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Everything posted by JustTom

  1. CALL SOMEBODY !! This is the most important thing and it is never mentioned in this community. Pick up the phone and start dialing! For real, addiction means the brain is physically damaged and to try and brute-force through the cravings with sheer willpower is a path to hell. Call any friend, you don't have to talk about the issue at hand if you don't want to, just ask what's up, how are things, exchange some stories, get out of your head and off your keyboard.
  2. Dude you're a beast congrats!
  3. Oooh, is your avatar Miller from The Expanse? Love that show so much^^ Welcome to the forums!
  4. I'm not a parent, but I'll share my 2 cents: It is vital that you give your son an alternative to gaming. If all he wants to do is gaming and you take it away, it will only create resistance and resentment. It's like taking all he enjoys away, leaving him sitting in a boring room with nothing fun to do. Even though there are other things, it's hard to see when the gaming immersion was strong. It's generally not a sustainable strategy to force somebody to do or not do something. Rather, we should try to make them themselves want to change. It might be the case that a kid is just too young to understand the long-term negative impacts, in which case the only way to make them want to stop is to give them something else they want instead. Is there something else he likes? Such as sports, building stuff, other outdoors activities, or even just other entertainment. Try to replace his gaming time with doing that activity instead. If there isn't anything obvious that he wouldn't mind doing instead of gaming, I would make it my highest priority to show him. To show him people(preferably teens) doing cool non-gaming things. I'd show him what even very young composers can do with music, how they actually do it in practice(Ashton Gleckman is fricking 18 years old and he's already a famous composer), I'd show kids building robots, I'd show kids doing street tricks with skateboards and parkour, I'd show programmers/hackers and what they can do, I'd show art, I'd show technology, I'd show travel, anything that might spark that curiosity flame that will engulf him by finding out about a completely new world and finding it even cooler and more fun than games. That's how I would approach it.
  5. Oh no I think your frustration was 100% justified. Also, when I read the title of this thread, I prepared myself for cringe and someone mentioning the communist manifesto, but I was pleasantly surprised ?
  6. Oh you're also doing AI? I'm doing my master thesis now too haha. I can 100% relate to the frustration that's for sure.
  7. Yeah I agree that really shouldn't be allowed. But non-digital companies don't do it just because they can't, not because they prefer to stay ethical. In digital space, you have constant interaction so they can always try to sway you. But once you've bought a bottle of vodka, that's it, you can do whatever you want with it and nobody will stop you from pouring it down the sink instead of your throat. But subtle techniques to "manipulate" us are everywhere, even for physical products. The layout of the grocery store has been studied and optimized extensively, for example putting the small-but-expensive candy packages near the cashiers so that you're likely to grab it while waiting. Imagine broccoli on the cashier shelves LOL.
  8. My problem with this line of thinking, however, is that there is no way to quantify what constitutes so-called "manipulation". Companies will argue that they are just making their products more pleasurable. There is no logical way to refute this argument unless you challenge that there should be a limit to how pleasurable an activity should be, in which case you're delving into completely unexplored and perhaps even philosophical territory. Here's the thing: Is a restaurant unethical because they make their food so delicious that people keep over-eating? Are car manufacturers unethical because their cars are so convenient we no longer use bikes? Are movie studios unethical because their films are too good and we keep binge-watching them? Are musicians unethical because they make such amazing music that we pump up the volume and create tinnitus? Are social media unethical because they connected the world so much we are unable to disconnect? Are CHAIRS unethical because they're so comfortable that we never stand up and stretch while working? There are just random stream-of-thought examples(so don't cherry-pick the weakest ones in order to make an argument..! ? ), but you can see how you could apply this to anything. In the perfect world, we would use our knowledge of how to make things pleasurable in order to hyper-optimize things that make us happy in the longterm as opposed to instant gratification, but that is indeed a utopia, because people will never in a billion years agree on what it is and how it should be done. Some people love video games and they play 20-40 hours on top of their job, family and whatnot, and would argue that it's their source of happiness in life. So because there is no actual logical distinction between making things pleasurable and being manipulative, what the society usually does in these scenarios where you have a scale, is to just draw an arbitrary line and say "this is ok because we said so, and this is not ok because we said so". For example, it is obvious as a day that making hard drugs legal would make them safer, but they are banned because people cannot handle something that is so intensely pleasurable. So the cost of drugs being unsafe is less than the cost of more people doing safer drugs, because they just couldn't handle them and get addicted/overdose. Again, IN THE PERFECT WORLD, I would love for EVERYTHING to be legal and just let the people decide what is good for their lives and what is not, but that is completely delusional and the society cannot function like that. Anyways, I think there indeed should be an arbitrary line drawn because games and audio-visual media, in general, is getting WAY TOO pleasurable. When VR gets better, I can honestly imagine games being more instantly pleasurable than drugs. Neuralink has revealed their initial research and it's mindblowing. Musk says there are going to be human trials in a year(make that two or three, because It's Elon). In 20 years, you can bet your bottom dollar that people are going to be wiring their brains into a VR headset for direct neuron stimulation. Shit is going to be nuts 100% - why? Because it will make a lot of money. This is why it's important to set the boundaries early, now that it's obvious that SO MANY people are getting addicted to games. I don't think it should be nor it is possible to regulate what elements can and cannot be in a game, but putting warnings or links/contacts to institutions/communities that can help when a gamer is having problems is a good start. With the recent acknowledgment of video gaming addiction=disease, we can start getting official data and hopefully enough people will push for some improvement.
