On 02 Dec 2008, at 01:05, Abram Demski wrote:

> Bruno,
> It sounds like what you are saying in this reply is that my version of
> COMP+MAT is consistent, but counter to your intuition (because you
> cannot see how consciousness could be attached to physical stuff).

I have no problem a priori in attaching consciousness to physical  
stuff. I do have problem when MEC + MAT forces me to attach  
consciousness to an empty machine (with no physical activity) together  
with inert material.

> If
> this is the case, then it sounds like MGA only works for specific
> versions of MAT-- say, versions of MAT that claim consciousness hinges
> only on the matter, not on the causal relationships.

On the contrary. I want consciousness related to the causal  
relationship. But with MEC the causal relationship are in the  
computations. The thought experiment shows that the physical  
implementation plays the role of making them able to manifest  
relatively to us, but are not responsible for their existence.

> In other words,
> what Günther called NMAT. So you need a different argument against--
> let's call it CMAT, for causal MAT. The olympization argument only
> works if COMP+CMAT can be shown to imply the removability of inert
> matter... which I don't think it can, because that inert matter here
> has a causal role to play in the counterfactuals, and is therefore
> essential to the physical computation.

OK, so now you have to disagree with MGA 1. No problem. But would you  
still say "yes" to the mechanist doctor?  I don't see how, because now  
you appeal to something rather magic like influence in real time of  
inactive material. Or, you are weakening the physical supervenience  
thesis by appeal to a notion of causality which seems to me a bit  
magical, and contrary to the local functionalism of the  

The real question I have to ask to you, Günther and others is this  
one:  does your new supervenience thesis forced the UD to be  
physically executed in a "real" universe to get the UDA conclusion?  
Does MGA, even just as a refutation of "naïve mat" eliminate the use  
of the concrete UD in UDA?

It is true that by weakening MEC or MAT, the reasoning doesn't go  
through, but it seems to me the conclusion goes with any primitive  
stuff view of MAT or Matter activity to which we could attach  
consciousness through "causal" links. Once you begin to define matter  
through causal links, and this keeping comp, and linking the  
experience to those causal relation, perhaps made in other time at  
other occasion, you are not a long way from the comp supervenience.  
But if you don't see this, I guess the conversation will continue.



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