Tutoring Video Activities (renamed from June Learning)

Another Szasz manifesto diagram

Another diagram

what are your opinions about your last 3 diagrams?

Content (in terms of the relationships and their descriptions) seems okay/reasonable to me.

I think I am getting more comfortable making them and thinking about how to do stuff like group things together.

One thing I wish the Diagrams app let you do is move things around easily in a parent/child structure. I may go back to using MindNode some more just cuz of that feature.

I’m watching Max Tutoring #10, and @Elliot says that this sentence could go in several places in a tree, which is something i agree with (and I had to think about where to put it some, whereas other stuff seemed more obvious):

June Learning (Tutoring Video Activities) - Friendly - Critical Falliblism 2021-06-20 17-28-58


Individuals with brain diseases (bad brains) or kidney diseases (bad kidneys) are literally sick. Individuals with mental diseases (bad behaviors), like societies with economic diseases (bad fiscal policies), are metaphorically sick.

I made these two Szasz sentences siblings but Max and Elliot made one sentence a child of the other. I think both approaches seem reasonable

Tutoring Max #10 - YouTube 🔊 2021-06-20 17-32-16

The structure and relationships that I wind up coming up with are not at all obvious at first. There is significant “discovery” that happens in trying to translate stuff to a diagram, even assuming I get the general idea of what is being said the first time. So that indicates to me that the activity is worthwhile

I actually made some diagrams before but forgot about them or something.
max tutoring 6 - elliot lying sentence example 1.pdf (33.1 KB)

You can see this older one is pretty similar to the one I made recently for this thread.

Old diagram from sentence from Pinker essay, Max Tutoring 13.
max tutoring 13.pdf (41.5 KB)

Max Tutoring #13, Pinker essay paragraph, emphasis added on the “it”

Artificial intelligence is an existence proof of one of the great ideas in human history: that the abstract realm of knowledge, reason, and purpose does not consist of an élan vital or immaterial soul or miraculous powers of neural tissue. Rather, it can be linked to the physical realm of animals and machines via the concepts of information, computation, and control.

I’ve watched Max Tutoring 13 before but still had to think about what the “it” was referring to. My initial intuition was that it was referring to “one of the great ideas” but then when I did more explicit analysis I decided “it” must refer to “the abstract realm of knowledge.” The reason I think this is because Pinker has just been describing what the abstract realm of knowledge does not consist of, and now he’s trying to describe what it can be linked to. “Consist of” and “linked to” don’t seem parallel to me - i’d expect the sentence that starts with “Rather” to tell us what the abstract realm of knowledge does consist of. But it’s clear from the context and from Pinker’s use of “[r]ather” that he’s attempting to draw a contrast, and so I read the “it” against that context.

One thing about Pinker’s first sentence btw - he’s got this HUGE buildup:

Artificial intelligence is an existence proof of one of the great ideas in human history

Calling something “one of the great ideas in human history” is almost the max level you can do in terms of build-up. I guess you could say an idea is THE GREATEST in human history…anyways so you’ve got that drumroll please buildup and then…

that the abstract realm of knowledge, reason, and purpose does not consist of an élan vital or immaterial soul or miraculous powers of neural tissue

…one of the great ideas in human history is a negative/negation of some idea? What? It just falls so flat as writing. And then he mixes in this complex stuff about élan vital and miraculous powers of the neural tissue. So his buildup falls flat and then gets weighted down by complex words/concepts to boot. You get a big buildup and then you need to get to the next sentence to even figure out what he’s talking about (if you can figure out what the “it” refers to!)

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glancing at the Pinker essay in Possible Minds discussed in Max Tutoring #13 and this paragraph struck me (emphasis added)

The other focus of much tech prophecy today is artificial intelligence, whether in the original sci-fi dystopia of computers running amok and enslaving us in an unstoppable quest for domination or the newer version, in which they subjugate us by accident, single-mindedly seeking some goal we give them regardless of its side effects on human welfare (the value-alignment problem adumbrated by Wiener). Here again both threats strike me as chimerical, growing from a narrow technological determinism that neglects the networks of information and control in an intelligent system, like a computer or a brain, and in a society as a whole.

That’s a whole paragraph. Check out that first sentence, which constitutes most of the paragraph. It’s too long. Also, this is supposed to be a popular science book, I think? So why the hell is he using the word “adumbrated”?

beginning of next para:

The subjugation fear is based on a muzzy

No good reason to use this over “muddled” or “fuzzy”.

conception of intelligence that owes more to the Great Chain of Being and a Nietzschean will to power than to a Wienerian analysis of intelligence and purpose in terms of information, computation, and control.

This sort of thing - name-dropping and mentioning several fancy sounding things in a row - is how you signal that you are a prestigious intellectual. It also turns people off from reading intellectual things, since they don’t get the references and assume maybe they’re dumb and this stuff isn’t for them. Compare this kind of thing to many business/finance/self help type books, which work hard at making things simple and straightforward.

To impress the readers who don’t know that word, and who believe that this is him making a good faith effort to simplify for them (whereas with colleagues his speech would be way harder for the general reader to follow).

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More Pinker. Pinker’s text:

Purpose can be explained as the control of operations to effect changes in the world, guided by discrepancies between its current state and a goal state.

I think Pinker’s text is confused.

Purpose is the goal that guides some action.

E.g. I’m hungry. My goal is not to be hungry. There is a discrepancy between the state of the world (I am hungry) and my desired state (not hungry).

I decide to eat an apple. I go to my kitchen and get an apple and eat it. My purpose in this story is not the control of my hands, mouth, teeth, and the physical position of the apple in order to effect a change in the world. That is my behavior, or the goal-directed actions I take, in light of my purpose of not being hungry.

You might object that Pinker mentions being guided by discrepancies in between current state and goal state, and that brings the goal/state stuff back in and makes his definition reasonable. I don’t think so. The way he decided to write it, he basically said that purpose is acting or doing stuff, controlling stuff, so that things come out a certain way, change in a certain manner. But I don’t think that’s what purpose is typically understood as…like that’s a novel way of defining it at least?

First definition for purpose in Webster’s Third:

something that one sets before himself as an object to be attained : an end or aim to be kept in view in any plan, measure, exertion, or operation : design

And a couple from Random House Webster’s:

  1. the reason for which something exists or is done, made, used, etc.
  1. an intended or desired result; end; aim; goal.

That fits with my understanding of the term. Thoughts?

Bonus content:

I edited Pinker’s text some :wink::

Purpose can be explained as is the control action of operations to effect changes in the world, guided by discrepancies between its current state and a goal state.

I’d still recommend people learn from the tutoring videos – watch them and practice the stuff discussed (pause before solutions to stuff and try yourself, and there are practice activities explained in the videos that you can do too). Or if not that, learn using the articles at https://criticalfallibilism.com (They don’t tell you what to practice as much, but you’d still need to figure out ways to practice.)

My general view is that if someone isn’t doing something like this, that means they are not actually interested in trying to learn CF/FI philosophy.

Max Tutoring Table of Contents

These descriptions were written by @JustinCEO and are the same as on YouTube. Having them all together enables searching and skimming better than having the text split on separate videos. I’ve posted them before but I forget where.

Tutoring Max #52

Max’s notes Notes | Tutorial 52 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video; discussion about tutoring.
12:00 - Max’s post “Why I Live” http://curi.us/2380-max-microblogging#18534
13:53 - People being cosmically significant versus parochial concerns.
17:20 - Sci-fi genre; taking the setting seriously.
23:08 - Sci-fi/fantasy audience overlap.
29:34 - Impacting humanity’s future.
34:02 - Popularizing something like Paths Forward; ways of making a difference; bottlenecks on getting popular other than how good something is.
38:03 - Things having broad popularity - apple pie; degrees of goodness.
41:48 - IGCs ({idea, goal, context} triples).
47:51 - Ideas as solutions and goals as problems.
53:54 - Making a big impact on humanity is wrong as a primary goal.
1:00:44 - Roark’s goal and needing clients; choice of occupations in modern society.
1:04:27 - Popularity as a goal.
1:05:59 - The media.
1:08:48 - Popularity example - viral photo of guy who looks like Justin Bieber eating a burrito sideways.
1:16:49 - Feynman receiving letters with dubious theories of gravity; catching up to existing knowledge.
1:19:25 - Expecting to make mistakes and trying to do better next time; chess.
1:23:51 - Life being important; not going with the flow; liking the journey.
1:35:15 - Bridging material to canonical material; difficulties in interacting with other people after you change.
1:40:05 - Software and epistemology overlap.
1:50:17 - Bridging gaps in perspectives.
1:53:16 - Tiredness and error rate.
2:02:53 - Trying to create something that lasts decades.

Tutoring Max #51

Max’s notes Notes | Tutorial 51 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:59 - Practicing skills while doing other things.
8:25 - Philosophy and rationality skills can be harder than people think.
12:43 - Academics’ bad use of sources.
22:36 - Type-level programming.
44:07 - Temporarily getting rid of excuses for not doing something; prioritizing philosophy.
50:32 - Fixing bad methods learned in childhood; measuring progress.
1:00:48 - Time management.
1:10:08 - Reevaluating activities in your life.
1:14:12 - Non-judgmental observation.
1:20:04 - Applying new thinking methods to your life takes time.
1:22:42 - Journaling; paying attention to how you use your time and other resources; seeing the negatives of something.
1:31:32 - Cycles of learning and using ideas.
1:36:30 - Prioritization; societal defaults; employees and CEOs.
1:45:18 - Assumptions people make for what matters in companies.