  9. I think you're on the right path, you're gonna make it. Keep believing. I will join you in this "quit your job to follow your passion" thing in a few months.
  10. a ton of vegetables(an omelette with filling or salads that I eat daily) such as carrots, broccoli, paprika, cucumber, black olives, corn, 2-3 types of salad, and then feta cheese, a lot of tuna, regular cheese, eggs, peanuts, occasional toast and too-frequently-than-I-would-like I eat apple pie. While I was gaming I gained some weight due to eating A LOT of sweets and constantly drinking soda. I'm not overweight but also not ideal by my standards. I mean in the end it's about not eating more energy than we spend + getting enough micros. There are many ways to do that. I think most millennials in the west eat quite healthy, the rate of smokers went down significantly and except for some deficiencies such as no one getting enough vitamin D, we're doing pretty good on this front.
  11. Do you also have some ethical/environmental concerns with meat? Because avoiding meat just for weight loss seems so strange to me, I guess as you said you can't eat burgers and such, but in general, the nutritional values of meat are perfect for a low-carb diet. Binging on pasta or fruits can skyrocket weight. I've been eating 99% vegetarian for half a year and have since gained weight ? Though of course that's because of gaming in winter/spring and general neglect. Personally, I do have both ethical and environmental concerns with meat, but not nutritional ones, so it's like the reverse of yours^^
  12. How was your gaming period? Was it bad or did you manage to somehow stay functional and keep up with studies etc.?
  13. If you feel considerable depersonalization and/or depression, I highly suggest to get a proper blood testing done - it could be a simple medical issue. There's a youtube guy "bignoknow" who had very severe depersonalization for a very long time, highly suicidal, was hospitalized at times etc. In the end it was found through a blood test that he had dangerously low levels of testosterone, started a therapy for it and recovered.
  14. Popping in here real quick to say I strongly disagree with Cammy's sentiment. Do what you feel is right for you. I'm a huge fan of changing and growing your personality, but change should be motivated by internal consideration. Never change just because someone said they don't like something. ESPECIALLY from strangers on the internet. DOUBLE-SPECIALLY in your own journal. TRIPPLE-SPECIALLY when it's something as petty as not liking you writing "hehe". I mean come on.
  15. You did great! Realizing it doesn't feel right is all you can do, really. I also got caught up in playing poker thinking "it's not a video game", even though I was playing online. Took me days to get off of it. If you stopped as early as you realized, I wouldn't consider it a relapse.
  16. Congrats @ElectroNugget !
  17. The genre is called hybrid or hybrid orchestral. Two Steps From Hell is a label that publishes a ton of this style for example.
  18. The dramatic music lol. Sounds good though, makes sense to me. Anyone that dipped at least a little bit into personal development and health knows these things. Which is not the majority of the population by any means though, so that's where the problem lies.
  19. The point is to be able to control your life and live consciously, not abstain from technology. Once gaming becomes a problem, it's a fully unconscious activity, you just do it like a zombie, to get hits of instant gratification. You don't create anything, you don't help anybody, you don't develope your talents, you don't make your life fulfilled, you just game to waste time and satisfy urges. Audio/visual production is the complete opposite. It requires focus and a lot of effort, has steep learning curves, rewards come after long time of hard practice, etc. It is a consciouss activity through which you create something for others or if you're good enough, you can sell. It also develops the creative imagination, develops a useful real world skill etc. I would agree that it's important to not become a hermit and just sit at home producing music(although there are artists like that). There is a balance to be found between being social and outdoorsy vs. working hard on your computer producing things. Also depends on your goals and at what point you are in life and in your head. TL;DR: No. Not even close.
  20. Change in appearance can complement change in identity nicely. I had a long beard in summer 2016 and when I deleted my LoL account for the first time, I trimmed it to a very short style instead. Somehow it signified that this is a new me now. Obviously that doesn't have to have a utilitarian reason. I think "fuck it" is a perfectly reasonable justification as well ?
  21. Sorry about the job. Don't get discouraged by external circumstances though. To put it in science terms: keep maximizing the probability of success and eventually, the result sampled from your distribution will be successful! ?
  22. I also used to have this hardcore attitude. I thought it's the only way to achieve great things. But it always lead me here, as you said: This loop is all too familiar to me. Except being overweight but hey don't you worry about my number of problems being too small. I'm starting to think a bit differently now and I think I'm really getting somewhere, mentally. Breaking out of that loop. Are you gaming now by the way?
  23. Welcome aboard again, Captain Obvious. Good to have you back ?
  24. Sent you a message with my number, feel free to call during the day or evening EU time