how are you defining nonfiction? amazon lists over a thousand books on bigfoot in the “science and math” section, and the first 10 all look like they’re on the “definitely real” side. so a nonfiction label is no help.
possibly you mean “actually true” not “labeled as nonfiction in the bookstore”, but that requires the reader know what’s true ahead of time. which would of course be great, but remains elusive.
I should make clearer that I’m extremely in favor of people being much more careful what they include in their media diet, and that I agree fiction has risks people aren’t cognizant of. I just don’t think the nonfiction label is any protection against misinformation.
It’s not obvious to me that reading arbitrary non-fiction gives you more accurate beliefs than arbitrary fiction. No adult updates their probability that dragons are real after reading Game of Thrones, and nonfiction is full of both literal lies and statements that are technically true but deeply misleading that give you the feeling of being accurate information, such that you update on them.
I think you’re raising reasonable points, fairly gently. I think the overall issue is important, and was in my mind as I planned and wrote this. I get that, given that this post was high karma and curated, and has at least one comment saying we should scale Vavilov day immediately, it felt important to you to note the pitfalls (even if I already pushed against the universalization). But I don’t have a way to respond to this in LW comments that doesn’t feel like justifying my personal choices, and I’m not interested in doing that.
Potential alternatives include “you create a top-level post discussing the general case”, an off-LW conversation between us, or just not following up. If anyone else wants to continue this conversation I encourage you to make your own post doing so (and feel free to link to it here): I’m leaving this comment up because I think it’s important, but I will be locking or deleting comments that attempt to continue the conversation further on this post.
I couldn’t think of anything that met all of: could be done in a day, didn’t require follow-up, and was actually useful instead of purely symbolic. Planting something has fantastic symbolism, but letting it die later is worse than not doing it at all, and plant care isn’t a priority for me the rest of the year.
Ah, yes. I think young people should probably take the long term effects of viruses more seriously in general.
Then this doesn’t seem like a counterargument to “to elderly people it would be effectively the same as any other serious stressor” to me.
It looks like those deaths are “with covid” not necessarily “due to covid”. I think that was a reasonable approximation at first, but it makes it a bad tool for tracking when covid becomes less dangerous and more widespread. However the fact that excess deaths are spiking with covid prevalence is pretty suggestive.
How does this compare to other contagious diseases? EDIT: for aging in particular.
I think that assumption is inaccurate, and is becoming more inaccurate over time. Lockdown is also hard on people and contributes to the excess deaths.
When I looked into this there was a paper that compared psych sequelae from covid to influenza and flu-like illnesses and found “covid to be modestly worse except for myoneural junction and other muscular diseases, where covid 5xed the risk (although it’s still quite low in absolute terms). Dementia risk is also doubled, presumably mostly among the elderly.” This was not controlling for age or acute severity, and data was gathered pre-vaccine.
(note: I did this research months ago and haven’t done any follow-up, so trust what I wrote then over what I remember now)
I broadly agree but don’t think that proves covid was the culprit. Vague shitty symptoms doctors refuse to grapple with were a problem long before covid, and if people with these symptoms can get better care by calling it long covid than leaving it open or blaming something else, they’d be stupid not to.
There’s an easier study I’d like to do before the lithium experiment: compare water contamination to obesity rates. I have two decent but not amazing datasets to do this (the water one tracks 18 contaminants but not lithium by zip code, the weight one tracks % obese not BMI by county) and a statistician who will analyze the results if I get the data in a single spreadsheet. I expect there are APIs to do that fairly easily but haven’t had time to dig into it myself. If someone gets the 18 contaminants plus % obese in a single spreadsheet, and fixes the issues with county vs. zipcode aggregation, I can get this analysis done fairly quickly. Bonus points if you find better DBs than I do (I wish it was BMI by zipcode, not % obese by county) or incorporate additional data, like income, age, well water usage, and density.
I’ve discussed this with SMTM previously, they agree it’s worth doing although are less excited than me because the water quality database doesn’t include lithium. So additional bonus points if someone finds a database of lithium concentration in drinking water by county.
I’d happily pay $100 + credit on the eventual blog post for the spreadsheet combining the two DBs listed, and am open to negotiation on larger amounts if it’s more difficult than I think it is or additional features are included.
shrug I definitely ran into this repeatedly without an intervening success, it’s possible there was something weird because they were older websites.
I’d be extremely interested in write-ups of alternatives to The Lean Start-Up, which I found valuable but also badly dated, with a lot of room for improvement.
A personal blog is like opening a public door to your mind. Do you really think that you won’t clean up the contents for the sake of public appearances?
This isn’t true by my definition of a personal blog, which makes me think you’re using a different and probably narrower definition. Can you expand on what you mean by “personal blog”?
I’m very curious about this as well. I expect MTurk (which Positly is built on) to disproportionately draw from people willing to tolerate a low wage for increased flexibility, who are disproportionately disabled.
This post was well written, interesting, had multiple useful examples, and generally filled in models of the world. I haven’t explicitly fact-checked it but it accords with things I’ve read and verified elsewhere.
Conversations with Ray clarified for me how much secret keeping is a skill, separate from any principles about when would agree keeping a secret was good in principle, which has been very helpful in thinking through confidentiality agreements/decisions.
When I looked into it, you could see an effect on birthweight for babies born to mothers in high altitudes vs their lower-altitude siblings, and vice versa, which suggests to me something non-genetic is going on. And the effect of altitude on birth weight held up in countries where altitude was associated with both lower and higher income (although that wasn’t the sibling study), which pushes against and doesn’t eliminate income effects.