Tutoring Max #50

Max’s notes Notes | Tutorial 50 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video.
5:44 - Paying attention to doubts and confusion; guessing versus knowing.
11:54 - Discussion of “Thoughts on Error Messages”; writing too broadly. Thoughts on Error Messages | Posts — Max Learning FI
16:52 - Getting criticism; queue of errors.
18:41 - Math problem discussion. Curiosity – Open Discussion 2 (2019)
23:00 - Conflicts of interest; conflict resolution rules. Notes on Conflicts of Interest Scenarios (Tutoring Max 49) | Posts — Max Learning FI
26:40 - Downsides in using force to get what you want.
34:46 - Singular/objective truth; better to be a scientist than a dictator; harmony of interests.
48:09 - Project planning.
54:43 - Breaking things down too small; Goldratt.
57:00 - Considering alternative projects, why project will succeed.
1:06:54 - Making things 10% better as a bad plan.
1:09:17 - CPU improvement as example of major progress.
1:17:52 - Needing a large competitive advantage over existing players.
1:20:51 - Project planning analysis for an app.
1:32:03 - Goldratt thinking tools; focusing steps; current reality tree and future reality tree; testing claims for a project plan.
1:38:34 - Reminder tools and using what you’ve learned.
1:40:57 - Keeping topic sentences in mind while writing.
1:47:13 - Being able to judge outcomes.
1:55:49 - Nginx problem.

Tutoring Max #49 - Conflicts of Interest Discussion

Conflicts of interest discussion: http://curi.us/2380-max-microblogging#18320
Max’s Notes: Notes on Conflicts of Interest Scenarios (Tutoring Max 49) | Posts — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video.
2:16 - Beginning of conflicts of interest discussion.
7:59 - What if two people want the same job?
43:35 - Max finds it easier to ask an investigative question compared to a question from a certain perspective.
1:36:23 - Thinking about tough cases, nightmare scenarios in connection with conflicts of interest.
1:39:13 - Multiple candidates running in the same election.
1:43:24 - People being biased and wanting to switch systems based on that; people imagining themselves as the dictator.
1:46:49 - Problem with Flux: not addressing the issue of elites.

Tutoring Max #48

Max’s notes. Notes | Tutorial 48 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video.
2:13 - Spaced repetition; maintaining skills.
6:48 - Prioritizing philosophy versus other things.
9:43 - Treating philosophy as urgent.
12:28 - Getting things done in the morning.
14:52 - Going through days intentionally.
18:48 - Reading Atlas Shrugged.
23:30 - Being afraid of what greatness involves.
26:29 - Wanting the easy life.
30:49 - Noticing instances where extra skill would have been useful.
34:10 - Overbooking schedules; having time-flexible projects.
40:10 - Underestimating project duration; 80/20 rule.
44:24 - Buffers & wasting time; eating the overhead; flexible personal projects.
49:58 - People being bad at their jobs; project managers.
53:28 - Importance of not being overbooked; size of buffer.
58:35 - Leading discussions: objective part versus social part; making trees; decisive issues.
1:07:10 - Conflict clouds, evaporating clouds, double cruxes.
1:09:53 - Excessive humility as a source of problems.
1:14:49 - @patio11 tweet regarding ambition. https://twitter.com/patio11/status/1311754520217546752?s=20
1:18:49 - What the world is like (in terms of jobs, career paths) and people not telling you the facts; getting work.
1:24:30 - Max’s “The Goal of A Political Party” essay; grammar and writing criticism. What is the goal of a political party? | Posts — Max Learning FI
1:35:45 - Tools for remembering concepts: writing, summaries, bullet points, checklists.
1:42:20 - Goals for a political party; affecting the system in a big way.
1:48:56 - Bullet point writing method.
1:54:07 - Writing an outline first.

Tutoring Max #47

Max’s notes Notes | Tutorial 47 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 Beginning of video; going through Max’s thoughts on Elliot’s essay Debates and Impasse Chains · Elliot Temple
6:28 - Using several partial explanations to communicate a concept.
8:34 - Why partial explanations are not necessarily compromises.
11:24 - Incremental learning; thinking about explaining things to a 5-year-old.
13:35 - Biased analogies.
15:25 - Teaching math correctly from the beginning; math facts versus history facts.
21:54 - Not wanting to think about the relevance of other fields.
25:03 - Gavin impasse chain discussion tree. https://files.fish.xk.io/2020-10-09-gavin-impasse-chain.pdf Original discussion Curiosity – Project Planning Discussion
30:19 - People not knowing prepositions.
35:38 - Max’s perspective on how most people would view the conversation with Gavin.
38:09 - People not liking it when Elliot’s ideas are applied to them.
42:16 - Discussions for mutual benefit; value of familiarity with a variety of perspectives.
48:54 - People continuing to debate rather than addressing discussion problems.
57:09 - How Gavin could have resolved an impasse.
1:05:32 - Gavin misinterpreting a narrow statement broadly.
1:08:30 - Definition of “impasse”; alternative terminology.
1:15:06 - Resolving impasses in general.
1:18:16 - Importance of discussion methodology as a topic.
1:20:15 - Dialogue about the Dart programming language.
1:27:34 - Discussion about Max teaching someone about blockchain.
1:41:47 - People not understanding stuff; withholding answers.
1:44:20 - Origins of money.
1:50:54 - Learning repeatable methods versus specific things.
1:57:03 - Having some trust in the learner.
1:59:08 - Going too fast for your student.

Tutoring Max #46

The discussion written in the video is posted at Curiosity – Max Microblogging
Max’s notes: Notes | Tutorial 46 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video; discussion tree for discussion at Curiosity – Max Microblogging
6:08 - Reading trashy romance novels; alternative things to read that are also easy.
11:10 - PUA knowledge as relevant to understanding romance novels.
14:14 - The fanfic-level quality of even big name romance authors.
19:39 - Approach to discussion going forward.
20:30 - Deficiencies with evolutionary psychology as a field.
31:06 - Approaches to back-and-forth discussions.
36:07 - Keeping a tree up to date as a discussion aid.
39:42 - Replying once as a social behavior; comparison to double-texting.
45:39 - Integrating ideas; lack of intellectual understanding.
56:02 - Making conversations work - doing short chunks.
1:01:56 - People wanting to “win” in discussions sometimes; being okay with losing.
1:04:45 - Respect from authority at a distance.
1:06:04 - Chess handicapping.
1:08:07 - Accepting the learner role; social status issues causing problems in discussion.
1:12:33 - People not wanting credit for revealing errors.
1:15:56 - Conversational track records; people not expecting knowledge with reach.
1:23:18 - Hostility to asymmetric discussion roles.
1:25:04 - Being selective about what you include in a discussion tree.
1:29:14 - Choosing to go in depth on a particular point in a discussion.
1:31:08 - Hostility to treating a conversation as a project worthy of planning and consideration.
1:35:19 - People lying about their openness to criticism.
1:39:37 - Looking at a discussion with Gavin Palmer that reached an impasse. http://curi.us/2321-project-planning-discussion#16695
1:50:59 - Debates and Impasse Chains article. Debates and Impasse Chains · Elliot Temple
1:56:55 - Lack of ideas in field of solving discussion problems.

Tutoring Max #45

The discussion written in the video is posted at Curiosity – Max Microblogging
Max’s notes: Notes | Tutorial 45 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:17 - Speedrunning & mastery.
6:50 - Reading; intentionally doing small chunks.
12:02 - Flow state versus wasting the day away unproductively; getting perspective on your life.
17:30 - Trying meditation.
23:54 - Elliot’s old emotions essay. Fallible Ideas – Emotions
28:39 - Not being too reliant on emotions as motivation.
33:31 - Max reads/reacts to some thoughts Elliot wrote on willpower & following your intuition.
41:28 - Goals, bottlenecks, mental energy.
49:53 - Blaming things on PMS.
54:42 - Giving direct answers to questions.
1:07:05 - Max gives some thoughts related to the genes discussion.
1:31:47 - Looking at a video linked in the genes discussion. Why do women have breasts? - YouTube
1:44:35 - Some comments related to genes discussion.
1:50:00 - Big picture comments on discussion.

Tutoring Max #44 - Debate About Genes and Their Influence Over the Mind

The discussion written in the video is posted at Curiosity – Max Microblogging
Max’s notes: Notes | Tutorial 44 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
This video had lots of writing so it is somewhat quiet for much of the first hour.
0:00 - Beginning of video; progress since last time.
1:11 - Discussion of post-mortem by LessWrong guy regarding lack of math skill Numeracy neglect - A personal postmortem - LessWrong
9:30 - Using discussion to learn about a topic; text debate begins.
30:05 - Writing smaller chunks; labeling chunks as important.
53:55 - Max’s discussion tree.
55:38 - Multi-section replies; discussion mistakes; having a main point.
59:00 - Chats versus discussions; placement of important points.
1:05:36 - People not knowing how their discussions are organized.
1:09:07 - Extent of disagreements not being quite real to people.
1:13:21 - People thinking that it is unrealistic to try to think seriously; dishonesty.
1:15:38 - People being unwilling to read books.
1:32:05 - Making trees as you go along as a discussion tool.
1:33:18 - Intuitively keeping track of discussion trees.
1:37:42 - Learning to change ideas that you picked up in early childhood.
1:41:43 - Lack of skill at managing discussion complexity.
1:43:30 - Resistance against going depth-first in a discussion.
1:46:59 - Lacking the skillset to have a debate but still thinking you’re right.
1:49:13 - Verbal jousting.
1:57:07 - People wanting to win instead of be the learner.

