On 09.09.2011 23:06 meekerdb said the following:
On 9/9/2011 1:37 PM, Evgenii Rudnyi wrote:
On 09.09.2011 21:58 meekerdb said the following:
On 9/9/2011 11:35 AM, Evgenii Rudnyi wrote:
On 06.09.2011 22:25 meekerdb said the following:
On 9/6/2011 12:43 PM, Evgenii Rudnyi wrote:
I was talking about realism in a sense that universals
exist (I am not sure if this could be generalized for all
things). My first naive/crazy idea was that this could give
some basis to produce qualia related to notation. Neurons
somehow distill universals from things and report them.
On the other hand, if we are to write a program that
should classify objects, then this program should have
some dictionary with categories. That dictionary in some
sense should exist.
Wouldn't those neural net face recognition programs be an
example of this. They start out not knowing anyone's face.
But then with training they learn to recognize Brent and
distinguish him from Evgenii. Each instance of the Brent
image is a little different from the other instances but it
assigned the same classification for purposes of access or
other action. In effect it has invented "Brent" and "Evgenii"
as universals. The 'dictionary' then exists as the combined
information of the program and memory. The persistent
patterns in memory are analogous to dictionary entries. The
imaging and actions provide the meaning of these entries.
I like more to take an example with a human being rather than
with a name, so let me consider a term "a human being". So,
after all a neural net is some map. It takes some visual,
audio, tactile, etc. inputs, processes them and produces some
token. What happens then? Presumably it puts this token to the
dictionary that produces qualia for the homunculus in the brain
(or whomever, this does not matter at this point). Now I would
say that if that final qualia corresponded to "a human being"
is the same in all brains, than this is realism. If different,
then this is nominalism.
I don't think that's the distinction between realism and
nominalism in their theory of universals. It's my understanding
that the realist says that there really are human beings in an
objective sense (where "objective" may really just refer to
intersubjective agreement). While the nominalist says "human
being" is just name we give to a category created arbitrarily and
we could just as well have defined it as hairless bipeds and
include ostriches and shaved kangaroos.
Yes, you are right. My interpretation is different from the
conventional difference between realism and nominalism. Here one
says indeed that each person has something that exists in the
objective sense and this something is "a human being". Well, it we
treat qualia ontologically, then I guess, this will be close to
realism. Yet one can imagine different scenarios. Under a
conventional definition, qualia "human being" is tied with a
physical person in the classical sense of the realism. It is
necessary however then to explain how a homunculus in the brain
retrieves that qualia from a physical person (quantum
I think it is a category error to think of a token being put in a
dictionary as evoking qualia. I think qualia supervene on the
conscious formation (and recall) of symbolic (mostly language)
narration which is put into memory (although possibly only short
term). In the neural net analogy, the perception of a person
activates some part of the network so that some word, e.g. "Bob",
gets inserted in the stream of consciousness that it is going into
memory. "Bob" is retrieved only in the sense that some part of the
network is activated. There is no homunculus.
It well may be, I do not know. Anyway, in my view if we take qualia
ontologically, this will be some sort of realism.
As for homunculus, I also agree. Yet, frankly speaking I still do not
understand (even with qualia), how a 3D world that I experience is
created. Who experiences it? How qualia helps to solve such a question?
The scenario that I have described is different in a sense that the
communication takes place through physical processes that we know
but at the end we may still think of qualia in the ontological
sense. Hence one could probably state that this is also the realism
(but definitely in some unconventional sense).
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