Salience Preference

On the assumption that most reactionary-types will want to refuse the idea of an integrated ‘salience preference’ — what is the counter-argument? (I’m also wondering whether ethico-political humanism — in its restrictive rather than expansive usage — can be bound into the same super-syndrome.)

November 1, 2014admin 43 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations


43 Responses to this entry

  • Irving Says:

    If you don’t mind me asking, what is “salience preference”, exactly?


    admin Reply:

    Valuing the close above the distant.


    Nyan Sandwich Reply:

    I think it’s abstract distance in thoughtspace, though.

    Ethnocentrism is salience preference the same as time preference, in this argument.


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 1:58 am Reply | Quote
  • Nyan Sandwich Says:

    This is existentially disturbing to me. It will take me a while to process it.


    Nyan Sandwich Reply:

    Resolved. My worry was retarded.

    That you can construct a category containing both X and Y does not necessarily mean that properties of X must be related to properties of Y.

    Caring about the near future more than the far future seems a result of my having more insight and leverage over the near future than the far. Caring about people in my tribe who are like me is straightforward application of a concentric identity. These things would seem to vary separately; if I have a more cosmopolitan identity, that has nothing to do with how much insight and leverage I have over the future. Ergo I reject “salience preference” in this form as a useful concept.

    Still “salience preference” cast differently seems like the kind of thing that would exist psychologically. We have a preference for dealing with situations with which we have experience, good information, and leverage. ie near in causal links through time and space, and understandable in terms of previous experience. This seems like a useful concept. Stolen.

    Always useful to ground out arguments to the object level where the nice meta structure goes away. This frequently sinks metaphysical quandaries and bad philosophy.


    Michael Anissimov Reply:

    Having a cosmopolitan identity does compromise your impact over the future, though, because ethnocentrics are better cooperators. The imperial Brits were cosmopolitan in a sense, but there was never any doubt that they had an ethnocentric in-group.


    Izak Reply:

    Actually, “salience preference” may be useful in certain ways.

    I know an old medieval lit professor who absolutely hates the tendency that began in the sixties to “make it relevant,” “it” being whatever the historical subject was, and “relevant” meaning related to whatever social justice issue du jour is/was being fretted over. I get where he’s coming from — he saw personally how the expectation to “make it relevant” (or what the English call “presentism”) would be used to distort history and turn everything from the medieval era into a completely worthless question of gender relations or something like that. So his defense strategy has been to seal off the middle ages hermetically as a good historicist should, approaching it as completely outside of today, incommensurable to today’s realities, etc. The now and the then become mutually irrelevant.

    The irony, of course, is that in attempting to show such deference to the middle ages, he has completely divorced himself from how they themselves viewed history. The medievals wanted to “make it relevant” in every possible way. Everything in history had to be of some significance, and if it wasn’t, then there’d be no reason to care about it.

    I think I agree with the medievals rather than the moderns, which — according to the formulation of “salience preference” — would mean that I fall under that banner in a very certain way — but the only way I can fall under that banner is by looking far into the distant past. It isn’t that what happened long ago wasn’t important on its own terms. It means that its importance should always be subordinated under the present and should inform the present, just as the distant future should do the same.


    Alrenous Reply:

    This is why I hate Sophism. It’s satanically efficient at getting the baby thrown out with the bathwater. History need not be ‘made’ relevant, it is in fact relevant, but the chains of causation that lead to the present tend to support no political narrative except themselves; neither Red nor Blue has any interest in real history.

    But, for the sake of being explicit, the way to teach history to kids is to start near the present and work backwards.

    Izak Reply:

    It just occurred to me that “time preference” as defined in economic terms is entirely future-oriented, which renders my entire point meaningless. Oh well!

    Time to go read Hoppe, I guess.

    But if I can make something of a partial save here, I’ll say that people grasp toward far-off places or times to make the temporal and spatial present meaningful, whether the time is future or past. The idea of delayed satisfaction before a desired end creates an intrinsic purpose for the present. Hence, there’s no real “preference” for one thing or the other, just a submission to a sort of broad structure.