Tutoring Max #43

Max’s notes Notes | Tutorial 43 (goals) | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video; speedrunning.
4:45 - Taking time off.
6:41 - Making money; inflation & savings.
10:25 - Index funds; variance; safe withdrawal rates.
14:41 - Having lots more people; overpopulation concerns.
18:22 - Making money off things you want to do.
19:47 - Recruiting people to do philosophy; number of good people.
23:54 - People with potential.
29:30 - Wanting to save the world versus the Objectivist perspective; Atlas Shrugged.
33:47 - Need for philosophical education.
37:46 - Interfacing with existing institutions.
40:27 - Breakthroughs and the need for a high quality plan.
43:52 - Political activists shouldn’t be the ruling class.
46:03 - Being right doesn’t mean people will listen; getting corrupted.
50:01 - Plans; Silicon Valley; making a better world.
55:29 - Making educational material; Atlas Shrugged moving the needle.
59:43 - Rand’s followers not being very good.
1:00:39 - Fixing teeth; questionable science behind some dental procedures.
1:02:57 - Pandering to people who judge you based on superficial characteristics.
1:07:26 - Looking into downsides of some medical technology.
1:12:16 - Optimizing for helping the best people.
1:15:59 - Popper’s thinking quality versus Rand’s.
1:18:41 - What to read.
1:23:09 - Goldratt’s followers; comments on TCS.
1:26:24 - People being unable to tell the difference between good books like Goldratt’s The Goal and other books. The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement - 30th Anniversary Edition: Goldratt, Eliyahu M.: 9780884271956: Amazon.com: Books
1:28:59 - Difficulty applying ideas in The Goal.
1:32:32 - Philosophy areas that need work.
1:34:37 - Status quo will defend itself from threats.
1:36:33 - Things that might change society and help progress.
1:40:15 - Western civilization under attack.
1:44:02 - Playing by the rules; people in power cheating.
1:46:01 - Being a public intellectual; Jordan Peterson & the left.
1:50:01 - Getting dismissed as a crank; David Deutsch limiting what he says in public; global warming.
1:56:30 - Changing the world is hard.

Tutoring Max #42

Max’s Learning Report Learning Report: 2020, week 38 | Learning Reports — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:52 - Discussion about LessWrong/getting banned.
6:58 - LessWrong’s sexual assault problem.
8:22 - Effective Altruism; relying on experts.
13:01 - People getting offended when your criticism has a big impact.
14:45 - Rates of progress in learning existing knowledge versus pioneering activities.
17:19 - YouTuber Tom Scott; the Italian Attack in preferential voting systems.
22:51 - Thinking about goals.
27:14 - More on Effective Altruism, figuring out what to donate to.
32:24 - Alimony should be based on consumption, not business holdings.
36:02 - Speedrunning; mastering something.
40:08 - Autopiloting while doing repetitive things.
43:16 - Duet example.
49:30 - Debugging example.
51:37 - More speedrunning/games.
59:45 - patio11 tweet about people tolerating weird interests until those interests make others successful.
1:06:27 - :exclamation:Overreaching discussion begins.
1:09:28 - The goal-dependent nature of what counts as an error.
1:11:56 - Designing an airplane example.
1:14:16 - Discussions where someone makes more errors than they are resolving.
1:19:00 - Resistance to answering to other people; asking simple questions.
1:24:16 - Isolating being tilted; minimal test cases.
1:30:04 - Not giving enough considering to prerequisites or project planning.
1:33:10 - Not having a track record of doing anything similar to what you’re trying to do.
1:38:01 - Brainstorming about similarities between grammar learning project and past projects.
1:42:25 - Only having a small number of ways you’re breaking new ground in a project; troubleshooting errors.
1:43:45 - Playing small games for mastery.
1:45:26 - Running into limits of a game.
1:51:11 - People getting mad when asked for project plan.
1:52:55 - Children getting pushed into overreaching.
1:56:13 - Flexible projects.
1:59:41 - Plan for next time.

Tutoring Max #41

Max’s notes. Notes | Tutorial 41 | Tutorial Notes — Max Learning FI
0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:27 - “Hello, and welcome to FI” writing by Max.
5:25 - Discussion of “List of Fallible Ideas Evaders” - Curiosity – Fallible Ideas Post-Mortems
10:18 - People objecting to having email addresses public.
15:39 - Elliot’s alleged “history of threats”; LessWrong ban.
26:38 - Moderation cultures at different forums; Hacker News; Reddit; LessWrong.
32:34 - Communicating what you’re in for when you join FI; resources for new members.
35:35 - Detailed comments on “Hello, and welcome to FI”; FI not being like other forums.
37:53 - Topic changes on FI compared to other forums.
42:13 - Offending people by pointing out that they’re lying.
43:35 - Assuming you know you can do stuff before you know what it is.
47:02 - Confronting things about yourself (Max).
48:28 - FI standards; nature doesn’t grade on a curve.
52:03 - People wanting to discuss sophisticated topics.
54:11 - People not wanting to label things honestly or make direct requests.
58:33 - How various people came to FI.
1:04:18 - Current FI discussion topics; people working on long-term projects.
1:11:48 - More comments on “Hello, and welcome to FI”.
1:15:43 - People hiding when they’re mad before leaving FI.
1:20:40 - Trying to address people finding FI mean; inferential distance.
1:27:13 - Books to read. Learning from Great Books · Elliot Temple
1:30:26 - Method of discussion being more important than topic.
1:34:16 - Exploratory learning.
1:45:39 - Looking at potential versus accomplishments; David Deutsch & Elliot’s interaction.
1:48:23 - How Elliot engaged with TCS community early on.
1:50:38 - How to approach future sessions.
1:53:33 - How to improve writing.
1:56:21 - People avoiding debating Elliot; having a discussion that is trying to get to a conclusion.

Tutoring Max #40

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:01 - Procrastination discussion.
3:54 - Wanting to reread Allen Carr’s Easy Way to Stop Smoking book (Max); remembering books and having discussions. Amazon.com: Allen Carr's Easy Way To Stop Smoking eBook : Carr, Allen: Kindle Store.
6:46 - Guided versus self-directed learning; thinking about things yourself before reading answers.
10:02 - Upsides and downsides of self-directed versus guided learning.
13:36 - Keyboard discussion.
15:18 - Speedrunning discussion.
28:46 - Using programming to help speedrunning.
42:23 - Book reading strategies and standards.
46:03 - Rereading books; detailed analyses of shows/films.
51:37 - Why kids rewatch things so much.
53:34 - Confusing audiobook reading of Fabric of reality; text-to-speech versus audiobooks.
57:06 - People not wanting to listen to stuff because they don’t like someone’s voice; vocal fry.
59:40 - People putting effort into how they sound.
1:02:42 - Whether epistemology and evolution are unified.
1:07:08 - Further development of epistemology as a prerequisite for Artificial General Intelligence.
1:08:22 - Whether particular evolutionary algorithms actually do evolution.
1:12:12 - Figuring out what counts as an evolutionary algorithm.
1:14:48 - Things having behavior that the designers didn’t intend.
1:16:47 - Figuring out what creates knowledge - example with thing that digs for treasure chests.
1:18:30 - People being confused about GPT-3; attributing complex personalities pets.
1:22:30 - Focusing on learning the basics; confusion about qualia.
1:24:54 - Light bending through water.
1:27:24 - Discussion about meta discussion; anti-meta people lacking a consistent definition of meta.
1:30:36 - People wanting unwritten rules to limit discussion topics.
1:32:31 - Siloing discussion & anti-meta rules; restrictions on who you can use as an example.
1:36:26 - Anti-meta rules as vague rules to hide social norms under.
1:37:55 - Finding new universalities; breakpoints.
1:41:07 - Writing topics for next time.
1:46:42 - Test driven development.

