Hi Abram,

> Interesting thought experiment. My initial reaction (from my "time
> skeptic" position):
> --Since my consciousness is relative to a single moment,

I take this as a motivation for doing MGA before UDA(1...7), because  
this does not make sense for me.
Consciousness is better attached to a computation or computational  
history as see from a *point* (or "interval") of view.

> I can't talk
> about that same consciousness being carried over to the next moment:
> the consciousness in the next moment is a different consciousness that
> remembers the previous one.

I would say that it is the consciousness itself which is invariant, it  
is the *content* of that consciousness which vary. So the person  
itself remains the same person but with enriched experiences, more or  
less defined by the many content of its accessible consciousness  
(under the form of memories, hope, wishes, ...

> To suppose otherwise is to invent an
> imaginary entity that is carried along through time, which effects the
> world (to the extent that my consciousness alters the world) but does
> not itself change.

Its life changes, but continuously, or computationally, preserving its  
Are you saying that the person is imaginary? Then you will be lead to  
eliminative materialism.
I have no clue why person are imaginary. They are immaterial, but they  
are no less real than a soccer game, or a nation, or a tree, or  
whatever stable relatively to an environment.

> --To then ask which copy of me I will have the experience of is to ask
> which location that imaginary entity will be carried to; in other
> words, it is a meaningless question.

I don't see how you will convince any of your polycopies. Some rare  
will say "I have seen the Space Odyssey movie", much more but still  
very rare will say "I have seen a good movie"/ Most will say "I have  
seen white noise". All will accept that the question was  
retrospectively meaningful.

> --When I tell you my bet about which movie I will see, I am not
> minimizing the chance of being condemned to hell, I am minimizing the
> number of my copies that will be so carried.


> I can and should take
> this into account; for example, if I am OK with only a few copies
> surviving so long as those copies get to see the original Dracula
> movie, then I could "bet" that I will see the original Dracula movie.

I agree. MEC makes choice and decision a suicide with respect to the  
future we don't want. If I decide to go to Washington, somehow I am  
killing the "myself" who could have gone to Moscow. Choice is always a  
form of partial suicide. I am OK with that. It is the base of quantum  
and comp suicide.

> --This perspective does not prevent me from entering the teleporter or
> saying yes to the doctor, because I already believe that "I" am a
> different consciousness each moment.

You say yes to the doctor because you think you will die anyway. This  
is not MEC!
You could say yes to the doctor who proposes to you an empty brain,  
then. It is the cheaper one.

> In fairness, the time skeptic cannot really give so complete an
> answer, since the time skeptic doesn't quite know what it means to
> make decisions, particularly decisions that choose between potential
> futures...

Right. And decisions in general concern potential futures I think.

> but let us say that the time skeptic is for now "playing
> along" with the experiment.

It seems to me that the "time skeptic" is a "person skeptic" only.

> Oh, and just to be clear... the time skeptic is asserting that the
> above solution is the only possible solution, not merely that it is a
> working one. :)

I don't understand. I guess that I miss something here.


