Le 20-mars-06, à 14:27, Georges Quenot a écrit :


>> Comp is just my theory of mind.
>
> That's fine.


You know, Bohr said about quantum mechanics that to understand it you 
need to understand that you don't understand it. Comp is very much like 
that, the more you grasp it, the less you can believe in it. It is a 
royal gate to the counter-intuitive land.



>
>> It is useful because it makes things
>> completely precise and testable.
>
> For instance?


For instance, what I was just saying above. With self-duplication 
thought experiments I can justify that the first person point of view 
cannot recognize itself into any third person description.
Also, if you accept the standard definition of knowledge à-la 
Theaetetus (cf the hypostases), you can make this mathematically 
precise.



> About consciousness?


The UDA justifies that matter arises in some way through consciousness 
in a verifiable way. So you can indirectly test theories on 
consciousness, and this keeping somehow the "consciousness mystery" 
intact. If you accept Helmholtz's theory of perception, then you can 
modelise "consciousness" by the unconscious (automated) inference of 
self-consistency. Mathematical logic can help to see that such an 
inference is equivalent with the inference of the existence of a 
(relative) reality or world-view. Then with computer science, you can 
even justify a role for consciousness like relative self-speeding 
ability, but also the aptitude of making decision in finite time in 
presence of partial information.
Comp is not just a philosophical idea, it is a way to apply computer 
science for dundamental question. It gives formula, like Lob's theorem 
(B(Bp->p)->Bp) which are as informative as schroedinger equation in 
physics.



> I consider the possibility that mind emerges from matter
> activity.


I respect that, but this is just impossible in case comp is true (cf 
the Movie Graph Argument or Maudlin's Olympia, or UDA + occam razor, 
etc.).
If you want I can explain you this  bit by bit.
I am glad with this because I have never really understood what is 
"matter".  Each time I ask, people oscillate between giving me a list 
of sensation (coffee smelling, table hurting), or measurement of 
numbers and correlations between numbers (real or natural, ...), or 
they invoke logical algebra, etc. At least with comp I know that the 
concept is useless, and quasi contradictory (even without occam).



> I think that modern physics and the synthetic
> theory of evolution provide a resonable (though partial)
> account for the "technical" capabilities of the human
> mind.


I agree that the theory of evolution has a great power of explanation. 
Roughly speaking, comp leads to a similar explanation for the origin of 
the physical laws, in terms of winning "dreams" where dreams are 
computations as seen from some first person point of view. The person 
point of view can be captured through the modal logic appearing 
naturally in computer science. It is not an evolution in time, but 
still an evolution in some logical space.



> What remains unclear to me is "consciousness".
> The simplest explanation is that this is just the way
> things appear to human organisms but I still find that
> a bit short. Does Comp have more to say on this issue?


Comp can explain the whole picture minus one epsilon, but comp can 
explain why it is necessary that an epsilon will remain outside the 
explanation.
Precisely, once the identification between consciousness and first 
person view of self-consistency automated bet, comp can then explain:

1) why consciousness is of the type true but uncommunicable, (and thus 
private);
2) self-speeding role of consciousness;
3) why it seems to be wholistic and integrated;
4) How consciousness of all lobian entities participate in the building 
of physical reality;
5) How consciousness can make you more clever;
6) How cleverness can make you LESS conscious;
7) Why there is something uncomputably more clever than a inference 
machine: two (or more) inference machines;
8) Why the errors, the illusions, the wrongness, the madness and 
eventually death (or its possibility) are needed for self-conscious 
expansion;
9) Why a tiny part of the mystery will necessarily remain, as far as we 
stay in the terrestrial or effective realm. It is an open problem to 
see if we can "die alive" and see truly beyond. My reading of Plotinus 
makes me think this should not be entirely unplausible with 
comp-weaker, but I'm not yet sure about that;
10) Why there is quantum and quale. Unexpected results: the quanta seem 
just to correspond to the first person plural notion of (sharable) 
qualia (part of this remains to be verified more accurately, though);
11) and then all this can be indirectly testable, given that with comp, 
the physical laws are entirely derivable by the consciousness theory 
attached to comp, and so we can derive physics from it and compare with 
the empirical physics. (Ah but this is the point 4, so I stop here).

I certainly do think that comp explains a lot, although I believe the 
explanation comes more exactly from lobianity which is a consequence of 
  a much more general assumption like "self-referential correctness". 
But then comp makes the reasoning easier.

All this is explained in length in "Conscience et Mécanisme" (my 
Brussel's "thesis"). In France I have restricted myself (for the PhD at 
Lille) only on the comp *matter* theory.

Hope I don't look too much pretentious but then the comp theory is 
already there, just waiting to be extended, or refuted, or corrected, 
or compared with similar of dissimilar approaches. Like in this list 
where many people shares some common intuition on fundamental 
questions, and are willing to discuss them.

Bruno


http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/


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