Wei Dai asks: > Does this convince you that it makes sense to ask what other people > experience? Nobody KNOWS what other people experience. We can KNOW only what other people communicate about their experience. Just as: our experience is a first person secret, even we ourselves don't 'know' it, only in an 'adjusted' (interpreted) format of our mindwork, which we may communicate(?) to others. Such communication can be quite straightforward, or adjusted to our communicational purposes, as the case may be.
My answer to your question (to Pete): Yes, it makes sense to ask, prepared for a thorough re-thinking for such (multiple?) transmutations. So the reasonable question may be: to ask what other people may communicate about their experience. That stands also for computers<G>. Regards John Mikes ----- Original Message ----- From: "Wei Dai" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> To: "Pete Carlton" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> Cc: "Stathis Papaioannou" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>; <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>; <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> Sent: Friday, February 06, 2004 9:57 AM Subject: Re: More on qualia of consciousness and occam's razor > On Tue, Feb 03, 2004 at 02:55:53PM -0800, Pete Carlton wrote: > > But even this goes way out in front of what we can possibly know. You > > say we have no idea what these feelings are like to experience--but why > > should we assume we even are entitled to ask this question? > > Here's my basic philosophy: we're entitled to ask any question whose > answer is relevant to making a decision. As far as qualia is concerned, > consider this thought experiment: > > Two subjects labeled A and B and placed in separate rooms. They're each > given a button and told to choose between pushing it and not pushing it. > If subject A pushes the button, he is rewarded. If subject B doesn't push > the button, he is rewarded. While they consider their choices, they're > both given a real-time high-resolution brain scan of subject A. So if they > can answer the question "is the person being scanned having the same > subjective experiences that I am having?" then they can both obtain the > rewards for sure, otherwise they can only choose blindly. > > Does this convince you that it makes sense to ask what other people > experience?