    If we take the principle and apply it spatially, this is why someone like Yukio Mishima read a bunch of Western philosophers to establish his identity as an anti-cosmopolitan Japanese traditionalist, which I’m sure we might call a form of “provincialism” even if it goes a bit past the more commonly accepted definition.

    In political terms, low time preference and cosmopolitanism can be strong in a given individual and yet lend themselves to a sort of extreme identitarianism. Yet some prole can have high time-preference, extreme cultural myopia, and yet follow suit with precisely the same ideology as the first guy with no internal contradictions whatsoever.

    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 2:36 am Reply | Quote
  • Hurlock Says:

    “On the assumption that most reactionary-types will want to refuse the idea of an integrated ‘salience preference’ ”

    Why would anyone want to refuse that idea? To me it seems like a blatantly obvious fact.

    But I have the problem with the phrasing, when talking about physical space and physical distance.
    “Time preference and provincialism are both special cases of salience preference.”
    It is rather the other way around. Salience preference is an instance of time preference. Motion always happens in time, and the bigger the distance the more time it takes to close it. If that was not true, there would be no such thing as a metaphysical distinction possible between ‘close’ and ‘distant’ objects, they would all be immediately reachable. Or if the ‘distant’ objects were faster to reach than the ‘close’ one, this would lead to a mere reversal of what is ‘close’ and what is ‘distant’. Anyways, this is more nitpicking than anything else, but it is somewhat important to note.
    Basically you deduce salience preference from time preference.

    Otherwise, in the abstract realm of thoughtspace, the one Nyan talks about, salience preference is not a subset of time preference (using the same term for both physical distance and genetic distance, or other types of more abstract ‘distances’ would be quite confusing of course).

    Anyways back to the original point, I don’t see why anyone wouldn’t like the concept. In terms of physical space and distance, it is a completely natural thing following directly from time preference. And in genetic terms it is also a completely natural phenomenon, with a clear biologically-evolutionary basis.
    I guess some people would start having a problem with it if they make the deep analogy with economic time preference, where lower time preference is (roughly speaking) usually better than higher time preference in economic terms. Following the analogy this would mean that a ‘shorter’ salience preference is worse than a ‘longer’ salience preference, which would mean cosmopolitanism is (again, roughly speaking) better than tribalism.

    I haven’t really thought whether this analogy is correct (or even adequate) so I won’t comment on it now, but is this what you were getting at?


    Hurlock Reply:

    Now that I’ve thought about it, salience preference in terms of preference of the closely related (biologically and culturally) is a useful concepts and can work analogous of time preference in economic terms.

    The more complex and extended the division of labor becomes, the more we have to cooperate with people who are more distant from us in genetic (and maybe even cultural) terms. We are naturally wary of such people and prefer more closely related ones, but in the market economy, when there is low uncertainty and society is orderly we are willing to cooperate with such people. However, if the level of uncertainty increases and the order starts crumbling and the crime rate starts rising, our salience preference goes back up and we become more and more reluctant to cooperate with individuals who are more distant from us genetically.

    Mike brings up a good point above, but I think he misunderstands it.
    “Having a cosmopolitan identity does compromise your impact over the future, though, because ethnocentrics are better cooperators.”
    A cosmopolitan tendency would not compromise your impact over the future if uncertainty and violence is low. As I said, in those cases cosmopolitanism is better because it gives more options, extends the division of labor and leads to more productivity and wealth creation.
    If the future is more uncertain however and violence is high, then cosmopolitanism will hurt your impact on the future because in that situation sticking and cooperating only with your ethnic group is much more safer and will immensely increase your survivability.
    Which is why in the modern west, where uncertainty and violence are rising we see people of all ethnicities, becoming more and more ethnocentric. When however you have low violence and uncertainty in an orderly society, ethnocentrism is pointless because in a sense the whole game has changed.

