Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
2010/1/4 Brent Meeker <meeke...@dslextreme.com>:
I think you give an excellent explication of the problem, Stathis. However,
one thing about it that still worries me is the role of time. You say the
mapping need not be consistent even moment to moment, and yet the mapping is
a timeless Platonic object. To be a timeless object the the moments need
some timeless representation. In Bruno's theory time arises from the
computational sequence. But in the mapping, time is just a relation of
similarity (closest continuation) of states. So three states which when
ordered by closest continuation are XYZ may have been computed in the order
XZY. So I find myself seeing the hardwareless computer as a reductio
against consciousness=computation thesis and support for Peter's view that
ur-stuff and contingency are fundamental.
It always seemed to me obvious that I would experience time normally
if the computations or other physical processes generating my stream
of consciousness were chopped up and played out of sequence,
backwards, simultaneously or whatever. It could be happening right
now: I have no way to know if the seconds of my life are running
sequentially or all in parallel during a single second of real time.
The two problems that many seem to have with this idea is a feeling
that there needs to be some sort of mechanism for singling out the
time slice that is the "now", and a feeling that the time slices lack
a causal glue to connect them together. But maybe I'm missing
something, because these objections never seemed to me to be problems.
I can understand that view, but in that case why consider them
computations? Why not just suppose all states of your consciousness (and
even other parts of the world) exist. If they can be glued together by
inherent features or simply experienced without even an implicit order,
then computation seems irrelevant. Of course that leaves the apparent
lawfulness of physics even further from possible explanation than the UD
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