On 17 March 2010 06:09, John Mikes <jami...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Stathis,
> I feel we are riding the human restrictive imaging in a complex nature.
> While I DO feel completely comfortable to say that there is a neuron through
> which connectivity is established to a "next" segment in our mental
> complexity, and if that neuron dies, the connectivity to that particular
> quale broke - on 2nd thought the diversity and multiplicity we do experience
> in nature (knownw domains and presumed for the still unknown ones) provides
> hope for more than one connecting link to ALL reducing the exclusivity of
> that particular neuron.
> Nature's complexity, however, shows redundancy and 'multiple emergency
> breaks' to the features, according to their 'importance' , that may be
> beyond our present grasp.
> In human logic (engineering/physical thinking as well) we think in "THE"
> way how things occur.  " O N E "  is enough. (This is the basis of our
> one-track causality-thinking as well: we find in our (known) model ONE most
> valued initiating factor and satisfy ourselves with that one, as "THE Cause"
> while from 'beyond our model' there may be multiple factors contributing to
> the effect assigned to that ONE in-model factor. This is the reason why our
> knowledge is "almost", sometimes even paradoxical and ambiguous).
> Stathis asked:
> Are you prepared to say that it is possible
> there is a single subatomic particle in your brain which makes the
> difference between consciousness and zombiehood?
> I am propared to say that we may do that, i.e. to assign such differences to
> a figmentous 'particle' - in what we may be no more right than in other
> 'presumed' mental explanations based on tissue/energy/bio science of the
> brain.
> Am I far out to compare a 'zombie' to a binary computer in 'basic' while the
> more advanced (still!) 'partial zombie' variants come in the advanced AI
> versions? It still does not commute with the wholeness of mentality, but
> follows certain leads beyond the strictly mechanistically  prefabricated
> machine connectivities. We still program within our known domains.
> We still cannot exceed our limited (model-view) knowledge base.

The question (which has got a bit lost in the discussion) is whether
it is possible to make an artificial brain component which exactly
reproduces the behaviour of the biological component, so that it if
replaces the biological component the surrounding tissue cannot tell
that it is an impostor, but which lacks consciousness. If it is
possible, then it would either be possible to create a partial zombie
who is blind, deaf, aphasic etc. but behaves normally, or perhaps a
abrupt full zombie when one vital component (which would have to be an
indivisible part of a neuron) was changed. This does not assume any
scientific theory about brain function: we can imagine that the
artificial component is created and installed by God. Is it possible
to make such a component, or is it a logical impossibility, such that
even God could not do it?

Stathis Papaioannou

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