Hi Godfrey,

I see we agree on many things. I comment only where we take distance.

Le 12-août-05, à 19:33, [EMAIL PROTECTED] a écrit :

Again I fully agree, though I am sure you are aware that "mentality" and "identity" are among the most difficult problems that science has tried to tackle and that what we think we know about such matters pales in comparison with what we are sure we don't know! Even just building theories may be more forthcoming in some domains than others, irrespective of testing them.

BM: That is exactly why I have concentrate on a testable theory of the mind. Actually the testability is my first and most basic concern. I will say more in a reply to Lee. Mentality and identity are difficult, sure. But the question of what is time, matter, space, etc. are difficult too. Modern physics has even made them more difficult.

This is just ignorance. Science is *the* most efficacious way to accept that we are ignorant. It is the motor of science. If you have a scientific interest in alien abduction you can always search for a piece of unknown metal, or for tackling the plausibility problem of the account. Etc. As I mentioned before one of my favorite text to illustrate what is the scientific attitude is given in a book of parapsychology (the "In search of the light' by S. Blackmore). Of course the whishfull thinkers in parapsychology doesn't like it because it is negative (She shows the protocol errors in most parapsychologists experiments).

That is a wonderful point you make above! But my own was that acknowledging something may not exactly be the same as admiting its reality; it can in fact be just the oposite when what is acknowledge is someone else's belief for instance. How (consensual) reality is acquired is a pretty complicated and still mysterious process. I would venture that a lot of what we
would count as "subjective reality" is just that! (more below)

I am not sure I understand you, and pêrhaps it is just a question of vocabulary. If I acknowledge a belief of someone, it seems to me that I take as real (or very plausible) that that someone has a belief, not that the belief is true. Altough the subjective reality is just that, I guess, subjective. I take as objective the existence of "subjective reality", or at least I take as objective the existence of the discourse and silence on subjective reality, and what I am searching an explanation on is exactly that, how to explain in objective term the subjective discourse, including the fact that we know we acnnot make objective that subjectivity. This is part of the so-called mind-body problem. Saying, like Lee, that my subjective view is neurons firing is just false. To say that it is the sult of neurons firing is much more interesting but actually makes the problem worse (as serious philosopher of mind know very well). The reason is that if neurons firing explains all my behavior, it is just more enigmatic that something like consciousness has ever evolved. The explanation is more subtle and demanding and eventually forces us to revised our oldest prejudices about the nature of reality.

> If that derivation is just a piece of your subjectivity that may dash > your hopes to convey it to others...

By derivation I really mean "demonstration". It is valid for anyone (accepting classical logic applies on the elementary arithmetical truth). Sorry if this looks contemptuous.

It may very well be contemptuous but I cannot fault your "demonstration" since I see no reason why materialism would
 be compatible with your hypothesis!

Good! Many people still confuse comp and materialism.

If I understand it correctly this is that one materially supported conscious entity could be entirely (and analytically) replaced by a digitally constructed one without it even being conscious of it. Am I right? Is this what you COMP ? If so you are right in one thing: it is one hell of a stronger contention than the strongest AI hyp
(and that much more unlikely).

OK. But please note that 99,9% of the scientists take it for granted. Actually I know only Penrose postulating explicitly the negation of comp. This forces him to speculate about the falsity of both quantum mechanics and general relativity.

OK. This means you are serious like Lee. I certainly don't expect people to understand it quickly! The people in this list does not know (I think) that they are one century in advance!
(and then they doesn't know I'm two centuries in advance ;-)
(Don't infer I'm some sort of genius: it is just years and years and years of work + open mindedness).

Oh don't worry about that! There is genius in knowing that your are not!

I didn't say that either. I don't know if I am a genious, but I don't know if I am not a genious either ;-)

And since you are a machine your years and years
and years may surely add to two centuries! No wonder you outrun your modesty...

I have never said that I am a machine. I have not the slightest idea if comp is true. But I am sure that if comp is true then physics emerges from the arithmetical relations, well, as sure as I am sure of the irrationality of the square root of 2. I give a proof.

Oh but you make it sound so easy! See: its is the "derive physics from computer science" that I have my first problem with!

That is the object of the proof I gave. The proof is 100% third person accessible, like any proof. What is hard, perhaps, is that the proof is done in a field which is in the intersection of theoretical physics, theoretical computer science and theoretical cognitive science.

Easier said than done, I'm afraid. Stephen Wolfram sent me his huge book but I remain as unconvinced by it as everyone else who has read it about his "tinker bell" version of Quantum Mechanics. I heard Ed Fredkin a number of times and, though he is quite charming, I don't think he has any better answer to that question...

Wolfram, like Schmidhuber, entirely dismiss the 1/3 distinction. The proof I gave shows that Wolfram is just wrong on those matter. I am nearer Svozil and Chaitin (but well beyond, probably).

More specifically: I believe QM puts a big kabosh into any non-quantum mechanistic view of the physical world. If you don't get that, than maybe you don't get a lot of other things, Bruno. Sorry if this sounds contemptuous. It is meant
to be.

It does not seem contemptuous, it seems just circular. If you have the two following axioms:

1) There is a physical world
2) The physical world is described by QM

Then it seems obvious to me that "QM puts a big kabosh into any non-quantum mechanistic view of the physical world".

