2010/1/11 Brent Meeker <meeke...@dslextreme.com>: >> It seems that you're saying the observer would notice that something >> odd had happened if his program were paused and restarted in the way >> described, but how is that possible when S1 and S2 are identical >> whether generated continuously or discontinuously? >> >> > > I think you're assuming what is to be proven, i.e. that S1 and S2 are a) > states of consciousness, i.e. thoughts or "observer moments" and b) are > successive and contiguous without overlap. Suppose that states of > consciousness have durations of 10msec (or 1e8 microstates of computation at > the appropriate level - I don't want to assume a transcendent continuous > time) and successive states overlap by 3msec. Then identifying some 10msec > period as state S2 is arbitrary and generating it will only be identical > with what the brain did for the middle 4msec (where there was no overlap > with) S1 or S3. But, ex hypothesi, 4msec isn't enough to constitute a OM.
S1 and S2 can be precisely delimited as machine states but only more loosely as mental states. This is because, as you say, there may be a thought that spans S1 and S2, and is therefore partly generated by M1 and partly by M2. I don't see this as an issue since even if the computer was just doing arithmetic it could be broken up and distributed across two machines and the final answer would still be the same. Similarly, if the subject in the virtual environment was doing mental arithmetic he would still get the right answer despite the physical discontinuity introduced mid-calculation, and how would that be possible if the discontinuity caused a disruption in consciousness? -- Stathis Papaioannou
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