Peter Jones writes:
 
> Brent Meeker wrote:
> > Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> > > Peter Jones writes:
> > >
> > >
> > >>>That's what I'm saying, but I certainly don't think everyone agrees with 
> > >>>me on the list, and
> > >>>I'm not completely decided as to which of the three is more absurd: 
> > >>>every physical system
> > >>>implements every conscious computation, no physical system implements 
> > >>>any conscious
> > >>>computation (they are all implemented non-physically in Platonia), or 
> > >>>the idea that a
> > >>>computation can be conscious in the first place.
> > >>
> > >>
> > >>You haven't made it clear why you don't accept that every physical
> > >>system
> > >>implements one computation, whether it is a
> > >>conscious computation or not. I don't see what
> > >>contradicts it.
> > >
> > >
> > > Every physical system does implement every computation, in a trivial 
> > > sense, as every rock
> > > is a hammer and a doorstop and contains a bust of Albert Einstein inside 
> > > it. Those three aspects
> > > of rocks are not of any consequence unless there is someone around to 
> > > appreciate them.
> > > Similarly, if the vibration of atoms in a rock under some complex mapping 
> > > are calculating pi
> > > that is not of any consequence unless someone goes to the trouble of 
> > > determining that mapping,
> > > and even then it wouldn't be of any use as a general purpose computer 
> > > unless you built another
> > > general purpose computer to dynamically interpret the vibrations (which 
> > > does not mean the rock
> > > isn't doing the calculation without this extra computer).
> >
> > I think there are some constraints on what the rock must be doing in order 
> > that it
> > can be said to be calculating pi instead of the interpreting computer.  For 
> > example
> > if the rock states were just 1,0,1,0,1,0... then there are several 
> > arguments based on
> > for example information theory that would rule out that being a computation 
> > of pi.
> 
> Stathis would no doubt say you just need a dictionary that says;
> 
> Let the first 1 be 3
> let the first 0 be 1
> let the second 1 be 4
> let the second 0 be 1
> let the third 1 be 5
> let the third 0 be 9
> ...
> 
> But there are good AIT reasons for saying that all the complexity is
> in the dictionary

Yes, that's just what I would say. The only purpose served by the rock is to 
provide the real world 
dynamism part of the computation, even if it does this simply by mapping lines 
of code to the otherwise 
idle passage of time. The rock would be completely irrelevant but for this, and 
in fact Bruno's idea is that the 
rock (or whatever) *is* irrelevant, and the computation is implemented by 
virtue of its status as a Platonic 
object. It would then perhaps be more accurate to say that physical reality 
maps onto the computation, rather 
than the computation maps onto physical reality. I think this is more elegant 
than having useless chunks of 
matter implementing every computation, but I can't quite see a way to eliminate 
all matter, since the only 
empirical starting point we have is that *some* matter appears to implement 
some computations. 

Stathis Papaioannou
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