    I think that all people (some more and others less), of all genetic backgrounds oscillate between higher and lower salience preference in these terms (genetics; tribalism and cosmopolitanism) depending on the circumstances, the same way they oscillate between higher and lower time preference. When uncertainty and danger is high – higher time preference, ‘shorter’ (preferring the closely related above the more distantly related) salience preference. When uncertainty is low and danger is low – lower time preference, ‘higher’ salience preference (preference for the shorter over the more distantly related is not that pronounced, maybe almost not prononced at all).


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Some general thoughts inspired by this.

    Provincialism is order-generating and even orderly in itself. It is complex, it is competitive, it allows for thick levels of trust and relationship.

    But it is order that is maintained by disorder. Think asabiyah. It is the singularity of the border, where all order breaks down, that creates the intense order of groups that live along the border.

    Because provincialism is order-generating, it removes the disorder that enables provincialism. Society gets safe and wide, people naturally become ‘rootless’ (in quotes because I’m not using it as a term of abuse) and the society becomes more prey to elite exploitation to mass indifference and the break down of valuable social customs.

    You see this same phenomenon in all the works of man. New bureaucracies function pretty well when the serious threat they were created to face isn;’t defeated yet. After the bureaucracy wins, it turns toxic, even if some kind of ongoing preventative effort is needed to keep the threat from resurging. Sometimes if the threat recurs strong enough, the bureaucracy will reform. See western military history, e.g.

    Social conservatism also. In a more threatening environment, taking too many risks with pregnancy and relationships will get you abandoned or starving, so people don’t. Instead, they develop bourgeois values of thrift and so on. This is the Farewell to Alms theme. Over the years, bourgeois thrift generates enough order, invents contraception and safe cheap abortion and massive wealth for welfare and therapy and public schools and daycare subsidies, that the vida loca isn’t that loca anymore. More people live it and the society starts to invent less stuff and generate less wealth.

    I don’t know of any other sphere where entropy generates order, and order generates entropy. (Maybe this is a simple definition of chaos theory?) What makes it possible in humans is FEAR. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Fear is the magical element that transmutes disorder to order. Consciousness enables predictions about the future. If the future, especially the immediate future, looks threatening, humans will work harder to create and maintain the kinds of order available to them. And vice versa.

    Therefore, a longer time preference will lead to a greater preference for localism, especially the more productive kinds of localism that not only preserve order but generate it. Entropy increases along the time-axis, so the greater the time preference the more fear.

    Therefore the key dysfunction of progressivism is its belief in progress. Not the equality mania. It’s the belief that everything is going to get better. This belief disables fear. It disconnects the cyclical mechanism that converts disorder back into order.

    People on the right are on the right because they are more fearful. They discount future disaster less. (this is also why people on the right tend to be happier and more prosperous. Psychological mechanisms that make entropy seem nearer and larger increase their fear and therefore increases their effort to maintain or create their local order, and on average these efforts succeed at the margin.).

    Conservatism has long recognized that progressivism is enabled by order and increases entropy. Their solution has been to point out that progressivism increases disorder. That hasn’t worked. Explaining the mechanism isn’t enough. NRx hasn’t come up with a good solution either. The Patchwork is a mechanism that attempts to recreate entropy (borders and competition, and taking power out of the hands of the ordinary people who are safely esconsed in the core of each Patch, and therefore less aware of the entropy), but the Patchwork wouldn’t work for any number of reasons.

    Side thought: not all local orderly responses to entropy are order generating. Clannishness comes to mind. The less order-generating, the more stable. Moderate order-generating responses seem to lead to fairly predictable cycles. The asabiyah cycle for the muslims, the Chinese imperial cycle of the mandate of heaven, the cycle in classical antiquity of the forms of rule of a city state. The West has hit on an extreme form of order-generation. There has never been anything like it. The consequences have been awesome, and could be extremely dire. How to maintain and increase order without disabling fear? That’s the question.

    Side thought: After having typed all this, I realize that it may have been inspired by my exposure to Mormon stuff. Oh, well.


