On Mar 24, 2016, at 20:48 PM, Elliot Temple <cu...@curi.us
> On Mar 23, 2016, at 12:14 AM, anonymous FI
>> I started a couple of different threads, and now I have several
>> different replies in both of them. I don’t know how to choose what
>> to reply to.
>> I know that I can just reply to anything, and that would be better
>> than nothing. And that is what I plan on doing. But I am wondering
>> how other people have solved this problem. Does anyone have a
>> strategy that they use to keep track of emails and figure out which
>> ones to reply to?
>> Do you just reply as you go along? Do you read through all the emails
>> first, then go back and reply to the ones you think are best?
> I reply as I go along. I think that's important. If you read something
> and save it for later, then you have to reread it and you'll have
> different ideas than the first time. If you want to reread something
> important, great, but that doesn't substitute for the first reading,
> it's a different thing.
> And if you're reading without thinking enough to have thoughts to
> reply, and going "I'd totally reply if I took this seriously, which
> I'll do on a second reading later", that's bad.
so do you mean that i should always read stuff in a way that i am
actually thinking about how i could reply to it?
i don’t always do that. sometimes when i am reading emails, i am not
thinking about them in that way. no replies come to mind, and i don’t
try to think of any.
i think maybe one reason i do that is because i don’t want to write
emails right then. and i feel like i think of replies now, they will be
wasted. because i am not going to write an email.
sometimes i don’t want to think. i just want to kind of zone out.
sometimes i will just watch tv or go on reddit or something when i am
feeling like that. but sometimes i will read some FI emails. just ones
that are easy to read.
if i am going to zone out either way, is it better to read FI emails
than to go on Facebook or reddit or something? or is it better to do
stuff that doesn’t matter when i am zoning out, and just read FI when
i am willing to actually think about it?
should i try to stop zoning out at all? sometimes i am tired and i
don’t feel like thinking. is that bad? is it just bad if i do it too
> And people save stuff they don't really want to reply to for later,
> imagining somehow (magically) they will want to do it later. (What
> will change? Blank out.)
why are they planning on writing replies to stuff they don’t really
want to reply to? can’t they just find emails they do want to reply to
what kind of emails do people not want to reply to? is it that they
don’t want to reply to emails with criticisms of them, but they feel
like they should reply to those?
> And people just don't like making decisions. Like they don't want to
> admit they don't like a post, or have nothing to say about it, or
> aren't going to reply to it. For various reasons. So instead of
> admitting that – or doing something to change it like spending some
> time thinking about what to say (now!) – they just stick it in a
> queue for later.
> NOTE: I have nothing against skimming something really fast to decide
> if you're going to read it or not. Like REALLY fast. Not reading much
> of it, just glancing. Takes a few seconds. Let's you see length,
> amount of new text vs quoting, general topic, and read 2-3 sentences
> to see what it's like (if you're good at skimming you can often guess
> which sentences to read before you read them, e.g. it's often the
> first sentence of the first paragraph of a section. especially if the
> author is good at writing).
> I'm not very selective because I write a lot. I often try more to
> reply to posts I think are good – the kind I'd like to see more of.
> If you want a certain type of discussion, participate more in that
that’s hard. it is harder to reply to high quality posts. it is easier
to reply when some else has made a mistake that is easy to spot and
one reason that seems easier is because i am writing about stuff i know
more about when i do that.
replying to higher quality posts means that i am exposing myself to
criticism more. i have to say stuff that i am less sure of. i have to
say new ideas that i haven’t thought through as well. i have to talk
about stuff i don’t understand as well.
> If I was being more selective I'd consider: what problems am I trying
> to solve by posting? which of those are higher priorities for me?
> which threads are relevant?
i need to improve my ideas. i need to learn more TCS. i need to learn
i am good at some things and understand some things well. i can write
posts that sound smart that people think are high quality. but there is
also lots of stuff that i don’t know. so i just don’t write about
that stuff. i don’t reply to posts that would expose my ignorance.
i also need to get better at learning in general. i have been able to do
some learning before. but only when it seems easy to me. i haven’t
ever had to work at it. usually i learn a little bit about something
until it starts to feel hard. and then i just stop learning about it and
find something new to learn about instead. i have done that with lots of
things. like i take up different hobbies because they are easy at the
beginning. but then i quit learning more when they get hard.
it isn’t just philosophy i have this problem with. i have always
avoided doing things that didn’t seem easy to me. i just thought that
they weren’t fun activities. i didn’t think of it as avoiding
something because i wasn’t good at it. i never played sports much. or
video games. because both of those seemed hard when i first tried them.
i need to get better at doing things that seem hard. i am not sure how
to do that. i don’t know how to find that enjoyable. i need to think
about it in a different way. but i don’t know how. i don’t know how
to enjoy things i am not good at.
do you have examples of this (writing too long replies about stuff that
isn’t important enough)?
i worry about posting wrong. so then i don’t want to post anything. i
don’t post very much to begin with. so it seems like what i choose to
post about would be particularly revealing about me. that in itself is
something people could criticize. so i find it hard to post anything at
like, i find posting in general hard. a lot of the time it is hard for
me to come up with anything to say or to write any kind of post. but
sometimes there are posts that would be easy for me to write and send. i
don’t find ALL posting hard. but i don’t want to send those posts.
because i don’t want people to judge me based on what i DO choose to
post. they can see i don’t post very much. so then when i do post
something i am afraid they will think something like: “why would you
break your silence just to write that? that’s not worth writing. there
are so many better emails you could have replied to.”
> People have so many life problems. For example, every parent here
> needs to figure out how much money to give their kids. Yet no one here
> seems to care and actually post much about that until they actually
> figure out some kinda answer. Instead they just reply to some of the
> threads in front of them (but not that one. cuz it's "hard"? cuz it
> doesn't give them the chance to win an argument vs someone they think
> is wrong? cuz they arrogantly think they are already doing something
> OK even though they've never exposed their policy to criticism?).
maybe they think they don’t have very much to say because they
haven’t solved it. and they are waiting for someone who has a better
answer to post. i do that sometimes. i don’t see the point in posting
if i don’t know very much. i feel like i don’t have anything to say
> People have all kinds of other problems too and should bring them up
> more instead of just arguing with whatever someone posted in the last
> couple days. It's important to have a sense of purpose.
it’s hard to bring up problems. i don’t understand my problems. i
don’t know how to write about them. i don’t know what questions to
it’s easier to write about things you understand.
> I think one part of the problem is people cargo cult me. They try to
> do things that superficially look similar to things I do. But they
> aren't actually the same things. And my problem situation is different
> than theirs anyway, so even if they were doing some of the same things
> as me some of it *still* wouldn't make sense.
i think that is probably true (that some people cargo cult you).
but there are other issues too. like, people don’t know what good
posts for someone in their position would like like. there aren’t many
good examples of how to learn. it isn’t something that really exists
outside of FI. and most the people on FI don’t write like that either.
you know lots of stuff, so you write like someone who knows lots of
some other people know stuff about some issues, and they mostly only
write posts about those issues.
so most the high quality posts on list are by people who know what they
are talking about. there aren’t very many high quality posts by people
who are learning something that they don’t know very much about.