|Reviews for Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality|
| Julia Wise chapter 31 . 7/24/2011
I decided to read this story because every time a new chapter came out, my husband was completely useless for anything until he had read it. We solved this problem by making it our bedtime reading aloud, which gives us both someone to speculate with and hasn't given us nightmares yet.
Thanks for an enjoyable story!
| LaserKing chapter 1 . 7/24/2011
Definitely the best fanfiction ever written. Few people can meaningfully add content to the original author's work like LW can.
Now, he just needs to get working on that Rationalist!Frodo LOTR fic.
| Ginny R.B chapter 16 . 7/23/2011
This was the first chapter where I understood a little why people were so enraptured by this story.
Truthfully, I still don't quite understand the intense fervor, but I think I'm beginning to. Up until this chapter, I greatly disliked your idea of Harry. Even if I disregarded Harry's character from the canon and thought of this one as an OC who shared Harry's name... I still did not like him. I can admit, though, that I very much loved JK Rowling's characters as they were (even Harry and his utter naiveté and seeming noncommittal interest in magic), am very much biased because of it, and that I was a little resistant to these new personalities. However, I can disregard the original books. But even then... I still didn't like Harry all that much. I also find that I don't appreciate your interpretations for many of these characters...
...but I do for Professor Quirrell. They way he interacted with the class, his ideas, the very way he conducted the lesson- Very intriguing! And Harry's reactions to him were great to read, too. Overall, these were the first characterizations (even a little on Harry's part) that I liked... Very much, in fact. I hope that the chapters that follow will continue this trend so that I, too, can come to love this (because I feel the potential is there now. I really do).
| aku chi chapter 14 . 7/23/2011
A beautiful solution to a delightfully baffling riddle. Your musings on time travel were most enjoyable. I'm re-reading "The Methods of Rationality": this, and the preceding chapter, are perhaps my favorites.
| Praetorian Productions chapter 18 . 7/23/2011
I'm enjoying this fic; it's well-written and interesting.
| The Prince of Mathematics chapter 25 . 7/23/2011
I supposed, perhaps incorrectly, that one of the submitted hypotheses (for the "disappearance of magic" concept from the previous chapters) might be simple nostalgia for the past or retelling of history-as established, of course, by Marx and Derrida.
Apparently not. Most unfortunate.
| zork chapter 40 . 7/23/2011
alas-we-never-do, I have generally found that condescending correction is most effective when it is actually correct. Seamus Finnigan's name is spelt with two "i"s by J K Rowling as well as by Less Wrong. (You didn't say what conditional clause problem you think you see, but the last sentence of this chapter has a conditional clause in it and there's nothing wrong with it at all.)
(A few other remarks, in order. "The bashing of theism" is not a belief, regardless of whether it is cynical or borderline pathetic. I see no reason to think that LW is "trying to frankly ruin life for everyone else". Telling Draco Malfoy "no, wait, pure-blood supremacy is morally wrong, can't you see?" would obviously do no good at all; convincing him that it's based on a factual error seems like a much more effective strategy. If you find this fic so contemptible, why are you still reading it? The canonical Harry does plenty of things as naive as befriending Quirrelmort. Your last sentence, in its context, seems to be implying that the number of "i"s in "Finnigan" is the sort of knowledge that truly makes someone intelligent, which is (1) insane, (2) interesting given that LW got it right and you got it wrong, and (3) a strange contrast with your remark two paragraphs earlier about "names that are of no consequence to me".)
| dreamhunter501 chapter 72 . 7/23/2011
| Gabriel chapter 63 . 7/23/2011
"If you were given a glass half-empty and half-full, then that was the way reality was, that was the truth and it was so; but you still had a choice of how to feel about it, whether you would despair over the empty half or rejoice in the water that was there."
Reading this right on the heels of Chekhov's "Ward 6," and I felt that this expressed very eloquently an idea that I'd been trying (without success) to articulate - that the good in this world isn't just a cheap facade over the "true" ugliness underlying it, but rather that the two can coexist without contradiction, and that it is not naivete to privilege the good.
| Noremac1 chapter 72 . 7/23/2011
...I can't even begin to comment on the awsomeness of this fic.
| Sean y chapter 64 . 7/23/2011
Wow that freaked me out when I read the beginning of the chapter it was like u were talking to me its 836am and iv been up all night reading lol but think I'll finish anyways lol
| Diane White chapter 44 . 7/23/2011
A kiss? Really? They are 11 year old! That's just wrong. Funny, but wrong.
| Yulwei chapter 72 . 7/23/2011
The weakest link in the Harry Potter series has always been Harry Potter himself and I found myself time and time again forced to agree with Snape's assessment of him and his abilities. Your Harry relies less on luck and doesn't have his friends and allies acting as crutches for him. He still engages in acts of supreme idiocy like agreeing to go to Azkaban and free Bellatrix but it's tolerable in this thing that I can praise you for is making the Aurors look competant and badass. In the book only Mad Eye seemed like he knew what he was doing.
