--- On Tue, 2/24/09, Wei Dai <wei...@weidai.com> wrote:
> Jack, welcome back.

Hi Wei.

Now that the interesting Consciousness Online web conference is over, it's time 
to get back to the this.

BTW, I have to say that the qualia issue remains mysterious to me.  It's hard 
to see how e.g. color qualia can arise, whether by math or not.  So the dualism 
idea is not as easy to dismiss as we tend to think.  OTOH I still think dualism 
is not plausible - it would be quite a coincidence for 
nonmaterial/nonmathematical properties to exist that happen to be exactly like 
the properties that material/mathematical creatures tend to believe they have.  
So what are qualia?

> The ASSA/RSSA and QTI debates can be rephrased as whether U should equal M*Q, 
> or just Q, but that is an "ought" question.

No.  First, I don't agree that the real question is what the utility function 
is or should be.  The real question is whether the measure, M, is conserved or 
whether it decreases.  It's just that a lot of people don't understand what 
that means.

The next point is that while U=M*Q is perfectly well defined, U=Q is not, and I 
don't know what you mean by it.

OK, you might ask "huh?" when I say that.  What I mean is that M*Q is just a 
caricature of a utility function but should obviously be generalized to the 
case of multiple types of observations by using Sum_i M_i Q_i.

There is no corresponding generalization for Q.  You could use Sum_i Q_i, but 
in that case the sum is just a constant that does not depend on the physical 
situation (which determines the measure distribution over observation types, 
M_i; and in the the MWI the M_i will all be nonzero) and in that case no 
decision you could make would matter at all, so that can't be what you mean.

Probably what you have in mind is some kind of Q_average, where the average is 
over observations by the same person, but personal identity is not well-defined.

--- On Wed, 2/25/09, Stathis Papaioannou <stath...@gmail.com> wrote:
> If you're not worried about the fair trade, then to be consistent you 
> shouldn't be worried about the unfair trade either. In the fair trade, one 
> version of you A disappears overnight, and a new version of you B is created 
> elsewhere in the morning. The unfair trade is the same, except that there is 
> an extra version of you A' which disappears overnight. Now why should the 
> *addition* of another version make you nervous when you wouldn't have been 
> nervous otherwise?

It's not the addition of the other copy that's the problem; it's the loss of 
it.  Losing people is bad.

> That Riker's measure increased is not the important thing here: it is that 
> the two Rikers differentiated. Killing one of them after they had 
> differentiated would be wrong, but killing one of them before they had 
> differentiated would be OK.

That would be equivalent to U = Sum_i Q_i in which no changes in the 
wavefunction matter at all, since M_i > 0 for all i no matter what.  I don't 
think you thought that one through.


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