On 28 Jan 2005 Bruno Marchal wrote:
At 22:19 27/01/05 +1100, Stathis Papaioannou wrote:For example, if I am running an AI program on my computer and a particular bitstring is associated with the simulated being noting, "I think, therefore I am", then should not the same bitstring arising by chance in the course of, say, a spreadsheet calculation give rise to the same moment of consciousness - regardless of whether the spreadsheet user or anyone other than the simulated being himself is or can be aware of this?
But from the point of view of the simulated being himself he cannot have the slightest clue about
which executions he is supported by. He is dispersed in 2^aleph0 computational histories and
he can only bet on its most probable consistent extensions. You always talk like if the mind body relation was one-one, when with comp although you still can attach a mind to a ["piece of relative
object" appearing in your most probable histories] the mind of "the piece of relative object" cannot
attach an object to itself, only an infinity of such objects. With comp the mind-body relation is one-one
in the body -> mind direction, and one-many in the mind-body direction. It is counter-intuitive but no less than QM without collapse (Everett, Deutch).
Bruno, I don't see where you think I disagree with you. I agree that a particular simulated mind may have multiple physical implementations, and that it is in general impossible for the mind to know which implementation it is supported by. I make the further point that it is not necessary, in general, for any conscious being at the level of the physical implementation to be aware that the implementation is being run, in order for the simulated being to be conscious.
OK. So we can perhaps drop out the very idea that there is a "physical run". I agree with
Hal Finney view of the accidental running. Consciousness is attached to states together
with their relative histories. Consciousness will then be related to the measure one
continuations ... if the laws of physics can be derived from that. If not: comp is false.
And this makes comp (in principle) testable (experimentally refutable).