Get your fill of sci-fi, science, and mockery of stupid people
* FAQ    * Search   * Register   * Login 
Want to support this site? Click

Quote of the Week: "A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within." - Will Durant, American historian (1885-1981)


All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 106 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-04 11:34pm
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2011-04-22 11:04pm
Posts: 4455
Location: Ocularis Terribus.
weemadando wrote:
I've been enjoying some of it, but not other parts.

There's great ideas and some clever moments, but they're increasingly buried by Harry being an obnoxiously non-11 year old cunt.

The bit with the time travel experiment was probably my favourite thus far, if not for the coda that Harry appends.


That is one way of preventing gaming of time-travel. Later on Dumbledore is about to use a time-turner to get involved in a mess where Harry is already involved using a time-turner. Just before he starts spinning it he spies a note, in his handwriting, saying "NO!"

He goes back and leaves himself the note, but proceeds to not get involved.

Harry's scientific knowledge does pay a few dividends. He learns to make a unique dementor-killing patronus (though that actually had very little to do with the scientific method) and in the very latest chapters he figured out how to create his own potions to cause very basic effects.

Another thing that really struck me is the attitude of the Wizards here. Quirrel explains to Harry at one point how there are things that Wizards never write down, never teach, and never speak of except to other Wizards who managed to figure it out on their own. Most of the higher-order, and more dangerous magic is like this. He claims that Oppenheimer and the other Manhattan Project workers, for instance, should never have let their creation be used by anyone not intimately familiar with the power of the atomic bomb.

That's an... interesting idea. It is also rather antithetical to science, where we research and record everything, so that even if we go nowhere with out experiments, the data can still aid future researchers.



"Any plan which requires the direct intervention of any deity to work can be assumed to be a very poor one."- Newbiespud

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-04 11:49pm
Offline
Miles Dyson
User avatar

Joined: 2007-04-05 09:44pm
Posts: 7729
Location: Isle of Dogs
Ahriman238 wrote:
Another thing that really struck me is the attitude of the Wizards here. Quirrel explains to Harry at one point how there are things that Wizards never write down, never teach, and never speak of except to other Wizards who managed to figure it out on their own. Most of the higher-order, and more dangerous magic is like this. He claims that Oppenheimer and the other Manhattan Project workers, for instance, should never have let their creation be used by anyone not intimately familiar with the power of the atomic bomb.

That's an... interesting idea. It is also rather antithetical to science, where we research and record everything, so that even if we go nowhere with out experiments, the data can still aid future researchers.


That's an obvious stand-in for (Eliezer's views on) seed AI design. As in he won't talk to you about it unless you are already making good progress with it on your own (i.e. you are already 'dangerous'), and when you do he coats it with references to terrible ominous power cribbed equally from historical military research and high fantasy.



Image
Image
Windhaven
~ Spirit of Flight ~

x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

( Trailer : zeppelins, death rays, wormholes... )
( Opening cutscene / voice acting test )

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-04 11:54pm
Offline
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 22010
Ryan Thunder wrote:
Because she's aggressively traditional?
Because she's smart enough to know what would be boring as shit to the normal people who buy 80-90% of her books, and avoid it.

I mean for crying out loud, Ryan, bringing in "guns pwn magic" as a capstone to the Harry Potter series? Alkaloid's basically talking about turning Harry Potter into a mutant version of Salvation War, and we all know how unpopular that is around here these days on account of its endless fixation on "science" effortlessly wiping the floor with "magic," at the expense of literary quality, character development, or dramatic tension. Any sane author would want to avoid something like that, even if it makes a handful of outlier-people think the story's magnificent because of all the shit blowing up at the end.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 03:18am
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2010-03-25 03:25am
Posts: 587
This really is a very good fic in all ways except for the one aforementioned glaring flaw. Sure Nerdwank Harry is WAY more calculating, confident, and self-possessed than anyone that age should ever be, but god damn if it doesn't get him into a lot of trouble. He's intelligent but not necessarily wise.