    Michael Reply:

    Fear of Gnon is the beginning of wisdom

    Lesser Bull Reply:



    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 3:00 am Reply | Quote
  • Chris B Says:

    isn’t this just pointless relativism insinuating the equality of far and near in time and space?


    nydwracu Reply:

    Yeah, it’s a misfire of analogical reasoning.

    To visibly group two things together on the basis of one shared characteristic implies that they have something in common beyond that one commonality itself — or that that one commonality says something useful about the two, which is a special case of the same thing. (Because if it’s relevant, then other things can be deduced from it.) What does it do? — as far as I can tell, nothing.

    ‘Salience preference’ is like ‘eargreyish’, but it superficially sounds like an intelligent thing. Anyone can tell that the fact that mice and elephants both have grey ears doesn’t say anything useful about them (other than that they have ears; and time-preference and ethnocentrism are both types of preference, so the analogy still holds), but time-preference and ethnocentrism are more abstract and exosemantically heavier than mice and elephants, so ‘salience preference’ inherits that exosemantic weight and sounds impressive.


    admin Reply:

    That seems way too fast. If circles of concern are woven together partly by potential webs of reciprocal altruism, there’s a real analogy between low time-preference and an interest in long-distance deal-making (geographically, ethnically, whatever). In both cases the alternative — high salience preference — is at least reasonably interpreted as a failure to grasp the way distant things might matter (even entirely egoistically).


    Chris B Reply:

    If you narrow the thing down to mere personal preference, then sure, but you would surely need to flesh out the reasons and justifications for provincialism and not assume it is due to small mindedness.

    But the issue really is that provincialism is a term of reproach and used as an insult so the statement is spiked. Could we not tease it out and change provincialism for “concern for the particular in all factors, at all times”, or “concern for kin in all factors, at all times”? or something along these line to make the statement and question less combative and more open for engagement.

    (I presume you are trying to take this down the prog “far against near” tactic route, and incorporating complexity to matters?)

    spandrell Reply:

    Perhaps it’s a reasonable inference that distant things don’t matter as much as close things. All politics are local. Jihadists can’t hurt you if we don’t let them in, etc.

    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 5:00 am Reply | Quote
  • Salience Preference | Reaction Times Says:

    […] Source: Outside In […]

    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 5:53 am Reply | Quote
  • Orthodox Says:

    Low time preference is the hand maiden of provincialism in the real world.

    Who has the highest/lowest time preference? What is the state of their family/tribe?

    In order to have a very low time preference, one needs continuity of ownership (in some form) through time. This is necessary to even have low time preference in the first place. Lehman Brothers is only one famous example of what happens when continuity is no longer guaranteed in mind.

    As nearness in physical space trends towards distant, uncertainty goes up.

    Notice that while there are deranged progressives that will help Ebolafricans because black, most of help for Africans, especially when there are no TV cameras around, comes from Christian missionaries. God is near to them.


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 6:39 am Reply | Quote
  • Wyrd Says:

    Some Mild Moldbug Mayheim:


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 7:03 am Reply | Quote
  • Alrenous Says:

    Um, no shit? Does nobody ever examine their own mind?

    Close things are more subjectively intense. The marshmallow in front of you has subjective depth and detail. The two marshmallows are abstract, flat, and pale. Ref: the use of the word ‘immediacy.’ Intense feelings are more motivating.

    The corollary is that, under certain conditions, distant things can be more intense, and in these cases a human may act counter-intuitively.

    Apparently someone really does need to write “The Brain: A User’s Manual.”

    I control myself primarily by intentionally conjuring another immediate but opposed sensation. To conquer the marshmallow test, I vividly imagine my future disappointment; that is, I take future disappointment and manifest it in the present. Over time this became automated; so at first it replaced an ongoing effort of will with a one-time effort of will, and now it costs no will at all.
    I seem to have accidentally made the habit better than I intended. Sometimes it seems like doesn’t work; this has always been because my subconscious knows something I don’t.

