On Nov 21, 2008, at 9:01 AM, Jason Resch wrote:
> What you described sounds very similar to a split brain patient I  
> saw on a documentary.

It might seem similar on the surface, but it's actually very  
different. The observers of the split-brain patient and the patient  
himself know that something is amiss. There is a real difference in  
his consciousness and his behavior. If cosmic rays randomly severed  
your corpus callosum right now, you would definitely notice a  
difference. (It's an empirical question whether or not you'd know it  
almost immediately, or if it would take a while for you to figure it  
out. I'm sure the neurologists and cognitive scientists already know  
the answer to that one.)

At no point during the replacement of Alice's fully-functioning  
neurons with cosmic-ray stimulated neurons (or during the replacement  
of cosmic-ray neurons with no neurons at all) will Alice notice any  
difference in her consciousness. In principle, she cannot notice it,  
since every one of her full-functionally neurons always continues to  
do exactly what it would have done. This is a serious problem for the  
mechanistic view of consciousness.

-- Kory


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