Brent Meeker writes:

> > It is consistent with Maudlin's paper to say consciousness supervenes on no 
> > physical activity - i.e. on computation as Platonic object - 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.

> But note that Maudlin's argument depends on being in a classical world.  The 
> quantum 
> world in which we live the counterfactuals are always realized with some 
> probability.

I assume you are referring to the MWI interpretation, in which the 
counterfactuals are 
always realised in some branch with certainty; in a classical world, the 
are realised with some probability just as in the CI of QM. In any case, I 
don't see that 
it makes much difference to the argument. Consider this model of the MWI case. 
A machine 
is made up of two parts, a1 and b1, such that a1 is active at a particular time 
and b1 
comes into play from an inert state to alter the activity of a1 only if a 
counterfactual is 
realised. It seems absurd to say that a1 is conscious when it undergoes some 
activity with b1 hovering over it inertly (because the counterfactual is not 
realised) but not 
conscious when it undergoes the same activity without b1 in place. But it seems 
no less 
absurd to me to say that a1 or a1b1 is conscious with an identical machine next 
to it, a2b2, 
in which the counterfactual is realised, but not if a2b2 is not present. For 
how would a1/a1b1 
know or care about a2b2, whether in the next room or in another branch of the 

Stathis Papaioannou
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