Tutoring Max #39 - More on Paths Forward

More on Paths Forward, especially for the first hour. http://fallibleideas.com/paths-forward

0:00 - Beginning of video; Paths forwards methods.
1:52 - Asking people if they will propose an alternative method; concrete Paths Forward methods.
5:22 - “Using Intellectual Process to Combat Bias” discussion. Using Intellectual Processes to Combat Bias · Elliot Temple
8:13 - Burdens on your integrity; Paths Forward core concepts vs. implementation.
11:25 - Other people with a debate policy.
15:56 - Considering what it would take for a reasonable third party to trust your objectivity.
18:36 - Paths Forward as an alternative to the social status hierarchy.
20:58 - Social climbers feeling threatened.
23:37 - Betting your career on Karl Popper being wrong.
26:25 - People denying Elliot’s connection to David Deutsch.
28:24 - People being impressed by others from a distance; having your own life.
31:48 - Proxies, bridging arguments.
34:02 - Dealing with well-known arguments.
35:51 - Reading until the first important error.
38:32 - How people might respond to idea of reading to first error.
41:01 - Lack of good literature as evidence; damning large things for small reasons.
43:21 - Not skipping evidence; social words.
46:28 - “Would you be surprised to be wrong about this?”; labeling claims.
48:28 - Bridging arguments, modularity, sample applications.
57:51 - Making it easy for your errors to get corrected.
1:00:06 - Interactive & customized discussion.
1:04:25 - Having a representative of a school of ideas; Ayn Rand Institute’s shortcomings as advocates.
1:09:09 - Paths Forwards resources; unpublished Elliot material; lack of feedback.
1:16:49 - SubscribeStar discussion.
1:19:16 - Having a debate policy.
1:20:53 - Max’s “SI [Solomonoff Induction] murders people. a lot” post & talking to Less Wrong (LW) people about AGI. https://groups.google.com/g/fallible-ideas/c/Z-6WxmN85O4/m/kjZVHILlAgAJ
1:27:47 - Breakpoints & inability to convert some things into each other.
1:30:09 - Differences between number sets; college rankings article. The Trouble with College Rankings | The New Yorker
1:34:13 - More on SI/AGI/Max SI post.
1:44:34 - Difficulty of getting people to carefully engage with your material & take responsibility for trying to understand you.
1:50:11 - LW versus Fallible Ideas attitude to addressing criticism; endorsing other people’s work.
1:53:45 - Discussion breaking down because of blocking problem-solving at the meta level.
1:56:32 - Problem avoidance attitude.

Tutoring Max #38 – Paths Forward

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:15 - What problems is Paths Forward trying to solve?
4:35 - If I’m right and your wrong, how are you going to find out and change your mind?; people being overwhelmed by risky bets.
6:59 - People claiming that your ideas just aren’t high on the list of their ideas to study.
12:26 - People’s failure to say what it would take to change their mind about their priorities.
14:26 - People hiding information about their views.
15:35 - How do we correct our errors? Two broad categories of solutions; destroying one category with policies.
17:32 - Limiting ideas shared for criticism due to limited time, energy, and need for privacy.
19:00 - The easy case: sharing impersonal ideas related to career or major hobby; public intellectuals; not making claims about stuff you don’t have paths forward about.
23:11 - People forming opinions on controversial issues with no record and not being open to discussion.
26:59 - Dual purpose of writing" enabling people to refute your mistakes or correct their mistakes.
28:06 - People not wanting to stick their neck out and not having read the literature on their own side.
32:07 - People should exclude arguments they know are bad when pointing to a body of literature.
34:50 - The meaning of contributing to human knowledge and the unreasonableness of bringing up claims not entered into human knowledge.
38:59 - Taking responsibility for ideas versus deferring to experts.
43:42 - People who claim that they’re just amateurs and shouldn’t have to take responsibility for what they claim.
46:55 - People not putting appropriate disclaimers on their non-serious stuff; wanting to get credit when they get lucky.
50:08 - Expectations for rationality varying by forum; discussion of different online communities.
56:21 - Value of having a shared canon of material that’s been read by many members of the community.
1:00:30 - Lack of places where there is a default of taking responsibility for their ideas.
1:02:53 - If an idea hasn’t been entered into human knowledge, you shouldn’t assume it is correct.
1:04:11 - Making some effort to share your idea.
1:09:11 - Not getting to rationally reject something on the basis of criticisms you have not entered into human knowledge; busyness.
1:11:48 - How to address the idea that giving each idea due process would take too long (Max’s answer - focus).
1:14:19 - Why focus is not enough; danger of throwing out ideas/dismissing people without argument or paths forward.
1:17:29 - Consolidating discussions; Elliot’s debate policy.
1:20:45 - Debate policy as a time-saver.
1:23:46 - Having a bunch of ideas written down as a time-saver; asking for specific citations.
1:27:11 - Debating how to proceed with literature; libraries of criticism.
1:30:08 - :exclamation:Key point: Ideas that refute a category of ideas.
1:37:29 - Elliot serving as an index of written material due to it being hard to find things.
1:38:49 - Using resources like fans to handle inquiries; having multiple layers of proxies.
1:42:41 - Bridging arguments.
1:47:46 - Asking if any written refutations of a book exist.
1:49:35 - People wrongly feeling safe by holding the mainstream view.
1:51:31 - Getting referred to a book being an opportunity to 1) learn something or 2) refute something.
1:54:47 - Taking responsibility for the literature you cite.
1:56:43 - People having trouble resolving a single idea.
1:58:03 - Session wrap-up.

Tutoring Max #37

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:04 - Importance of having good ways to organize discussions over time when dealing with time limitations.
3:14 - LessWrong related discussion.
17:39 - More on having discussions over time.
22:05 - Improving reading habits; the effort-efficiency of listening to audiobooks.
25:53 - Perfectionism and setting your standards too high; resilient skills.
29:44 - Discussing Bitcoin; problems with Bitcoin.
33:36 - The problematic basis for Bitcoin’s valuation; comparison to Apple.
40:03 - Tutoring session logistics and plans.
46:52 - Value of discussion in figuring out problems.
50:02 - People’s negative attitude to short replies.
52:44 - Beginning of discussion on tutorials themselves - what’s worked well, less well, etc.
55:55 - Three stages of learning; tutorials as demonstrations of how one can learn things.
1:01:32 - Doing trees for debates in a Yes/No way.
1:05:35 - Emotional issues, motivation.
1:08:34 - Usefulness of thinking about different resources like mental energy, physical energy etc.
1:10:57 - Doing check-ins throughout the day to align your actions with your explicit goals.
1:12:47 - Giving yourself permission to abort harder tasks.
1:20:33 - Value of tutorials for rapid progress.
1:23:16 - The potentially destabilizing consequences of learning new things for other parts of your life.
1:24:48 - Writing things down before you change too much; records of Elliot’s early stuff.
1:34:00 - Projects for upcoming sessions.
1:39:25 - Dealing with pressure; criticism of “fun criterion”.
1:42:44 - Difficulty of alternative lifestyles.
1:45:10 - People’s judgment about what’s fun being determined by convention; misleading nature of “fun criterion”.
1:51:39 - Plan for next session: Paths Forward; expectations for future tutorial scheduling.
1:56:26 - Learning about Objectivism.

Tutoring Max #36

0:00 - Beginning of video.
2:29 - Looking at Max’s big idea tree on Solomonoff Induction; getting value out of post-mortems.
5:02 - Thinking about goals in writing replies (in the context of some of Max’s replies to AnneB).
14:49 - People claiming they’ll discuss problems before quitting the FI community and then not following up.
20:08 - The impossibility of actually knowing the size of a “small” error until you come up with a solution.
31:27 - Jumping into detail versus starting with a higher level overview.
33:42 - Max talks about his attempt to try to bridge the gap between two systems; Elliot discusses why that can be hard at 34:57.
39:04 - Understanding people’s systems and figuring out if there’s a “native way” to do what you want to do at 39:04; Goldratt’s thoughts on presentations at 40:40.
43:50 - Discussion regarding Richard Ngo’s thoughts on democracy; discussions of some problems with LessWrong.
57:44 - Detailed discussion of article by Ngo begins; Max tries to write a summary from memory at 59:24 until 1:05:04.
1:06:29 - Discussion of some details of liquid democracy in light of Ngo article - delegation, public funding etc.
1:14:49 - Max’s goals for a reply to Ngo article.
1:21:18 - Difficulty finding people to talk to who have considered issues in detail and are patient; narrowing down the positions someone might have with questions at 1:22:31.
1:25:21 - Coming up with a plan for achieving Max’s goals for a reply to Ngo article; information needed for deciding to take various actions at 1:28:30.
1:30:22 - Considering what actions are worth taking independent of someone else’s interaction with you; multi-purpose actions versus parochial posts at 1:33:57.
1:35:24 - Filtering people out by asking if they’ll claim to be important, serious, and interested in the discussion.
1:36:08 - Max’s story of an unpleasant interaction on Twitter with an academic; weight-of-the-evidence views and judging books at 1:37:28.
1:39:58 - Looking at previous discussions you’ve had that worked; figuring out the “minimum viable product”.
1:43:13 - Goals for discussion differing; short-term model versus FI model of building up an archive over time in an organized way with canonical material.
1:45:29 - Splintered public discussion with everyone talking about their own pet ideas versus focusing on fewer ideas.
1:47:31 - Value of interactive discussions versus books.
1:48:26 - Discussion of message from friend about The Beginning of Infinity.
1:51:07 - Discussion of writing down some questions down as you go when reading something; people intending to read a book twice and then failing; importance of some types of questions at 1:53:19.
1:58:29 - Writing down every major problem.

Tutoring Max #35

0:00 - Progress since last time.
3:15 - Max and Elliot’s Social dynamics checklists.
10:47 - Breaking rules and social status.
22:34 - Going through Elliot’s checklist.
25:43 - Congruence.
28:39 - Popularity.
29:56 - Reactivity.
31:28 - Compliance; Elon Musk example; hidden effort; pop star at a concert not counting as work.
40:10 - Attacks on value.
45:54 - Analyzing social dynamics in detail seeming mean; people not wanting responsibility for their autopiloted behaviors at 48:01.
49:52 - Being forgiving of mistakes when trying to improve.
1:00:35 - Dishonestly raising challenges to someone and then not replying if they pass the challenge.
1:12:08 - LessWrong people not engaging with what Elliot was saying.
1:18:17 - What the consequences would be if a major line of argument for evolution got refuted; how to look at multiple arguments for evolutionary theory at 1:22:32.
1:25:33 - Eliezer Yudkowsky being a fan of many-worlds interpretation.
1:33:27 - LessWrong poster Donald Hobson’s unproductive approach to trying to continue the conversation.
1:45:06 - Trying to fix someone without pointing out an error; supposed limits of Goldratt’s chain metaphor; people thinking other people can’t disagree with them.
1:53:31 - curi draws a diagram and discusses chains, conjunctions, disjunctions, and bottlenecks.