Now don't worry, I believe more in the quantum than in comp! I thought, in the past, that I would quickly refute comp with quantum mechanics. But the fact are there, comp, as far as it has been tested implies everything we can deduce from the quantum. Comp is not yet refuted, and evidences add up that the quantum is derivable from comp (or from numbers through comp). Of course, I believe in the quantum, but if comp is correct, I can no more believe in "1)", i.e. I must abandon the existence of a physical world, and the quantum describes only the way machine dreams interference generate the stable illusion of solidity and time from arithmetical truth (under the form of confirmable bets, the Lobian Bp & Dp).

Incidentally, the reverse reduction of computer science to physics seems to be a lot more hopeful specially since most computations seem to run a lot faster in physical computers than on... (what are the alternatives again?).

If you study the Universal Dovetailer Argument, you will see that any machine betting correctly and consistently on any piece of "observable" reality, will bet that to simulate that piece of reality exactly, there is a need of simulating an infinity of computations. Remember we don't know in which computations "we are", and the "physical" appearances emerge from some probabilistic interference among all the possible computations. Without QM, for example, with just a Newtonian World I would directly interpret my proof as a refutation of comp.

OK, no one
has built a truly quantum computer just yet but a lot of people think they are about to do it!

I'm quasi sure they will!
And I'm quasi sure me or someone else will extract the existence of a quantum computer in the neighborhood of any "conscious" lobian machine, or refute comp. comp will provide really solid foundations for the quantum, if it is correct. In particular physical *laws* will be real general laws pertaining on all possible observers.

Sure will (take it with and entire salt mine)! My point is that we already have ways of explaining other people's experiences
 on the basis of empathy or antipathy and in terms of direct causation.

Causation? Sorry but I consider such a notion as very vague (and very interesting). There are ten thousands notion of causality, and a lot of them can be studied as necessary implication: B(p->q) in some modal logic. So I consider they are at least as many notion of "causation" than there are modal logics. And there is an infinity of modal logics ...

Bill Clinton was found of saying "I feel your pain" and
no one called him on that obvious lie! I can think of some numbers that would tell me about the pain others are feeling
(checked the price of gas today? $2.59 a gallon!!! That hurts!!!)

Quite cheap from here!

Seriously, I see nothing wrong with what you saying as long as you couch it in that "faith-based" argumentation.

I think all theories are faith-based. But, yes, comp, is not only faith based, but it justifies why some part of it are necessarily faith-based, if true.

Your argument is cute and may very well be defensible that way. This day and and age it may actually be better supported
that way than as hard clad science, who knows?

It is hard clad science. I know of course that it could look "philosophical" because I indeed tackle a "philosophical problem". But I did actually chose purposefully special hypotheses for making the conclusion 100% testable, as it makes testable many variant of comp (like some weakening or strengthening). Many people, including Bohr, qualified the Einstein Podolski Rosen paper as "philosophical". But then (30 years later) Bell shows it to be testable (and Deutch: exploitable). My work is like EPR+BELL, although it bears on the mind body problem. The UDA part corresponds to EPR and the translation of the UDA in the language of a sufficiently rich machine theorem prover is the BELL part: I arrive to propositions as vulnerable as it is possible to be.

Oh, what a pity! I was kind of bracing to see that derivation! I am sure it would drive your point across a lot quicker. Oh well, I could probably give you a couple of other outrageous hypothesis from which you could derive the whole of physics, not constructively of course! You are the logician but isn't it the case that from an assuredly false premise
you can derive anything?

Oh please! If you don't know the premise is false, then by deriving anything from the premise gives in any circumstances interesting information. Take the case where I would derive the false from comp, then I would have derive a refutation of comp. (p -> f is the same as ~p). That would be something!
So non constructive proof can be interesting and informative!
Anyway, my proof *is* constructive.

The second part is a translation of that argument in the language of the "universal machine itself". This, by the constraints of theoretical computer science, makes the proof constructive, so that it gives the complete derivation of physics from computer science. Of course God is a little malicious, apparently, and we are led to hard intractable purely mathematical questions.

You are welcome,



Oh gosh! Another let down! Well maybe those pesky Quantum Computer builders can rescue you after all one day.

Here you are right. This is actually predictable from comp. One of the quantum logics should be quantum tractable, and not classically tractable. Also, I said to much when I say the questions are intractable. I should insist on the fact that I did solve one of the main decisive question (and comp succeed the test), and that, concerning many others, I have not yet really try to solve them, but professional logician does not find them easy, so I doubt I will get them. Now, I could prove that all of them are tractable in the sense that less than a CETI project could solve them (like you can simulate a <few-bits>-quantum computer with enough classical bits.

I heard that you plan to become immortal (after a little digital plastic surgery) you will have the time to wait for it!

It is the contrary. I plan to be mortal, but with comp this seems extremely hard if not impossible. This is the feature I dislike the most in comp. It is not clear there could be any hope of finding a way to get out. There could be a whole arithmetical Bardo Thodol. (This is already true with Everett QM). That's another reason to think about using the word "theology", perhaps.

Bruno: you seem to hold quite estimable principles about the fundamentals of scientific practice and you seem much less
 threatening than your digitalist surgeon.


When I have a chance I'll check your papers out and see what I can make out
of them. Thanks for the summary, though.

Take it easy,



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