>> You are a zombie. What is it about sensory data that suggests an
>> external world?
> What is it about sensory data that suggests an external world to
> human?

Nothing. That's the point. That's why we incorporate the usage of natural
world properties to contextualise it in the external world. Called
phenomenal consciousuness..that makes us not a zombie.

> Well, of course, we have a phenomenal view. Bu there is no informtion
> in the phenomenal display that was not first in the pre-phenomenal
> sensory data.

Yes there is. Mountains of it. It's just that the mechanism and the need
for it is not obvious to you. Some aspects of the external world must be
recruited to some extent in the production of the visual field, for
example. None of the real spatial relative location qualities, for
example, are inherent in the photons hitting the retina. Same with the
spatial nature of a sound field. That data is added through the mechanisms
for generation of phenomenality.

>> The science you can do is the science of zombie sense data, not an
>> external world.
> What does "of" mean in that sentence? Human science
> is based on human phenomenality which is based on pre-phenomenal
> sense data, and contains nothing beyond it informationally.

No, science is NOT done on pre-phenomenal sense data. It is done on the
phenomenal scene. This is physiological fact. Close you eyes and see how
much science you can do.

I don;t seem to be getting this obvious simple thing past the pre-judgements.

> Humans unconsciously make guesses about the causal origins
> of their sense-data in order to construct the phenomenal
> view, which is then subjected to further educated guesswork
> as part of the scientific process (which make contradict the
> original guesswork, as in the detection of illusions)

No they unconsciously generate a phenomenal field an then make judgements
from it. Again close your eyes and explore what affect it has on your
judgements. Hard-coded a-priori reflex system such as those that make the
hand-eye reflex work in blindsight are not science and exist nowhere else
excpet in reflex bahaviour.

>> Your hypotheses about an external world would be treated
>> as wild metaphysics by your zombie friends
> Unless they are doing the same thing. why shouldn't
> they be? It is function/behaviour afer all. Zombies
> are suppposed to lack phenomenality, not function.

You are stuck on the philosophiocal zombie! Ditch it! Not what we are
talking about. The philosophical zombie is an oxymoron.

>> (none of which you cen ever be
>> aware of, for they are in this external world..., so there's another
>> problem :-) Very tricky stuff, this.
>> The only science you can do is "I hypohesise that when I activate this
>> nerve, that sense nerve and this one do <this>" You then publish in
>> nature
>> and collect your prize. (Except the external world this assumes is not
>> there, from your perspective... life is grim for the zombie)
> Assuming, for some unexplained reasons, that zombies cannot
> hypothesise about an external world without phenomena.

Again you are projecting your experiences onto the zombie. There is no
body, no boundary, not NOTHING to the zombie to even conceive of to
hypothesise about. They are a toaster, a rock.

>> If I am to do more I must have a 'learning rule'. Who tells me the
>> learning rule?
> The only thing a zombie lacks, by hypothesis, is phenomenality.
> Since a "learning rule" is not a quale, they presumably have them.

>> This is a rule of interpretation. That requires context.
>> Where does the context come from? There is none. That is the situation
>> of
>> the zombie.
>> <snip>
>> >> ..but..
>> >> The sense data is separate and exquisitely ambiguous and we do
>> >> not look for sense data to verify scientific observations!
>> >> We look for perceptual/phenomenal data. Experiences.
>> >> Maybe this is yet another terminological issue. Sensing
>> >> is not perception.
>> >
>> > If the perception is less ambiguous that the sense data,
>> > that is a false certainty.
>> Less ambiguous means more information content. More discrimination. The
>> brain accesses the external world directly, not only via sensing.
> How?
>> A
>> mystery of non-local access = "hard problem"  = we don't know
>> everything.
> The hard problem is about how phenomenality arises.
> You seem to have assumed that there is some kind of
> clairvoyance going on as well. But that is idiosyncratic.

No. No. No. I am saying that we do not know everything! That is all. You
are constantly trying to make a solutuion fit your knowledge in the face
of a problem which everyone agrees remains. So it means we do not know

>> We have to admit to this ignorance and accept that we don't know
>> something
>> fundamental about the universe. BTW this means no magic, no ESP, no
>> "dualism" - just basic physics an explanatory mechanism that is right in
>> front of us that our 'received view' finds invisible.
> Errr, yes. Or our brains don't access the external world directly.

That is your preconception, not mine. Try and imagine the ways in which
you would have to think if that make sense of phenomenality. here's one:

That there is no such thing as 'space' or 'things' or 'distance' at all.
That we are all actually in the same place. You can do this and not
violate any "laws of nature" at all, and it makes phenomenality easy -
predictable in brain material.... the fact that it predicts itself, when
nothing else has... now what could that mean?

Colin Hales

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