Tutoring Max #34

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:23 - Looking at some writing of Max’s on a technical paper related to Bitcoin.
1:58 - Goal of writing, how this project fits in with other goals.
11:58 - Using more accurate words when paraphrasing.
17:57 - Discussion of fungibility and Bitcoin.
25:23 - Distributed consensus.
47:05 - Max’s perspective on the usefulness of the writing exercise; Elliot talks about how his approach to writing would be different at 52:44.
58:16 - Looking at Kieren discussion as example of approach where parties each ask and answer a question.
1:03:04 - Less Wrong social analysis on TAG replies.
1:08:25 - Things to keep in mind when doing social analysis.
1:17:03 - Neediness; acting above someone.
1:20:49 - Looking at the word “even” in a LessWrong reply.
1:23:39 - Typos signifying low effort.
1:26:46 - Moving to johnswentworth replies.
1:35:23 - Elliot explains why he mispredicted what would happen in the discussion; lying to soften criticism, encourage people; looking at comment history at 1:39:08.
1:46:35 - Goldratt discussion.
1:54:45 - Social analysis checklist on johnswentworth.
1:59:53 - Elliot summarizes Less Wrong replies he got.

Tutoring Max #33

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:05 - Progress since last time.
3:30 - Looking at more LessWrong discussion.
13:26 - Paraphrasing main points to make nicer discussion trees.
27:44 - The Critical Rationalist definition of rationality as being about methods of thinking and error correction.
35:05 - Making simple messages that communicate successfully and then working your way up.
41:35 - Discussion of Max’s question barrage.
46:17 - Brainstorming a reply; not skipping steps at 49:07.
55:51 - Brainstorming different positions people have on assumptions and the inability to justify all your assumptions.
58:52 - Allegedly obvious bases for justification such as “I think, therefore I am”.
1:02:53 - Figuring out disagreements with a conversation partner.
1:12:02 - Critical Rationalism’s approach to dealing with assumptions.
1:18:25 - Binary/deterministic ideas versus probabilistic ideas.
1:30:19 - Turing completeness.
1:40:35 - Encoding ideas; LessWrong epistemology and the Oracle in Fabric of Reality.
1:46:26 - Lack of LessWrong representatives who will debate and resolve issues.
1:49:08 - Talking about advanced issues and skipping steps; reducing candidates for source of error at 1:51:37.

Tutoring Max #32

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:38 - Progress since last time.
6:40 - Going through a Less Wrong discussion between Max, MakoYass and TAG and making a tree.
19:56 - Tagging discussions in trees.
31:15 - Labeling when you are replying with thoughts on the general topic rather than replying to a specific point.
42:49 - Max uses a complicated example; figuring out the minimum features an example needs at 45:33.
48:15 - Grammar analysis of a Max sentence in the discussion.
54:00 - Mastering things at a slow rate first and then speeding up; typing practice; learning juggling.
59:30 - LessWrong’s broken double-quoting and bad copy-pasting.
1:02:30 - Attitude issues affecting LessWrong discussion.
1:10:48 - Trying to sort out a mess of a discussion versus keeping the conversation under the control in the first place; psychological issues and lack of patience affecting conversations.
1:21:45 - Max and TAG talking past each other and using “relevant” to refer to different things; people jumping back to the original topic of a discussion rather than resolving a sub-tree at 1:30:48.
1:34:19 - Conversation would be difficult to fix for Elliot even understanding what the problem was (further clarification on this point at 1:39:46).
1:35:42 - Making an idea tree to keep track of discussions.
1:41:01 - People not wanting to clear up misunderstandings enough.
1:55:15 - “Would I say this to an 8-year-old, who I liked, who was curious about this stuff?” as a question to ask before you write a response to someone.

Tutoring Max #31

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:18 - Progress since last time.
4:33 - Continuing Analyzing Lies Ray Scott Percival (RSP) analysis.
10:18 - RSP’s unclear use of “safe space”.
12:39 - RSP bringing up lightsabers; the significance of RSP discussing “being given” a lightsaber at 15:48.
21:34 - RSP throwing arguments at people; RSP’s attitude towards having arguments as being like drinking or partying.
24:06 - What philosophers actually are in our society versus what they should be.
31:39 - RSP thinking fighting is fun when you’re winning; the common attitude of not wanting a challenge using the gaming industry at an example.
41:33 - Speedrunners showing how easy console games actually are; finding movies hard to watch.
44:49 - Judging communities by whether they discover any other good ideas or are just one-hit wonders.
57:31 - Taking a look at Elliot’s email re: RSP from 2017.
1:00:44 - RSP exaggerating how much some scientists value Popper; comparison to Deutsch’s advocacy of Popper; second pass at 1:09:37; third pass at 1:11:02.
1:13:26 - Going through Elliot’s analysis of Lulie Tanett (LT).
1:17:39 - LT’s complicated writing hiding a lack of argument; LT having the tone of a wise person giving a lecture; comparison to a person who knows he is clueless and writes accordingly.
1:23:31 - LT misusing the argument from The Beginning of Infinity that problems are soluble.
1:27:21 - LT hinting that she is David Deutsch’s representative and misrepresenting how good the situation is behind the scenes.
1:31:37 - Elliot sums up’s LT’s post.
1:35:49 - Grammar stuff - relative adverbs.
1:38:57 - Less Wrong thread.
1:44:07 - Discussion of Max writing practice piece “Medical Diagnoses and Arguments of Support.”
1:55:51 - Summary comments about piece from Elliot.

Tutoring Max #30

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:28 - Progress since last time.
2:15 - Analyzing the Ray Scott Percival (RSP) reply in Analyzing Lies discussion.
9:43 - Determining when someone should have known better; social climber subcultures; Critical Cafe forum problems.
15:31 - Facebook being terrible.
24:04 - RSP bragging about being extroverted; bragging as relative social status elevation; RSP’s fake concession at 25:39.
30:46 - RSP’s book “The Myth of the Closed Mind” and RSP’s close-mindedness.
36:55 - RSP’s pro-fighting attitude.
40:49 - Being able to have a discussion and think you won.
48:02 - RSP’s apparent skepticism.
50:31 - The economic calculation debate and the influence on Marxism.
55:26 - RSP going off topic.
1:07:05 - RSP’s metaphorical violence and bad attitude towards discussion.
1:26:00 - David Deutsch’s idea of reach.
1:31:55 - Next focus and time remaining on intensive tutoring.
1:34:19 - Schedule management and prioritizing.
1:39:56 - Avoiding firefighting mode; showing other people your plan.
1:44:47 - The importance of a reading book habit; Heinlein books at 1:49:23.
1:53:44 - Debate trees; multi-person debates being harder to organize and more chaotic.

Tutoring Max #29

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:03 - Picking up Analyzing Lies Lulie Tanett (LT) analysis from last time.
2:19 - Making a try at understanding something yourself first before looking at other people’s answers for comparison.
3:52 - Summing up analysis so far.
6:58 - “social status or bureaucracy” LT quote: false dichotomies; how does bureaucracy persuade people? at 8:08; appealing to social status/bureaucracy at 9:!3.
14:04 - “apparent premise” analysis; academia having flaws at 16:07; LT setting herself up as an impartial judge at 17:38; fairness of LT’s characterization of Birner at 19:03; what Birner’s actually responding to at 24:56.
27:33 - Difficulty of tracking down papers without university academic paper access.
30:15 - LT claiming building intellectual communities is easy; LT cheerleading for forum at 33:07.
34:28 - LT claiming you don’t need to be an academic to engage with academia; story about rich self-trained philosopher guy hiring academics; LT’s use of the idea that problems are soluble at 37:48; LT reframing the debate & dangers of social networking at 39:46.
40:54 - Advantage more consistent/evil people have - Ayn Rand quote re: compromise.
48:14 - Institutional academia versus academia.
52:21 - Exuberant promoter/social type; academic social culture at 54:50; extrovert versus introvert at 56:53.
1:00:28 - LT focusing on superficial traits compared to Birner focusing on core traits.
1:02:18 - LT quote re: not taking clash of ideas seriously; possible meaning of not taking clash seriously at 1:04:24.
1:07:00 - Feynman story about math textbooks.
1:09:59 - Discerning the meaning of LT statement “But truth is connected”; two interpretations at 1:14:04.
1:20:02 - Where is David Deutsch writing about Critical Rationalism?; LT moving the goalposts at 1:23:23.
1:23:52 - People opposing the Beginning of Infinity (BOI) worldview after reading and liking it; global warming “skepticism.”; CO2 not directly trapping meaningful heat at 1:26:42; Easter Island story and alternative to traditional narrative at 1:29:52.
1:32:17 - Raising standards causing lack of any production.
1:33:45 - Many people not liking BOI; LT’s claims regarding craving for Popper/CR/BOI type ideas at 1:35:57.
1:39:14 - Hostility to Rand.
1:41:58 - LT’s claims re: people turning to Popper to understand various issues.
1:44:26 - Claiming you’re doing well if you’re not; SENS example.
1:47:33 - LT quote re: “very fertile ground”.
1:51:50 - People getting “interested” in ideas and not taking them very far versus people taking seriously stuff in e.g. academia.
1:54:24 - LT’s social dynamics.

