tammy's blog about
AI alignment, utopia, anthropics, and more;
the post purchase fuzzies and utilons separately puts forward the idea that you should be aware, when you're doing something, of whether you're doing it to help the world (utils) or to feel good (fuzzies), and that it's generally a good idea to not mix those up together too much.
here i'm suggesting a complementary idea: when you're engaging with something, check that you're actually getting either of those, rather than nothing. i think one typical failure mode of this is politics/culture war stuff, where people continue to engage in stuff which by their own model is neither particularly useful (there are much more pressing matters) nor particularly enjoyable to partake of.
i find it good to regularly consciously ask myself: "what am i doing this for? fuzzies, utils, or neither?"
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