OH MY FUCKING GOD I JUST REALIZED WHO QUIRRELL IS. I know that sounds ridiculous, but I really didn't know much about Harry Potter at all going into this. From the perspective of someone who honestly didn't know up until now, after having read all 83 current chapters, this is staggering.

If you haven't read this story, know this much: The author may have cranked Harry up into a super awesome genius version of himself, but the bad guys have gotten at least as much of an upgrade. Holy shit. They're making Nerdwank Harry look like a total dipshit right now.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 04:20am
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2008-06-24 05:46pm
Posts: 575
Ahriman238 wrote:
That is one way of preventing gaming of time-travel. Later on Dumbledore is about to use a time-turner to get involved in a mess where Harry is already involved using a time-turner. Just before he starts spinning it he spies a note, in his handwriting, saying "NO!"

He goes back and leaves himself the note, but proceeds to not get involved.


Isn't that an information/ontological paradox? I'm assuming that the note telling him NO was because he knew it would be a very bad idea, but from what you said he didn't actually get involved and thus couldn't have known that he shouldn't do what he was planning without first getting involved and learning his mistake, which he didn't do. So where did the knowledge that he shouldn't get involved come from? From the scenario you described, he was intending to act, but opted not to because of a warning from himself, despite apparently never acquiring any reason to change his mind (other than the note from himself).



"And the writers sayeth unto the firmament: let there be a hokey plot convenience! And lo, I sayeth it shall be a curse upon Voyager, and all the people who dwell within, and they shall surely feeleth like a collection of jackasses."

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 05:07am
Offline
SMAKIBBFB
User avatar

Joined: 2002-07-28 12:30pm
Posts: 19195
Revy wrote:
Ahriman238 wrote:
That is one way of preventing gaming of time-travel. Later on Dumbledore is about to use a time-turner to get involved in a mess where Harry is already involved using a time-turner. Just before he starts spinning it he spies a note, in his handwriting, saying "NO!"

He goes back and leaves himself the note, but proceeds to not get involved.


Isn't that an information/ontological paradox? I'm assuming that the note telling him NO was because he knew it would be a very bad idea, but from what you said he didn't actually get involved and thus couldn't have known that he shouldn't do what he was planning without first getting involved and learning his mistake, which he didn't do. So where did the knowledge that he shouldn't get involved come from? From the scenario you described, he was intending to act, but opted not to because of a warning from himself, despite apparently never acquiring any reason to change his mind (other than the note from himself).


The way magic appears to be described (from what I've red) as some sort of "software" overlay on the universe that certain people have access to may just treat these scenarios of impending paradox as a treatable error and manage them accordingly.



Image
What is Project Zohar?

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 05:17am
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2010-09-18 05:20pm
Posts: 891
Location: The Land Of Cheese
The Universe just Caught the Exception. :lol:




Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 11:10am
Offline
Jedi Knight

Joined: 2011-03-21 07:59am
Posts: 959
Quote:
I mean for crying out loud, Ryan, bringing in "guns pwn magic" as a capstone to the Harry Potter series? Alkaloid's basically talking about turning Harry Potter into a mutant version of Salvation War


No, I'm really not. I'm talking about the fact that the wizarding world is fundamentally broken and needs a serious shift in ideology to stop it from completely collapsing, and the story could be just as satisfying if it was about Harry seeingthis and breaking the cycle that everyone was trapped in. These people allowed the same facist dictator to rise to power twice in a single fucking generations. It would be like if Hitler didn't kill himself and just vanished, and then in '55 people started hearing about him being in Austria and instead of fucking looking for him they just stuck their fingers in their ears and said 'nope' even when the fucking SS rolled into parliament and took over. The big themes in the overarching plot are love and more strongly self sacrifice, but the problem is most of the world constantly expects the same few people to make all the sacrifices so they can live in their happy racist little isolationist world and look down on all the not human wizard folk. I think Harry or the Order or someone similar actually going to the muggles, asking for help and breaking the mold of the shitty society that let this happen, making it make the sacrifice instead of them for once in its life, fits with that. It's darker, sure, but I think the books got steadily darker anyway, so I wouldn't have a problem with it.

