On 14 Mar 2010, at 03:35, m.a. wrote:

Please see questions below (in bold).

On 13 Mar 2010, at 16:00, m.a. wrote:

Bruno,
Thanks to your lucid explanation I begin to glimpse the beauty of comp. Please check my reasoning here. If materialism is correct, the brain can be compared to a computer which contains the programming for higher order languages (e.g. word processors, spreadsheets, paintbrush etc.) but requires anexternal input to implement the creative potential of those languages.

Locally, yes. You can run the UD though. But this is of no use relatively to you. It is a program without input, and without ouput. From outside it is like the empty function, also computed by the program "do nothing".


For a computer the input is man; for the brain the input might be God, chance, spirits or what have you.

Both for the computer and man, the inputs are given by their most probable universal neighbor, emerging from a competition among all universal computer below their substitution level.

Could you please clarify this?


Well, it is really the consequence of the UD Argument. If my relevant (at the right substitution level, or below) computational state is S, my next first person state, (my next OM) is given by a measure on all computations, executed (in arithmetic) going through that state S. But the UD generates all universal machines, and all executions of each of those universal machine, so it generates the state S infinitely many often, as S is generated by any universal machines (themselves generating S an infinity of times).


Here I am not sure to follow you. The comp indeterminacy on all our "incarnations" in arithmetic, or in the universal dovetailing may on the contrary restrict that freedom, by making us live consequences of act we don't do.

How does this "restrict freedom"? The ability to imagine many alternatives and therefore make an informed choice among them seems to me the essence of free will. I thought that was what you were saying below:


Exactly. That is why adding randomness limit my free-will, because it entails that some alternatives will be realized independently of my will. If I hesitate between going to Moscow and going to Washington, the fact that both alternatives are realized (in the same proportion, say) makes my "happening to be in one of those places" a random event, not the result of my informed choice among the alternatives. No need for duplication: if I decide to go to W or to M by throwing a coin, my choice is less free than if I make a choice resulting from information I get on W and M.



So it is really determinism which allows us to develop at least a partial control on the universal neighborhood we bet on.

What is partial determinism?


A mixture of determinism and indeterminism. Like freely choosing between being duplicated in Washington and Moscow instead of being duplicated in Sidney and Beijing.

Or like being duplicated in W and M, but being able to insure that I will have coffee in both places.

Quantum mechanics, and statistical physics are always mixing indeterminacy and determinacy. Free will relies on the (self)- determinacy part. Indeterminacy adds unexpected events capable of preventing my will to be accomplished.

Pure, total indeterminacy, gives total randomness, and I am no more able to predict anything, or to evaluate any form of likelihood, except for some global quasi-uniform "white noise".

Bruno




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