Le 25-mars-07, à 15:13, Mark Peaty a écrit :

> I hope you guys will forgive my irreverence, but in the last
> couple of hours for the first time I have managed to read this
> thread to here. Having done so, and in the spirit of this
> everything-list wherein it is assumed everything is not only
> possible but _will_ happen and indeed may already have happened
> in a universe near you [and of course is that possibility
> exists, then it definitely already always has happened], I get
> the feeling that comp could lead to madness.

You begin to see the point perhaps ...

> But then, of
> course, it already has hasn't it ... in another universe
> somewhere/when else ... of course ... :-)

You wish :-)

> The thing is Brent and Stathis have been going around and around
> this critical point of duration and continuity for some time
> now, without wanting to admit that *our experience of being
> aware of being here and now [respectively] is intrinsically
> paradoxical*. Well I have felt compelled to that viewpoint for
> more than a decade or so now, and I find from reading this
> discussion that comp does not solve this. OK, it may well be
> that Loebian machines, whether modest or not in other universes,
> or just modest but smarter than me - the latter not hard :-) can
> get on with the computation of their ontology and somehow
> transcend the apparent paradox. The paradox I have thus far
> asserted to be primary is the comparatively simple thought that
> we are constantly mistaken in taking our experience to be more
> or less _all of what is happening_ when it is really only our
> brain's construction of its model of self in the world, which is
> nothing to sniff at of course but then the processes for doing
> this have been scores of millions of years in the making.

OK. This is not so new. A rough summary of Aristotle versus Plato 
consists in saying:
Aristotle: reality is what you see and measure (let the experts speak, 
and sleep well)
Plato: what you see and measure *could* be the shadow of the shadow of 
the shadow of what *could* perhaps be (let us keep vigilance in all 

> Comp makes the whole thing much more Comp-licated!

It is the least we can say. My original motivation was in showing that 
with comp the mind body problem is two times more complex than 
materialists usually think. Indeed (cf uda) with comp you have to 
explain the physical from the "number-theoretical/information 
theoretical etc..) studies.

> AFAICS under
> Comp, we are each and every one of us confined to an anthropic
> view which does not even have a consolation

Careful with the idea of consolation. A priori science is not supposed 
to comfort us, but to believe (and hopefully know). Cf some recurring 
remark from Stathis to Tom. Now, if you have "faith", really, then 
there are no reason to be anxious about any finding by science.

> that we are
> participating in a genuine continuity.

And here you are quite quick. But, with respect to this notion of 
continuity,  I have a problem with a list, given tat for being less 
quick on such question you have to invest more in a bit more technical 
computer science. I am not sure computer science and logic makes it 
possible to recover any third person global notion of continuity, but 
evidences add that there are genuine first person plural genuine 
continuity. Actually, the very notion of computation, both classical 
and quantum, could have his roots in topology. In some mathematical 
structure, akin to first person structure, the notion of computable is 
equivalent with the notion of being continuous.

> Pre-comp, one could
> assume that, no matter how deluded one might be, as long as 'I'
> am able to be coherent long enough to recognise that it doesn't
> make sense to say 'I don't exist' then the chances were very
> good that the world is going on independently of me and I have
> the chance of really contributing.

I would not abandon that idea.

>  In a pre-comp universe a wise
> person will recognise that, well, things are always what we
> believe them to be until we discover otherwise so we have no
> guarantee that our attempts to do the right thing are
> necessarily the best. However we have a right to believe that so
> long as we have tried to sort out the facts of our situation and
> purposed not to cause avoidable harm to others then we are being
> as ethical as we know how to be and this counts for something
> and at least we tried.


> But with comp, assuming there are no
> intrinsic barriers to the formation of worlds and experience
> wherein we can come to truly believe we and our world have a
> coherent history, we have no reason to assume that this current
> experience _and the whole noumenal world we believe to exist_
> cannot just wink out of existence. By definition it seems, it
> must always be possible that everything we take to be an
> indication of duration 'out there' is a transient artefact of
> this slice of multiverse.

This is a problem for any block view of reality (primarily physical or 
But making the physical universe secondary does not make it more 
deluding. On the contrary: given that if the quantum hyp is correct, 
then we have to justify it from numbers, and this would make the 
"quantum universe" even more solid, and less deluding.

> That is a pretty rugged conception to present to people as
> _necessarily_ possible. I therefore take comfort in the
> difficulties that people have in integrating Comp into a
> coherent explanation of the universe we perceive.

Hmmmm.... If you search comfort, be prepared to be deluded and trapped 
by wishful thinking.
'course, I hope truth being enough comfortable, but I find wishful 
thinking rather not comfortable for the long run.
Being wrong leads to difficulties, in general.

> I realise that
> much can be done with higher mathematics but just because people
> can create a formal language system in which algorithmic
> processes can be referred to with simple symbols, and sets of
> such symbols can be syntaxed together with indicators that mean,
> effectively, 'and so on so forth for ever and ever', this does
> not mean that the universe outside of peoples' heads can ever
> reflect this. I think it behoves contributors here to consider
> whether the universal dovetailer can ever be more real than Jack
> and his Beanstalk. Jack and his magic vegetable have been around
> for a couple of centuries now. The universal dovetailer may do
> likewise. We just need to keep in touch with the idea though
> that 'It Ain't Necessarily So!'.

Yes. And provably so. It is wahat I find particularly cute with the 
comp hyp: The "yes doctor" entirely and completely  justify why comp, 
if true, has to be non necessarily such. "Yes doctor" entails the 
fundamental right to say "no" to the doctor. Comp is an eminently 
personal affair, which is coherent with its "elimination" of 
eliminative materialism, and its reawakening of many person points of 



> Mark Peaty  CDES
> http://www.arach.net.au/~mpeaty/
> 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
> >

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