On 10/03/11 14:10, Bruno Marchal wrote:
Yes, but you still require an explanation of how the machine actually
runs. All possible states of the machine exist 'already' in an
On 10 Mar 2011, at 13:47, Andrew Soltau wrote:
All the moments exist, and as Deutsch points out, as you summarise,
'The appearance of change is already explained by the fact that there
are different frames that have an implicit sequence and in which the
observers state is different', but for change to actually happen, the
magic finger must move. Otherwise reality would be like a movie film
sitting in the can in storage.
The change in the "working program" is brought by the "universal
machine" which interprets it.
All you need is an initial universal "machine". It happens that
addition and multiplication, with first order logic is enough to
define such an initial universal system, and the UDA+MGA shows that
the laws of mind, including the laws of matter, does not depend on the
choice of the initial universal system.
Naturally. But you still require an explanation of how such arithmetic,
or how such computations, are carried out. This is where you need an
So elementary arithmetic does emulate, in the mathematical sense,
Arithmetic does not just describe all those computations: it literally
emulate them. This is not trivial to show, although computer science
gives the insight. Computations in arithmetic are not like movie, they
are like a observer line universe in a block universe.
Ok. And you still require an explanation of how something moves along
the line. This is what is missing from physics. It is inherently absent
in any concept of straightforward existence.
Provided you can explain how we come to be experiencing change, in other
words, how it comes to be that the computation is running, as opposed to
To add an external time reintroduces a mystery where it is not needed.
That use of time is like the use of "God" as gap explanation by the
pseudo-religious (authoritative) people. You will end up with a
primitive time, a primitive matter, and why not a primitive "god"
responsible for all this.
In which case you have to accept that the passage of time is an
illusion. In this case, you are not a being which witnesses change. You
are simply, at each moment in time, that which exists at that moment in
time, and has the illusion, at that moment in time, that you have
existed at other moments in time. Objectively this is unassailable.
Subjectively I personally, for one, consider that it does not account
for my experience.
That is, in my opinion, the correct insight of Deutsch.
I don't really think that there is a lot more one can say about it.
Except that he mentions an "implicit sequence", which is typically
made explicit by the universal machine which emulates, albeit
statically or arithmetically-realistically, the computation. All
computations in that setting are ultimately based on the explicit
sequence 0, s(0), s(s(0)), ... (or the equivalent in the combinators,
How the sequence is defined, and whether it is fundamentally physical or
arithmetical, is of no consequence to this - admittedly highly
philosophical - point.
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