Bruno marchal writes:

> Le 23-janv.-07, à 06:17, Stathis Papaioannou a écrit :
> > Simplistically, I conceive of computations as mysterious abstract 
> > objects, like
> > all other mathematical objects. Physical computers are devices which 
> > reflect
> > these mathematical objects in order to achieve some practical purpose 
> > in the
> > substrate of their implementation. A computer, an abacus, a set of 
> > fingers,
> > pencil and paper can be used to compute 2+3=5, but these processes do 
> > not
> > create the computation, they just make it accessible to the user. The 
> > fact that
> > 2 birds land on a tree in South America and 3 elephants drink at a 
> > watering hole
> > in Africa, or 2 atoms move to the left in a rock and 3 atoms move to 
> > the right
> > is essentially the same process as the abacus, but it is useless, 
> > trivial, lost in
> > randomness, escapes the notice of theories of computation - and 
> > rightly so.
> > However, what about the special case where a more complex version of 
> > 2+3=5
> > on the abacus is conscious? Then I see no reason why the birds and the 
> > elephants
> > or the atoms in a rock should not also implement the same 
> > consciousness, even
> > though there is no possibility of interaction with the outside world 
> > due to the
> > computation being lost in noise. What this really does is destroy the 
> > whole notion
> > of physical supervenience: if you shot the elephants or smashed the 
> > rock, the
> > computation could as easily spring from the new noise situation. Thus, 
> > it would
> > appear that consciousness comes from computation as pure mathematical 
> > object,
> > and is no more created by the physical process that addition is 
> > created by the
> > physical process. Either that, or it isn't computational at all.
> OK, so we do agree.
> >
> >> The real question is not "does a rock implement computations", the
> >> question is "does a rock implement computations in such a way as to
> >> changed the relative measure of my (future) comp states in a relevant
> >> way?" And for answering such question we need to know what a rock
> >> really is, and both physics and comp are not near at all to answer
> >> this. Comp has less trouble here because it does not have to reify any
> >> primary reality associated to the rock, which already emerge locally
> >> from many non material computations.
> >
> > No, as I implied above, a rock makes no difference whatsoever to the 
> > measure of
> > computation it might be seen as implementing.
> OK.
> So, now, we have to extract "physics" from computations if we assume 
> (even just standard comp). Do you agree with the UDA informal 
> conclusion? That is, that physics will be given by relative (cf RSSA) 
> measure on computational histories from some internal point of views? 
> Such a measure has to be observer invariant (I am not talking about the 
> content of what is measured, but about the general math of that 
> measure). In any case we must dig on computations and provability, if 
> only to get reasonable mathematical definition of those different 
> "person point of view".

Yes, I agree, *given* comp. 
> PS Could someone give me the plural of "point of view" ?

"points of view" 

Stathis Papaioannou
Be one of the first to try Windows Live Mail.
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups 
"Everything List" group.
To post to this group, send email to
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to [EMAIL PROTECTED]
For more options, visit this group at

Reply via email to