|Reviews for Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality|
| LadyClaire87 chapter 14 . 6/5/2010
Well, normally I don't review until I have read everything written so far. But this story is worth more than one review.
But this story actually deserves over 4000 reviews (and more). It is great. Absolutely FANTASTIC! This has got to be one of the funniest stories I have read so far. And at the same time it makes you think about so many things.
I loved the riddle. It's got to be one of the best pranks ever thought of. And I am SOOO angry at myself for not figuring it out. I was thinking: "Somehow Harry must have written those notes himself." But I was unable to take it one step further and realize that it was a time turner. ARRRGH!
At least I figured out what Hermione did wrong in her experiment. Then again at 23, with a Bachelor in Physics and working on my Master, I really should have been embarrassed ,if I hadn't seen that. Especially, as I knew why the stuff vanished.
I really loved that scene. It's fun, but you still can learn something from it. (In that chapter I also learned about the truth quark. I knew that bottom was once called beauty, but somehow none of our Professors ever mentioned truth for top. And I didn't run across it in any books either. Rather strange, given how the two names belong together. But well, I'm not focussing on particle physics.)
But anyway, I also loved the sorting chapter. And I truly loved the last omake.
Now I shall go on reading. If I don't get any sleep tonight, I shall blame you. Thank god, it's Saturday.
Thank you for this amazing story! I bow to your genius.
| Team503 chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
I did NOT see this coming. OUTSTANDING.
This is my favorite fanfic of all time. Period. Ever.
PS - Teach me, Yoda?
| NicNacs chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
Another great chapter! I liked the slight panic at Draco's alternative hypothesis. Keep up the good work.
| Wind172 chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
This is getting interesting. I'm looking forward to the next few chapters.
By the way what is your estimate of the British Isles Wizarding Population?
| twilight's reflection chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
I see what you mean by making the obstacles greater.
Excellent chapter, I look forward to the next one greatly.
| fontgoddess chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
I wish I had learned the concepts in this chapter in high school science class. Even in elementary school. I feel like all my science fair projects must have science observations rather than experiments with a falsifiable hypothesis.
I've never had a teacher who has so thoroughly gone over how to sufficiently and scientifically figure out ways in which you might be wrong. They should teach this to children as soon as possible. "What could make what you believe untrue?"
If more people knew how to think this way, we'd have a much better chance of solving all sorts of problems — not just scientific problems either. It's one thing to do science projects where you just don't know what will happen, it's quite another to really hammer your hypothesis to see whether it stands up.
I feel a lot like Malfoy feels in this chapter. Suddenly I'm wondering whether assumptions I've made are untrue, and how I can test them for veracity. It's honestly quite exciting (although maybe not for Malfoy) because the world might be completely different than I thought it was and all I have to do is look at it differently to see a completely different universe.
Story-wise this chapter is especially compelling. It went without saying in the canon of the series that the blood purists were being racist fascists. It is such a fascinating idea to wonder what if they were right, what if magic was changing, lessening, or becoming more dilute. How did no one in the actual series get more than anecdotal evidence about how magic was changing?
This also hits on the issues that I've wondered about in more than one fantasy series. Where does magic come from? Is it matter or energy? Is it a finite or infinite resource? Is magic even measurable? What are the effects of using magic beyond the intended effects? Obviously you've wondered about some of these things too, because you're looking at these questions within your story.
| dougal74 chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
I have enjoyed this story in the most part - you are a good writer.
But, I find I have lost patients with the story as it is, as it seems to be going no where; apart from Harry trying different experiments.
Is there any correlation at all between this story and canon - all I've got up to now is that Harry is getting frustrated and angry because he seemingly can't catagorize magic. Is anything strange gonna happen, a stone, a three headed dog, VOldemort in one guise or another.
Chapter wise, your story is now as long as PS and word count is probably double, yet we see no real development in the story itself.
| nxkris chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
wow, i love that harry now has draco scared that magic is disappearing from the world, i hope you actually go with one of those options and show what steps harry leads believers to take. update soon.
| Luiz4200 chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
Would people trust Draco? Please update.
| LWCyan chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
"Find portraits who knew a married Squib couple well enough to know the names of all their children. Write down the name of each child and whether that child was a wizard, a Squib, or a Muggle."
Squib couples can't have Squib children, because Squibs have at least one magical parent by definition. But -
- according to Wikipedia, Squibs can see Hogwarts but Muggles can't, so there's at least one test that can distinguish Muggles and Squibs without knowing anything about ancestry. Hmm... can Muggle-born Squibs exist?
| Gundum M chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
| Nancy Lebovitz chapter 1 . 6/5/2010
What if the house elves are weakening the wizards without getting stronger themselves?
Are there any other magical species (maybe the centaurs?) with a grudge against the wizards who aren't mind controlled?
| WaxWings chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
This was a very enjoyable chapter, the interaction with Hermione and Draco was very good. The wait for this chapter was hard, but I guess I am just impatient, and I am happy to have received such a good update.
I thought it was a bit odd that the table was mentioned to be light both in weight and mass. I wondered why Harry would check both, did he expect the acceleration die to gravity to be different for some reason? Then it hit me as a bit of fridge brilliance, the table had the appearance of being heavy, but when it seemed to be light, Harry might have suspected some magic in play, and decided to see if the mass disagreed with the normal weight. I wonder how he estimated the mass. Did he check whether the table had an unusual amount of inertia for its weight?
This actually brings up a interesting issue with the featherlight charm. Does it work on objects by reducing the effect of gravity on the object, or by reducing the effects of its mass. I could forsee some interesting effects if worked by reducing effect of gravity on the object while leaving the mass alone.
It is funny to see that Hermione stll seems to believe that she and Harry are the protagonists of a Romantic Comedy. Of all the genres that this story could belong to, it would be interesting if she was the one proven correct.
Concerning the nature of spells. When I was exposed to the Harry Potter series, I too was of the opinion that it did not make sense that spells at a fundamental level were a product of the words and wand motions, that there had to be more to it. In such a world spells are not some much created as discovered. They are some aspect of reality which had not previously been seen, but swish and flick and there you are! My personal fan theory has always been that a spell is created by a magic user who has made a schema of some sort which describes the spell. Perhaps this schema takes the some of some physical object.
Hermione makes a very good point about the looking into the existing wizarding literature. Perhaps the naive view was worth exploring, but now that Harry's hypothesis has been disproven, he should see what the wizards say about the nature of spells - especially about how spells are created.
I think you did a very good job describing Draco's transformation from a simple pureblood bigot to one who has discovered an alternate, perhaps even mor terrifying theory. It was fun to see the silly reasons Draco came up with for rejecting Harry's paper, and for him to have some empathy with Snape.
I have never thought about it before, but I guess I would be part of the forgotten knowledge camp. When I read the series, I never had the impression that wizards were becoming weaker, rather, that there was knowledge that had been lost.
I like the use of the portraits in this story. I think that they are a resource that are rarely used in canon or fan fiction, but have the potential to offer much.
You still seem to be channeling Terry Pratchett with your description of the cowls and their practical utility.
Thank you for the story, I always look forward to updates.
| Darchias chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
How exciting, I definately look forward to the conclusion of this experiment.
| Kathleen chapter 22 . 6/5/2010
GREAT chapter! Loved the experiments and figuring out how to test hypotheses. Truly brilliant work. I look forward to the next one.