Would it be a good use of my time to read HPMOR (by Eliezer Yudkowsky)?
51
628
975
resolved Nov 28
Resolved
NO

Background

I’ve read all Harry Potter books and watched most of the movies. While it holds sentimental value, it plays no current role in my life. Some of my favorite reads include “Fooled by Randomness”, “Beginning of Infinity" and "Great Ideas by Western Philosophy". Annually, I read 12-24 books. Regarding Eliezer Yudkowsky, my opinion is neutral due to the limited information I know about him. I am not reading the book to form an opinion about him.

Resolution Criterion

If HPMOR captivates me to the point of losing track of time and offers a fresh outlook on life, I’ll deem it worth my time.

Resolving this Question

I found reading Yudkowsky's book challenging and neither novel nor entertaining. Perhaps if I had read it as a young boy, I might have enjoyed it. However, as an adult, it failed to captivate me or offer a fresh perspective.

To add value for market participants, I reflected on which books I've read that met my resolution criteria. I generally find books that introduce me to novel insights worthy of my time. Some of these books aren't necessarily special but they were the first to introduce me to a certain idea, e.g. "The Power of Habit". Many good books on habits exist, and if any were my first read on the subject, they'd have been worthwhile.

The rest of these books are more unique and I believe that I would have appreciated them no matter when I discovered them. These books include:

- The Beginning of Infinity
- Pure Invention: How Japan Made the Modern World
- The Sinner and the Saint: Dostoevsky and the Gentleman Murderer Who Inspired a Masterpiece
- Persepolis: The story of Satrapi's unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution
- The Remains of the Day

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Yud's, more recently, written a piece of fiction targeted at adults...

predicted YES

@jacksonpolack It's great, but if one doesn't like HPMOR I think it's unlikely one will enjoy it (Although I'm only 100h in, so still near the beginning).

Huh, it's above 1M words

predicted YES

@jacksonpolack You sweet child of summer, for I know of the Wandering Inn

But yeah, planecrash is quite lengthy

I found reading Yudkowsky's book challenging and neither novel nor entertaining. Perhaps if I had read it as a young boy, I might have enjoyed it. However, as an adult, it failed to captivate me or offer a fresh perspective.

To add value for market participants, I reflected on which books I've read that met my resolution criteria. I generally find books that introduce me to novel insights worthy of my time. Some of these books aren't necessarily special but they were the first to introduce me to a certain idea, e.g. "The Power of Habit". Many good books on habits exist, and if any were my first read on the subject, they'd have been worthwhile.

The rest of these books are more unique and I believe that I would have appreciated them no matter when I discovered them. These books include:

- The Beginning of Infinity
- Pure Invention: How Japan Made the Modern World
- The Sinner and the Saint: Dostoevsky and the Gentleman Murderer Who Inspired a Masterpiece
- Persepolis: The story of Satrapi's unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution
- The Remains of the Day

Thank you for participating in this market 🤍

predicted NO

@Soli I can confirm the last two on that list are fabulous

bought Ṁ5 of NO

What’s your opinion on fanfic in general?

predicted YES

HPMOR on the main stage now that Emmett is in the news 😅

Yud about to see a readership boost

So much exciting shit is happening in this world but I will resolve this market soon. Apologies everyone for pushing the date.

bought Ṁ30 of YES

Also consider listening to it. Maybe then the bar for it being a good use of time is lower.

bought Ṁ20 of NO

It's ok, but captivates me to the point of losing track of time AND offers a fresh outlook on life seems like a pretty high bar.

If you're so inclined, the audio version is quite good as well and worth a listen.

HPMOR is great as long as you remember it's made up of unreliable characters, an unreliable narrator, and an unreliable author

predicted YES

Yes. I read a lot, disagree with EY on a lot of things, and think HPMOR is great. I've read it several times. It's also Vitalik Buterin's favorite book.

@NathanBraun haha I did not know that it is Vitali's favorite book. I like Vitali. I will probably start reading it this weekend.

bought Ṁ10 of YES

@Soli If you read 12-24 books a year, are in this sphere that trades on Manifold, and haven't read it, it's definitely worth it. 'Give a new outlook on life' is a very high bar though (if it were me)

bought Ṁ10 of YES

I don't know that I would say that HPMOR is "good", per se. It's rather preachy at times and diverges rather sharply from canon (the author admits that he did not read all of the Harry Potter books). The only thing protagonist really has in common with canon Harry Potter is his first name. He often feels like an adult in a child's body (which is rather awkward). With that being said, it is still wildly funny at times and definitely capable of provoking thought (if you let it).

My favorite bit was actually from an omake about the Matrix:
MORPHEUS: For the longest time, I wouldn't believe it. But then I saw the fields with my own eyes, watched them liquefy the dead so they could be fed intravenously to the living -

NEO (politely): Excuse me, please.

MORPHEUS: Yes, Neo?

NEO: I've kept quiet for as long as I could, but I feel a certain need to speak up at this point. The human body is the most inefficient source of energy you could possibly imagine. The efficiency of a power plant at converting thermal energy into electricity decreases as you run the turbines at lower temperatures. If you had any sort of food humans could eat, it would be more efficient to burn it in a furnace than feed it to humans. And now you're telling me that their food is the bodies of the dead, fed to the living? Haven't you ever heard of the laws of thermodynamics?

MORPHEUS: Where did you hear about the laws of thermodynamics, Neo?

NEO: Anyone who's made it past one science class in high school ought to know about the laws of thermodynamics!

MORPHEUS: Where did you go to high school, Neo?

(Pause.)

NEO: ...in the Matrix.

MORPHEUS: The machines tell elegant lies.

predicted YES

@DanielParker yeah, hpmor!harry doesn't really share many personality traits with canon!harry, only like... life circumstance traits? i don't think that's very important personally, it just seems like part of the premise to me, but it's definitely true.

@DanielParker Interesting. I did not know that the main character doesn't have much to do with Harry from the books. This makes me more excited to read the book.

bought Ṁ10 YES from 63% to 64%

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