Quote:
and we all know how unpopular that is around here these days on account of its endless fixation on "science" effortlessly wiping the floor with "magic," at the expense of literary quality, character development, or dramatic tension. Any sane author would want to avoid something like that, even if it makes a handful of outlier-people think the story's magnificent because of all the shit blowing up at the end.


The salvation war sucked not because science beat magic, but because it took a very narrow and stupid stance on what magic actually was, and mad scientists better at magic than magicians. Don't forget it was originally relatively popular here, and the quality of the writing never really got worse, people were just intrigued with the idea. A setting or a single concept will never make or break a story, it's all in the execution. Salvation war died because it claimed to be science vs magic, was really science vs stupid people doing shitty science and had an entire chapter describing in minute detail the interior workings of a nuclear bomb as it was exploding, followed by an addendum stating that this isn't really how they work. Rowling could have pulled it off because she built a setting where magic was as ineffable to science as science was to magic, but the most fundamental and powerful aspects of both affected wizards and non wizards alike. I'm not claiming the army fighting Voldemort at Hogwarts would be the best ending, as long as it wasn't written as 'the RAF carpet bombs voldy, the end' I don't think it would be worse in large part because the story was always going to end with his defeat, how the world and the people in it are affected by what they had to do to defeat him is really where it gets the most interesting.

As it was, there wasn't really any change that was noticeable beyond who lived and died, there was nothing to indicate that the MoM attempted to introduce a proper law enforcement or legal system, that the systematic racism that allowed anyone and his dog to gain support in the disenfranchised parts of society had been changed, that anyone but Arthur Weasley actually gave a shit about the rights of muggles who were kidnapped and had their brains fucked with because they happened to be in the wrong place when some 12 year old shithead blew up a pet store because his mum wouldn't buy him a puppy. I think it would have been a better ending if there were, and the best way to start that is to prove emphatically to the arrogant fucks that muggles are not some inferior species of moss that can't toe their own damn shoelaces and that you need to learn some really important shit from them.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 11:36am
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2002-10-30 07:40pm
Posts: 4510
Location: In a dark reflection of a better world
That is true, after the final battle, the only thing we have that assures us life has changed is J.K. Rowling's word that Azkaban no longer uses Dementors. And that was only in an interview, not in the books. For all we know, the epilogue that takes place 19 years later is still as repressive a society as we saw for the rest of the Harry Potter series.



"I will not be pushed, filed, stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed,or numbered. I am a free man. My life is my own" Number 6
The Prisoner

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 01:28pm
Offline
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 22010
Revy wrote:
Ahriman238 wrote:
That is one way of preventing gaming of time-travel. Later on Dumbledore is about to use a time-turner to get involved in a mess where Harry is already involved using a time-turner. Just before he starts spinning it he spies a note, in his handwriting, saying "NO!"

He goes back and leaves himself the note, but proceeds to not get involved.
Isn't that an information/ontological paradox? I'm assuming that the note telling him NO was because he knew it would be a very bad idea, but from what you said he didn't actually get involved and thus couldn't have known that he shouldn't do what he was planning without first getting involved and learning his mistake, which he didn't do. So where did the knowledge that he shouldn't get involved come from? From the scenario you described, he was intending to act, but opted not to because of a warning from himself, despite apparently never acquiring any reason to change his mind (other than the note from himself).
This really comes down to how you interpret theories of time travel. You're a Whovian, think wibbly wobbly.

