points
132 comments4 min readLW link

Pur­chase Fuzzies and Utilons Separately

Eliezer Yudkowsky1 Apr 2009 9:51 UTC
130 points
89 comments4 min readLW link

Op­ti­miz­ing Fuzzies And Utilons: The Altru­ism Chip Jar

orthonormal1 Jan 2011 18:53 UTC
131 points
49 comments3 min readLW link

Tor­ture vs. Dust Specks

Eliezer Yudkowsky30 Oct 2007 2:50 UTC
66 points
616 comments1 min readLW link

Beauty quips, “I’d shut up and mul­ti­ply!”

neq17 May 2010 14:34 UTC
14 points
358 comments6 min readLW link

Put Your­self in Man­ual Mode (aka Shut Up and Mul­ti­ply)

lukeprog27 Mar 2011 6:13 UTC
11 points
25 comments1 min readLW link

Per­sonal story about benefits of Ra­tion­al­ity Dojo and shut­ting up and multiplying

Gleb_Tsipursky26 Aug 2015 16:38 UTC
12 points
27 comments1 min readLW link

Op­ti­mal Philan­thropy for Hu­man Beings

lukeprog25 Jul 2011 7:27 UTC
49 points
88 comments7 min readLW link

[SEQ RERUN] One Life Against the World

Tyrrell_McAllister12 Jun 2011 1:38 UTC
10 points
17 comments1 min readLW link

Cir­cu­lar Altru­ism vs. Per­sonal Preference

Vladimir_Nesov26 Oct 2009 1:43 UTC
15 points
14 comments2 min readLW link

Does util­i­tar­i­anism “re­quire” ex­treme self sac­ri­fice? If not why do peo­ple com­monly say it does?

Princess_Stargirl9 Dec 2014 8:32 UTC
12 points
100 comments1 min readLW link

The “In­tu­itions” Be­hind “Utili­tar­i­anism”

Eliezer Yudkowsky28 Jan 2008 16:29 UTC
52 points
204 comments9 min readLW link

[SEQ RERUN] The “In­tu­itions” Be­hind “Utili­tar­i­anism”

MinibearRex31 Dec 2011 6:09 UTC
6 points
0 comments1 min readLW link

[SEQ RERUN] Pur­chase Fuzzies and Utilons Separately

MinibearRex8 Apr 2013 5:01 UTC
7 points
2 comments1 min readLW link

Mo­ral­ity is not about willpower

PhilGoetz8 Oct 2011 1:33 UTC
20 points
146 comments13 min readLW link

Tor­ture Si­mu­lated with Flipbooks

Amanojack26 May 2011 1:00 UTC
9 points
33 comments1 min readLW link

Tor­ture vs. Shampoo

ChrisHallquist23 Sep 2013 4:34 UTC
18 points
43 comments1 min readLW link

Knigh­tian Uncer­tainty and Am­bi­guity Aver­sion: Motivation

So8res21 Jul 2014 20:32 UTC
35 points
44 comments13 min readLW link

Allais Malaise

Eliezer Yudkowsky21 Jan 2008 0:40 UTC
30 points
38 comments2 min readLW link

Re­vis­it­ing tor­ture vs. dust specks

cousin_it8 Jul 2009 11:04 UTC
8 points
66 comments2 min readLW link

How Less­wrong helped me make $25K: A ra­tio­nal pric­ing strategy

kareemabukhadra21 Dec 2020 20:20 UTC
50 points
21 comments3 min readLW link

Short, Ex­treme, For­got­ten Tor­ture vs Death

burrito7 Feb 2021 9:31 UTC
3 points
2 comments1 min readLW link
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