    That said provincialism is also ‘xenophobia’; the hobbit preference for the similar over the different; it’s just that distance frequently causes difference. E.g. Brits prefer Aussies over the French, despite the distance, but still prefer other Brits over Aussies because the distance has allowed divergence.

    Not that anyone much like Brits anymore, since they’ve given up on being Gentlemen.


    spandrell Reply:


    Might as well talk of “visibility preference”.

    Or just cognitive preference. Animal brains prefer things they can perceive and understand. D’oh.


    Alrenous Reply:

    Apparently humans fear the unknown. Who knew.

    But look upthread; apparently this really is arcane wisdom at this point.


    admin Reply:

    So high time preference is easy to understand. Sure. That isn’t the question though.


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 9:40 am Reply | Quote
  • vxxc2014 Says:

    Is this going to be like “Content”?

    Which I was informed isn’t substance, detail, facts and so on but agreement with what can only be called consensus?


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 9:56 am Reply | Quote
  • vxxc2014 Says:

    Having issued warning, here is salience: Antares rocket explosion and Virgin Galactic Space 2 explosion has the Guardian and the internetz all abuzz with schadenfreude on failure.

    It should go without saying that as this advances man up from roiling in welfare, meaningless sex that is content free [sterile] and money for social justice NGO’s, that it raises man up instead of down in the projects holding up the bubble, that Progress considers Space, UP, Lure of the Void an enemy.

    Somebody should post on why Space lifts man up and advances in every sense the race, better yet does it by both our mostly parasitical front company governments trifling payments – but that and the institutional knowledge gained is still extremely valuable and not easily replaced – and also offers vast commercial, business opportunities.

    Finally somebody should point out it’s unlikely that hundreds of millions of young people can or will, should survive living at home and working as coffee waiters or collecting the dole for much longer. We have to have more room to let the poppies grow tall or crop them.

    I actually think the plan is to let disastrous consequences of insane decisions crop them.
    War, disease and any disruption of the food supply system would do nicely for that dread purpose. It’s actually typical of both Communist regimes and Banker Regimes [see 19th century Ireland].

    As far as pass the popcorn: on massive reductions in population of the essentially useless non essential I’m talking about YOU young man. In WW2 USSR only the soldiers and productive workers ate. Wasn’t much better in Germany and the British were all a bit thinner afterwards as well.

    So space and it’s infinite room for expansion of man and the frustrated ambitions of the young are salient to your survival, young man. We grey hairs have our futures now as secure as we can or wish to make them. You on the other hand either go UP or go away.

    YOU. Not the Vibrant, he’ll outlast you. Vibrants survive, Histories Court Trolls Survive, peasants survive. Surplus clerical workers with a dangerous amount of over-education and debts they can’t pay, deadbeats don’t. The debt you can’t pay is your death warrant, your eviction and seizure notice doubt it not.


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    The Cathedral can’t tolerate risk. That’s why it’s all aflutter, even if it didn’t already hate Space.

    But for a space advocate, the Antares rocket and the Virgin Galactic test failure shouldn’t worry you too much. Antares is a totally professional company that will press on. Virgin Galactic may be affected, but the company is incompetent and has made poor design choices. It is only being punished for its sins.


    VXXC Reply:

    No Sir it’s not the inevitable growing pains and casualties.

    The problem is the enemy wants it dead. Now this is proof it needs defending or aggression on it’s behalf regardless of merit.

    However in the case of space it’s the ultimate merit. A million Americas await the next century or new dark ages. Out of which may crawl a religion based on entitlement and social justice amongst the cannibals who survive.

    No Sir. Up. UP. Its worth many wars to me and I’m sure others.
    If success follows and failure remains say farewell. If failure pursues nuke it from Orbit.


    Only way to be sure.

    [PS I’m prodding Land you know].


    admin Reply:

    OK, prodded.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    In Virgin’s case it isn’t “the inevitable growing pains” because they’ve made some stupid design choices that were known to be stupid when they made them. With Antares it is just growing pains.

