On Nov 24, 2008, at 3:28 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:
> MGA 1 shows that MEC+MAT implies lucky Alice is conscious (during the
> exam). OK?
> MGA 2 shows that MEC+MAT implies Alice is dreaming (and thus  
> conscious)
> when the film is projected. OK?

I don't mean to hold up the show, but I'm still stuck here. I don't  
understand how Lucky Alice should be viewed as conscious in the  
context of MEC+MAT.

In a different message, you said this:

> But to go in the
> detail here would confront us with the not simple task of defining
> more precisely what is a computation, or what we will count has two
> identical computations in the deployment.

As complex as that task may be, I'm beginning to think that I can't  
get past MGA 1 without tackling it.

Imagine that you have a grid of bits, and at each tick of the clock,  
each bit is randomly turned on or off using a pseudorandom number  
generator with a very long periodicity. Imagine that for some stretch  
of time, the bits in the grid act "as if" they were following the  
rules to Conway's Life. Are Conway's Life computations in fact being  
performed? I thought "obviously no". The majority answer here seems to  
be "obviously yes".

Suppose that we perform a very complex computation, and the result is  
the integer "5". Should any computation that results in "5" be viewed  
as performing the former computation?

Chalmer's paper "Does a Rock Implement Every Finite-State Automaton?"  
seems directly relevant to all of these Lucky Alice thought  
experiments. (Is it?) I need to re-read that paper.

I have no doubt that my thinking on these topics is confused. Where  
should I begin?

-- Kory

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