Jesse Mazer wrote:

You might say that in the last example the states were "causally connected", while in the first they were not. But why should that make any difference, especially to a solipsist?


If one believes in "psychophysical laws" (to use Chalmers' term) relating 3rd-person patterns of causality to 1st-person qualia, then perhaps non-causally-connected descriptions of an algorithm would not increase the measure of the corresponding 1st-person experiences (and if you believe in a single universe as opposed to a multiverse where every causal pattern is instantiated somewhere, then certain possible 1st-person qualia might not be experienced at all if the corresponding causal pattern wasn't instantiated somewhere in spacetime).

There are two types of causal relationships here: that between physical states and mental states, and that between different physical states. I was suggesting that the former relationship should still hold regardless of how the physical states come about.

Incidentally, David Chalmers has written a paper discussing these very ideas, available on the net: http://cogprints.org/226/00/199708001.html

--Stathis Papaioannou

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