    But the fundamentals remain. The fundamentals are that SpaceX remains the only real possibility for real space access, so the Antares explosion only matters to the extent it makes things more difficult for SpaceX, which it doesn’t much. Nobody died, so the Cathedral/Clerisy/Hideous Strength will find it harder to get shrieky.

    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 10:14 am Reply | Quote
  • Lesser Bull Says:

    Time preference is a failure of integration. The failure to realize that the future self is the self.

    Provincialism isn’t.

    In fact, cosmopolitans generally show less concern overall. They don’t add more concern for the far in addition to the normal concern for the near. They use their supposed concern for the far to care less about both. (Except in the common case where cosmopolitanism is really just an elite form of provincialism. Interacting and marrying within a small, elite international class with its own customs and interests doesn’t make you cosmopolitan.).

    But salience preference is a good concept, if handled carefully. I like Hurlock’s suggestion that provincialism and low time preference both increase when societies decay.


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 12:39 pm Reply | Quote
  • Anomaly UK Says:

    High time preference is justified if the future is primarily out of your control. Eat, drink and be merry, because tomorrow we may die. Provincialism likewise, when the distant or foreign are affected much more by other factors than by your own actions toward them.

    As one grows more powerful, “salience preference” becomes much less defensible—your actions will affect your future more reliably, will affect further afield and potentially rebound up on you.

    So, yes, useful concept, I think.

    The optimum level of of time preference is not zero—discount curves should not be flat—and neither is the optimum level of provincialism. The near future does weigh more heavily, as does the near space.


    Alrenous Reply:

    Also interest. I can invest the single mallow now and likely get more than two before the deal-offerer is willing to give me the pair. If the doubling time is ten years, a mallow ten years from now is objectively worth half a mallow now.


    Anomaly UK Reply:

    That’s what I meant by “discount curves are not flat”. It’s an unfortunate result of several years spent in derivative pricing that I don’t see these things from quite the usual angle…


    Alrenous Reply:

    I figured you might mean that, I mainly wanted to see it explicit. Economics is still an arcane art outside libertarians and tech-comms.

    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 1:41 pm Reply | Quote
  • E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Says:

    One problem with the time/space convergence implied in Salience Preference (as used here):

    1. You will never reach mid to far away peoples unless you travel there
    2. You will reach mid to far away times unless you die.

    Consider the pairings and how they are unlike

    Family vs. Immediate Time
    Neighbors vs. Tomorrow, this week
    Community vs. Next Week, This month
    Town / Locality vs. Next Year, this year
    Region vs. Next Decade, next event cycle (elections, etc)
    Nation vs. Next Generation
    World vs. Posterity (how we will be remembered by history)

    The general rule is that these two kinds of ‘salience preference’ are inversely correlated, i.e. preference for the immediate PEOPLE in space correlates most strongly to the farthest TIME preference.

    So here’s the trick to this sophistry. When we think of provincialism, we’re (rxnrly) thinking of PEOPLE. The salience preference correlation only functions properly with OBJECTS. Conflation is the sleight of hand that makes most sophistry work, and this one is pretty good at it:

    Short time preference is associated with immediate objects
    Long time preference is associated with distant objects

    Doesn’t work relationally, though.


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 2:12 pm Reply | Quote
  • ||||| Says:

    This is just too…synchronous. It’s very much what I had in mind here. Don’t even know where to start. It may go quite a bit deeper than anyone realizes. Is this what a hyperstition feels like? The more I think of this more doubts are raised and the more I want to think about this.

    What’s the reason for me to be this way?
    I’m lying on the floor
    I’ve broken through some door
    I don’t know how I came to this
    There is blood lust in my eyes
    And someone in my mind saying

    I have forced you here
    I’m hiding, right here inside you
    Trapped in here so long
    You’ll find me growing in every man

    Who is this that speaks to me?
    Tearing down my mind
    My reality
    This must certainly be the one
    What will I pay for this?
    This evil synthesis!

