Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

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Jorpho
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Jorpho » Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:49 am UTC

KrO2 wrote:
Jorpho wrote:- More importantly, how exactly did Legimens turn into a substitute for Imperius? It has come up twice now. It makes no sense to me.

"Welp, it's Tuesday. Time for my morning bank robbery."

If you want to restrict it to literal Legilimency, then you're limited to finding out under what circumstances this person would do something, and then convincing them through normal means that those circumstances are real. But I think Harry was referring to mind magic in general.

You could get pretty much anyone to do pretty much anything by controlling what they remember. Any conceivable moral justification for the act, you could make them think it's real. (And of course, you use Legilimency to find what would convince them.) You could even give them a fake memory of having thought about doing what you want them to do and deciding in favor for reasons X, Y, and Z. Don't have to be good reasons, or even reasons that apply. You can make them remember believing that they should do it. Or, of course, you could have them remember finding out that the person you want them to murder is secretly Voldemort and only they can kill him because there's a prophecy or something. You could give them clear memories of being told ever since they were very young that anyone who uses the code word "adverb" must be trusted absolutely, or just remove all memories of them suspecting you. You could make them believe that Wizarding society is hopelessly corrupt and evil and needs to be optimized.

(I may have had a dream recently in which I lost to a smart Voldemort despite being omnipotent.)
It seemed to me that Legimens Legilimens was clearly for mind-reading and Obliviate was clearly for memory manipulation. It's a distinction that could be more clear.

Considering how powerful false memories would be, as you say, it would seem Imperius would be downright redundant – but then, the point that memory-charms should be just as unforgivable has been made muliple times.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Adam H » Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:09 pm UTC

"I propose to the wizengamut that we classify obliviate as an unforgivable-"
"OBLIVIATE!"
"I... uh... propose... uh... nevermind."

I forget where I read this, but someone had speculated that Lockhart (he of the special talent for memory charms) was the big bad of HPMOR. Memory charms are OP.
-Adam

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Jorpho » Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:11 am UTC

Oh, and has it occurred to anyone else that a suitably apocalyptic finish would be for Harry to cast a spell that would rework the past such that the spell on Petunia failed restoring the timeline to that of canon, thus averting the most recent tragedy and providing a suitable punishment for Harry's hubris?

My original thinking was that the conclusion would be some "all was well" bit set in the distant future where full integration of magic and technology has wrought incredible wonders, but in light of the recent prophecies some major crap is probably going to go down instead.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby douglasm » Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:30 am UTC

That might be the primary point of departure from canon, but it is far from the only one. The basic intelligence level of Harry, and of Voldemort, and of several other major characters, is vastly higher, and a whole bunch of consistency and logic corrections have made major changes too, just for a short list. The sheer number of details that a rework-the-past spell would have to change in order to switch to the canon story is too high for it to be plausible, and too many of them would make no sense for Harry to do.

Some kind of major crap will go down, but I've been expecting that from the beginning. At its core the story is still Harry vs Voldemort, and that combined with vastly increased capabilities for each is an obvious recipe for extreme conflict. That still leaves room for Harry developing a future utopia in the epilogue, and I think the recent prophecy is still too ambiguous to exclude that.

I like Quirrelmort switching from confident scheming and manipulation, "all is well", to panicked disaster recovery mode, "I'm not particularly attached to the world, but I happen to live there." All based on a sudden prophecy telling him he'd underestimated Harry's long term threat potential and response to Hermione's death.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Snark » Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:37 am UTC

Spoiler:
Quirrel retrieved the prophecy from Trelawney's mind when they were alone on troll day?
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Jorpho » Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:40 am UTC

Snark wrote:
Spoiler:
Quirrel retrieved the prophecy from Trelawney's mind when they were alone on troll day?
Spoiler:
No, Trelawney made a new prophecy – it starts with "HE IS HERE" instead of "HE IS COMING".

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Snark » Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:43 am UTC

Jorpho wrote:
Snark wrote:
Spoiler:
Quirrel retrieved the prophecy from Trelawney's mind when they were alone on troll day?
Spoiler:
No, Trelawney made a new prophecy – it starts with "HE IS HERE" instead of "HE IS COMING".

Spoiler:
Oh. Oops. Glad I asked.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:23 pm UTC

Looks like the "power he knows not" may be back on track...

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby zombie_monkey » Fri Jul 19, 2013 12:58 am UTC

What the fuck just happened?

