Calibrating Beliefs

I mentioned Scout Mindset, the new book by Julia Galef, just the other day. Now I am two thirds through the audio book, read by herself, and can wholeheartedly recommend it once more. It is quite close to what I expected from it.

One chapter is about calibrating beliefs, that is not only being aware of what you belive to be right, but also how confident you are about that, by assigning a probability to beliefs being correct. Then, in her own words:

Being perfectly calibrated would mean that your “50% sure” claims are in fact correct 50 percent of the time, your “60% sure” claims are correct 60 percent of the time, your “70% sure” claims are correct 70 percent of the time, and so on. Perfect calibration is an abstract ideal, not something that’s possible to achieve in reality. Still, it’s a useful benchmark against which to compare yourself.

She then provides opportunity to practice by answering trivia questions. This was more fun than I expected and you should click there right now and spend a few minutes on this!

I say this not only because it just so happened that I did well this time: My guesses about which I was 55%, 65%, 75%, 85% and 95% certain, turned out to be 50%, 67%, 80%, 100% and 100% correct, respectively. Probably a fluke. Full score sheet.

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