    For reference:
    [1] –
    [2] –

    Also strongly recommend taking a gander at this.

    The salient points;

    From [1]:

    “However, it is not simply the case that brain and market networks are identical. It is interesting to note that, at least for this dataset, the financial network did show subtle but significant differences from the fMRI data. In particular, the market was significantly more clustered, more modular, and more efficient than the brain networks; but the market was also significantly less robust than the brain networks to targeted attack on high-degree nodes or hubs. Bearing in mind the prior data and theory suggesting that modularity favors adaptivity of processing, clustering favors specialized segregation of processing, and efficiency favors integrated processing and is positively correlated with IQ and executive functions in human brain networks (Bassett et al., 2009; Li et al., 2009; van den Heuvel et al., 2009), the intuitive interpretation is that the market network is overall a more highly optimized information processing system than the human brain networks. It also seems intuitive, but will need further testing, that there may be a trade-off between informational optimization and robustness of these systems. The human brain may be less smart than the market but it is also less prone to systemic disintegration as a result of removing key nodes or hubs from the networks. It is imaginable that this hypothetical interplay between informational optimization and robustness to hub deletion could be useful in assessing or controlling a market’s risk of systemic collapse.”

    This is beyond hilarious because an alternative interpretation is that the market has already intellectually outgrown its objects of study and is overfitting. Present a more complex world and it might fall into robustness correspondingly.

    From [2]:

    “Social experiments have demonstrated that humans can efficiently route through the global acquaintance network topology knowing only some meta-information about their immediate neighbors and the final destination, but lacking the global topology knowledge. In the sociological domain, the network of global acquaintances is a complex network that is both scale-free and strongly clustered. Other networks of social and biological nature, as well as communication networks such as the Internet, exhibit similar characteristics.”


    “The interpretation of the HMS-based “geometry-under-topology” model applied to real networks is straightforward: the topology of a real network, i.e., the structure of connections between nodes, is closely coupled with the intrinsic similarities between nodes. The more similar the two nodes, the more likely they are connected. Thus, the geometry underlying a real network is the geometry induced by node similarities.

    If this similarity space is taxonomic, i.e., if it allows for a hierarchical classification of nodes, then the hidden geometry is hyperbolic. Hierarchies are (approximately) trees, which embed “almost” isometrically in hyperbolic spaces.

    We found that hidden hyperbolic metric spaces explain, simultaneously, the scale-free degree distributions and strong clustering in complex networks. More precisely, the assumption that real networks have some forms of hidden hierarchical organization naturally explains their observed topologies.

    Greedy routing mechanisms are efficient in these settings and may offer virtually infinitely scalable routing algorithms for future communication networks. Figure 6 presents illustrations of negative curvature of hyperbolic planes and their similarity to successful and unsuccessful paths in a visualization of a modeled network.”

    “On the assumption that most reactionary-types will want to refuse the idea of an integrated ‘salience preference’ — what is the counter-argument? ”

    Assortativity over time, I would guess. Spatial distances are much more pliable than temporal ones (you can think of intelligence as minimizing temporal distance to some omega-point of state accessibility). I can bring an object near me and minimize future costs of interaction.

    There’s also a subtler difficulty here that I think most didn’t really quite note. Both localists and globalists can claim they’re future-oriented but no one can determine who’s right because no one has access to the objective evolutions of both strategies. Ironically, the best globalists can do is try to demonstrate that the optimal strategy must be greedy since that justifies the conquest of the rural by the urban otherwise localists could claim something to the effect of their strategy incurring exponential returns in a more distant future as opposed to constant gains by cosmopolitan options. For example, the reactionary perspective on cosmopolitanism is that it’s responsible for a social analogue of the Kessler syndrome (as in “It is not just that human trash accumulates in cities—it is that cities turn what accumulates in them into trash.”) and that their own method would avoid such threats. Then there’d be a cosmopolitan retort, counter-retort and so on. Core of the matter being that if your strategy is simple enough to calculate in advance and have a bullet-proof theoretical justification it’s probably not complex enough to be king of the hill so it’s difficult to non-arbitrarily rank candidates, best you can do is patchwork-like disentangle them, provide exit and see what works best in the long run but then you’re avoiding the question of how they interact with each other so it’s only a partial solution at best.

