Lee Corbin wrote:

Jesse writes

> For me, it's not that I think it's meaningful to imagine a universe just
> like ours but without causality, rather it's that I think causality is
> probably important to deciding whether a particular system in our universe
> counts as a valid "instantiation" of some observer-moment, and thus
> contributes to the measure of that observer-moment (which in turn affects > the likelihood that I will experience that observer-moment in the future).

But here you use the word "system". Isn't that by definition a
process (obeying, for example, in our universe the Schrödinger
equation)?   I wouldn't know, in other words, what kind of system
would *not* be a valid instantiation of an observer-moment if
it actually computed a sequence of states that emulated a person.

As long as you actually run the simulation I think it would be a valid instantiation--but see below about why a book doesn't qualify.

> I think if you run a simulation of an observer, and record the output and
> write it down in a book which you then make thousands of copies of, the
> static description in all the books most likely would not have any effect on > the measure of that observer, since these descriptions lack the necessary
> "causal structure".

Yes, I'd agree. When you use the word "static" then I get the
picture.  A warehouse full of stacks of paper with symbols
written on it for example.  But it's not *doing* anything.


> I sort of vaguely imagine all of spacetime as an
> enormous graph showing the causal links between primitive events, with the > number of instantiations basically being the number of spots you could find
> a particular sub-graph representing an observer-moment embedded in the
> entire graph; the graphs corresponding to the physical process that we label > a "book" would not have the same structure as graphs corresponding to the
> physical process that we label as a simulation of a particular observer.

Here I am not sure that I am following you. Let's say somewhere in
spacetime we have a spot, as you say, where we could find a particular
sub-graph representing an observer moment. But a "book" COULD NOT
have the same kind of structure?  (If the answer is yes, then I'm
following you.

Yes, I'm saying the book wouldn't have the same causal structure. There would still be *some* sort of causal structure despite the fact that a book looks "static" on a macro-level--the book only maintains macro-level stability because of constant electromagnetic interactions between the atoms that make it up--but the causal structure of the physical book wouldn't resemble the causal structure of the simulation which is being described in symbols on the pages of the book.


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