Stephen Paul King writes:
Dear Lee and Stathis,
I really do not want to be a stick-in-the-mud here, but what do we base
the idea that "copies" could exist upon? What if "I", or any one else's 1st
person aspect, can not be copied? If the operation of copying is
impossible, what is the status of all of these thought experiments?
If, and this is a HUGE if, there is some thing irreducibly quantum
mechanical to this "1st person aspect" then it follows from QM that copying
is not allowed. Neither a quantum state nor a "qubit" can be copied without
destroying the "original".
All of these threads so far seem to be assuming that the process that
gives rise to a 1st person experience and the content of the experience
itself are purely classical and can be faithfully represented by classical
systems. It is this assumption, I believe, that underpins the entire
classical Platonic thesis. Indications are that it has already been
falsified, by the same experiments that unassailably imply that Nature is,
at its core, Quantum Mechanical and not Classical and thus one wonders:
"Why do we persist in this state of denial?"
It is true that nature is quantum mechanical rather than classical, but I am
not aware that anyone has proved that the brain is not a classical computer.
If it is, then it should in theory be possible to get a functionally
equivalent copy by copying the computational state, rather than exactly
emulating the quantum state; rather as one can transfer the operating system
and files from one electronic computer to another, without copying the
original machine atom for atom.
SEEK: Over 80,000 jobs across all industries at Australia's #1 job site.