Slate Star Codex Podcast

Audio version of Slate Star Codex. It's just me reading Scott Alexander's Blog Posts.
In 2016, I wrote Ketamine Research In A New Light, which discussed the emerging consensus that, contra existing theory, ketamine’s rapid-acting antidepressant effects had nothing to do with NMDA at all. I discussed some experiments which suggested they might actually be due to a related receptor...
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Four years ago I examined the claim that SSRIs are little better than placebo. Since then, some of my thinking on this question has changed. First, we got Cipriani et al’s meta-analysis of anti-depressants. It avoids some of the pitfalls of Kirsch and comes to about the same conclusion. This kno...
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[Originally to be titled “Marijuana: I Was Wrong”, but looking back I was suitably careful about everything, and my reward is not having to say that.] Five years ago, I reviewed the potential costs and benefits of marijuana legalization and concluded that there wasn’t enough evidence for a firm...
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Kelsey Piper has written an article for Vox: Early Childhood Education Yields Big Benefits – Just Not The Ones You Think. I had previously followed various studies that showed that preschool does not increase academic skill, academic achievement, or IQ, and concluded that it was useless. In fact...
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These are my preliminary choices for California elected positions and ballot initiatives. Some of them are based on Ozy’s recommendations and the Berkeley EA and rationalist community’s recommendations. I agree with the latter’s note that because California ballot propositions are weird superlaw...
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[Epistemic status: low. You tell me if you think this works.] Commenter no_bear_so_low has been doing some great work with Google Trends recently – see for example his Internet searches increasingly favour the left over the right wing of politics or Googling habits suggest we are getting a lot ...
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[Epistemic status: fiction] Thanks for letting me put my story on your blog. Mainstream media is crap and no one would have believed me anyway. This starts in September 2017. I was working for a small online ad startup. You know the ads on Facebook and Twitter? We tell companies how to get them...
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I’ve gotten a chance to discuss The Whole City Is Center with a few people now. They remain skeptical of the idea that anyone could “deserve” to have bad things happen to them, based on their personality traits or misdeeds. These people tend to imagine the pro-desert faction as going around, act...
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[Epistemic status: so, so, so speculative. I do not necessarily endorse taking any of the substances mentioned in this post.] There’s been recent interest in “smart drugs” said to enhance learning and memory. For example, from the Washington Post: When aficionados talk about nootropics, they u...
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[I briefly had a different piece up tonight discussing a conference, but the organizers asked me to hold off on writing about it until they’ve put up their own synopsis. It will be back up eventually; please accept this post instead for now.] In Jewish legend, the Chamber of Guf is a pit where ...
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