Browsing the archives for the A Series of Experiments category

Declared Void…If Only it Were Possible
By: Barry Belmont

This work of art is called ‘Declared Void’ by Carey Young (2005). It’s just a a drawn line and some text but it says infinitely more with all the surrounding implications for liberty. I for one would love to see ‘declared voids’ become the norm. Whole swaths cleared of America by the voluntary actions of [...]

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Google Data Explorer and Knowing the World
By: Barry Belmont

If you thought the Ngram viewer from Google was amazing then you’re really just going to have your mind blown by its latest and greatest contribution to understanding the world: The Google Public Data Explorer. It’s incredible and shows a lot of correlations that make scientists of us all. The correlations that all your favorite [...]

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Free Markets in Currency FTW: Bitcoin is Greater than the Dollar
By: Barry Belmont

If you haven’t heard of this new sort of experiment in decentralized currency exchange known as Bitcoin I suggest you burn through the internet and learn as much about it as you can about it. It is one of the most exciting real world experiments in capital currently being undertaken: a peer-to-peer currency exchange all [...]

4 Comments Posted in A Series of Experiments, Economics
The Good of the People: Words
By: Barry Belmont

So, Google, with it’s 3 billion or so books cataloged, has given us the ability to track how words have been used throughout the years. Wanting to test a couple pet theories, I stumbled upon the rather remarkable trend in how people think in terms of positive and negative. I leave you to interpret the [...]

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The Tragedy of the Commons
By: Barry Belmont

So for those of you interested in theory behind the experiment to be conducted today at 12:15, consider this blurb from Garrett Hardin: The rebuttal to the invisible hand in population control is to be found in a scenario first sketched in a little-known pamphlet (6) in 1833 by a mathematical amateur named William Forster Lloyd [...]

1 Comment Posted in A Series of Experiments, Science
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A Knife, Peas, and Justice
By: Barry Belmont

Imagine an organization were in charge of ensuring that those who ate at designated tables did so safely. The purpose behind their existence is to keep those eating safe, and also to have all of those around them free from harm. A laudable goal. You can even name this organization the “Understanding Nutritional Safety Operations [...]

4 Comments Posted in A Series of Experiments, Abolish ASUN, Analog Dilemma
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The Effects of Authority: The Milgrim Experiment
By: Barry Belmont

If you want to feel sad, angry, and hopeless over the nature of the human condition, watch these three segments (about 15 minutes total) from a BBC documentary about aggression. In it the film makers replicate the infamous Milgrim Experiment wherein a subject is persuaded to inflict extraordinary harm on another human being by the [...]

2 Comments Posted in A Series of Experiments, Science, The State
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A Series of Experiments 4: Argumentation
By: Barry Belmont

+ The point of an argument is to arrive at a ‘truth‘ that corresponds more closely to the reality of the universe. + Every statement must be for or against some position if it is to be of any use at all. + One either has something of merit to bring to an argument or [...]

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A Series of Experiments 3: Truth
By: Barry Belmont

+ There exists an actual, factual side to reality that is not open to interpretation. + What we generally think of as “truth” is that ‘thing’ — typically our understanding of the world — which corresponds to this reality. + There exist truths even if it is not possible for us to ever know them. [...]

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A Series of Experiments 2: Well-Being
By: Barry Belmont

+ There is such a thing as human well-being and that there are definite ways to increase or decrease it. + We should act such that our actions produce a general increase in human well-being. + There is not only one way to achieve this goal, there are many correct answers. + The most parsimonious [...]

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