On Wed, Nov 19, 2008 at 5:59 AM, Bruno Marchal <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:

> Does everyone accept, like Russell,  that, assuming COMP and MAT, Alice
> is not a zombie? I mean, is there someone who object? Remember we are
> proving implication/ MAT+MECH => <something>. We never try to argue
> about that <something> per se. Eventually we hope to prove MAT+MECH =>
> false, that is NOT(MAT & MECH) which is equivalent to MAT implies NOT
> MECH, MECH => NOT MAT, etc.
> (by MAT i mean materialism, or naturalism, or physicalism or more
> generally "the physical supervenience thesis", according to which
> consciousness supervenes on the physical activity of the brain.

Bruno, I am on the fence as to whether or not Alice is a Zombie.  The
argument for her not being conscious is related to the non causal effect of
information in this scenario.  A string of 1's and 0's which is simply
defined out of nowhere, in my opinion cannot contain conscious observers,
even if it could be considered to encode brain states conscious observers or
a universe with conscious observers.  To have meaningful information there
must be relations between objects, such as the flow of information in the
succession of states in a Turing machine.  In the case of Alice, the
information coming from the cosmic rays is meaningless, and might as well
have occurred in isolation.  If all of Alice's logic gates had been spread
over a field, and made to fire in the same way due to cosmic rays and if all
logic gates remained otherwise disconnected from each other, would anyone
consider this field of logic gates be conscious?

I have an idea that consciousness is related to hierarchies of information,
at the lowest levels of neural activity, simple computations of small
amounts of information combine information into a result, and then these
higher level results are passed up to higher levels of processing, etc.  For
example the red/green/blue data from the eyes are combined into single
pixels, these pixels are combined into an field of colors, this field of
colors is then processed by object classification sections of the brain.  So
my argument that Alice might not be conscious would be related to the
skipping of steps through the injection of information which is "empty" (not
having been computed from lower level sets of information and hence not
actually conveying any information).


) I do not believe is

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