Le 22-juin-06, à 03:55, Stathis Papaioannou a écrit (in a reply to Stephen):

<x-tad-bigger> I am reminded of David Chalmer's paper recently mentioned by Hal Finney, "Does a Rock Implement Every Finite State Automaton?", which looks at the idea that any physical state such as the vibration of atoms in a rock can be mapped onto any computation, if you look at it the right way. Usually when this idea is brought up (Hilary Putnam, John Searle, the aforementioned Chalmers paper) it is taken as self-evidently wrong. However, I have not seen any argument to convince me that this is so; it just seems people think it *ought* to be so, then look around for a justification having already made up their minds. Now, if any computation is implemented by any physical process, then if one physical process exists, then all possible computations are implemented. I'll stop at this point, although it is tempting to speculate that if all it takes for every computation to be implemented is a single physical process - a rock, a single subatomic particle, the idle passage of time in an otherwise empty universe - perhaps this is not far from saying that the physical process is superfluous, and all computations are implemented by virtue of their existence as platonic objects.

Nice point! At least those platonic computations are well-defined as such including the counterfactuals. Now, a real rock implements plausibly a particular (not universal) quantum computation, and as such some finite state automaton, but not a universal computation, still less a DU.



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