This goes back to an experiment Harry did with trying to use a Time Turner to do prime factorization on the product of two random prime numbers (which Harry did not know). His plan was to try a solution. If it worked, he'd write the solution on a note and send it into the past. If it didn't work, he'd write the next solution in line on the note and send that into the past instead.

From his point of view, he expected the note he picked up to contain the solution- but instead, he got a note reading "DO NOT MESS WITH TIME." This is very similar to Dumbledore's experience: the information he gets from the future basically tells him "don't try to get information from the future," despite the fact that it would take very strange circumstances to explain why Dumbledore would send back such information.

This seems to be a fairly consistent property of the Methods-version of the Potterverse, unless I missed something. Using Time Turners to create a causal loop doesn't work, and you get a nasty letter from the future about how bad an idea it is. Why this happens is an open question. The obvious explanation (think wibbly wobbly timey wimey) is that the "proper time" path followed by the information* keeps looping back around and changing each time 'until' a stable loop is created.

And a loop in which I get information (like the prime factorization of a six digit number, or a secret about what Quirrell is doing) from the future is NOT stable- because I would then proceed to act on information I never obtained in the universe's causal past. Whereas a loop in which I write "DO NOT MESS WITH TIME" in shaky handwriting on a note, send it back in time to my past self, who writes "DO NOT MESS WITH TIME" in shaky handwriting on a note and sends it back to to himself...

That is a stable loop. I don't know why my future self wrote the note, but then, I don't have to, because the only information I receive from the future is a warning not to go looking for ways to get information from the future.

*Proper time is what you experience in your own frame of reference; think of it as a clock you carry with you that measures the time you experience.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 01:44pm
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2008-06-24 05:46pm
Posts: 575
Actually what I wouldn't have minded seeing was that after the Prime Minister gets that visit basically saying "Ehh, there's magical terrorists wrecking the country because we're a bunch of useless idiots, k'bye thx!" he forms a task force to actually investigate the threat represented by the magical world and if necessary deal it, and towards the end that is exactly what happens. Something like the BPRD from Hellboy showing up and calling the wizarding world out on their handling of the situation.

Because really, can you imagine the government of any country finding out about the existence of magic and just shrugging it off? Not only would they likely want to exploit it, but finding out that it actually represents a serious threat to the safety of everyone, and that the last big dark wizard had a hand in helping the freaking Nazis try to take over the world ... yeah. They're going to at least try and do something.



"And the writers sayeth unto the firmament: let there be a hokey plot convenience! And lo, I sayeth it shall be a curse upon Voyager, and all the people who dwell within, and they shall surely feeleth like a collection of jackasses."

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 02:46pm
Offline
Castellan
User avatar

Joined: 2010-03-09 03:16pm
Posts: 5804
Location: Bound in a nutshell
One interesting idea I read recently in this was that our WW2 was closely tied with the war between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, even with the idea that "they kept sacrificing to him even after he was defeated." I couldn't help but wonder if that was a reference to the Holocaust in some way.



"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

"Bones' remedies for problems seems to revolve around giving his patients a prescription of heavy drugs, booze, or taking them to strip clubs. He is either insane, a drug addict, or the best damn Doctor in Starfleet!" - SFDebris

SDN World 6: The Kingdom of Orion

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 03:23pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member
User avatar

Joined: 2008-08-19 01:34pm
Posts: 1821
Location: You've asked me for my sacrifice, and I am winter born
"All your base are belong to J.K. Rowling."

Priceless.

This HP is wayyyyyyy too precocious and incisive, but I'm enjoying the story nonetheless.



Image
The only people who were safe were the legion; after one of their AT-ATs got painted dayglo pink with scarlet go faster stripes, they identified the perpetrators and exacted revenge. - Eleventh Century Remnant

Lord Monckton is my heeerrooo

"Yeah, well, fuck them. I never said I liked the Moros." - Shroom Man 777

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 03:24pm
Offline
Jedi Council Member
User avatar

Joined: 2011-02-28 06:36am
Posts: 1669
Eternal_Freedom wrote:
One interesting idea I read recently in this was that our WW2 was closely tied with the war between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, even with the idea that "they kept sacrificing to him even after he was defeated." I couldn't help but wonder if that was a reference to the Holocaust in some way.

