# Re: language, cloning and thought experiments

```
--- 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.
http://consciousnessonline.wordpress.com/

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
> 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

> 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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