Le 06-oct.-06, à 13:48, Stathis Papaioannou a écrit :

> Bruno Marchal writes:
>> Le 04-oct.-06, à 14:21, Stathis Papaioannou a écrit :
>>> Maudlin's example in his paper is rather complicated. If I could
>>> summarise, he states that one
>>> of the requirements for a conscious computation is that it not be the
>>> trivial case of a recording, a
>>> machine that plays out the same physical motion regardless of input.
>>> He then proposes a second
>>> machine next to one which on its own is just a recording, such that
>>> the second machine comes into
>>> play and acts on the first machine should inputs be different. The
>>> system as a whole now handles
>>> counterfactuals. However, should the counterfactuals not actually
>>> arise, the second machine just
>>> sits there inertly next to the first machine. We would now have to 
>>> say
>>> that when the first machine
>>> goes through physical sequence abc on its own, it is just 
>>> implementing
>>> a recording and could not
>>> possibly be conscious, while if it goes through the same sequence abc
>>> with the second machine sitting
>>> inertly next to it it is or could be conscious. This would seem to
>>> contravene the supervenience thesis
>>> which most computationalists accept: that mental activity supervenes
>>> on physical activity, and further
>>> that the same physical activity will give rise to the same mental
>>> activity. For it seems in the example
>>> that physical activity is the same in both cases (since the second
>>> machine does nothing), yet in the
>>> first case the system cannot be conscious while in the second case it
>>> can.
>> This is a nice summary of Maudlin's paper.
>>> There are several possible responses to the above argument. One is
>>> that computationalism is wrong.
>>> Another is that the supervenience thesis is wrong and the mental does
>>> not supervene on the physical
>>> (but Bruno would say it supervenes on computation as Platonic 
>>> object).
>>> Yet another response is that
>>> the idea that a recording cannot be conscious is wrong, and the
>>> relationship between physical activity
>>> and mental activity can be one->many, allowing that any physical
>>> process may implement any
>>> computation including any conscious computation.
>> Why? The whole point is that consciousness or even just computation
>> would supervene on *absence" of physical activity.
>> This is not "on *any* physical activity. I can imagine the quantum
>> vacuum is "full of computations", but saying consciousness supervene 
>> on
>> no physical activity at all is equivalent, keeping the comp 
>> assumption,
>> to associate consciousness on the immaterial/mathematical 
>> computations.
>> This shows then why we have to explain the relative appearance of the
>> "physical stuff".
> It is consistent with Maudlin's paper to say consciousness supervenes 
> on no
> physical activity - i.e. on computation as Platonic object -

I did not have problem with the expression "platonic object" but be 
careful because it makes some people believe (cf Peter Jones) that we 
are reifying numbers and mathematical objects. This would be a mistake 
only second to Aristotle reification of the notion of matter

> but it is also consistent
> to say that it supervenes on a recording, or on any physical activity, 
> and that
> perhaps if there were no physical universe with at least a single 
> quantum state
> there would be no consciousness. Admittedly the latter is inelegant 
> compared to
> the "no physical supervenience" idea, but I can't quite see how to 
> eliminate it
> completely.

I think you are right, but it seems to me that at that point (still 
more after the translation of the UDA in arithmetic) to really believe 
that a recording can have all consciousness experiences would be like 
to believe that, despite the thermodynamical explanation, cars are 
still pull by (invisible) horses. In any *applied* math there is an 
unavoidable use of Ockham razor. The movie graph or Maudlin's Olympia 
makes it as minimal as possible.



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