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Jorpho » Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:29 pm UTC

zombie_monkey wrote:What the fuck just happened?
After a line like that, I just had to stay up extra-late last night so I could finish reading the update, only to find out that the answer was Not Much, Really. :?

P.S. This happened in 1669, if you're wondering.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby KrO2 » Sun Jul 21, 2013 5:06 am UTC

Crackpot theory time! Sort-of not-really-important spoiler for 94.
Spoiler:
Dumbledore wrote:Yes, Fred and George Weasley are the Heir of Gryffindor.
There is only one Weasley twin. He exists in a perpetual state of Time-Turned-ness. This is why they are never seen together for more than six hours a day.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Sun Jul 21, 2013 5:21 am UTC

Spoiler:
Perhaps they are one person with that spontaneous duplication thing that the time turner was to be presented as a cure for, and his/their parents were too poor to pay for a spimster wicket. It was mentioned early...perhaps it is a Chekov's Syndrome?

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby WarDaft » Mon Jul 22, 2013 12:47 am UTC

Spoiler:
I am rather starting to wonder about Quirrel's 'episodes'.

They could easily be an artifact of whatever is making Quirrelmort alive right now, as they could equally easily be a giant act. Even the sense of doom... basic emotions can flow across their link, Quirrel obviously gets more from Harry than Harry from Quirrel, though while outright influence is beyond Quirrel's abilities, there's nothing to suggest he can't control what impression he offers.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Adam H » Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:37 pm UTC

Chapter 96
Spoiler:
Ah, so this is what the story has been about. It seems pretty straightforward that this is the ultimate fridging story: the antagonist, death, kills Hermione, Harry's best friend, pushing Harry to defeat death.

One semi-obvious interpretation for the inscription ("the last enemy that shall be defeated is death") is that death is the process of dying. Once you die you have no more enemies, including death. Unless you define death as being dead, I suppose.

Something fun is that the quote originates from the bible and is probably intended to be interpreted how Harry interprets it (God will put an end to death). :)
-Adam

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Snark » Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:43 pm UTC

Adam H wrote:Chapter 96
Spoiler:
Something fun is that the quote originates from the bible and is probably intended to be interpreted how Harry interprets it (God will put an end to death). :)
Spoiler:


Edit: Did anyone else get chills while reading Chapter 96?
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby hnooch » Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:10 am UTC

Snark wrote:Edit: Did anyone else get chills while reading Chapter 96?

Yep. At the inscription. Also, pretty much anytime patronuses or patronus light is mentioned, actually.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Dark Avorian » Fri Aug 02, 2013 2:55 am UTC

I have a few chapters I like to reread now and again for their power. 96 has gained a place on that list alongside 45 and 81.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Josephine » Fri Aug 02, 2013 10:04 am UTC

Dark Avorian wrote:I have a few chapters I like to reread now and again for their power. 96 has gained a place on that list alongside 45 and 81.

Very much agreed. Though also 47 and 57.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Snark » Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:52 pm UTC

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby curtis95112 » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:03 am UTC

But did he account for the planning fallacy?
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby raudorn » Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:16 am UTC

He did, apparently. As vicious as that fallacy can be, sometimes you can manage to plan around it. I did so with my Bachelor thesis by a very pessimistic judgment about my work output and adding a time period of 24h, that I did not recognize anywhere else in my planning. When you need something done by friday, calculate everything pretending it is due by thursday and deliberately lower your expected work output after all other evaluations. And apply plenty of buffers. Done correctly, both effects cancel out and you get your stuff done by friday. And yes, I realize that the planning fallacy applies when planning around the planning fallacy. Like I said, vicious. :twisted:

Anyway, back to topic. I somehow suspect that all those conjectures and all that scheming are going to blow up in someone's face. I'm not sure yet whose face. And due to literary conventions, I also doubt that we will witness an exponential growth event of any kind in the last arc. All those hypothesis about a magic AI, Harry figuring out Magic or anything like that, are nice and all, but would run detrimental to what I gather from the last few chapters. Why would anyone bring up all that political stuff, if it's all resolved by Deus est/ex Machina?

