Thank you for organizing this program. I really enjoyed the book reviews. Even though I am still a bit shy in commenting and using votes, these posts encouraged me to consider writing something myself in the future.
Thank you for your work. I really liked the review for your summary of Problem Solving and your general easy-to-read approach. But I also want to have more studies on this kind of education style so I can ground my understanding on independent observations instead of just ideals. I would definitively read a follow-up on the research regarding the books.
I see, thank you for that and thank you for the conversation.
Possibly. Is this your interpretation of the paragraphs 304 and 307? But which arguments can he use to assert that, if he argued previously for not knowing definitively? I really enjoy your takes on this. I hope this is also kind of fruitful for your endeavors.
It is a shame that the book about Sprachdynamik is not translated into other languages. It is also an introduction to the modern Regionalsprachenforschung (science of regional and minority languages). But it is mostly about the concept that there is a synchronization effort between the competency of performing utterances (not just words, but grammar and speech patterns too) on different layers. The micro layer focuses on individual adjustments to the utterances you are hearing and reading each day. The meso layer is about recurring events like work or peer groups. And the macro layer focuses on culture defining moments like the publication of the bible. Here is a research paper (unfortunately in German, but you could translate it via Google Translate, if you want to go deeper) that uses Sprachdynamik to analyze the German minority language in Hungary by the Goethe institute. Unfortunately, I am not so well read on the international discourse. But for me it is a sufficient theory of language change and development.
I thought the analysis is the part about finding out the limitations of concepts. Of course, it can be useful to be careful with your definitions and expect that you do not find anything. But I am not so sure, if this contrasts all of analytical philosophy because you have philosophers like Popper or Russel who try to be very careful in applying their concepts. And many philosophers are very self-critical in their efforts.
I understand him as claiming that we can’t set up an reliable, intersubjective system of discussing these internal experiences as other people can’t perform the error checking function that they can in normal language.
I really like this description, this is a possible stepping stone for the introduction of the mind-body problem. But there is also the possibility of him denying these sensations in their entirety because they cannot be translated and do not have a function. For me, this is the part of having a box with no beetle at all: “it cancels out, whatever it is” (which would be a linguistic interpretation of monism). Is this a possible or an accurate interpretation of his thought experiment? I do not know because for him linguistic definitions seem to be unreachable. This is the unsatifying part for me. I am not sure, if I am getting it and I do not want to imply that I am. So I do not try to challenge these concepts. I can only say that I do not like them because they do not offer me more insights with the interpretation I have of them.
I don’t know if Wittgenstein was the originator of this concept, but he seems to have made it more prominent.
I suppose the pragmatic maxim is also related to this. I always wondered, if Wittgenstein read Peirce’s argument in regard to metaphysics.
I really like your review, but I have to admit that I do not like Wittgenstein’s concepts. I am simply not sure how to use them in any meaningful way. Unfortunately this has not changed after reading your text.
For example, for me, J. L. Austin explained the whole “language as use” philosophy way better in “How To Do Things With Words” and in most cases I refer to the concept of Sprachdynamik as the principle theory of language change and development, rather than mentioning “language-games”. Language-games reinforce the elusiveness of concepts, words and language as a whole. But if you want to use language to do something you have to hold onto at least some meanings.
This contrasts your last section and I do not know how you arrived at your conclusions. Your arguments seem to refer to the elusiveness as a possible building block for ones own definitions. But this seems to be exactly what analytical philosophers try to achieve, or not? They try to find the best possible definition which can be applied to hopefully all but practically most situations. The mentioned difference between conceptual engineering and analysis does not convince me.
Family resemblances also seem to be only useful in denying problems: I cannot find a simple definition for some widely used word therefore it must be a family resemblance and not further be investigated. I am not so sure.
In his argument against private languages I cannot even understand what he means by the word language. His example for a private language is something that is fully untranslatable like the sensations of emotions. But what exactly does it mean to speak of sensations as a private language? What?
This is really unsatisfying. So for me, Wittgenstein is just one of the lesser concept manufacturers, who had luck in getting referenced over and over again. But don’t take my word on this! Maybe other people have more luck with these concepts!