Tutoring Max #28

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:14 - Progress since last time; Analyzing Lies Birner quote discussion.
14:32 - Using trees versus using paraphrasing.
28:48 - Moving on to Lulie Tanett (LT) quote; “spirit” of the post.
37:16 - Characterizing something as a premise; pretending you’re revealing something that’s already been explicitly stated.
42:42 - Evaluating whether two of LT’s statements contradict.
48:47 - LT ignoring Birner’s argument.
55:05 - Analyzing “there’s always a way of explaining an idea that isn’t off-putting; it’s not fundamentally the case that people dislike criticism.”
1:22:45 - Analyzing "(What they dislike is something more like: being trapped; being called bad; having problems that destabilise/overwhelm; etc; disliking criticism.
1:34:57 - Going through life “ironically”; sarcasm.
1:39:28 - LT’s position on criticism and the Analyzing Lies analysis.
1:44:48 - Possibility of unbounded progress; social networking versus unbounded progress.
1:50:26 - Multi-pass method.
2:00:53 - Response to chat comment.

Tutoring Max #27

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:11 - Progress since last time.
5:44 - The name critical rationalism.
10:00 - Tutoring session logistics & beginning of writing session criticism.
17:38 - Risks of using a timer.
20:37 - Writing so that your reader doesn’t have to double back.
23:57 - People having different goals for their reading other than learning, such as signaling tribe membership.
31:16 - Taking account of flow when deciding how much to edit.
46:13 - People’s different attitudes towards discovering new stuff versus learning stuff that’s already known.
51:46 - Moving on to Analyzing Lies material.
1:03:55 - Self-analyzing the quality of your own points.
1:26:26 - Boundary between Critical Rationalism and Elliot’s ideas.
1:28:20 - Objectivist view on personality types; Atlas Shrugged quote.
1:37:26 - Analyzing song lyrics.
1:40:24 - Autodidactic learning; anti-book-learning attitude.
1:43:29 - Department of Justice deciding that Yale discriminating against whites and Asians; bad thinking in the world.

Tutoring Max #26

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:14 - Progress since last time; attempting to explain simple things writing examples (some examples: “Why shouldn’t you look at the sun?” and “What is swimming?”).
3:32 - Importance of considering audience; no perfect way to write.
38:43 - Importance of identifying with the problem situation for figuring out what details to include.
42:35 - Paragraph breaks as a means of providing organization.
55:54 - curi does some of Max’s writing prompts for contrast; discussion and comparison starting at 1:06:35.
1:09:24 - Writing like how people talk; point of simple writing exercise; lacking clear goals.
1:12:56 - Max and curi write about how to use a microwave; discussion at 1:15:57.
1:18:44 - Max and curi do a brainstorming session about how to prepare dinner after a microwave breaks.
1:23:55 - Max and curi brainstorm about brainstorming topics.
1:29:28 - Max and curi brainstorm about getting a date with a stripper; discussion at 1:36:01.
1:40:48 - Breaking up a question into parts; standard dating advice for normal girls having limited utility for strippers.
1:43:12 - Max and curi brainstorm about budgeting; discussion at 1:50:22.

Tutoring Max #25

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:36 - Progress since last time; analyzing writing example about why pots get empty when you boil water.
22:20 - Writing consistency; having a purpose or goal; brainstorming.
26:55 - Communicating an approximation.
44:37 - Analyzing writing example about why mirrors show an image of yourself.
51:37 - Writing session: explaining division.
1:26:41 - Describing something versus explaining something.
1:41:17 - Elliot’s version of explaining division.
1:46:02 - Writing and editing communications as an ongoing process relevant to philosophy; wikiHow as examples of simple step-by-step explanations.
1:56:53 - Understanding what you like about activities that you suspect are not a good use of time.

Tutoring Max #24

0:00 - Progress since last time; Mises paragraph.
10:02 - Analysis of confusing academic language regarding Szasz.
19:23 - Scaling down/finding your baseline.
24:03 - Picking a topic to write about.
33:11 - Explaining math concepts; confusion about fractions/ratios/percents; possible things to write about.
43:44 - Natural breakpoints in discussing a topic; ratio of public to private writing.
48:25 - Brainstorming solutions.
51:34 - Analyzing short stories; building on low level errors versus getting low level details right.
1:05:20 - Not destroying the method of correcting mistakes; connecting rationality and morality.
1:10:04 - Rationalist versus traditionalist attitudes to social norms.
1:14:22 - LSAT question discussion; bad-question writing; people not expecting literalness.
1:30:35 - Explicit, rational analysis of social dynamics.
1:32:15 - reCAPTCHA illustrating sloppiness/low standards.
1:39:30 - Amount of error correction you should do for other people.
1:43:26 - Miscommunications; marriage.
1:47:40 - Thinking for yourself; error made on your own versus ten truths accepted on faith.
1:52:27 - People’s reaction to Rand; BioShock; hiding disagreements.
1:58:36 - Trump.
2:01:11 - Stuff to do for next time.

Tutoring Max #23

0:00 - Progress since last time.
3:26 - What a universe is; David Deutsch’s view.
9:13 - Physics is local.
12:56 - Tourette’s syndrome; understanding Szasz and psychiatry.
16:56 - Scientists versus social controllers; people wanting “treatment” for mental illness.
18:27 - Having skill to look into things efficiently.

Tutoring Max #22

0:00 - Progress since last time.
3:17 - Considering having a child; time constraints; co-parents.
8:43 - Analysis of debate regarding coronavirus.
15:02 - Organizing a discussion tree.
20:23 - Attacking quality of idea before giving criticism.
24:28 - Establishing goalposts.
29:00 - Putting burdens on conversation partner; asking for disclaimers.
34:06 - Meta discussion.
39:52 - Putting things in trees to find non-sequiturs; trees as a teamwork builder.
46:20 - Backing people into a corner versus winning the main point.
54:11 - Directly responding to points people bring up.
59:14 - Bringing up too many things at once.
1:11:12 - Focusing on attacking someone else’s position versus focusing on finding major problems.
1:18:04 - Thinking about your goal in a discussion.
1:23:57 - Getting a couple of examples of a problem before bringing it up the third time.
1:31:25 - Sticking to claims you’re confident about or hedging them in advance.
1:35:55 - Feeling like more of an FI community member; getting accustomed to norms; talking to other people.
1:43:12 - Eli Goldratt’s forum; lack of participation in forums; lack of appreciation for free ice cream.
1:51:18 - Goldratt not charging according to value offered; obstacles to implementing Theory of Constraints.

Tutoring Max #21

0:00 - Beginning of video.
2:34 - Analysis of chapter in “Possible Minds” book written by Stephen Wolfram; looking at the topic sentence of each paragraph. Lots of detailed points and criticism.
35:42 - Comma mistakes and a tip.
39:39 - Goals have objectivity.
46:14 - Time is scarce even with immortality.
1:00:13 - Inability to predict content based on topic sentences; what poor quality of essays in “Possible Minds” says about the world.
1:09:25 - Practicing text analysis; value of looking at topic sentences; difficulty of checking things in certain fields; importance of being able to judge for yourself whether you’re getting something right; less structured ways of evaluating things.
1:20:52 - Recognizing extraterrestrial intelligence; similarity of bridging gap with an alien and with an infant; universality versus mind design space.
1:26:33 - Mind-uploading.
1:29:49 - Further projects - text analysis & analyzing a debate.
1:36:34 - Using trees to analyze & manage debates.
1:42:18 - People often not being on the same page; people having low standards for communication and understanding; social norms.
1:47:40 - Management books discussion; value of a manager in meetings; cost of meetings & having objectives.

Tutoring Max #20

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:12 - Grammar discussion begins.
2:00 - Analysis: “I can explain”; different models of analyzing this sentence.
7:55 - Analysis: “I can explain the acronyms if need be”; verbals and auxiliary verbs.
15:17 - Auxiliary verbs, tenses, finite and non-finite verbs.
24:46 - Subjunctive.
32:01 - Analysis: “It is a poor argument of my superior reason, that I am unable to make justice be apprehended and felt in the most necessary cases, without the intervention of blows”; how much time to spend analyzing sentences; expletives.
46:48 - Pattern: verbal serving as an object and also having its own subject and an object.
58:15 - Analysis: “So Alice, I just wanted to add, this sentence would have a parenthetical if the point wasn’t to be an example of a sentence with a parenthetical.”
1:19:02 - How to learn grammar effectively.
1:24:01 - Analysis: “I’m going to steal that kid’s lollipop whether you like it or not.”
1:32:47 - Analysis: “Both rugby and football are popular.”
1:42:00 - What is “both”?
1:47:36 - Quickly reviewing other examples for major errors.
1:59:46 - Making progress with grammar; high error rates.