I think the idea was that the Holocaust was supposed to be part of some dark ritual to fuel Grindelwald and Dumbledore spent much of World War II trying to stop it, hence why he didn't defeat Waldy until 1945.



"I'm just reading through your formspring here, and your responses to many questions seem to indicate that you are ready and willing to sacrifice realism/believability for the sake of (sometimes) marginal increases in gameplay quality. Why is this?"
"Because until I see gamers sincerely demanding that if they get winged in the gut with a bullet that they spend the next three hours bleeding out on the ground before permanently dying, they probably are too." - J.E. Sawyer
Panzersharkcat.9706 | Jade Quarry; Battle.net: BigBug#1199

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 03:28pm
Offline
Castellan
User avatar

Joined: 2010-03-09 03:16pm
Posts: 5804
Location: Bound in a nutshell
Panzersharkcat wrote:
Eternal_Freedom wrote:
One interesting idea I read recently in this was that our WW2 was closely tied with the war between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, even with the idea that "they kept sacrificing to him even after he was defeated." I couldn't help but wonder if that was a reference to the Holocaust in some way.

I think the idea was that the Holocaust was supposed to be part of some dark ritual to fuel Grindelwald and Dumbledore spent much of World War II trying to stop it, hence why he didn't defeat Waldy until 1945.


Thats the implication I got, I just wasn't going to say it in case I was missing something massively obvious as I usually do.

"All these worlds are JK Rowling's, except Europa. Attempt no fanfics there."



"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

"Bones' remedies for problems seems to revolve around giving his patients a prescription of heavy drugs, booze, or taking them to strip clubs. He is either insane, a drug addict, or the best damn Doctor in Starfleet!" - SFDebris

SDN World 6: The Kingdom of Orion

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 03:44pm
Offline
Jedi Knight
User avatar

Joined: 2010-03-25 03:25am
Posts: 587
I really wish I hadn't googled the name Quirrell, and had gone on thinking he was an invention of the author of this fanfic, because...

[Reveal] Spoiler:
I was being bamboozled right alongside Harry, which is an experience I don't think anyone who's an actual serious Harry Potter fan could get from this story. It also impresses me that I could read the entire story to date, not figure out that Quirrell is possessed by goddamn Voldemort, learn as much, and then realize that it made perfect sense all along. I knew his plot to rescue Bellatrix from Azkaban stank to high heaven, but the guy plays a complex enough game that I figured he could have some other, secret, but not necessarily evil motive for it. Instead no, he's just evil. Well shit.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 06:11pm
Offline
Jedi Master
User avatar

Joined: 2007-08-02 01:39pm
Posts: 1388
Location: Dresden, valley of the clueless
Majin Gojira wrote:
Skgoa wrote:
Were des the energy go, then?


Refraction, Reflection, conversion into other forms, depends on the target.

Quote:
Clearly, if they interacted at all, a powerful curse would impart quite a lot of energy on the victim's clothes.


Given that most clothes are permeable and an active spell acts, as near as physics can determine without introducing Ghostbusters or Atomic Robo science into it, as a gas, I really don't see a problem with a gas passing through a permeable substance to take an effect on a less permeable substance.

In truth, most spells operate on the defunct ideas of Spiritualism, where an ectoplasmic medium is used to convey the things, and the spell activating on a human target would be activating in their ectoplasmic matrix.

Or some such bullshit.

Yeah, Spiritualism lives on in modern fantasy.

Quote:
And I just realized you could simply heat a tank up untill the crew is dead. This is an actual tacitc that has been used successfully in war. And the wizard could fly higher than the canon can track or put up a magic shield. So yeah, tanks are useless...