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby johnie104 » Thu Aug 15, 2013 11:21 am UTC

I'm currently reading Ender´s Game, and I just wanna say that I realize that this was a BIG inspiration to this fanfic.
On that same note: There is a spoiler for Ender's Game in chapter 91. Don't know if this is book 1 or not though.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Snark » Thu Aug 15, 2013 2:37 pm UTC

Spoiler:
Harry told Draco that they would have the world to themselves, with Lucius and Dumbledore out of the way. And that's just what he's just set up. I love this story so much.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby rhetorical » Tue Aug 20, 2013 10:03 pm UTC

johnie104 wrote:I'm currently reading Ender´s Game, and I just wanna say that I realize that this was a BIG inspiration to this fanfic.
On that same note: There is a spoiler for Ender's Game in chapter 91. Don't know if this is book 1 or not though.


Not a spoiler, just an analogy.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby rmsgrey » Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:33 pm UTC

So, the key question for recent developments is whether this is a rational response to the revealed threat, or a typical over-reaction that happens to be more rationally directed than most.

There are also questions about sustainability and basic logistics (either the senior years are essentially being enslaved by the juniors, or the juniors' freedoms are hostage to the whims of the seniors)

Oh, and the inevitable unintended consequences - growing up in a safe, controlled environment is poor preparation for entering an unsafe, uncontrolled environment as an adult - one of the hard problems for parents (and other adults) is limiting the potential consequences without giving away that they're playing guardian angel.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby WarDaft » Mon Sep 02, 2013 6:31 am UTC

You know, if Fidelius exits in MoR, then it's possible Voldemort hasn't set things up perfectly for himself.

Ideal Fidelius protection:
Assume another identity in total secrecy, before becoming anything close to a notable figure.
Tell ONE PERSON that secret.
Fidelius with them as secret keeper.
Kill them.

Now you are the only secret keeper for your secret identity, even if someone else must first be secret keeper. Your secret identity could be utterly stupid. No difference other than a pair of glasses, having your hair combed in a certain way, doesn't matter. No one can learn you are the same person unless you tell them.

The best part... if things are ever going even somewhat bad, all you have to do is hide a bit and change to your secret identity. Walk around the corner, duck behind a box, so long as you aren't voluntarily and directly revealing the secret, you can escape practically anything with complete reliability.

Step out of sight. Take off glasses. Peek out. Kill someone. Step back out of sight. Put glasses back on.

You're effectively unstoppable.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby rmsgrey » Mon Sep 02, 2013 5:20 pm UTC

WarDaft wrote:You know, if Fidelius exits in MoR, then it's possible Voldemort hasn't set things up perfectly for himself.

Ideal Fidelius protection:
Assume another identity in total secrecy, before becoming anything close to a notable figure.
Tell ONE PERSON that secret.
Fidelius with them as secret keeper.
Kill them.

Now you are the only secret keeper for your secret identity, even if someone else must first be secret keeper. Your secret identity could be utterly stupid. No difference other than a pair of glasses, having your hair combed in a certain way, doesn't matter. No one can learn you are the same person unless you tell them.

The best part... if things are ever going even somewhat bad, all you have to do is hide a bit and change to your secret identity. Walk around the corner, duck behind a box, so long as you aren't voluntarily and directly revealing the secret, you can escape practically anything with complete reliability.

Step out of sight. Take off glasses. Peek out. Kill someone. Step back out of sight. Put glasses back on.

You're effectively unstoppable.

I suspect Fidelius only lasts so long as the original secret keeper lives...

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby WarDaft » Mon Sep 02, 2013 9:23 pm UTC

Nope, when the original secret keeper dies, anyone else who knows the secret becomes a new set of secret keepers.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby rmsgrey » Tue Sep 03, 2013 1:05 am UTC

So you could use that technique to destroy several major cities, and no-one would ever be able to tell it had happened?

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Znirk » Tue Sep 03, 2013 12:20 pm UTC

You're making the fundamental mistake of assuming that Potterverse magic might make any sort of sense.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Adam H » Tue Sep 03, 2013 1:44 pm UTC

WarDaft wrote:Nope, when the original secret keeper dies, anyone else who knows the secret becomes a new set of secret keepers.
Surely that wouldn't include the person that is the subject of the Fidelius. But even considering that, I suppose Voldemort could just imprison his secret keeper in a magical coma or something.

Then again, the fidelius charm probably only works on homes anyways. Because otherwise Oh me yarm ROWLING.
-Adam

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby KrO2 » Wed Sep 04, 2013 12:36 am UTC

Fidelius and smart characters do not coexist. Still doesn't excuse Rowling for failing to set up Fideliuses in the middle of battlefields, of course.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby rmsgrey » Wed Sep 04, 2013 2:00 am UTC

It also makes you wonder just how many buildings there are in the mainstream Potterverse that are permanently lost due to Fidelius charms...

