Bruno Marchal wrote:
> Colin,
> We agree on the conclusion. We disagree on vocabulary, and on the 
> validity of your reasoning.
> Let us call I-comp the usual indexical mechanism discussed in this 
> list (comp).
> Let us call m-comp the thesis that there is a primitive "natural 
> world", and that it can be described by a digital machine.
> UDA shows that I-comp entails NOT m-comp.
> Obviously m-comp entails I-comp.
> So m-comp entails NOT m-comp.
> This refutes m-comp.
My argument involves refuting what you call m-comp
Where did you get the idea I am suggesting "/It can be described by a 
digital machine/"? I'll state it again....
There is a natural world (a)
It is imperfectly described from within in 2 ways (b) and (c).
A symbolic description which is predictive of appearances (b) needs no 
assumption that the natural world is computing (b) or is a computation 
of (b).
A symbolic description which is predictive of structure (c) needs no 
assumption that the natural world is computing (c) or is a computation 
of (c).
The 'describing' in (b) and (c) invokes no necessary 'digital machine'. 
The Turing computation of the descriptions (b) and (c) is /not claimable 
to be a natural world/ by anything more than a form of faith.

This seems to be the sticking point ... this 'digital machine' idea 
....the automatic attribution of symbolic regularities as some kind of 
computation then attributed some kind of involvement in the natural 
world. This extra attribution is not justified. Non-parsimonious, not 
logically connected in any necessary way.

> Now you seem to believe in a stuffy natural reality, so you have to 
> abandon I-comp. This is coherent. Now you have to say "no" to the 
> doctor and introduce actual infinities in the brain. I find this very 
> unplausible, but it is not my goal to defend it.
> Now I find your reasoning based on informality not convincing at all, 
> to say the least. It is really based on level confusion s Peter Jones 
> was driving at correctly. You "B" above seems also indicate you have 
> not study the argument. 
> Bruno
The COMP that I refute is pragmatic and empirically tractable. Yes, 
m-comp is false. I don't need I-comp to reach that conclusion I need 
only go as far as the (a)/(b)/(c) framework in which (b) and (c) are 
imperfect, incomplete and non-unique symbolic descriptions of a natural 
world and which otherwise have no involvement in the natural world /at 
all/. Two different entities (human and Klingon :-) ) in our natural 
world could have completely different (b) formulations and be as 
predictive as each other.

Study or not study?.... makes no difference. The whole idea of i-comp is 

BTW, just in case there's another issue behind this....there's no such 
thing as 'digital'.

Anyone who has ever done electronics will tell you that. It's all 
'analogue' ...a construction of a quantised reality. By 'analogue' what 
I mean is "whatever it is that is the natural world (a)" above. All the 
digital machines on the planet are analogue. These are the ones people 
are using to do AGI. The virtual-discretisation  we call digital <> 
quantisation of QM. So when you invoke a 'digital machine' you are 
talking about a fiction, anyway. Quantum computers merely facilitate 
multiple simultaneous executions within the same kind of 
"virtual-digital" structure ...doing lots more virtual-digital work 
doesn't make the computation any more digital than a standard PC. So in 
reality (a) there is no such "thing" as a Turing machine. There are only 
machines acting 'as-if' they are, by design, through constraint of 
analogue state transitions. I have personally played with the electronic 
transition between 0 and 1 on many occasions it's as real as the 0 and 
the 1 and you can walk all over it.

There's multiple layers of misconception operating in this area. And 
they are not all mine!


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