Dear Bruno,
Can you imagine any way to test whether a higher intelligence is monitoring the UD and occasionally modifying it? marty a.

----- Original Message ----- From: "Bruno Marchal" <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, July 08, 2011 12:09 PM
Subject: Re: Bruno's blasphemy.

On 08 Jul 2011, at 01:59, Russell Standish wrote:

On Wed, Jul 06, 2011 at 10:12:45PM -0700, meekerdb wrote:
One that happens to be incompatible with
theory that our minds are computer programs.

Can you explain that?  It seems to be Bruno's central claim, but so
far as I can see he only tries to prove that a physical reality is


Here's my take on it. I guess you read the version I wrote 6 years ago
in ToN.

Once you allow the existence of a universal dovetailer, we are far
more likely to be running on the dovetailer (which is a simple
program) than on a much more complicated program (such as simulating
the universe as we currently see it).

I am in a good mood, so I will respect that. I don't want to go in the "details". Let just mention that I am not sure the size of the UD code matter so much. If we assume the *physical* existence of a forever running UD, then what counts is the number of computational histories going in my current state. That the UD itself wins might play a role. But the way I isolate a computer science isolation of a formulation of the mind-body, even what you say, if correct, has to be deduced from the self-introspecting discourse of the machine.

Under COMP, the dovetailer is
capable of generating all possible experiences (which is why it is
universal). Therefore, everything we call physics (electrons, quarks,
electromagnetic fields, etc) is phenomena caused by the running of the

That's correct. Yet, I guess many people will suppose that this comes from the fact that the UD will emulate some physical phenomenon, like the computation of the heisenberg gigantic matrix describing the observable evolution of the entire Milky Way + Magellan and Co. Now, despite the UD does that indeed (trivially), that computation itself is only playing an infinitesimal part in *our* experience of the galaxy. A priori we have to take into account *all* computations going through our actual 3-version of our actual mind state. So the real physics, the one with the "real" quanta and the qualia, results from the statistical interference of a priori a vastly bigger set of computations.

By Church-Turing thesis, the dovetailer could be running
on anything capable of supporting universal computation. To use
Kantian terminology, what the dovetailer runs on is the noumenon,
unknowable reality, which need have no connection which the phenomenon
we observe. In fact with the CT-thesis, we cannot even know which
noumenon we're running on, in the case there may be more than one. We
might just as well be running on some demigod's child's playstation,
as running on Platonic arithmetic. It is in principle unknowable, even
by any putative omniscient God - there is simply no matter of fact
there to know.

All UDs are equivalent, and physics, nor the whole theology, can't depend of the initial choice. We can take elementary arithmetic, the combinators, or any Turing complete formalism. So we can even take the (rational, not real) Newton laws (but that would be confusing!), or a rational topological computer (but that would be treachery with respect to the "correct" extraction of the consciousness/matter coupling from the introspecting universal machine discourse.

So ultimately, this is why Bruno eliminates the concrete dovetailer,
in the manner of Laplace eliminating God "Sire, je n'ai besoin de cet

No, it is much worst, it is more like "Sire, Your hypothesis (primitive matter) can't be used, and might only prevents the finding of the solution to the mind body problem.

Anyway, Bruno will no doubt correct any mistaken conceptions here :).

The impulse is stronger than me :)


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