Hi Tom,

On 27 Dec 2008, at 22:50, Tom Caylor wrote:

> Bruno,
> Just coming at this after not thinking about it much.

Good method :)

> Sometimes
> that's an advantage, but sometimes it results in forgetting pertinent
> points that were understood before.

As a math teacher, I know perfectly well that a student can genuinely  
understand a point, and forget later. Understanding is not enough, you  
have to forget and come back, repeatedly, sometimes from different  
directions,  until the familiarity develops. Some theorem are so deep  
that you get surprises each time you come back to them. A bit like  
with music and art.
Even more so with a simple but not so simple counter-intuitive  
argument in a still a bit taboo domain.
In public discussion, possible new people can benefit from clear  
question. No problem asking.

> Taking two of your statements and trying to synthesize them, first
> this one:
> On Dec 27, 11:51 am, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:
>> ...
>> Then I propose an argument that IF we say yes to the doctor, that is,
>> IF there is a level of self-description such that  a digital
>> substitution preserves my identity feeling and my consciousness THEN
>> numbers (or combinators, ...) have to be enough at the ontological
>> level. The rest can be described as internal gluing epistomologies,
>> the lawful "many dreams".  This is going in *your* direction, it  
>> seems
>> to me.
> From your first statement, my initial "off the cuff" (quick) reaction
> was that there is a contradiction between two parts of the supposed
> theory of everything:
> A) "(IF) there is a level of self-description such that a digital
> substitution preserves my identity feeling and my consciousness"
> B) "The rest can be described as internal gluing epistomologies, the
> lawful "many dreams""
> The "rest" in B is truly huge, is it not?

Yes, it is, indeed. It is the whole first person plenitude, the  
sharable and the non sharable. Even the perceptible and the non  
The "dreams" were defined as computations "as seen from some first  
person points of view (cf the throught experiments). That is why I  
have put "lawful" before the many dreams: those things are real and  
big.  They are as real as the total or partial computable functions,  
and their relative implementations. By a Skolem like phenomenon the  
little box of numbers, once seen from inside by numbers is *very* big,  
uncomputably big.

> And it is part of reality
> is it not?

Yes, it is, if by reality you mean the truth which kicks back soon or  
later when we are wrong or lie about them. In this case it is really  
the computational truth, or the Sigma_1 truth, but again seen from an  
inside point of view (making it climbs far higher than Sigma_1). It  
does not just look more complex there: it *is* more complex there.

> Out "internal gluing epistemolgies" are something that is
> going on in our mind, and our mind is part of reality.

OK. But then you have to make precise that by "our mind" you mean the  
mind of the universal machines /numbers (in the relative way).

When you say mind is part of reality, some will take this in the  
naturalist way (like mind = functioning of the brain).

But with the UDA reversal you have something like NUMBERS  ==>  
UNIVERSAL MACHINE ==> UNIVERSAL MIND ==> primary hypostases ==>  
secondary hypostases (that is: sensible and intelligible matter).

> And this
> "rest" is larger than anything that can be simulated (digitally,
> computably), right?

Absolutely so.

> And yet it is something in our consciousness,
> that is, it is part of A.

I refer you to my text, which you have gently quoted above. Your "A"  
is a bit truncated if I may say.

>  It seems that wanting to have non-
> simulatable "internal gluing epistemologies" and also have a
> simulatable consciousness is like wanting to have your cake and not
> have your cake too.

Who said that consciousness is simulable or simulatable?

Saying yes to the digital doctor does not mean a brain simulate a  
consciousness or a first person. On the contrary, as exemplified by  
the reasoning and mainly by UDA.8 (the MGA), consciousness does not  
even supervene on the activity of the brain. The brain makes only  
higher the probability that some first person, incarnated locally  
through a hopefully self-referential correct machine with respect to  
its normal histories, remain able to manifest herself again relatively  
to those most probable histories/dreams. The "real person" in the  
machine is really connected to a continuum of histories, not obeying  
*only* computable laws.

> But then perhaps this is not a contradiction in light of your last
> statement:
>> After the discovery of the Universal Machine, the Mechanist
>> hypothesis, or even just the "strong AI" thesis,  is not a
>> reductionism, it is an openness of our mind toward a peculiar Unknown
>> which invites itself to our table.
>> Bruno
> The supposed contradiction was that it seemed you were wanting
> reductionism and non-reductionism at the same time.  But here you say
> otherwise.  It seems that you are saying that if our consciousness is
> simulatable then there is an Unknown that will always remain unknown,
> in other words, this implies that there can be no theory of
> everything.

OK. We are (at least, even without comp) universal digital machine.  
And that machine, when being aware of its own universality (like the  
Löbian machines) can then be aware that there is already no complete  
theory about herself. She is an unknown to herself, really. This  
understanding can be made partially constructive by the machine, in  
the sense that she can defeat all attempts of "total" or complete  
theories about herself.



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