Re: Maudlin's argument

Le 03-oct.-06, à 06:56, George Levy a écrit :

Bruno Marchal wrote in explaining Maudlin's argument:

"For any given precise running computation associated to some inner experience, you
can modify the device in such a way that the amount of physical activity involved is
arbitrarily low, and even null for dreaming experience which has no inputs and no outputs.
Now, having suppressed that physical activity present in the running computation, the
machine will only be accidentally correct. It will be correct only for that precise computation,
with unchanged environment. If it is changed a little bit, it will make the machine running
computation no more relatively correct. But then, Maudlin ingenuously showed that
counterfactual correctness can be recovered, by adding non active devices which will be
triggered only if some (counterfactual) change would appear in the environment.

To reduce the machine's complexity Maudlin must perform a modicum of analysis, simulation etc.. to predict how the machine performs in different situations. Using his newly acquired knowledge, he then  maximally reduces the machine's complexity for one particular task, keeping the machine fully operational for all other tasks. In effect Maudlin has surreptitiously inserted himself in the mechanism. so now, we don't have just the machine but we have the machine plus Maudlin. The machine is not simpler or not existent. The machine is now Maudlin!

(We can come back on this real critics, but here is a short answer for those who have Mauldlin's paper, we can find a version on the net now).

Olympia is "proto-olympia" + "the Klaras". Maudlin assumes comp and he needs only the description of the original machine to build the Klaras (for regaining counterfactual correctness) and add them to the proto-olympia (the machine with no physical activity which is only accidentally correct). Once added, the composed, Olympia = "proto-olympia + Klara", is independent of Maudlin, and is computationnaly equivalent with the original machine).

So Olympia, once build, does not need Maudlin's at all. Of course with comp the building itself cannot influence the future possible supervenience, for the same reason that if a doctor give you an artificial brain, the story of each individual components has no relation with the later use of it (if not it means the comp level has not been chosen correctly).

In conclusion, the following conclusion reached by Maudlin and Bruno is fallacious.

"Now this shows that any inner experience can be associated with an arbitrary low (even null) physical
activity, and this in keeping counterfactual correctness. And that is absurd with the
conjunction of both comp and materialism."

I think the paradox can be resolved by tracing how information flows and Maudlin is certainly in the circuit, using information, just like Maxwell's demon is affecting entropy.

Once Olympia is build, Maudlin's is completely out of the circuit. I think you forget the purpose of the Klaras.

At least, George, this is a real attempt to find an error, and in the 8th step ! I appreciate your try, but it seems to me you have just forgot that Maudlin's did *program* his intervention: through the Klaras, so that keeping comp at this stage makes Maudlin's special role irrelevant. OK?

Bruno

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

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