And right there, you show you clearly don't know what a tank is used for in warfare. This is like saying an Attack Helicopter makes the tank obsolete.

It sort of does, but not for its current role (which is being made obsolete due to the types of wars we now fight).

Or, to use an example you think you aren't calling on:

This is like claiming that Phasers make body armor obsolete in Star Trek, when it also can protect against abrasions, melee combat and other situations beyond handling direct weapons fire.

Or that Transporters make Personnel Carriers obsolete, in spite of the fact that they can be jammed by natural phenomenon and man-made devices.

Quote:
It's still the setting and no one but Rowling gets to decide its rules.


Pardon her for being consistent with what she set up, and so what if you don't like it.

Go read the Dresden Files series instead if that sort of thing bothers you.

No, really go read it. It's pretty darn fun.

Quote:
That's nice for you. The important point is that there are reasons and that going "they shoulda jused tanks LOL!" is stupid and arrogant.


My point is to dismissed the idea that their lacks of tanks held any latent "They don't need them" affinity attached to it.

That's like arguing that Star Trek society is less advanced than Star Wars tech due to the latter's lack off transporter tech and then claiming that said tech would provide them an advantage in a conflict.

I mean, which is more believable: That Wizards have unseen magics (which were not used in their WAR) which can overcome tanks, or that an elitist, secretive society would be unaware of a technological advancement made by those they consider their inferiors, reluctant to use such advancements due to preexisting and rigid prejudices that society has against said inferiors or have trouble incorporating that technology due to the nature of their magic having a bad effect on digital technology in particular.

Since the first appeals to the unknown, we go with the later due to Occam's Razor. Q.E.D.

Quote:
Because that's exactly the same situation. :roll:


You're claiming, as near as I can tell, that their lack of a specific technology shows within a society shows that they do not need it or have a method of reproducing/super effectively countering it upon the battlefield.

Which is the EXACT claim made by trekkies on those mentioned pages regarding Trek's lack of heavy weaponry, armor, special weapons, etc.

So, yeah, it is relevant.

Nice straw you have there...



http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Economic Left/Right: -7.12
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.74

This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-05 07:50pm
Offline
Sith Acolyte
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-06 11:27pm
Posts: 5687
Location: Philadelphia
Bold added for emphasis in this quote:

Skgoa wrote:
Majin Gojira wrote:
You're claiming, as near as I can tell, that their lack of a specific technology shows within a society shows that they do not need it or have a method of reproducing/super effectively countering it upon the battlefield.

Which is the EXACT claim made by trekkies on those mentioned pages regarding Trek's lack of heavy weaponry, armor, special weapons, etc.

So, yeah, it is relevant.

Nice straw you have there...


Alright, clarify your claim and I'll adjust my argument accordingly.

Also: Dear God! did you have to quote the whole thing if all you were going to do is put up a single sarcastic line?



ISARMA: Daikaiju Coordinator: Just Add Radiation
Justice League- Molly Hayes: Respect Hats or Freakin' Else!
Browncoat
Supernatural Taisen - "[This Story] is essentially "Wouldn't it be awesome if this happened?" Followed by explosions."

Reviewing movies is a lot like Paleontology: The Evidence is there...but no one seems to agree upon it.

"God! Are you so bored that you enjoy seeing us humans suffer?! Why can't you let this poor man live happily with his son! What kind of God are you, crushing us like ants?!" - Kyoami, Ran

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-06 04:23am
Offline
Jedi Master
User avatar

Joined: 2007-08-02 01:39pm
Posts: 1388
Location: Dresden, valley of the clueless
My claim is that tanks do exist in the Harry Potter setting (this is how it's different from Star Trek) and wizards should be reasonably well expected to have access to them if needed. Thus there must be an in-universe reason why they don't use them. Now, in a realistic or even SciFi setting this would raise legitimate questions. But this is fantasy, so - quite literally - any number of magical reasons will suffice. (once again: applicable to Trek but not to this setting.)



http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Economic Left/Right: -7.12
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.74

This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-06 08:58am
Offline
Emperor's Hand

Joined: 2009-05-23 07:29pm
Posts: 22010
Obvious reasons:

-Wizards in general are ignorant of technological artifacts, and do not fully grasp why a tank is more dangerous than, say, a large magical beast. If they had a tank, they wouldn't know how to maintain it, it would break down in short order, and they wouldn't be able to fix it.

