If you answer better your own question than me, I  will lose my job 
here :-)

You put your finger on the very reason why "primary matter" is 
incompatible with computationalism.
Concreteness can make histories singular only by adding actual 
infinities into it. Then from inside we have to take into account all 
interpretations, which, with church thesis, can be defined through one 
interpretation, and it can be shown it does not matter which one (for 
reason quite similar to those justifying that notions like Kolmogorov 
complexity are "machine independent").

I was preparing an answer to your post, but your own is clearer than 
mine. I will say more in an answer to Brent I intend to write tomorrow 
or this week-end.

Hope the others will read and meditate this post ...


Le 31-janv.-07, à 14:37, Stathis Papaioannou a écrit :

>  On second thoughts, my objection below is invalid. My argument has 
> been that under the right interpretation, any string or any physical 
> system could be seen as implementing any meaning or computation: you 
> reverse the usual order and write the dictionary to match the symbols. 
> This only appears strange when the interpretation is not available: 
> however erratic-seeming the internal workings of a physical machine, 
> if it interacts with the environment in an appropriate way, and if it 
> follows the same protocols interacting with a virtual environment, we 
> can accept that it is carrying out a computation. But what if we 
> chanced upon the inputless version of this same computer in ignorance 
> of its function? We might discern patterns in its behaviour (provided 
> that it had not been deliberately designed to obscure pattern, like a 
> message encoded with a one-time pad) but we could attribute any 
> interpretation to these patterns that the designers *might* have 
> chosen, as there is no way to favour one over another. This means that 
> a given physical computer cannot be fixed as implementing one 
> computation unless taken in conjunction with a particular 
> interpretation, which is problematic when multiple interpretations 
> exist or might exist; that is, it shouldn't make any difference to an 
> inputless machine if the interpretation is contained in a printed 
> manual that is waved in front of it or if it exists as an abstract 
> possibility.
> The problem is solved in the case of abstract machines because there 
> is no mismatch between a single physical device and all the possible 
> interpretations. We can, as you say, fix an abstract machine or string 
> against a particular environment and consider just that combination. 
> In the physical world, someone may come along at any time and insist 
> that "cat" means "dog" in his language, but in Platonia you can simply 
> consider the cat-string/ cat-meaning combination, as it would be 
> logically inconsistent to say that the combination might mean 
> something else.
> Stathsi Papaioannou
>> To:
>> Subject: RE: ASSA and Many-Worlds
>> Date: Tue, 30 Jan 2007 09:49:00 +1100
>> Bruno Marchal writes:
>>  > Le 28-janv.-07, à 20:21, Brent Meeker a écrit :
>> >
>> > > 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.
>> > 
>> > Yes. But a series of discrete states (or their godel number) has to 
>> be
>> > related by a computation for making sense.
>> >
>> > So it makes no sense to say that a sequence of number is a 
>> computation.
>> > You have to fix a "universal environment". Let us fix once and for 
>> all
>> > a godel numbering. Then it is only relative to some universal number
>> > that a sequence of number can be counted as a computation.
>>  This sounds a bit strange, as if you have the sequence of numbers, 
>> then you set their meaning, and thereby create the computation. How 
>> can you "fix once and for all a Godel numbering" in Platonia? How do 
>> you exclude all the other possible interpretations? 
>> > Now, from a first person point of view, we don't know in which
>> > computation we belong. So from a first person point of view, we 
>> have to
>> > take all equivalent computations (number sequence) relative to all
>> > universal number.
>> >
>> > This is enough to explain why from first person points of view,
>> > computations seem to require a continuum. In a sense we have to be
>> > related to the continuum of computations going through our states 
>> (it
>> > includes the infinity of computations describing finer grained
>> > histories with respect to our comp level of substitution.
>> >
>> > Consciousness is typically a first person notion. Strictly speaking 
>> it
>> > cannot be associated to one third person computation. Only this one 
>> can
>> > be described by a sequence of discrete states (more or less 
>> arbitrarily
>> > from a choice of a universal number/system). First person 
>> consciousness
>> > is associated with a uncountable ("continuous") third person
>> > computation.
>> >
>> > That is why all notion of self-correctness can make sense only
>> > relatively to the most *probable* computational histories. OK?
>> >
>> >
>> > Bruno
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> > </html
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