Stathis, I feel both ASSA and RSSA are variations WITHIN human thinking with a minuscule difference of handling. When I TRY to think about 'everything' I feel I have to step out from the restrictions of the human 'mind'(?) capabilities and (at least) imagine to grasp totality (i.e. the wholeness) without 'assuming' any self-sampling limitations - be it absolute, or relative, - in its uncompromised entirety.. The fact that (today?) we cannot do it, is no argument against 'it has to be done'. I don't settle for half-solutions when I am looking for the theoretically right answers. No compromise. I am 'agnostic', meaning that I condone my incapability to reach such levels.
Are you in favor of a self-inflicted - assumed (limited) gnosis? Yes, I am shooting at the stars: being on the "Everything" list is not a ground-level compromise for (humanly?) attainable (partial) knowledge. To be satisfied with such, one should attend Physics 101. Or: arithmetic 101 (not even math 101). John Mikes On Wed, Jan 13, 2010 at 4:25 AM, Stathis Papaioannou <stath...@gmail.com>wrote: > 2010/1/13 Nick Prince <m...@dtech.fsnet.co.uk>: > > > > I’ve read through a good deal of previous posts on the ASSA/RSSA > > debate but I keep reaching a stumbling block regarding how successive > > observer moments (OM) are to be expected in terms of their > > continuity. I think Youness Ayaita queried the same thing as I am > > here but articulated it much better - this post was "a question > > concerning the ASSA/RSSA debate (Sept 18 2007). Stathis gave an > > answer which was very helpful (as usual) but he still referred to a > > uniform? distribution which I find difficult to understand. Russell > > called it global! > > > > From the everything wiki I have looked up the relevant definitions for > > the two contentious sampling assumptions which are quote : > > > > "The Relative Self Sampling Assumption (RSSA) is a form of anthropic > > reasoning that assumes our present observer moment is selected > > according to a measure that depends on another given observer moment > > (the prior observer moment). As such it implicitly relies on a notion > > of time that gives rise to a succession of observer moments. > > In one interpretation of quantum mechanics, observer moments are > > identified with the quantum state |psi>. The measure used with the > > RSSA is just given by the Born rule > > > > The Absolute Self Sampling Assumption, (ASSA) is a form of anthropic > > reasoning that assumes our present observer moment is selected from > > the set of all observer moments according to some absolute measure. To > > be contrasted with the Relative Self Sampling Assumption." > > > > Where I have difficulty with understanding the ASSA is in terms of its > > implications for our next observer moment. Is the absolute measure, > > referred to in the ASSA definition really intended to be a uniform > > distribution in the sense that my next OM could be equally any one > > from the multiverse? This would be strange indeed and would result in > > me experiencing all sorts of discontinuous happenings – even if the > > reference class was restricted to OM’s which I experience. On the > > other hand, am I to understand that the ASSA does not carry with it > > any implicit assumption about the probability distribution (absolute > > measure) that OM’s are selected from? Instead must we assume the > > nature of this distribution for picking out our next OM is to be > > determined by some other considerations like: “it is the laws of > > physics which glue OM’s together” as an example)? (I know that a > > computationalist might come up with another solution as to how the > > OM’s are stitched together, but that is not my point). Is it assumed > > (as a given for now anyway), that there is some additional mechanism > > or explanation as to why observer moments are stitched together in the > > way they are? Or, if a uniform distribution is implied, then how can > > this be reasonable? > > > > The RSSA, as I understand it would use the Born rule to indicate which > > successive OM’s are possible and likely. > > > > Why the ASSA is applicable to determine our birth OM I am also not > > sure of either. I would be very grateful to anyone who can clarify > > this for me. > > The ASSA/RSSA distinction on this list came, as I understand it, from > debate on the validity of the idea of "quantum immortality". This is > the theory that in a multiverse you can never die, because at every > juncture where you could die there is always a version of you that > continues living. The ASSA proponents say that even though there are > thousand year old versions of you in the multiverse they are of very > low measure and you are therefore very unlikely to find yourself one > of them, as unlikely as you are to end up living to a thousand through > pure good luck in a single universe. This paper by Jacques Mallah > outlines the position: http://arxiv.org/abs/0902.0187. A point of > disagreement when we discussed this paper on the list about a year ago > is that Jacques thinks it would be a bad thing if there were many > copies of a person in lockstep and some of the copies were destroyed, > whereas if I were one of the copies it wouldn't worry me at all. > > The problem with the ASSA is that it assumes that each OM is sampled > randomly from the set of all OM's. In fact, this is not how life > works. Today is Wednesday. I'm pretty sure that when I wake up > tomorrow morning it will be Thursday, and not Friday, even though > (absent some disaster) the measure of my Friday OM's in the multiverse > is about the same as the measure of my Thursday OM's. Even if there > were a billion copies of me on Friday and only one copy on Thursday, I > can still expect to go through the Thursday copy before ending up a > Friday copy. Once embedded in the multiverse, it puts constraints on > my possible successor OM. > > If I'm not already embedded in the multiverse then I could be anyone, > and I am therefore more likely to be someone from a high probability > group or era. So I am more likely to be a modern human than an early > human, for example, because there are more modern humans. I think > that's what Russell means by the ASSA being aplicable in birth order. > This is a tricky concept to get your mind around and leads to > semi-weirdness such as the Doomsday Argument. But that I'll experience > Thursday before Friday even if there are lots of me on Friday is, I > think, relatively straightforward. > > > -- > Stathis Papaioannou > > -- > You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups > "Everything List" group. > To post to this group, send email to everything-l...@googlegroups.com. > To unsubscribe from this group, send email to > everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com<everything-list%2bunsubscr...@googlegroups.com> > . > For more options, visit this group at > http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list?hl=en. > > > >--
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