Now for the negatives, I feel that you're cramming a bit too much into one school year. Some of these things could easily have happened in 2 years and it'd have only made my disbelief easier to suspend. I also feel you're being way to hard on Gryfindor and Ron Weasely. Finally a lot of the changes you've made can't be explained as a result of Petunia marrying someone else for example Draco's mother dying can't possibly be linked to that change.
I feel very strongly that Quirrel is in fact Voldemort or playing host to Voldy like he did in the books due to the interaction of his and Harry's magic, his overtly evil nature and other some such things. I'm wondering how you're going to get around Harry living since in this case his mother didn't die saving his life and putting some Love protection on him.
| alasweneverdo chapter 40 . 7/23/2011
I think the most entertaining thing about this story is how laughably full of themselves each of the main characters is. I'm also amused by what I see as not-so-subtle implications that morality is deduced by logic, which I think is an almost hilariously sad belief for anyone to genuinely hold-really, a lot of the more cynical beliefs I've read in here are borderline pathetic. The bashing of theism is one of them, and I will probably rant in a later review about how people who are that openly arrogant and simultaneously pessimistic about the universe need to stop trying to frankly ruin life for everyone else.
Wait, I lied, I'm doing it now.
The fact that the ever-righteous "scientists" of the world-that is, specifically people like your Harry, as "not all scientists are alike-there are scientists, and there are scientists," if that rings any bells-are so insecure in their feelings of hopelessness, after finding death to be the fearful and absolute end, does not justify the forcing of their philosophies down everyone else's throats for the sake of having others to share in their loneliness and despair.
What's more, I am sick of the blatant superiority shown by self-proclaimed prodigies and intellectuals, another thing "Harry" exemplifies quite well. He argues against the assumption that pure-bloods are fundamentally better than Muggle-borns because of a lack of scientific evidence, rather than because supremacy is *wrong*. There are no morals to be found in any of the chapters I've read, only calculated and logical methods, and you'll excuse me if I choose not to live my life analyzing every single moment. Actually, I take that back: the only morals presented are the ones given by the figures of authority your Harry so callously discredits and condescends.
That being said, I find myself feeling progressively more disturbed with each chapter, and if not for my ability to have long ago separated these characters from the ones we all know and love, this story would likely have made me hate the entire series. Though this has all made me incredibly glad that I've never met such a disgustingly self-important child (because yes, he is a child, something this story seems to ignore) as your thankfully personal Harry Potter. I'm also quite happy that the original Harry would not be so naive as to befriend a professor who is either a Dark wizard or a pedophile, though I find it beautifully just that for all his intellect and presumption, ickle Harry James Potter Evans-Verres (that is how it's spelled, right? Sorry, I don't put a high priority on names that are of no consequence to me) is still a stupid, hopeless child.
Wonderful for you to find an outlet for your many ideals and philosophies, and it was very clever to throw them to the hungry masses of the Harry Potter fandom, but for you to continue this story under the guise of it being just that, Harry Potter fanfiction, seems in somewhat bad taste, as everything you stand for appears to oppose what Rowling herself attempted to instill.
Best of luck in your endeavor to make the transition from pompous and arrogant fool to genuine writer. I expect to hear back from you when you can finally grasp something called "conditional clauses" and when you learn to check your spelling and facts (as Finnegan is spelled with one "i"). If you fancy yourself a story-writer, perhaps you should prioritize what sort of knowledge truly makes someone intelligent.
| Ten Past Twelve chapter 64 . 7/23/2011
"Could I please have a real physics textbook?"
A hilarious fic, to be sure, but also one that makes sense!... Well, at least as much as sense as violating the laws of physics will allow. The terror that Harry inspires in mortal men, with his thousands of seemingly redundant contingency plans and all, is something I wish I could do. Although it seems that at times, those plans violate the laws of physics too.