1Z wrote:

> What is "our philosophical stance"?

Well, this discussion, for example. I mean that it's all too easy to
'see' mere conceptual constructs as though they were objectively real -
e.g. IMO the 'sequence' to which Stathis is referring.

> What coordination? External time parameters, or internal time capsules?

Coordination between time capsules, such as to reconstitute time-slices
into sequences that would totalise their distributed information
structures into coherent conscious experiences (i.e. this is the
putative 'coordination' I'm casting doubt on).

> A 4D block world?

No, experientially a temporal world, with a given pov constituted by
the total information and perceptual resources encoded by the OM. I
know you find it hard to intuit that if this construct existed within a
4D block structure, it could thereby have any experientially dynamic
character. Personally, I'm unsure of this. One could entertain the view
that our subjective experience of differentiating this from that *just
is* what it's like to be such a structure - i.e. what we experience as
'time' in the A-series sense. I could ask: given that you feel anything
at all, how else would you expect it to feel? Isn't 'time' - dynamism -
an intrinsic aspect of qualia - the experience of contrast? But I'm not
sure if it necessarily follows that the transactional or relational
structure of this must thereby be 'physically dynamic' in an equivalent
sense. 1-person experience emerges in terms of multiple localised
transactional perspectives nested within what is (paradoxically?)
nevertheless a 'seamless' totality, and the contrast between 'what it's
like' to compresently be in these two 'static' states could provide the
contrast, or 'symmetry breaking', that seems essential to the dynamic
experience of difference or change. This may hardly strike you as a
knock-down argument, but I find it suggestive, and worth meditating on

David


> David Nyman wrote:
> > Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> >
> > > As for memory being encoded in or accessible to an OM, that is an 
> > > unnecessary complication.
> > > As you said previously, the OM's are related solely by their information 
> > > content. If the seconds
> > > of your life were sliced up, shuffled and thrown to the wind, (t1) 
> > > 3:10:02 PM of 10/10/06 would
> > > still subjectively follow (t2) 3:10:01 PM of 10/10/06 even though there 
> > > is no connection or "flow"
> > > of information between them. If you look at how t1 and t2 are generated, 
> > > then yes, there is a
> > > connection - they both come out of your head - but once generated, they 
> > > form a natural sequence
> > > which cannot be disrupted.
> >
> > But my point about the 'coherence' of consciousness is that it seems
> > (especially from what occurs, or fails to occur, when it deteriorates)
> > that complex representation and processing of *temporally extended*
> > information sequences (e.g. grasp of the entirety of the content and
> > meaning of a sentence or proposition) is necessary for one to
> > experience and act as a fully-functioning conscious individual.
> > Consequently, it seems to me that such processes must converge on OMs
> > in which all the necessary information is fully encoded and expressed
> > (which is essentially what Barbour seems to be claiming for his 'time
> > capsules' - e.g. his 'flight of the kingfisher' example). Without this,
> > the alternative seems to be that the individual random, wind-blown
> > seconds of your metaphor would need to be totalised in some additional
> > non-information-based manner in order to coordinate an ensemble of
> > informationally incomplete, discrete elements into coherent
> > experiences. AFAICS they only 'form a natural sequence' from the
> > quasi-objective perspective of our philosophical stance.
>
> What is "our philosophical stance"?
>
> >  And such
> > coordination is in any case what we were assuring Peter was both
> > unnecessary and impossible.
>
> What coordination? External time parameters, or internal time capsules?
>
> > The 'snapshot with memory' view of things is surely only viable if each
> > snapshot can be shown to be fully efficacious in reconstituting what we
> > do in fact experience - and this, short of magic, surely requires the
> > discrete presence within each snapshot of all the necessary process and
> > information. It seems to me that this might be a productive slant on
> > what work the brain might actually be doing in constructing the sort of
> > spatio-temporally dimensioned experiences we encounter. IOW, it isn't
> > just 'recording and replaying', but creating and continually updating a
> > coherent informational construct, centred on an embedded 'I', that
> > reads-out 'self-referentially' as a 4D world.
>
> A 4D block world?
>
> > Any given OM would
> > represent the state-of-update of this construct, with consequent full
> > access to its resources at that particular state-of-update.
> >
> > David
> >
> > > David Nyman writes:
> > > >
> > > > Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > (b) can't be right. However many copies of you there are, you only 
> > > > > experience being one at
> > > > > a time.
> > > >
> > > > Stathis, I concur with this view, and for the reasons you give.
> > > > However, much as I hate to complicate this issue further, I wonder if
> > > > you have a view on the following. I mentioned to Peter the issue of the
> > > > destructive effect of loss of short-term memory on the coherence of
> > > > 'normal' conscious processes - e.g. forgetting the beginning of a
> > > > sentence before getting to the end of it - an affliction to which I'm
> > > > not entirely a stranger myself! From this, it seems to me that the
> > > > notion of a 'state of consciousness' as being discrete with an OM, or
> > > > 'time-capsule', might be overly simplistic, unless we conceive of the
> > > > necessary extent of memory as being entirely encoded in, and accessible
> > > > to, an individual OM - i.e. an OM can represent a 'fully-conscious
> > > > individual'. For that matter, what temporal duration is an OM supposed
> > > > to encompass - a 'Planck-length' instant; the entire 'specious present?
> > > > This whole issue seems to be under-defined, but the danger is that the
> > > > very notion of 'the present' might need to be treated as an emergent
> > > > from a coordinated ensemble, rather than being inherent in individual
> > > > OMs. But then what would coordinate them?
> > > >
> > > > Any thoughts?
> > >
> > > It's certainly possible to have a very fragmented stream of 
> > > consciousness. While
> > > fortunately rare these days, the most extreme forms of disorganised 
> > > schizophrenia
> > > are from the patient's point of view something like having random, 
> > > disconnected thoughts
> > > and perceptions without even a sense that they belong to a single 
> > > enduring individual to
> > > bind them together.
> > >
> > > I think of an OM as the shortest possible period of conscious experience, 
> > > which would make
> > > its apparent duration many milliseconds. Much of the discussion in which 
> > > the term OM is used
> > > could as easily (and less ambiguously) use observer-second or 
> > > observer-minute without loss
> > > of the general point. Of course, hours of real time physical activity 
> > > might have to occur for
> > > each subjective moment of consciousness, and those hours may be divided 
> > > up into infinitesimals
> > > in a block universe, or whatever the underlying physics dictates. The OM 
> > > concept has analogies
> > > with block universe models, but it is philosophically useful regardless 
> > > of what the actual nature
> > > of time is.
> > >
> > > As for memory being encoded in or accessible to an OM, that is an 
> > > unnecessary complication.
> > > As you said previously, the OM's are related solely by their information 
> > > content. If the seconds
> > > of your life were sliced up, shuffled and thrown to the wind, (t1) 
> > > 3:10:02 PM of 10/10/06 would
> > > still subjectively follow (t2) 3:10:01 PM of 10/10/06 even though there 
> > > is no connection or "flow"
> > > of information between them. If you look at how t1 and t2 are generated, 
> > > then yes, there is a
> > > connection - they both come out of your head - but once generated, they 
> > > form a natural sequence
> > > which cannot be disrupted.
> > >
> > > Stathis Papaioannou
> > > _________________________________________________________________
> > > Be one of the first to try Windows Live Mail.
> > > http://ideas.live.com/programpage.aspx?versionId=5d21c51a-b161-4314-9b0e-4911fb2b2e6d


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