Hi Kim,

On 13 Dec 2008, at 02:27, Kim Jones wrote:

> Isn't it great that we may soon be able to capture the soul to
> disk!!!! You could have a Catholic soul, try an Islamic soul, reboot
> as a Buddhist - any religion you want

I am not sure someone will say yes to a doctor who propose an  
artificial brain with some remaining religious belief (or any belief)  
subroutine. Of course if those not really cleaned artificial brain are  
cheaper ...
Would you say yes to a doctor who proposes to you an artifical brain  
which can give you new memories and new convictions?

I can give you this brain, but chance are high you will wake up with  
the idea that all Europeans should be send in camps!

  --- Er ..., well, NO doctor. Thanks, I will economize for a clean  
new brain on which you will save my memories, not someone's else.

> Are you saying the machine may not be "good enough"? - that it could
> somehow fail to "capture the relevant instantaneous state"? What might
> the implications of that be?

There are many: roughly speaking: shit will happen.

You can survive with agnosology: You are blind and deaf or amnesic,  
for example, but you pretend you lost nothing in the experience.
You can survive with trouble: you feel having survive but with  
trouble: for example you have chronicle headache, and some difficulty  
to walk.
You can survive with change: you feel well, but your wife feel you are  
no more yourself
You can survive with big trouble: you are comatose, and seven doctors  
says you are dead, and three doctors say you are alive.
You survive but only in the third person sense: everybody believed you  
have survive but God knows you are a zombie.
You don't survive: you are dead: the instantaneous state is so  
crippled that no doctor can reconstitute a "soul" from that.

I always assume the doctor 100% gifted, the machines working well, the  
substitution level rightly chosen, and the default assumptions (no  
asteroïd destroying earth during the experiments, etc.

> Don't answer that - I will shut up

Gosh! Too late!

>> But once we make precise the hypothesis, fictionful argument are no
>> less valid, and you see that once a machine bet she is a machine, by
>> explicitly embracing a complete substitution of the (relative) body,
>> she has to bet "she" is not material.
> If "she" has enough brains and imagination to think it through, that  
> is OK

Yes. You will seen (much later I 'm afraid) how few you need to modify  
a Universal Machine (a computer) to give her that imagination. Indeed  
she will get a little too much imagination a priori. The real work  
will eventually consists in lowering down that imagination.

> OK - I have seen the shining light of understanding

Thanks for telling. Of course, this is something that I will be able  
to judge only after the exam in June, or should I do a surprise  
interrogation :)

> The hammer hits itself
> The eye sees itself move
> The tongue tastes itself

Hmmm Zoologists are animals, but botanists are not plants. Not  
everything is capable of studying itself. Make sure you are using a  
sufficiently flexible hammer (be careful not hitting your fingers with  
this one).

>> Here the "plan of the machine", codable by a number (and may be
>> downloadable on the net), plays a role similar to Xenocrates' soul.
> what if I download a corrupted version or one with a virus?

Shit will happen again. See above. It is the same if you eat corrupted  
raw meat. You can end up with a worm in the brain. Probably not a very  
funny experience.

>> In some sense I disagree with Xenocrates, but at this stage of the
>> reasoning, you can identify yourself with the number which encodes a
>> description of your body and mind, and in that sense, you are a
>> number, which each evening put itself on a disk, and each morning
>> choose among seven bodies to fit the day.
>> With mechanism, you can save your soul on a disk.
>> All right?
> So that means we already exist on a disk somewhere, right...

In a sense, this will be correct, yet I don't see how you deduce it at  
this stage. Up to now, you have to pay I don't know how much dollars  
for using a superscanning machine which copies your brain state (it  
can take month) and burn some disk with your instantaneous state  
description. And that disk is like a disk of music: it is not useful  
without some players with the right standard, and so one.
If you break the disk, you have to do another backup, etc.

> I hope these disks are in safe hands

Ah! You see!

> I am not my body - I am not my brain

Assuming comp, this is unavoidable. OK.

> I can change everything and anything I want about me and still  
> remain me

... provided you don't put too much mess on your backup disk ....

> ergo "I" am an immaterial something: probably a number or a very long
> bitstring which can, like any data, be crunched

Here I disagree, or I agree, because the word "I" will appears a bit  
ambiguous. In the next post, this ambiguity will be avoided, through  
more precise definition.

> I see and agree - there is nobody who would argue fiercely against you
> up to here? Is everyone in accord with the details up to here?

Good question.

> Is there anything like as convincing an alternate stance?

Just notice that, by" substantialising" both the brain and the soul,  
you could build NON-computationalist theories.

OK. thanks very much for your kind attention, Kim.

Soon: KIM 2 (I hope you don't mind I put your name in the thread. It  
should help my own poor memory later. It is not enough to have the  
good information, you have to find it in the genuine context ...).



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