-There may be spells which might work extremely well against a tank. There might be a "cause mechanical breakdown" spell for all I know, which would be incredibly effective against such a complex mechanical device. Although off the top of my head I can't tell. This is a possibility I'm listing because it seems obvious and plausible to me, not necessarily true.

-Magical Britain has a population of tens of thousands, small enough that standing armies of a few hundred suffice to control the whole country. How many Aurors are there, how many Death Eaters ever existed? So there aren't enough people concentrated in one place to make it worth the effort of recruiting regiment-sized forces of wizard 'infantry,' or of trying to concentrate heavily armored tanks which would only be useful for assaulting a fixed, fortified position.

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-06 05:06pm
Offline
Sith Acolyte
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-06 11:27pm
Posts: 5687
Location: Philadelphia
Skgoa wrote:
My claim is that tanks do exist in the Harry Potter setting (this is how it's different from Star Trek) and wizards should be reasonably well expected to have access to them if needed. Thus there must be an in-universe reason why they don't use them. Now, in a realistic or even SciFi setting this would raise legitimate questions. But this is fantasy, so - quite literally - any number of magical reasons will suffice. (once again: applicable to Trek but not to this setting.)


Simon_Jester covered my counterpoints pretty well, but I really want to emphasize point one and expand on it as them having a prejudice against using such technology or such technology takes a long time to filter down to them. The most advanced thing we see is the Flying Car, and that is an odd exception from someone obsessed with Muggle inventions that is looked down upon by the rest of power-holding society. And on point 2, I'd add that the general consensus is that magic generally produces EMP when created, which renders some technology rather vulnerable (not that it can't be shielded, of course). I also want to add that this in no way makes your claim any different.

We don't see them use tanks, therefore they have a way around them via magic instead of the far more logical reasons Simon_Jester listed which I also pointed out (or tried to).

Furthermore, even IF it is fantasy, that does not negate or render invalid the methodology used when analyzing the material. Energy is Energy, to quote an awesome series--and observable evidence is observable evidence. You cannot just claim that because they are Wizards that they have some way around or of duplicating the role, usefulness and firepower of Tanks unless they actually do it!

Hell, I can think of two fantasy series off the top of my head that use tanks or equivelent technology and yet still have mages around that would make the standard Auror or Death Eather shit themselves in terror as their magical firepower tends to be ranked in the kiloton to megaton range. And yet they're fantasy to!

Your presumption is crap.



ISARMA: Daikaiju Coordinator: Just Add Radiation
Justice League- Molly Hayes: Respect Hats or Freakin' Else!
Browncoat
Supernatural Taisen - "[This Story] is essentially "Wouldn't it be awesome if this happened?" Followed by explosions."

Reviewing movies is a lot like Paleontology: The Evidence is there...but no one seems to agree upon it.

"God! Are you so bored that you enjoy seeing us humans suffer?! Why can't you let this poor man live happily with his son! What kind of God are you, crushing us like ants?!" - Kyoami, Ran

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-06 06:32pm
Offline
Castellan
User avatar

Joined: 2010-03-09 03:16pm
Posts: 5804
Location: Bound in a nutshell
A side note here: we also see Sirius' flying motorbike, which is not seen as massively exceptional. Neither is the flying car really.



