Bruno Marchal wrote:
> On 02 Dec 2008, at 03:33, Brent Meeker wrote:
>> Bruno Marchal wrote:
>>> On 01 Dec 2008, at 03:25, Russell Standish wrote:
>>>> On Sun, Nov 30, 2008 at 07:10:43PM +0100, Bruno Marchal wrote:
>>>>>> I am speaking as someone unconvinced that MGA2 implies an
>>>>>> absurdity. MGA2 implies that the consciousness is supervening on  
>>>>>> the
>>>>>> stationary film.
>>>>> ?  I could agree, but is this not absurd enough, given MEC and the
>>>>> definition of the physical superveneience thesis;
>>>> It is, prima facie, no more absurd than consciousness supervening  
>>>> on a
>>>> block universe.
>>>>>> A block universe is nondynamic by definition. But looked at  
>>>>>> another
>>>>>> way, (ie from the inside) it is dynamic. It neatly illustrates why
>>>>>> consciousness can supervene on a stationary film (because it is
>>>>>> stationary when viewed from the inside).
>>>>> OK, but then you clearly change the physical supervenience thesis.
>>>> How so? The stationary film is a physical object, I would have
>>>> thought.
>>> I don't understand this. The physical supervenience thesis associate
>>> consciousness AT (x,t) to a computational state AT (x,t).
>> Stated this way seems to assume that the causal relations between  
>> the states are
>> irrelevant, only the states matter.
> Ah, please, add the delta again (see my previews post). I did wrote  
> (dx,dt), but Anna thought it was infinitesimal. It could be fuzzy  
> deltas or whatever you want. Unless you attach your consciousness,  
> from here and now,  to the whole block multiverse, the reasoning will  
> go through, assuming of course that the part of the multiverse, on  
> which you attach your mind, is Turing emulable (MEC).
>>> The idea is
>>> that consciousness can be "created" in real time by the physical
>>> "running" of a computation (viewed of not in a block universe).
>> Well we're pretty sure that brains do this.
> Well, my point is that for believing this, you have to abandon the MEC  
> hypothesis, perhaps in a manner like Searle or Penrose. Consciousness  
> would be the product of some non Turing emulable chemical reactions.  
> But if everything in the brain (or the genralized brain) is turing  
> emulable, then the reasoning (uda+mga) is supposed to explain why  
> consciousness (an immaterial thing) is related only to the computation  
> made by the brain, but not the brain itself nor to its physical  
> activity during the physical implementation. Your locally physical  
> brain just makes higher the probability that your consciousness  
> remains entangled with mine (and others).
>>> With the stationary film, this does not make sense. Alice experience
>>> of a dream is finite and short, the film lasts as long as you want. I
>>> think I see what you are doing: you take the stationary film as an
>>> incarnation of a computation in Platonia. In that sense you can
>>> associate the platonic experience of Alice to it, but this is a
>>> different physical supervenience thesis. And I argue that even this
>>> cannot work, because the movie does not capture a computation.
>> I was thinking along the same lines.  But then the question is what  
>> does capture
>> a computation.  Where in the thought experiments, starting with  
>> natural Alice
>> and ending with a pictures of Alice's brain states, did we lose  
>> computation?  Is
>> it important that the sequence be time rather than space or some  
>> other order?
>> Is it the loss causal relations or counterfactuality?
> We  "lose a computation" relatively to us when the computation is not  
> executed by a stable (relatively to us) universal machine nearby, be  
> it a cell, a brain, a natural or artificial universal computer.
> In the case of the movie, it is no so bad. Consciousness does not  
> supervene on the movie or its projection, but the movie can be used as  
> a backup of Alice's state. We can re-project a frame, of that movie,  
> on a functionally well working Boolean optical graph, and Alice will  
> be back ... with us.
> Of course the computations themselves, and their many possible  
> differentiations, are already in Platonia (= in the solution of the  
> universal Diophantine equation, in the processing of the UD, or  
> perhaps in the Mandelbrot set).
> Alice's brain and body are "just" local stable artifacts belonging to  
> our (most probable) computational history, and making possible for  
> Alice consciousness to differentiate through interactions with us,  
> relatively to us.
> Bruno

OK, that clarifies things and it corresponds with my intuition that 
consciousness is relative to an environment.  I can't seem to answer the 
question is MG-Alice conscious "yes" or "no", but I can say she is conscious 
within the movie environment, but not within our environment.  This is similar 
to Stathis asking about consciousness within a rock.  We could say the thermal 
motions of atoms within the rock may compute consciousness, but it is a 
consciousness within the rock environment, not in ours.


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