> On Sun, Dec 21, 2008 at 1:44 PM, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be>  
> wrote:
>> Hi Abram, Him Kim,
>> Kim, while answering Abram, I realised I was doing the KIM 2.3, you
>> can read it before KIM 2.2 without problem I think, in any case tell
>> me if you have follow the argument. I don't answer the questions, so
>> you or Abram, or anyone else can answer.
>> Abram, The answer to your post is really the step 3 of the UDA
>> reasoning. It is the justification of the first person indeterminacy,
>> and the definition of (relatively) normal machine.
>> On 20 Dec 2008, at 04:46, Abram Demski wrote:
>>> Bruno,
>>> From what assumptions could a probability ultimately be derived?
>> From the assumption that when I do an experience or an experiment, I
>> will observe a result.
>> And from the hope I will be able to interpret that result in my or  
>> our
>> favorite current theory from which I can *deduce* the probability  
>> laws.
>> This is akin to a self-consistency assumption.
>>> It
>>> seems that a coherent theory of the probability of future events is
>>> needed (otherwise the passing of time could be white noise), but I  
>>> do
>>> not see where such probabilities could come out of more basic
>>> assumptions.
>> UDA is a non constructive proof that in the MEC theory, we have to
>> derive the probabilities from the discourse of the "normal machine",
>> which I will define below (anticipating on the KIM 2 thread).
>> AUDA is a path toward a constructive derivation of the probability
>> laws. The basic idea is simple: let us ask the question directly to
>> the universal machine.
>> In QM, without collapse, Everett (+ Gleason theorem)  has convinced  
>> me
>> that
>> 1. There is no probabilities in the theory.
>> 2. Quantum and classical probabilities are justified in the "normal"
>> self-observing machines by the SWE only.
>> But there is a "hic". A "little" problem.
>> That derivation assumes MEC (or weakenings). And MEC forces the
>> probabilities to be derived from all type of computations, no way to
>> chose a particular universal machine at the start, any must do. This
>> is really what UDA shows. The good news is that such an extraction  
>> can
>> then justify both the quanta and the qualia. Quanta are (should be
>> here) particular case of (sharable) qualia.
>>> To reason about the future, we assume that we are in a
>>> randomly chosen computation--
>> Right now I don't feel like being on a randomly chosen computation.
>> "I"  "belong(s)" on all computations which have reached my actual
>> state(s) (singular for the 1-state, and plural for the 3-states, or
>> the 1-plural states, see below).
>> My next state will be chosen partially randomly among many consistent
>> continuations.
>>> but then we are already using some
>>> probability distribution.
>> At some level it is the Gaussian distribution. See the definition of
>> the "normal machine" below.
>>> Evolution is at the root of our ability to predict  
>>> probabilistically.
>>> We use one probability distribution over another because it helps us
>>> survive. However, this is not good enough of an answer in the
>>> multiverse: every possible form survives anyway.
>> Once you bet on everything you have to accept also, among many
>> realities, those who does not "survive", the cul-de-sac.
>> At the level of reasoning in comp this is equivalent with a "self-
>> consistency" assumption, which is implicit in teleportation  
>> experiment.
>> The multiverse idea is not so different from the Darwinian idea of
>> "all the species", of course restricted to the relatively consistent
>> one.
>> Relatively to what? Relatively to their most probable histories/
>> computation.
>> Below, to define the notion of "normal machine", I will construct a
>> case where in a sense "every possible form survives". despite this
>> fact, the probabilities will emerge clearly once we distinguish the
>> third person discourses from the first person discourses.
>>> To keep talking about
>>> evolution, we would need to talk about which forms are more common  
>>> in
>>> the multiverse. But to count how common forms are, we would need  
>>> some
>>> measure over the multiverse, which could give us a probability
>>> distribution in the first place. So every possible argument seems
>>> circular.
>> I don't think so. See below.
>>> So, I don't need all the details of your derivation of a probability
>>> (though I'm interested); but what assumptions can you get a
>>> probability distribution from?
>> From the assumption of mechanism. Digital mechanism. The assumption
>> that you survive with a relative probability 1 in case of scanning,
>> annihilation and reconstitution done at some level.
>> Then you are duplicable. I can "cut" you and "paste" you in two
>> identical rooms, except that I have put a "one" in a closed box in  
>> one
>> room, and I have put a "zero" in a similar and similarly disposed  
>> box,
>> in the other room. Ah! To help for some probable cutting the air
>> argument, I put a cup of delicious coffee near the boxes in the two
>> rooms. All right?
>> (If you don't mind I will of course assume you really want a cup of
>> coffee, at the moment of the experience).
>> Now the third person discourses is the content of a diary (or the
>> memory) of an observer which, typically does not enter the
>> teleportation boxes. The first person discourse(s) is (are) any
>> content of the diary (diaries) of those who does enter the
>> teleportation boxes, and get out of reconstitution boxes. Note that
>> first and third person can develop discourses about third and first
>> person discourses.
>> Here is the protocol of the experiment, which is told to you in
>> advance. You will be scanned, annihilated and reconstituted
>> simultaneously in the two rooms. And I am asking you now some  
>> question:
>> Assuming MEC (that is "probability 1" in case of simple  
>> teleportation).
>> What is the probability that you will survive this duplication
>> experiment/experience(s) ?
>> What is the probability that you will drink a cup of coffee in that
>> experiment/experience(s) ?
>> What is the probability that you will drink a cup of coffee and think
>> "OK I have survived, that coffee is good, I don't know what number
>> belongs to that box, obviously it cannot be both one and zero!"
>> What is the probability that you will write in your diary "1) I have
>> survived, 2) the coffee is good, 3) the number in the box is zero.
>> I don't want to give a definition of what is a normal machine, just
>> that you feel the point.
>> Let me give you another illustration which exploits the freedom of
>> thought a bit more. Indeed, let me duplicate you, or better,
>> polyplicate you into 2^(16180*10000)*(60*90)*24.
>> I explain. I multiply you by 2^(16180*10000) in front of a
>> (16180*10000) pixels screen, with each possible images (black and
>> white) on it.
>> And I reiterate every 1/24 of a second that multiplication, and this
>> during 90 minutes, that is 90*60 seconds.
>> What do you predict you will feel, as personal, subjective, first
>> person experience. What do you think is more probable, among:
>> I will feel seeing a white screen
>> I will feel seeing a black screen
>> I will feel seeing a movie
>> I will feel seeing a good movie
>> I will feel seeing "2001 Space Odyssey"
>> I will feel seeing "2001 Space Odyssey" with the subtitle of Caligula
>> I will feel seeing a random-noise-movie (what you see on TV when  
>> there
>> is no emission).
>> Of course there is a sense to say: I will see all possible movies,  
>> but
>> this means you are talking about yourself at the third person point  
>> of
>> view, and here what is asked, is what do you expect to experience or
>> live in your future if you are invited to practice it. By MEC, you
>> survive, and any of your first person experience is unique, on which
>> of the above you would bet? What bet will you do if I tell you that I
>> will accompany you in the multiplication. And send you to hell if  
>> your
>> bet is wrong. What bet you will do if you want to optimize the chance
>> of not going to hell?
>> The rest of the UDA reasoning shows that "this" thought experience
>> happens all the time in arithmetic, but the "probabilities", which
>> eventually could be credibilities or other uncertainty measure, are
>> constrained by computer science/number theory. It extends the notion
>> of normality from the protocol above to the whole Universal  
>> Deployment
>> (which I will (re)define in KIM 3).
>> Exercise: define the notion of "normal first person experience" for
>> machine in the protocol above. With the UD protocol, things are so
>> much complex that I will interview the Universal Machine directly to
>> provide hints ...
>> Bruno
>> http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/
> -- 
> Abram Demski
> Public address: abram-dem...@googlegroups.com
> Public archive: http://groups.google.com/group/abram-demski
> Private address: abramdem...@gmail.com
> >


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