Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> On 3/22/07, *Brent Meeker* <[EMAIL PROTECTED] 
> <mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]>> wrote:
>     No.  I'm talking about a sort of program/data division - which I
>     recognize is arbitrary in computer program - but I think may have an
>     analogue in brains.  When I write a simulation of a system of ODEs
>     the time evolution of the ODEs define the states.  But in the
>     simulation, what actually evolves them is passing them to another
>     program that takes them and the current state as data and
>     integrates; thus producing a sequence of states.  When you talk
>     about isolated OMs, what we are conscious of, I think of them as the
>     states.  They are what we write into memory; they form the
>     "narrative" of the simulation.  The integrator is like a simulation
>     at a lower level, perhaps at the level of neurons.  We're not aware
>     of it and in fact many different integration algorithms could be
>     used with little difference in the outcome (as in the comp idea of
>     replacing neurons with chips).  But the integrator, even conceived
>     as an abstract 'machine' in Platonia, is performing a function,
>     connecting
>     one state to the next.  I'm not denying that you can simulate all
>     this and that you can take a block universe view of the
>     simulation.  I'm just saying that the block can't be made of just
>     the conscious parts, the OMs, it needs to include the unconscious
>     parts that connect the conscious parts. 
> The integrator is just a device to generate the next state. Perhaps 
> without it there would be no continuity because there would be no 
> simulation, but if you had the DE's all solved beforehand you could 
> simply plot the states and have continuous motion, or whatever it is you 
> are simulating. In any case, what could it possibly mean for the 
> unconscious part binding my OMs together to be disrupted? Suppose that 
> this happened every minute on the minute: would I feel any different? If 
> I did feel different, that would mean my consciousness was affected, so 
> it would be the OMs that differed, not just the unconscious part; while 
> if I didn't feel any different by definition my continuity of 
> consciousness has been maintained and the unconscious disruption is 
> irrelevant.
> Stathis Papaioannou

No, my thought was that if you slice the physical or computational basis of 
consciousness to finely then no single slice is conscious, i.e. and OM must 
have some duration. And since it has duration it provides an inherent sense of 
time.  Note that I'm not denying that the physical process or computation can 
be more finely divided; maybe even arbitrarily finely divided, as for a 
continuum.  I'm just saying that below some granularity, there is no longer a 
"thought" or an "observation" that can be associated with that grain; that it 
takes some sequence of grains to constitute a thought.  

Further, I note that in replacing neural processes by a digital simulation this 
simulation must use much finer space and time divisions than those that 
correspond to "thoughts" or OMs.  So even assuming comp, consciousness is an 
emergent phenomena not a fundamental one.

Brent Meeker

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