"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

"Bones' remedies for problems seems to revolve around giving his patients a prescription of heavy drugs, booze, or taking them to strip clubs. He is either insane, a drug addict, or the best damn Doctor in Starfleet!" - SFDebris

SDN World 6: The Kingdom of Orion

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-06 06:39pm
Offline
Sith Acolyte
User avatar

Joined: 2002-08-06 11:27pm
Posts: 5687
Location: Philadelphia
Eternal_Freedom wrote:
A side note here: we also see Sirius' flying motorbike, which is not seen as massively exceptional. Neither is the flying car really.


I stand corrected on that point then.



ISARMA: Daikaiju Coordinator: Just Add Radiation
Justice League- Molly Hayes: Respect Hats or Freakin' Else!
Browncoat
Supernatural Taisen - "[This Story] is essentially "Wouldn't it be awesome if this happened?" Followed by explosions."

Reviewing movies is a lot like Paleontology: The Evidence is there...but no one seems to agree upon it.

"God! Are you so bored that you enjoy seeing us humans suffer?! Why can't you let this poor man live happily with his son! What kind of God are you, crushing us like ants?!" - Kyoami, Ran

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-07 12:49am
Offline
Sith Marauder
User avatar

Joined: 2008-03-14 07:47am
Posts: 3514
I'm pretty sure it's made clear that technological artifacts cease working near Hogwarts (or other concentrations of magic)

I'd guess the car and motorbike don't work mechanically anymore (you know, what with the car being sentinent, both flying and no petrol). They are enchanted objects that have been enchanted to mimic their old behavior (and then some. Maybe the bike merely has the same stuff they use on brooms?)

I don't see how being in a tank would offer any protection at all to a conjuror.



"Aid, trade, green technology and peace." - Hans Rosling.
"Welcome to SDN, where we can't see the forest because walking into trees repeatedly feels good, bro." - Mr Coffee

Top
 Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality PostPosted: 2012-04-07 05:17am
Offline
Jedi Master
User avatar

Joined: 2007-08-02 01:39pm
Posts: 1388
Location: Dresden, valley of the clueless
Majin Gojira wrote:
Skgoa wrote:
My claim is that tanks do exist in the Harry Potter setting (this is how it's different from Star Trek) and wizards should be reasonably well expected to have access to them if needed. Thus there must be an in-universe reason why they don't use them. Now, in a realistic or even SciFi setting this would raise legitimate questions. But this is fantasy, so - quite literally - any number of magical reasons will suffice. (once again: applicable to Trek but not to this setting.)


Simon_Jester covered my counterpoints pretty well, but I really want to emphasize point one and expand on it as them having a prejudice against using such technology or such technology takes a long time to filter down to them. The most advanced thing we see is the Flying Car, and that is an odd exception from someone obsessed with Muggle inventions that is looked down upon by the rest of power-holding society. And on point 2, I'd add that the general consensus is that magic generally produces EMP when created, which renders some technology rather vulnerable (not that it can't be shielded, of course). I also want to add that this in no way makes your claim any different.

We don't see them use tanks, therefore they have a way around them via magic instead of the far more logical reasons Simon_Jester listed which I also pointed out (or tried to).

Furthermore, even IF it is fantasy, that does not negate or render invalid the methodology used when analyzing the material. Energy is Energy, to quote an awesome series--and observable evidence is observable evidence. You cannot just claim that because they are Wizards that they have some way around or of duplicating the role, usefulness and firepower of Tanks unless they actually do it!

Hell, I can think of two fantasy series off the top of my head that use tanks or equivelent technology and yet still have mages around that would make the standard Auror or Death Eather shit themselves in terror as their magical firepower tends to be ranked in the kiloton to megaton range. And yet they're fantasy to!

Your presumption is crap.

funny how you are equating "this is how I want the setting to work" with "observable evidence". :roll:



http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Economic Left/Right: -7.12
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.74

This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

Top
 Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 106 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: dragon and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group