On 23 Jul 2010, at 17:17, Allen wrote:

I'm sure none of you needed the reminder, it's only so that I may point directly to what I mean. Now, doesn't this - the nature of a Turing machine - fundamentally exclude the ability to integrate information? The computers we have today do not integrate information to any significant extent, as Tononi explained with his digital camera example. Is this a fundamental limit of the Turing machine, or just our current technology?

I think this has nothing to do with technology. It is just that consciousness is not related to the activity of the physical machine, but to the logic which makes the person supported by the computation integrating that information. In a sense it is just false to relate consciousness to any third person describable activity, and in fine, if we are machine, our consciousness, which is a first person notion, is related (not even defined by) all the possible computations going through the logical state of the machine. This entails that any machine looking at itself below its substitution level (the level at which it feels surviving an artificial digital substitution) will discover that the apparent material reality is multiple: matter relies on infinity of computations. This is retrospectively confirmed by quantum mechanics.

In fine, matter is a construction of the mind, in the case we are digital machine. The brain does not makes consciousness, it filters it from infinities of first person histories. Tononi is a bit naïve, like many, on the mind-body (consciousness-reality) relationship. The integration does not rely on what a machine do, but on what an infinity of possible machines can do, and how consistent environment reacts to what the machine (person) decides.

It is a subtle matter, which necessitate to revise the fundamental status of physics. No amount of third person description will ever define what is consciousness, and this for reason related to Mechanism and discoveries in computer science/mathematical logic. You may look at my url for more if interested. Of you can find sum up and explanation in the archive of the list.


- Bruno Marchal


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