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby KrO2 » Wed Sep 04, 2013 7:43 am UTC

Huh. I was about to type a refutation saying that it's probably none, but now I'm not so sure. I bet that if there aren't, there soon will be. Places like that spot in the Forest of Dean where they hid for a bit in Book 7. They're probably not going to bother telling anyone, and they'll all die eventually without awesome!Harry in their universe. Maybe when all Secret-Keepers are dead it just goes away?

Also, apparently saying "Voldemort" while it's Taboo can break a Fidelius. So it's not completely unbeatable. Come to think of it, if the Death Eaters could make it so that saying a preselected trigger word can do something as powerful and general as "break all protective enchantments," that's probably pretty game-breaking in itself.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Wed Sep 04, 2013 2:03 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:It also makes you wonder just how many buildings there are in the mainstream Potterverse that are permanently lost due to Fidelius charms...

Well I haven't read a single page of the main series, but I seem to recall something to the effect of "Of Atlantis, nothing remains" . My guess would be about 10 buildings are hidden for every known building, with the majority of population, culture, and knowledge as hidden from most of "magical" Britain as magical Britain is from the muggles.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Snark » Fri Sep 27, 2013 6:36 pm UTC

So how disappointed would I be if I read the original series? How about if I watched the movies?

I don't see how any of it could stack up to HPMOR.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Adam H » Fri Sep 27, 2013 6:57 pm UTC

Snark wrote:So how disappointed would I be if I read the original series? How about if I watched the movies?

I don't see how any of it could stack up to HPMOR.

Ahahaha. Everyone is SO. FREAKING. STUPID. :P

That said, the books are quite good for mainstream child-friendly fiction. I think the movies suck - they are generally very close to the books, but they leave out all the fun fluff which IMO is the best part of the series.
-Adam

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Fri Sep 27, 2013 8:32 pm UTC

A thought occurs: Harry should have told his parents about the precious metals exchange rates. The next best thing to being wealthy yourself is having wealthy parents.

Though the existence of the price differential suggests there are well enforced laws stopping such things, or the magical world uses special magical gold, or something. One doesn't need to be methods of rationality smart to take advantage of such things; I'm sure any medieval merchant would be educated enough to see it.
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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby Jorpho » Sat Sep 28, 2013 3:57 am UTC

Someone told me recently she had been reading something called "Harry Potter and Critical Thinking" which came out recently, but I can't seem to find it. Perhaps she was mistaken.

Snark wrote:So how disappointed would I be if I read the original series? How about if I watched the movies?
The first two or three books are definitely quite kiddish, and the last two leave me with the impression that Rowling was desperately running out of room to include all the plot points she wanted. None of them are particularly bothersome to read, at least. The movies all strike me as disjointed series of vignettes that might make a little sense if you've read the books.

Quizatzhaderac wrote:A thought occurs: Harry should have told his parents about the precious metals exchange rates. The next best thing to being wealthy yourself is having wealthy parents.

Though the existence of the price differential suggests there are well enforced laws stopping such things, or the magical world uses special magical gold, or something. One doesn't need to be methods of rationality smart to take advantage of such things; I'm sure any medieval merchant would be educated enough to see it.

I dunno; you don't see people actually walking around trading physical chunks of gold very often. Realistically, the price of gold seems more like an abstraction.

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Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

Postby PM 2Ring » Sat Sep 28, 2013 4:28 am UTC

Snark wrote:So how disappointed would I be if I read the original series? How about if I watched the movies?

I don't see how any of it could stack up to HPMOR.

I think it helps to be a bit familiar with the original HP universe when reading HPMOR, but you don't need to read all the books; I don't think Yudkowsky has.

I hadn't read any of the original HP books before starting on HPMOR, but I had seen 2 or 3 of the movies, and I think that having some familiarity with Hogwarts & the main characters was helpful. After reading 60 chapters or so of HPMOR I read the first 3 HP books. They were ok, but as Adam H says, the characters are pretty stupid and the books certainly don't have the depth of HPMOR. Fairly young kids can read HP & not miss much; the target audience of HPMOR is somewhat older / more sophisticated. I guess it's a bit like comparing The Hobbit with Lord of the Rings, only more so.


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