On 4 August 2011 18:44, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

> I don't see how life (including us) could exist except at a quasi-classical
> level.  Evolution needs reliable replication to work with.  Given that we
> evolved as quasi-classical beings, it follows that our perception,
> psychology, and interaction with the world must be quasi-classical.

Neither do I.  Indeed, the lecturer was insistent on the lack of
"objective" criteria on the basis of which decoherent "worlds" must
obviously differentiate to yield the looked-for quasi-classical
environments.  Rather - as your comment implies - he spoke of the
process as inescapably "top-down" and "emergent", in the course of
which "we see what works" and "we spot (patterns)", etc.  IOW it seems
that the prior emergence of a point-of-view and its corresponding
"environment" are prerequisites for what is by then a
quasi-classically-informed functional or structural analysis of the
(conjecturally) basic micro-physical situation.  That is to say, the
role of the "observer" continues to be indispensable to the decoherent
account.

David


> On 8/4/2011 9:41 AM, David Nyman wrote:
>>
>> Hi Stephen
>>
>> Thanks for the link - very enjoyable talk.  As far as I could follow
>> it, he seemed to be saying that the differentiation of decoherent
>> "worlds" is in the final analysis a "psychological" matter - i.e. that
>> quasi-classical "reality", as ordinarily experienced, is consequent on
>> the selection of particular "best-fit" or "most fruitful"
>> interpretations of functional or structural features of the underlying
>> micro-physical state-of-affairs.
>
> I don't see how life (including us) could exist except at a quasi-classical
> level.  Evolution needs reliable replication to work with.  Given that we
> evolved as quasi-classical beings, it follows that our perception,
> psychology, and interaction with the world must be quasi-classical.
>
> Brent
>
>> Whereas I did take to heart his
>> admonitions as to the differing explanatory priorities of physics and
>> philosophy, and particularly the centrality of functional explanations
>> to science in general, I was a bit troubled by the seeming assumption
>> that the requirement for such interpretation and selection just
>> "bottoms out", as it were, at the level of micro-physics (although he
>> did speculate at one point on the subject of "deeper" ontological
>> bases below this "substitution level").  I couldn't quite decide
>> whether he was actually "sweeping the 1st-person under the rug", in
>> Bruno's terms.  He didn't address this aspect directly, but perhaps
>> this signals an implicit belief that micro-physical-functional, or
>> ontological/epistemological, elements must always play a dual role in
>> any intelligible account of our situation.
>>
>> I wonder what you thought.
>>
>> David
>>
>
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