Sol Plav

author: niplav, created: 2019-03-20, modified: 2024-04-10, language: english, status: in progress, importance: 6, confidence: log


This is the website of niplav. It contains texts on different topics, including (but not limited to) forecasting, futurism, unusual social behavior and philosophy, as well as translations and transcriptions of different texts, chronological archives of blogs and programming projects.

More information about the website and its author can be found on the about page, for recent additions and changes, see the changelog, and the corresponding RSS feed or substack1.

I can be hired to investigate research questions, write code, design and execute experiments, analyze data and make predictions.

Content warning.

Best Of



AI Alignment



Programming & Computer Science

“Stepchild”! That one word says it all. There’s a whole Tolstoyan novel in it, or maybe a Henry James, or at least a Grimm Brothers fairy tale. Computer science is the poor relation, the orphan, the foundling—taken in by a grand family but never taken seriously, never allowed to forget its doubtful origins. Or else computer science is the arriviste, the rich American cousin with too much cash and too little taste, who tears down the mossy old manse and puts up a spiffy new house designed by Frank Gehry. Or do we have a tale of sibling rivalry—the two children with different visions of the future for the family firm, neither of whom can ever feel secure in the love of a cold and distant parent?

Brian Hayes, “The stepchild”, 2007


Den Menschen ist der Sinn ins Innere gegeben,
Daſs sie als anerkannt das Beſte wählen,
Er gilt als Ziel, er ist das wahre Leben,
Von dem Sichgeistigen des Lebens Jahre zählen.

—Friedrich Hölderlin, “Fragment”, 1800

Quantified Self



The American girl is well acquainted with her body’s seductive capacity. She knows it lies in the face, and in expressive eyes, and thirsty lips. She knows seductiveness lies in the round breasts, the full buttocks, and in the shapely thighs, sleek legs and she shows all this and does not hide it. She knows it lies in clothes: in bright colors that awaken primal sensations, and in designs that reveal the temptations of the body— and in American girls these are sometimes live, screaming temptations! Then she adds to all this the fetching laugh, the naked looks, and the bold moves, and she does not ignore this for one moment or forget it!

Sayyid Qutb ash-Shaheed, “The America I Have Seen” p. 16, 1951

Existential Risk







Shut up! Shut up and leave me alone with my books!

—Zack M. Davis, “A Philosophy of Education”, 2012



English to German



I try to read blogs completely, mostly starting at the beginning because most blogs are not organized by topic (tagging/categorization systems don't count, don't be ridiculous). But blog archives are usually hard to navigate and it is often difficult to keep track of my current position in the blog (especially with yearly/monthly WordPress archives). To salvage this, I scrape blog archives and arrange them chronologically.



Media Consumption

I sometimes write reviews of things I have watched/read.

The following is four lists on the content I consume. The content listed there is a fairly big subset of what I actually read/listen to/watch, but not complete. I also don't remember everything from these perfectly.

Sol Plav

  1. Feeds like RSS/Atom/Substack are not a great fit for what I'm trying to do here, since I'm not writing a blog and instead focus on long content. But demand was high.