On 09 Jul 2011, at 19:06, Constantine Pseudonymous wrote:

Bruno, I'm not exactly sure what you mean by vitalism.... but if its
what I have in mind..... then it "died" erroneously..... I don't think
notions of qi and prana are without foundation.... far from it. There
is a sense in which, if vitalism died, that was a mistake.... but I am
not exactly sure of the specificity in which you refer to vitalism.

Vitalism is the belief, in the 19th century, by some biologist, in a vital principle which would not follow the known laws of physics and chemistry, other that higher level laws explainable at lower levels. It was notably based on results obtained on self-regeneration, and on the fact that biologist did not succeed in explaining conceptually the possibility of self-reproduction without falling in an infinite regress (Descartes-Driesch problem). The Kleene recursion theorem (in arithmetic) solves that problem. It is a key point, and I wrote a paper on that "amoeba, planaria and dreaming machine". And it is the basic block of the self-reference uses in AUDA (but hidden in Solovay Theorems, which encapsulate the many application of Kleene's theorem in the logic G and G*). Deep principles are at play in the life phenomenon, no doubt, but none seem to require a new physics, and still less non Turing emulable phenomenon. There is an abstract biology which does not depend on matter and which works in all bases of the phi_i (the computable functions), i.e. with respect to any choice of the initial universal system.

If you defend vitalism, you will still be under the consequence of comp, unless you believe that the vital principle is not Turing emulable, but then just say "no" to the doctor. You can still understand that IF mechanism is correct then the correct physics is the one by Plato-Plotinus, and not the naturalistic one developed by taking Aristotle too much literally.


On Jul 9, 5:26 am, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:
On 09 Jul 2011, at 09:10, Russell Standish wrote:

On Fri, Jul 08, 2011 at 11:04:56PM +0200, Bruno Marchal wrote:

On 08 Jul 2011, at 03:39, B Soroud wrote:

I mean if you went back to classical greece... or classical
india.... could it have been predicted or shown to deduced?

Excellent question. China was close. Reading the treatise "number"
by Plotinus, and having a bit study Diophantus, I am not sure that
in the world were Plato academia lasted longer they could have find
it.  Nature found it before (quantum vaccum, DNA, Brain, humans,
Human thought, computers, ...).
It is the little God. The one you can named (Like FORTRAN, Java,
c++, LISP, game of life, etc.) but when you name it, its names

David Deutsch has an interesting discussion about this in his
"Beginning of Infinity". He actually introduces several notions of
universality, one of which is universality of the numbering
system. Our numbering system is universal,

Well, carefull. It is unidversal in some sense, but is not Turing

since the discovery of the
zero, but ancient Greek & Roman systems were not.

But they are universal in some other sense.

Archimedes came
close to a universal numbering system in the "Sand Reckoner", but
mysteriously shied away from true universality (his system included
some rather arbitrary restrictions preventing it from true

But they were way far from Turing universality.

Similarly, Babbage and Lovelace came very close to the Turing
universality concept, but again mysteriously shied away from

Here I disagree. I have made research, and I am convinced that babbage
has been aware of the Turing universality, of, its notation system to
describe its machine. He said that this was his real big discovery,
but none understand it.

Then Emil Post is the second one, but nobody will listen (nor will
Post really insist). Only with Church and Turing will the notion be
admitted by the many. But still very badly understood, despite the
concrete computers, which when programmed, hides their universality.

Deutsch remarks that we as a species seem to have a reluctance to
making systems universal, which is quite curious.

So in answer to this question, even if Plato's academy had continued,
it probably still would not have discovered Turing universality.

I think it would have taken some more centuries. They might have
discovered it in the 12 or 13th century. They would not have been able
to miss it, especially with the development of math and calculus,
which they would have developed much faster than Newton and Leibniz.
OK, that is just my current opinion. We can't change history.



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