Brent Meeker writes:
> 1Z wrote:
> > Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> >>I've never really understood why computationalists insist that a system
> >>must be able to handle counterfactuals in order for consciousness to occur,
> > I've explained that several times: computer programmes contain
> > if-then statements.
> >>other than that otherwise any physical system could be seen as implementing
> >>any computation, which does not seem to me a good reason. In any case,
> >>Maudlin shows that the requirement for handling counterfactuals leads to
> >>a situation where of two systems with identical physical activity, one is
> >>conscious and the other not.
> > If two systems differ counterfactually, they are not physically
> > identical.
> I don't think I understand this either. Computer programs contain if-then
> statements which branch the process depending on the data input to the
> But there is no real distinction between data an program. So if you insist
> that computed intelligence or consciousness depends on counterfactuals in
> program that seems to me to be the same as insisting that the computation is
> implemented in some way that divides it from input data, i.e. it is in an
> I'm sympathetic to this view. I think intelligence is relative to an
> environment. But I'm not sure what computationalists think of this; I
> they suppose the environment can be simulated too and so then the whole thing
> a closed system and there are no conuterfactual branchings.
> Brent Meeker
Is it possible that we are currently actors in a single, deterministic,
computer program, with the illusion of free will and if-then contingency in
being due to the fact that we don't know the details of how the program will
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