Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> Brent Meeker writes:
>  > > > OK, but that means "observer moments" are not fundamental and the
>  > > "illusion" of their continuity may be provided by the continuity of
>  > > their underpinning. But I don't see how a strictly stepwise discrete
>  > > process as contemplated in the UD can provide that continuity. It 
> was my
>  > > understanding that it assumed consciousness could be provided by a
>  > > series of disjoint states.
>  > > >
>  > > > Brent Meeker
>  > >
>  > > It's an assumption of computationalism that the discrete computational
>  > > steps will lead to continuity of consciousness. Moreover, it's an
>  > > assumption of computationalism that a discontinuity in substrate of
>  > > implementation (i.e. from brain to digital computer) will preserve
>  > > continuity of consciousness.
>  >
>  > Maybe that assumption is inconsistent.
>  >
>  > Computational steps have an order in Platonia. In implementing them 
> in the material world, as in a computer, the sequentiallity (is that a 
> word?) of the steps is provided by the underlying physics just as the 1s 
> and 0s are provided by switches. But without the continuity of the 
> substrate it seems the states need some axiomatic, inherent order as in 
> Platonia. So then it is not clear that states can be chopped arbitrarily 
> finely and still function as computations - or a stream of conscious states.
>  >
>  > Brent Meeker
> I don't see how it is possible to mix up something any more thoroughly 
> in the real world than it is already mixed up in Platonia. 

Sure. In the real world I can write 1 2 4 7 6 3...  But in arithmtic Platonia 
(a small part of the kingdom) there's no spacial or temporal order that can 
conflict with the inherent order.

>It's not as 
> if God has to explicitly put the integers in line one after the other: 
> they just naturally form a sequence, and they would no less form a 
> sequence if they were written on cards and thrown to the wind. Explicit 
> ordering in the physical world is important from a third person 
> perspective. If the putative sequence has a first person experience, and 
> the substrate of its implementation is transparent to that first person 
> experience (eg. an entity in a virtual reality environment with no 
> external input) then the implicit ordering in Platonia is sufficient to 
> create the first person impression of continuity.
> Stathis Papaioannou

I don't disagree with that.  But that means that a conscious, 1st person, pair 
of experiences, i.e. pair of numbers can have no order other than the inherent 
order of the numbers.  And if an experience corresponds to just a number, then 
experiences are discrete and can't be chopped finer than some limit.  

I guess I need a more explicit idea of how experiences occur in arithmetic 
Platonia.  Are we to imagine that some large number 3875835442... is a single, 
atomic experience and another number 3876976342... is another single, atomic 
experience and they have no other relation than their natural order?  In that 
case, they would be experiences in a certain bundle of streams of consciousness 
just in virtue of having some digits in common or having factors in common or 
what?  Or are we to imagine another Platonic object, a Turing machine, that 
generates both these numbers in a certain sequence (maybe the reverse of their 
natural order) - and that's what makes them parts of the same experience bundle?

Brent Meeker

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