On Aug 1, 3:07 pm, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:
> On 01 Aug 2011, at 01:12, Craig Weinberg wrote:
> > I don't see why it has to be infinite and I don't see what's wrong
> > with non Turing.
> We will come back on this. Normally sane04 explains this. I have to go  
> now,
> Meanwhile you might think on how to explain what you mean by  
> "sensorimotive", without doing any poetry, so that anybody can  
> understand clearly what you mean.

Unfortunately sensorimotive is by definition poetic in part, because
it is the ontological complement to electromagnetism, which is non-
poetic, literal, and mechanical. Electromagnetism is nothing more than
patterns observed in the behavior of matter. The experience of those
behaviors are sensorimotive. As an electric circuit is a contiguous
material loop through which 'current' flows between positive and
negative poles, the experience of that circuit can be modeled as a
feeling or sense of disequilibrium which motivates an intention to
complete the circuit - which it will seek to do whatever way it can.
Of course that's just a theory, we can't know what it's like to be a
single electric circuit like that, but we can know that our
experiences are conducted through our nervous system, and that nervous
system can be understood to have sensory and motor functions, and that
those functions as experiential input and output are ontological
conjugates. Together, the sensorimotive function on the scale of an
organism can be called perception or sentience. We make sense of
ourselves and our environment and we are motivated by that sense to
try to complete the sensorimotive circuit which is presented.

The difference between something like semiconductors or copper wire
circuits from neurological circuits is more than just complexity.
Complexity is necessary but not sufficient for bringing about
consciousness, feeling, and understanding. Why this is boils down to
the same reason why we would want to use semiconductors instead of
neurons in the first place. There are different physical
(electromagnetic) characteristics which make wires and chips much
easier to work with. If that were not the case, there would be no
debate because we would 'simply' use cheap, sugar powered brain chips
instead. There are things that cells do that a chip can't easily do,
and vice versa. Higher forms of consciousness is one of the former.
The problem is that if we a priori define the universe as computation,
we disqualify the other form of escalation: signification. Complexity
alone is not significance. A cell is more than molecules, and I
propose that the reason that molecules keep organizing themselves into
cells is that they get something out of it. I don't know if the shared
experience of being a cell is vicarious or direct, but like any kind
of human belonging, there is a motive there and a sense.

>From a mechanical perspective, sense is the many to one input while
motive is the one to many output, but it's the sense of the
experiential content which is input and output as intention, not just
an encoded exterior 'signal'. Indeed our modern media technology
demonstrates how the sense that we make as human beings can easily be
encoded in many different signal translation architectures. It's not
the form of the signal that matters from the sensorimotive
perspective, it's what sense the receiver can make of the signal. What
I think comp does is imagine that signal form must equate with signal
content, particularly given the success of miniaturization in
processing enormously complex signals. I think this goes along with
the conception of electromagnetism as disembodied forces and fields,
quantum mechanical probability waves, etc as the overreaching of
abstraction to compensate for the disqualification of sensorimotive
phenomena because it doesn't mix well with existing theoretical
approaches and Enlightenment era traditions.

> I remind you that honest scientists admit not to understand, in the  
> scientific way, what is the nature of matter, nor the nature of mind,  
> so it will not help to allude on this. It might make sense to allude  
> on some property of mind and/or matter that we might share the  
> intuition with you.

What's wrong with understanding the nature of mind and matter? I admit
to not knowing whether or not my understanding will be contradicted by
some greater sense making effort, but I don't think that there is
inherently anything less presumptuous about focusing on granular
details of these phenomena rather than sketching out the big picture.


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