Thanks, I always seem to like Chalmers perspectives. In this case I
think that the hypothesis of physics I'm working from changes how I
see this argument compared to how I would have a couple years ago. My
thought now is that although organizational invariance is valid,
molecular structure is part of the organization. I think that
consciousness is not so much a phenomenon that is produced, but an
essential property that is accessed in different ways through
different organizations.

I'll just throw out some thoughts:

If you take an MRI of a silicon brain, it's going to look nothing like
a human brain. If an MRI can tell the difference, why can't the brain

Can you make synthetic water? Why not?

If consciousness is purely organizational, shouldn't we see an example
of non-living consciousness in nature? (Maybe we do but why don't we
recognize it as such). At least we should see an example of an
inorganic organism.

My view of awareness is now subtractive and holographic (think pinhole
camera), so that I would read fading qualia in a different way. More
like dementia.. attenuating connectivity between different aspects of
the self, not changing qualia necessarily. The brain might respond to
the implanted chips, even ruling out organic rejection, the native
neurology may strengthen it's remaining connections and attempt to
compensate for the implants with neuroplasticity, routing around the
'damage'. Qualia could also become more intense as the native brain
region gets smaller. Loudness seems to correlate with stupidity rather
than quiet behavior - maybe there's a reason for that. Maybe people
with less integrated neurons live in a coarser, more percussively
energitic version of the universe?

Of course, it's possible that silicon will not present as much of an
organizational incompatibility as I'm guessing, but my hunch is that
even if you could pull it off with chips, you would end up having to
reinvent living cells in semiconductor form before you can get feeling
out of them. I think there is a lot of organic firmware in there that
is not going to be supported on a solid state platform. Life needs
water. Our feelings need cells that need water. I see no reason to
think that water is less of a part of human consciousness than is

On Jul 12, 2:16 pm, Jesse Mazer <> wrote:
> Craig, I wonder what you'd think of Chalmers' "Absent Qualia, Fading Qualia, 
> Dancing Qualia" argument at to me 
> makes a strong argument for "organizational invariance", which says physical 
> systems organized the same way should produce the same qualia, so for example 
> a computer which simulated each of my neurons and their interactions with 
> sufficient accuracy would give rise to the same qualia as my biological 
> brain. The basic idea of the argument is that if you gradually replaced my 
> brain's neurons with computer chips that simulated the behavior of the 
> removed neurons and had the same input/output relationships, my qualia should 
> not change or fade in any reasonable theory of consciousness (an unreasonable 
> one would be one that had a total disconnect between qualia and behavior, so 
> that for example my qualia could be gradually fading or changing, or even 
> changing on a second-by-second basis, and yet behaviorally I would argue 
> emphatically that they were remaining unchanged)
> Jesse                                    

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