|Reviews for Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality|
| WestWard101 chapter 2 . 10/20/2010
Good strong early chapters!
| WestWard101 chapter 1 . 10/20/2010
| WestWard101 chapter 50 . 10/20/2010
It's been a nice ride so far, but I agree, it's time to answer some questions directly, and step up the action.
Orson Scott Card went through this phase of redemption through manipulation and exposition and it sucked then too.
Let it happen in the background, get the story back on track!
| room 101 chapter 25 . 10/20/2010
thank you so much for this story! I went to school with Jost Migenda and we did some translations of fanfics together, so I will also thank him for finding your story. This seems just like the right thing to read for a person who has a cat called Schroedinger and rats named Charme and Strange. I hope this story will succeed in showing some people, who are not used to it, the beauty and power of rationality as well.
People often question my rationality because I study Theology but they forget that science has to work with the hypothesis that there is no god (which became dogma somehow) while contrariwise a Theologist works with the opposite hypothesis. And it requires rational discipline as well if not so even more.
I will continue reading your story for I like not only your way of presenting rationality but also how you play with the reader' expectations (especially letting Quirrel hand over Bacon's diary instead of Voldemort's was simply great!)
than you again
| Andronicus chapter 50 . 10/20/2010
Absolutely well done fiction. I can't wait to see where this goes.
| Nongarak chapter 50 . 10/20/2010
Awesome. You rock.
| Me chapter 50 . 10/20/2010
I think Professor Quirrel is trying to turn Harry Dark, and told him to do that to Padma on purpose.
It reminds me of what Draco was thinking in the other chapter: assume that the result is what someone intended to happen and their plot was successful, then ask who profits from it. Quirrel said that he kept a low profile until he came to Hogwarts, and said something about not making your move until you are ready and not provoking enemies, I think, so why would he be suddenly deciding to accept a high-profile job at Hogwarts? What does he want? It seems like he wants power, and has a particular interest in Harry, so maybe he's trying to get Harry to trust him so they can work together and help each other take over the world?
I also think that the Dementor incident with Demented!Harry was part of Quirrel's plan. I note that Quirrel is the only person that Harry thinks is strong when Harry is in the Demented state. Perhaps a Demented Harry would be easier for Quirrel to use as a weapon.
Also: Professor Quirrell paused, his eyes narrowing. "Headmaster, I respectfully observe that you are not looking well. I suggest leaving the remainder of the day's task to Professor Flitwick."
That happens just before Harry's turn with the Dementor. Quirrel wants Dumbledore away so he can't interfere?
| Armagnac chapter 29 . 10/20/2010
I would buy that Hermione subscribes to a form of virtue ethics rather than deontology. It's hard to tell from the story so far if she believes more in rules and duties or personal character. In any case it's clear that she wants to think of herself as Good and tends to believe what authories say about being good. However, I do not buy motive consequentialism as a possible philosophy. A motive consequentialist would not assign moral blame to lapses in judgment which followed from a good motive. But it's clear that Hermione does. She disapproves of Harry's behavior even when he has good motives *and* produces good consequences, if she believes his methods are wrong in themselves.
This discussion makes me wonder if any of the other characters could be ascribed a coherent ethical theory. It seems we haven't seen enough of their motivations yet.
| chelsea chapter 1 . 10/19/2010
So good! XD
| sixpacksirius chapter 50 . 10/19/2010
You're epic. Can we be friends, please? :)
| mantimeforgot chapter 29 . 10/19/2010
I am fairly positive (80%) that ascribing a deontological morality to Hermione would be wrong. She is almost certainly a member either of the "Motive Consequentialist" or "Virtue Ethics" branch of morality.
Early in the story she is fretting over her treatment of Harry. She recognizes that she intends to make him uncomfortable, which is entirely different than how she interacts with others (notice her good heroines aren't supposed to do that inner dialogue), and then struggles to come up with a motive which she can ascribe to herself which would explain how her behavior of "liking him squirm" could in fact be justifiable (virtuous).
| GradStudent chapter 45 . 10/19/2010
Well, this is the most strikingly transhumanist chapter yet. Good show.
| bluewillow chapter 45 . 10/19/2010
Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those whom thou think'st thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy pictures be,
Much pleasure; then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul's delivery.
Thou art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell;
And poppy or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke; why swell'st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.
- John Donne
| RightBower chapter 50 . 10/19/2010
Nice work, an amusing and different take on it, and seeing a character poke a bit of fun at a universe you know is fun. What I'm curious about is how much of the changes are because of the 'what if' (of Harry being a well treated science prodigy child) and how many have you wrought to keep us on our toes/make for good storytelling/other?
| May chapter 9 . 10/19/2010
The song was perfect. PERFECT. I could imagine it so clearly and it brought me to my knees with hysterical laughter.