Re: "Boy with Incredible Brain"

From: Philip Goetz (
Date: Wed Mar 22 2006 - 13:06:24 MST

On 3/22/06, Richard Loosemore <> wrote:
> Michael Vassar wrote:
> > It would be SL4 if it was somehow possible to teach a high power savant
> > to do applied Bayesian reasoning and decision theory in everyday life in
> > a useful way. Maybe it would be worth the time for someone in the

> Good grief, I have to say that I couldn't disagree more!
> What exactly would be the result of teaching him to do applied Bayesian
> reasoning? (And how do you justify your answer?)

The answers to these questions are so obvious that I fear
stating them would do no good here. Richard, you seem to
have an emotional reaction. Why? It seems you think that teaching
a savant how to reason would be abusing him.

The purpose is not to build Searle's Chinese room, just to see what
the fellow could accomplish. Whether, for instance, thorough-going
Bayesian decisions could help him achieve his goals, in a way that
super-geniuses tend not to.

- Phil

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