On Wed, Sep 06, 2006 at 12:25:53PM +0200, Bruno Marchal wrote:
> Le 06-sept.-06, à 10:48, Russell Standish a écrit :
> > On Wed, Sep 06, 2006 at 12:25:10AM -0700, "Hal Finney" wrote:
> >> I'd think that in the context of a multiverse, physical supervenience
> >> would say that whether consciousness is instantiated would depend only
> >> on physical conditions here, at this point in the multiverse, and 
> >> would
> >> not depend on conditions elsewhere.  It would be a sort of "locality
> >> condition" for the multiverse.
> >
> > Why do you say this? Surely physical supervenience is simply
> > supervenience on some physical object. Physical objects are spread
> > across the multiverse, and are capable of reacting to all
> > counterfactuals presented to it.
> I agree with Hal Finney objection. A "simpler" one is that if the 
> physics needed is of the type MW or quantum (without collapse), then IF 
> this is relevant for solving the maudlin's paradox then a quantum 
> physical system should NOT been turing emulable.
> Put in another way: suppose that a quantum system is conscious, and 
> that comp is correct. Then a classical computer emulation of the 
> quantum system should be conscious, but for this one only the classical 
> counterfactual can play a role, and Maudlin's paradox will reappear at 
> that level.

This simplest way of addressing this is to use your dovetailer instead
of quantum multiverses, which tends to confuse people, and get
associated with quantum mysticism. The dovetailer is obviously
computable, but not the internal "trace" of one of its branches. (A
point you have frequently made).

In fact lets go one further and write a program that prints out all
combinations of 10^{30} bits in Library of Babel style. This is more
than enough information to encode all possible histories of neuronal
activity of a human brain, so most of us would bet this level of
substitution would satisfy "yes doctor".

So does this mean that the entire library of babel is conscious, or
the dovetailer program (which is about 5 lines of Fortran) is
conscious? To me it is an emphatic no! Does it mean that one of the
10^{30} length bitstrings is conscious? Again I also say no. The only
possible conscious thing is the subcollection of bitstrings that
corresponds to the actions of a program emulating a person under all
possible inputs. It will have complexity substantially less than
10^{30}, but substantially greater than the 5 line dovetailer.

> > But I think we are headed in the direction of whether computable
> > Multiverses really satisfy what we mean by computationalism. If
> > someone copies the entirety of reality, do I still survive in a "folk"
> > psychology sense. I am still confused on this point.
> How could you not survive that?
> Bruno

If I have inoperable brain cancer in reality A, and someone duplicates
reality A to reality B, then unfortunately I still have inoperable brain
cancer in reality B.

Maybe I'm being too literal...

I can also never experience your famous Washinton-Moscow teleportation
excercise - in reality B I am still stuck in Brussels.

*PS: A number of people ask me about the attachment to my email, which
is of type "application/pgp-signature". Don't worry, it is not a
virus. It is an electronic signature, that may be used to verify this
email came from me if you have PGP or GPG installed. Otherwise, you
may safely ignore this attachment.

A/Prof Russell Standish                  Phone 0425 253119 (mobile)
UNSW SYDNEY 2052                         [EMAIL PROTECTED]             
Australia                                http://parallel.hpc.unsw.edu.au/rks
            International prefix  +612, Interstate prefix 02

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