Abram Demski wrote:
> Bruno,
> Yes, I think there is a big difference between making an argument more
> detailed and making it more understandable. They can go together or be
> opposed. So a version of the argument targeted at my complaint might
> not be good at all pedagogically...
>> I would be pleased if you can give me a version of MAT or MEC to which
>> the argument does not apply. For example, the argument applies to most
>> transfinite variant of MEC. It does not apply when some "magic" is
>> introduced in MAT, and MAT is hard to define in a way to exclude that
>> magic. If you can help, I thank you in advance.
> My particular brand of "magic" appears to be a requirement of
> counterfactual/causal structure that reflects the
> counterfactual/causal structure of (abstract) computation. Stathis has
> pointed out some possible ways to show such ideas incoherent (which I
> am not completely skeptical of, despite my arguments). Since this type
> of theory is the type that matches my personal intuition, MGA will
> feel empty to me until such alternatives are explicitly dealt a
> killing blow (after which the rest is obvious, since I intuitively
> feel the contradiction in versions of COMP+MAT that don't require
> counterfactuals).

My intuition is similar, except I think it is causality that is necessary, 
rather than counterfactuals.  I find persuasive the argument that the brains 
potential for dealing with a counterfactual that never occurs cannot have any 
bearing on consciousnes.  After all there are infinitely many counterfactuals 
that never occur (that's why they're counterfactual) and my brain is no doubt 
unprepared to deal with most of them.

Causality, ISTM, is a physical relation and it is not captured by mathematical 
or logical relations.  That's probably why it has almost disappeared from 
physics theories, which are highly mathematical.  Bruno may think this is 
invoking "magic", like Peter's insistence that "existence" is contingent.  So 
be it.


> Of course, as you say, you'd be in a hard spot if you were required to
> deal with every various intuition that anybody had... but, for what
> it's worth, that is mine.
> --Abram
> On Sat, Dec 6, 2008 at 9:32 AM, Bruno Marchal <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
>> Le 05-déc.-08, à 22:11, Abram Demski a écrit :
>>> Bruno,
>>> Perhaps all I am saying is that you need to state more explicitly the
>>> assumptions about the connection between 1st and 3rd person, in both
>>> MEC and MAT. Simply taking them to be the general ideas that you take
>>> them to be does not obviously justify the argument.
>> I don't see why nor how. The first person notions are defined in the
>> three first steps of the UDA. Wait I come back on this in the
>> discussion with Kim perhaps. In AUDA I define the first person by the
>> "knower", and I use the classical definition proposed by Theaetetus in
>> the Theaetetus of Plato. Keep in mind that you arrived when I was
>> explaining the real last step of an already long argument.
>> Of course you may be right, and I would really appreciate any
>> improvements. But making things more precise could also be a red
>> herring sometimes, or be very confusing pedagogically, like with the
>> easy 1004 fallacy which can obviously crop here.
>> When I defended the thesis in France, it was already a work resulting
>> from 30 years of discussions with open minded physicists, engineers,
>> philosophers and mathematicians, and I have learned that what seems
>> obvious for one of them is not for the others.
>> I don't think there is anything controversial in my work. I got
>> academical problems in Brussels for not having find an original result
>> (but then I think they did not read the work). Pedagogical difficulties
>> stem from the intrinsical difficulty of the mind body problem, and from
>> the technical abyss between logicians and physicists to cite only them.
>>  It is more easy to collide two protons at the speed of light (minus
>> epsilon) than to arrange an appointment between mathematical logicians
>> and mathematical physicists (except perhaps nowadays on quantum
>> computing issues thankfully).
>>> Furthermore, stating the assumptions more clearly will make it more
>>> clear where the contradiction is coming from, and thus which versions
>>> of MEC and MAT the argument applies to.
>> I would be pleased if you can give me a version of MAT or MEC to which
>> the argument does not apply. For example, the argument applies to most
>> transfinite variant of MEC. It does not apply when some "magic" is
>> introduced in MAT, and MAT is hard to define in a way to exclude that
>> magic. If you can help, I thank you in advance.
>> Bruno
>>> --Abram
>>> On Fri, Dec 5, 2008 at 4:36 AM, Bruno Marchal <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
>>> wrote:
>>>> On 04 Dec 2008, at 15:58, Abram Demski wrote:
>>>>>> PS Abram. I think I will have to meditate a bit longer on your
>>>>>> (difficult) post. You may have a point (hopefully only pedagogical
>>>>>> :)
>>>>> A little bit more commentary may be in order then... I think my point
>>>>> may be halfway between pedagogical and serious...
>>>>> What I am saying is that people will come to the argument with some
>>>>> vague idea of which computations (or which physical entities) they
>>>>> pick out as "conscious". They will compare this to the various
>>>>> hypotheses that come along during the argument-- MAT, MEC, MAT + MEC,
>>>>> "Lucky Alice is conscious", "Lucky Alice is not conscious", et
>>>>> cetera... These notions are necessarily 3rd-person in nature. It
>>>>> seems
>>>>> like there is a problem there. Your argument is designed to talk
>>>>> about
>>>>> 1st-person phenomena.
>>>> The whole problem consists, assuming hypotheses, in relating 1-views
>>>> with 3-views.
>>>> In UDA, the 1-views are approximated by 1-discourses (personal diary
>>>> notes, memories in the brain, ...). But I do rely on the minimal
>>>> intuition needed to give sense to the willingness of saying "yes" to a
>>>> digitalist surgeon, and the believe in a comp survival, or a belief in
>>>> the unchanged feeling of "my" consciousness in such annihilation-
>>>> (re)creation experiences.
>>>>> If a 1st-person-perspective is a sort of structure (computational
>>>>> and/or physical), what type of structure is it?
>>>> The surprise will be: there are none. The 1-views of a machine will
>>>> appears to be already not expressible by the machine. The first and
>>>> third God have no name. Think about Tarski theorem in the comp
>>>> context. A sound machine cannot define the whole notion of "truth
>>>> about me".
>>>>> If we define it in
>>>>> terms of behavior only, then a recording is fine.
>>>> We certainly avoid the trap of behaviorism. You can see this as a
>>>> weakness, or as the full strong originality of comp, as I define it.
>>>> We give some sense, albeit undefined, to the word "consciousness"
>>>> apart from any behavior. But to reason we have to assume some relation
>>>> between consciousness and possible discourses (by machines).
>>>>> If we define it in
>>>>> terms of inner workings, then a recording is probably not fine, but
>>>>> we
>>>>> introduce "magical" dependence on things that shouldn't matter to
>>>>> us... ie, we should not care if we are interacting with a perfectly
>>>>> orchestrated recording, so long as to us the result is the same.
>>>>> It seems like this is independent of the differences between
>>>>> pure-comp / comp+mat.
>>>> This is not yet quite clear for me. Perhaps, if you are patient
>>>> enough, you will be able to clarify this along the UDA reasoning which
>>>> I will do slowly with Kim. The key point will be the understanding of
>>>> the ultimate conclusion: exactly like Everett can be said to justify
>>>> correctly the phenomenal collapse of the wave, if comp is assumed, we
>>>> have to justify in a similar way the wave itself. Assuming comp, we
>>>> put ourself in a position where we have to explain why numbers
>>>> develops stable and coherent belief in both mind and matter. We can
>>>> presuppose neither matter, nor mind eventually, except our own
>>>> consciousness, although even consciousness will eventually be reduced
>>>> into our "believe in numbers".
>>>> Bruno
>>>> http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/
>> http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/
> > 

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