Tutoring Max #19

0:00 - Progress since last time, grammar discussion.
8:50 - Special cases in English.
15:41 - Flux white paper text analysis begins.
18:15 - References within a sentence.
39:02 - The relationship between how often you use a statement and how much it communicates; more at 45:21.
54:21 - The low quality of people’s answers to studies when their answer doesn’t matter much for their life; more at 1:00:18 re: virtue signaling.
1:14:56 - How small incremental steps can lead to big fundamental changes; adding special cases at 1:18:50.
1:21:04 - Physicists, special cases, and the simpleness of reality.
1:34:27 - Correlative conjunctions.

Tutoring Max #18

0:00 - Mapping out bingeing games issue.
3:49 - Likes and dislikes re: games; something not being ideal versus being a major problem; disruption of other activities.
6:14 - Arbitrary activities in life.
10:15 - Lacking a goal for the game activity that is better than the projects being set aside; integrating things into life and having a mix of activities in terms of mental energy/difficulty level.
19:42 - People getting stuck.
24:36 - How to not waste your time and energy budgets by doing a mix of stuff.
27:39 - Stuff getting easier when you’re not operating near the edge of your abilities; getting bored and losing focus.
37:45 - Overspending energy and overcorrecting; doing period self-check-ins to try to spend time on more productive things; more at 43:14.
47:39 - Doing easier activities; validating your tiredness level.
53:40 - Tutoring as a helper role.
59:36 - Switching scheduling policies and how you organize your day is a big change that will take a while.
1:00:38 - Debating on less wrong.
1:03:01 - Value of talking with people.
1:05:55 - Text/grammar analysis of some Max writing.
1:09:45 - Goldratt’s chain metaphor; finding bottlenecks.
1:13:05 - Inferential distance; variance in idea quality.
1:17:01 - Popper’s bad political ideas; paradox of tolerance.
1:22:50 - Taking into account what the audience you are writing for already knows.
1:26:08 - Figuring out grammar errors; avoiding skipping steps.
1:34:11 - Dealing with other people’s errors.
1:34:53 - Text analysis of Yudkowsky passage.

Tutoring Max #17

0:00 - Beginning of video.
3:11 - Missing sleep; bingeing games.
11:23 - Difficulty determining whether you are making progress.
16:33 - Philosophy as a soft discipline.
19:43 - Choose-your-own-adventure goals & standardized goals; grammar resources.
29:13 - Being able to find your own resources.
36:28 - Writing goals; initial barriers to entry.
42:38 - Learning comes in steps.
44:42 - Remembering your goals; categorizing them; specifying goals in detail with effort estimates
48:40 - Calibrating the effort to the task.
51:21 - Emotions, motivations, interest, warning signs.
53:22 - Brainstorming (discussion and brainstorming session).
1:08:42 - Comments on brainstorming; more hierarchical/categorized versus freeform brainstorming; value of concretes.
1:15:18 - Being too abstract; learning philosophy and finding concretes.
1:20:10 - Project planning example.
1:28:42 - Working within limits being seen as weakness.
1:32:03 - Being able to operate when you’re not at your best; going slower; writing down more steps.
1:47:45 - Value of sleep.
1:50:22 - Keep trying different things to make progress; viewing steps positively.

Tutoring Max #16

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:11 - Grammar; linking verbs versus action verbs.
13:20 - Motivation and procrastination; not being fully persuaded about how you should spend your time.
16:52 - Making excuses; temporarily putting things off versus doing so repetitively; rationalism and fighting with yourself.
21:58 - Not doing as much intellectual stuff as you think you should be; valuing non-intellectual things; not assuming you know the answer of what activities you should do.
26:49 - Explaining video game binges; playing familiar games; reward cycles; setting your own goals.
33:26 - Guided progressions versus guiding your own progression.
37:15 - Avoiding fighting with yourself; being a neutral arbiter and making changes.
44:01 - Different ways of engaging with games.
45:25 - Incomplete criticisms of social stuff leave people conflicted.
48:17 - Lack of correct methods reducing effectiveness of people’s attempts to engage in intellectual activities (like reading); self-discipline.
57:14 - Having a queue of activities; overestimating your ability to get things done.
1:02:40 - Testing for burnout.
1:07:32 - Having a variety of activities; not putting pressure on same resource.
1:14:17 - Relationship between tiredness and your skill set.
1:18:47 - Proxies for mental effort and avoiding burnout; evasion.
1:26:21 - Disappointment & self-image; clash between cultural expectations about what’s hard & reality.
1:32:39 - Increasing your budget for activities; diminishing returns on increasing budget; doing things more efficiently.
1:37:16 - Doing things more efficiently examples: book reading, spellcheck, GPT3.
1:45:37 - Limits of budget metaphor; making sure things you’re spending budget on are actually valuable.
1:49:41 - Error; scheduling flexibility; incremental change.
1:54:51 - Splitting activities.

Tutoring Max #15

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:24 - Progress since last time, tiredness.
5:01 - Criticizing Max writing - Australian Constitution article; unnecessary modifiers.
37:34 - Criticizing Max writing - “Appearance is never worth sacrificing one’s integrity for.”
42:10 - Dishonest animal indicators; peacock’s tails.
46:04 - Social skill as honest versus dishonest indicator.
1:08:44 - Editing styles & having goals.
1:19:23 - Writing for generic audiences versus more specific contexts.
1:30:32 - Stating clear goals and asking people if their feedback addresses the goal.
1:32:19 - Using time effectively; asking people why their point is importance and worth time.
1:45:23 - FI people losing confidence.
1:51:19 - Bringing up too much stuff; finding limited chunks to discuss; lack of philosophical education.
1:53:51 - Political innovation not the world’s bottleneck; people liking to sound clever.

Tutoring Max #14

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:18 - Australian Constitution section tree discussion and analysis.
44:36 - Passing social tests while being smart and correct.
49:36 - Communicating complicated good ideas by relating it to tradition and common sense; political silencing.
52:32 - Government influence on people’s ideas through schools.
58:29 - Analyzing whether various left-wing stuff follows from gender being socially constructed.
1:08:51 - Old and new ideas of feminism re: femininity.
1:12:53 - What if physical strength differences were socially constructed?
1:19:57 - The left doesn’t address difficulty of changing culture.
1:25:04 - Left’s position as: “We could change this, therefore we should ignore it”.
1:28:44 - Not wanting things, oppression, brainwashing, delegitimizing preferences.
1:41:38 - Analyzing arguments in detail.
1:47:02 - Companies redistributing the women in a field.
1:51:31 - Men improved more from feminism than women did due to receiving criticism.
1:56:37 - Focus on female beauty causing problems (e.g. for Twitch problems); women’s role in teaching and parenting.

Tutoring Max #13

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:11 - Introductory comments/activity since last time.
5:06 - Goldratt method for finding root problems.
11:49 - Early ideas related to Yes/No philosophy.
14:17 - Meaning of lack of replies on FI & how to handle.
16:22 - People getting angry at meta.
19:58 - Committing to discussing a topic to resolution.
28:13 - Analyzing a Steven Pinker paragraph (for next hour).
1:24:42 - Finished tree of Steven Pinker paragraph.
1:27:33 - Pinker intentionally overcomplicating his writing to impress people.
1:29:25 - Discussion structure trees; comparing trees as a method of getting on the same page in a conversation.
1:34:57 - Criticism of Pinker’s writing as confused, empty, and oriented around impressing others.

Tutoring Max #12

(Max’s timestamps)

0:00:00 inspiration, journaling, and note taking
0:22:37 brief discussion of fallibility of maths
0:25:30 recap of material from last tutorial
0:27:50 brief discussion of universality
0:31:20 yes/no purpose and limits and more recap
0:55:00 converting continuums to digital via breakpoints
1:07:00 avoiding coercion and methods of coming up with new options
1:22:00 We Can Always Act on Non-Criticized Ideas
1:27:00 converting positive arguments to negative arguments
1:39:45 converting continuums to binary or digital via breakpoints
1:43:00 moving judgements from problems/solutions into goals
1:53:00 libraries of criticisms / patterns of error
2:06:00 margins of error on breakpoints
2:10:00 more discussion generally and on journaling and inspiration

related links:

Tutoring Max #11

0:00 - Beginning of video.
2:19 - Amounts of goodness.
7:26 - Error correction, analog systems, degree arguments.
10:23 - Vagueness about problems & decisive arguments.
15:19 - Why do people want degree arguments?
25:42 - How do we get more decisive arguments?
30:16 - Reaching conclusions in light of fallibility.
34:39 - Background goals.
37:40 - Focus & compound goals; excess capacity.
44:45 - Binary factors & excess capacity.
49:38 - Breakpoints.
53:33 - Rounding & pseudo-breakpoints.
57:08 - Expressing more precision than you have.
1:00:00 - Crow epistemology.
1:01:19 - Maximization & minimization problems; conversion factors.
1:03:44 - Compound goals & having many factors on different scales without conversion factors.
1:13:30 - Decision charts.
1:15:50 - Changing the compound goal.
1:17:43 - What if many solutions meet our criteria?
1:23:53 - Direct & indirect solutions.
1:26:06 - Grammar.
1:36:22 - Weighing, strong & weak arguments, survival advantages as a conversion factor.
1:44:31 - Hard to vary.
1:48:22 - Adaptation & hard to vary.
1:53:58 - Structural similarities across universes & knowledge.