I really appreciate the work the team is doing and I hope that you will grow to a successful organization. Although I would consider myself a software engineer, I am not seeing myself in the offered roles. Best luck in your endeavors!
You are right. Thank you for replying. The results of measurements are objective. I think I conflated objectivity with universal value. What I tried to say was that I am not convinced that tracking your learning progress for a topic in one specific way is always more valuable than in another way because it relies on the goal you want to achieve.
My personal way of measuring my knowledge gain is rather simple, but I am not sure how obvious it is. I write down definitions, arguments and examples of everything I know. Then I change them if I encounter something related (I track these changes with a diff program). And if a concept has grown from a small list of properties to lots of examples with elaborate descriptions, then my knowledge has grown too. Some problems include categorization issues, finding the best way for referencing sources and permanent media management.
For me, skill progress is more difficult to track because the metrics for each skill seem to be so different for every new task and I am not sure, if some skills are related or not. For example: If I can program a loop for changing a list of strings, am I able to use this skill to program a loop for changing a list of other data types? I would say no, because I have to know how I can change the different data types first. I don’t like this, so I mostly do not bother to track my skill progress.
I am not convinced that learning progress can be measured objectively because knowledge and skills are only useful in regards to a specific lifestyle. Another aspect of this: If a group has a specific lifestyle, using the metrics of that lifestyle to determine your progress would be beneficial for you to fit in. Anyway, it is still nice to share different approaches in tracking your progress towards your own goals.
Maybe it is a little unpopular and a bit blunt, but I think one candidate for having the most positive side effects on your life when you do not have it already is money. If you prioritize money without overdoing it, then you can take time off and focus on all the different areas which were previously locked. You cannot afford a nice home? Just buy it now! You do not have good relationships, because you did not have the time or the abilities? Just take your time now or hire someone who helps you! You have bad health? Take a plane and get help from the best doctors in the world!
Of course, this only applies to a world in which money is a universal trading unit and where you can deal with the negative side effects (like people trying to be friends with you, solely to get some of the money; not knowing when to stop prioritizing money, because your life cannot get better with more; or supporting an exploitative system in general). But I think money is a straightforward goal for most situations to increase your happiness.
It’s always puzzling me why this is so hard to accept for me. Maybe one aspect could be that work relationships force you to present yourself as best as possible to your employer. And this leads to situations in which you try to signal competence instead of uncertainty, even to yourself.
Trying to build your own productivity tools is also very helpful in understanding why you have difficulties in the first place because you reflect upon them while designing your feature set. I really appreciate this post for reminding me of the joy of programming your own solutions.
The team is great. Thank you very much!
Thus far I really like the stuff you included and I hope that you will continue to improve the site. You did an amazing job. I think the only criticism I have is the loading speed. I used a performance testing site to look into this and nearly 9 seconds for the frontpage seem to be very high, especially if you compare it to GreaterWrong. I understand the feature focus and I support it, but I just wanted to say that I would really appreciate the effort of a performance optimization in the future. I am aware of the complexity of such a request, and I am sure that you already have thought about this, but I wanted to give you some feedback anyway. Don’t feel obligated to do anything.
Maybe. But I am not sure. I think defining it like this is more truthful to your reasoning, so that you can better analyze your actions, if something goes wrong. For example, if you are feeling unhappy, but you do not understand why (maybe because you are doing something due to social norms to improve your life through prestige), then references to your feelings can help you to find a better outcome, while “doing the optimal thing” could lead you to believe in self-sacrifice, even if you suffer from it. Maybe it diverges at this point of individualism vs. communitarianism.
I see. I am skeptical, if you can justify something not refering back to your own happiness or some kind of satisfying feeling. Why do you want to worry, if not for benefiting you in an extended way (worrying helps you to feel something for others, so that they can feel for you, so that you can feel happy)? But these are just some questions to think about. Do not feel obligated to change anything!
In my life happiness stands above all, because well-being and happiness seem to be the same. How do you distinguish between them? Or: Why are maximum energy and maximum meaning not leading to maximum happiness?