    The Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine this year was awarded to a work on the neurophisiology (don’t let kantbot see this) of spatial navigation and the discovery of place and grid cells which constitute a spatial positioning system in the brain. Place cells encode memory for specific places while grid cells seem to provide a tiling for the available environment. Geology as an underlying geometry of several types of networks (airports,railroads, logistics and transportation in general) is obvious but I think there are more interesting things going with different domains due to peculiarities of the brain’s computational architecture. Somewhat further corroborated by things like this] and this if you squint really hard. Another thing that’s interesting is that this stuff is heavily involved with the hippocampus which in conjunction with the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex biases behavior towards being far-sighted somehow and both are key regions related to temporal discounting. It’s complicated.

    Depends on what exactly you mean by “integrated salience preference”, though. It just sounds like a roundabout way of saying someone is in a local optimum and might benefit by considering alternatives. But that’s an instance of cognitive provincialism itself, ha! A stupid or otherwise resourceless person won’t get much return from global considerations because for whatever reason they can’t relocate to another optimum. However, a hierarchical arrangement might alleviate that situation. It’s parochial in another sense in that it mainly considers individual (local/punctual) returns instead of ecological (global/topical/spatial) interactions and co-dependencies. Not every city can be an IQ shredder. Not every cell in the body can be a neuron. Actually, that’s precisely what’s false in a social context but there are neurons and then there are neurons. The competition is more between ecologies of strategies than between strategies.

    The difference might not be that localists are immediate and globalists not, but that they have different priorities and both of them are trying to reach theirs as soon as possible. Cutting that knot would be some objective method of hierarchizing priorities (which I don’t think is possible in general but you might be capable of pointing out internal inconsistencies and defeat particular systems).

    “The reactionary is not upset by certain things, but by anything out of place.”

    Central to whatever semantic space we’re (or maybe it’s just me) in right now is the notion of metric and I can’t help but notice that admin (and possibly a good portion of NRx) is very very interested in quasimetrics (it’s actually a very natural concept but it’s not what people usually think of distance), consider left-ratchets and hyperstitions and gravity. The thing is here is how to understand the variations in personal metrics relating to intertemporal choice, how these manifest in social arrangements (there are quite a few candidates) and what is the objective underlying geometry common to these structures.

    God damn it, I can feel something important lurking just beyond the distance but can’t quite make it out. It’s interesting how several human institutions seem to mirror our biological function in very deep ways. Or it’s our biological functions which mirror submerged realities and through living we make them concrete and perceptible.

    “It was a circuit, locking him out. To access the name he needed to know who to call. Incense-clouded blackness and strange drugs broke upon a sea-wall of silence.” HEH.

    I will create in my own image
    If God can then why can’t I?
    No thought of the consequences
    I’ve got to know the meaning of life

    Lightning strikes, it’s the witching hour
    The monstrosity comes alive
    A victim of man’s vanity
    Born in delirium, a deranged child
    He turns his back on his own creation
    Chaos ensues, the innocent die
    Who’s the monster?
    Who’s the victim?

    Crucify!!! Crucify!!!

    I’m gonna go do something else before my mind melts from combinatorially explosive inference.


    ||||| Reply:

    And I don’t know how I forgot to mention this.


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 7:51 pm Reply | Quote
  • Alice Teller Says:

    You assume that provincialism is innate rather than pragmatic. I might prefer to chat with a co-ethnic from Singapore or South Africa over a black neighbor but, as the international and national systems fail, I know who will have an impact on my life if things really fall apart.


    admin Reply:

    “I know who will have an impact on my life if things really fall apart.” — That depends massively on how you respond.


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Shaping your available responses is ‘an impact on my life’


    Posted on November 1st, 2014 at 8:14 pm Reply | Quote

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