Tutoring Max #10

0:00 - Beginning of video.
2:53 - More Szasz manifesto structure analysis.
25:38 - History of mental illness.
29:56 - People glossing over what they’re reading; understanding how things fit together; stream of consciousness writing; organizing writing.
35:46 - Analysis of first sentence of Declaration of Independence.
41:44 - Taggart Terminal sentence aside (passage from Atlas Shrugged).
44:11 - Declaration analysis continued.
1:01:32 - Taggart Terminal analysis.
1:08:22 - Focusing on structure before content.
1:25:56 - Measurements, policies and processes; verbalizing ideas; doing things on medium timelines.
1:33:32 - Modularizing writing; importance of structure in dealing with knowledge; the right structure as a timesaver.
1:40:00 - Grand visions for discussions as beginnings of infinity; having grand goals but bad methods.

Tutoring Max #9

0:00 - Beginning of video.
4:09 - Grammar. Analyzing “John pet his dog and cat with vigor.”
7:04 - Verb phrases.
15:52 - Grammar: “I like reading non-fiction books out of order”; discussion of “out of”.
19:47 - Theory of Constraints/Objectivist/Critical Rationalist overlap & toolset.
25:40 - Value of rereading and outlining books; density of Beginning of Infinity at 29:05.
32:46 - Looking at a past Max writings.
52:55 - Origin of Flux movement and influence of The Beginning of Infinity.

Tutoring Max #8

0:00 - Grammar. Analyzing sentence “Nobody’s ever been bothered by being dead.”
5:10 - Analyzing sentence “He was waiting for the rain to stop”; curi’s analysis at 7:30.
9:04 - Analyzing sentence “Assuming you’re an adult, there are some things you’re already good at judging.”
21:23 - Discussion about progress/goals/stuff to focus on.
23:39 - Analyzing a Szasz sentence; Elliot’s analysis compared to Max’s at 36:04.
43:00 - Methods for analyzing paragraphs; outlines.
46:04 - The structure of different types of writing and putting them into trees.

Tutoring Max #7

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:17 - Progress since last time; understanding books.
5:30 - Constitution of Australia example; best stuff to practice with.
9:48 - “The Choice” discussion and next steps.
14:27 - Grammar analysis of “My broken speakers don’t work for making sound.”
22:54 - Grammar analysis: “FYI, working at the CIA is cooler than the FBI.”
38:02 - Value of question-asking method of sentence analysis.
39:38 - “Lying” article analysis.

Tutoring Max #6

0:00 - Beginning of video.
1:28 - Guessing parent/child relationship percentages for a typical paragraph; Elliot’s answer at 17:08.
6:00 - Analyzing example paragraph from “The Choice”.
20:32 - Analyzing Elliot’s “Lying” article.
28:43 - Reading only the topic sentences as an editing technique.
37:58 - The value of being verbose for clarifying.
48:22 - Elliot’s writing structure as coming from intuition and general principles as opposed to an explicit editing step.
51:07 - Correcting writing errors.
58:57 - Value of giving indications to the reader what your reasoning is early on.

Learn grammar article:

Idea trees:

Tutoring Max #5

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:42 - Progress since last time; initial comments on “The Choice”.
5:16 - Grammar.
15:28 - “The Choice” discussion; different schools of rationality.
25:00 - Controversial themes of “The Choice”; the issue of brain power; complex reality being simple at 30:01; gravity example at 33:34.
36:15 - Project management; constraints.
40:40 - Dealing with volunteers.
41:42 - Mental energy as a constraint vs. time.
46:19 - What makes discussions work or fail.
54:42 - Agreeing early to shut down discussions.

Tutoring Max #4

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:30 - Tutoring logistics, introductory comments.
6:01 - Grammar.
9:19 - Example: “Let us talk about a different way.”; imperatives and implied “you”
14:24 - Indirect objects & appositives.
18:59 - Example: “I seriously think that Ayn Rand was wise.”; two functions of “that” & ways to depict in tree.
26:56 - Ways of teaching sentence patterns.
28:19 - Example: “You can find more stuff which is similar or related and work on that.”
42:09 - Example: “After you throw a small, red ball, while you sing, you should stamp your feet loudly, and you should clap your hands energetically, if it’s still daytime.”
1:01:18 - Transition to philosophy discussion.
1:03:55 - Making tree from Szasz Manifesto paragraph.
1:39:25 - Elliot’s Szasz tree.

Learn grammar article:

Idea trees:

Tutoring Max #3

0:00 - Beginning of video.
0:28 - Progress since last time.
2:26 - Making s-expressions; reviewing grammar exercises.
11:55 - Example: “I went to a fancy university, yet I’m still quite ignorant.”
16:19 - Example: “If universities are full of uncurious professors, don’t attend one.”
33:21 - Overreaching.
42:27 - Should have way of checking your success in objective way.
48:09 - Overreaching perspective: People do too much stuff that’s too hard.
51:00 - Overreaching perspective: People do stuff that’s too sophisticated and clever.
52:49 - Overreaching perspective: Proceeding while missing prerequisites, failing at prioritization.
1:04:48 - Doing error correction for other people.
1:08:01 - Overreaching perspective: Trouble self-evaluating.
1:10:35 - Expanding what you can judge objectively; using external help to help you judge success and failure; not putting all your eggs in one basket.
1:13:21 - Easier to judge objectively when you can use measurements.
1:18:51 - Ruling out theories; evolution example.
1:23:03 - Figuring out relevant measurable objectives; developing skill and judgment.
1:32:34 - Bad reactions to idea of overreaching; prerequisites and common ground.
1:37:26 - Buffer management and project planning; startup culture.
1:42:25 - Positive framings of overreaching-related issues; prerequisites; solid building blocks, programming example (lower level functions).

Learn grammar article:

Idea trees:

Tutoring Max #2

0:00 - Grammar article discussion.
6:37 - Example: “John put the toy soldier in the compartment in the box on the shelf in his room.”
11:22 - Example: “The delicious cake with berries unfortunately fell onto the dirty floor from the table.”"
16:21 - Verbs in “John had been playing golf.”
21:01 - Ways to use verbs/actions in a sentence.
32:30 - Prepositions as functions of nouns that output modifiers.
37:40 - Conjunctions.
42:37 - Diagram of “Max drank too much.”
52:40 - Value of study and learning principles over relying on intuition (applied to grammar).
58:16 - Idea tree goals & structure; brainstorming & refinement.
1:05:15 - Non-judgmental introspection.
1:08:00 - Bias, static memes, adding objectivity.
1:13:44 - Changing intuitions.
1:20:28 - Processes for adding objectivity.
1:27:24 - Things that interfere with fixing fundamental mistakes; public intellectuals having less of an excuse.
1:32:44 - Reaching conclusions with incomplete information.
1:34:58 - Overreaching, being at beginning of infinity, having a sense of ignorance putting you ahead of the game.
1:40:40 - Social ladder climbing and feeling threatened by acknowledging mistakes/problems.
1:49:29 - Normal social contexts & rational discussion.
1:51:37 - People underestimating the complexity of rational thinking & philosophy.

Learn grammar article:

Idea trees:

Tutoring Max #1

0:00 - Beginning of video.
4:29 - Introductory questions.
9:22 - Grammar. Brief overview of Part I of Elliot’s grammar article.
16:28 - Two patterns for sentences.
19:36 - Ways to think about verb phrases.
22:37 - Example: “John tried to pass his test.”
28:19 - Relative pronouns/clauses.
34:22 - Example: “The ferocious dog chased three cats over the chair.”; making tree at 48:41; S-expression at 50:36.
38:25 - Figuring out what modifiers modify.
55:44 - Communication and relying on other people knowing what you mean.
57:21 - Modifier ambiguity: applying to verb versus applying to entire sentence.
1:03:06 - Brief overview of Part II of Elliot’s grammar article; complex sentences; conjunctions.
1:07:11 - Prepositions.
1:11:24 - Coordinating & subordinating conjunctions; swapping the order of clauses at 1:15:25; two models of conjunctions at 1:17:37.
1:26:45 - Purpose of subordination with example; connection between writing and conceptual complexity.
1:32:08 - Part III of grammar article. Gerunds & participles.
1:47:08 - Infinitives.
1:57:37 - Importance of using dictionaries.

Learn grammar article:

Idea trees:

I downloaded all the subtitles for the tutoring max playlist.

They should be easy to search (e.g., grep -i "some word or phrase" ./*.vtt (the -i means case insensitive).

I have a feeling transcripts have been posted somewhere before, but thought this was a good resource to post here.

I used yd-dlp (spiritual successor to youtube-dl) via the command yt-dlp --write-auto-subs -f sb1 --download-archive "archive.txt" "$PLAYLIST_SOURCE" – it should probs be run in its own directory.
(sb1 is a collection of stills (~1 MB / video) so the download is small – instead of 100s of megs of video. I don’t think there’s a way to download only the subtitles and nothing more.)

Subtitles archives:

Maximum upload size is maximum 4 MB so it’s split into two:
tutoring-max-subs-1-26.zip (3.2 MB)
tutoring-max-subs-27-52.zip (3.6 MB)

Text gets doubled a lot and there’s a bunch of metadata stuff. But it works :slight_smile:

#36 is missing

YT says CC are unavailable for that video, so I guess they were never generated.
IDK how YT decides whether to do that, but I’ve noticed it for some videos (broadly speaking).

One thing I liked about this was that often the timestamp would appear on the same line as the search term, which was useful. It might be a problem for phrases, though.