On 06 Dec 2011, at 20:44, Stephen P. King wrote:

On 12/6/2011 1:42 PM, Bruno Marchal wrote:

On 06 Dec 2011, at 18:25, Quentin Anciaux wrote:

2011/12/6 meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net>
On 12/6/2011 4:11 AM, Quentin Anciaux wrote:

 The only thing that matter is digitalness... the
> fact that you run it on your pingpong ball computer doesn't matter.
It does matter. If you run computations on pingpong ball computer that
interact with the environment

This is relative to the environment. If you want to interact with the "simulated" brain, you *must* run at the same level. That does not preclude that the simulated brain can be run on any level, only interaction with you require a specific level... your level.

A human being is not a closed system. So the "substitution level" for Bruno's argument to go thru could include digital simulation of a large part of the universe - or maybe all of it.



But if all the universe is needed, then computationalism is certainly false and that would prevent any conscious AI and even if the argument could still go through with the whole universe... it seems really like plain old solipsism in that case.

Also, the argument is not about feasibility of capturing the consciousness of a living person and puting it in a computer but about the concept and the compatibility with materialism.

Yes, an environment is needed for consciousness, but I doubt that to capture an existing consciousness (mind uploading) the level would be more than neuronal or maybe atomic and hence the environment needed could be feeded via input/output system without it being explicitely included (weither the "real" one or a virtual one) in the captured consciousness.

If we assume comp, and if the whole physical universe is needed for the 'generalized brain', then, by comp, all the universe's states have to be digitally accessible, and the UD will still access to those states infinitely often. So the whole reasoning still go through, even in the case of a concrete physical UD (step seven).

Empirically this is doubtful, though. If the quantum indeterminacy relies on the first person indeterminacies, then we can bet that we share the computational states of "our matter constitution" at, or above, the quantum state of our bodies. Our level is probably above the quantum level. This makes QM saving comp from solipsism, and is coherent with Tegmark's argument that the brain does not exploit quantum superpositions when handling our relevant mechanist computational states (Sorry, Stephen). We most plausibly do share deep dynamical histories. Beware the collision with Andromeda!



Hi Bruno,

Yes, I am still reading this LIst. :-) Tegmark is not even wrong but I do concede the point as it is not relevant to digital substitution but I, like Craig, caution against thinking that using classical theory to reason about consciousness is doomed from the start. Your result, for me, proves that material monism fails miserably as a T.O.E.


but so does ideal monism.


The irony is that they fail for the exact same reason, the problem of epiphenomena.

I don't follow you on this. We have discussed that before. Matter (primitive matter) simply does not exist. It can be an ideal (immaterial) appearance (by the reasoning). Matter can not be an epiphenomenon. It is just a phenomenon, and not a primitive one. But with material monism, matter has to exist primitively (by definition) and consciousness has to be an epiphenomenon indeed. The role of matter and consciousness is not symmetrical. Matter can be an illusion, but consciousness cannot. In all case consciousness has to be real, or eliminated (which makes no sense). And it t makes logical sense to eliminate primitive matter, not consciousness. Only material monism needs to use the notion of epiphenomenon, not immaterial (number like) monism.

The main difference is that matter (or physics) single out (or try to single out) one universal system, where comp explains that such a universal physical system has to be justified from a measure, on all computations, invariant for all universal machine points of view, which includes the working of an infinity of universal systems. The other difference is that by extracting physics from a computational measure constrained by the logic of self-reference, we get a natural distinction between qualia and quanta (even if quanta appears as special case of qualia by the first person plural nature of physical histories).

But this measure simply does not exist! The set of all computable functions is of measure zero in the set of all functions.
What are you going to do about this fact?

The measure is on the computations (going through my actual state), not on all functions. The set of all functions plays some role, including an "random oracle background", but this is only due to the fact that from a first person perspective machines cannot distinguish an oracle from a more complex machine than herself.

We cannot simply postulate a measure

Indeed. We have to extract it entirely from the (math of the) self- reference constraints.

that is not contained by the requirements of our physical world.

UDA shows that once we assume we are digitalizable machine we cannot use the assumption of the existence of a physical world, even if that assumption were true.

The solution is to understand that our physical world is what determines a local measure on the computations.

You can indeed redefine the physical worlds by that property, but you have to justify its existence by the measure on all relative computations, as seen from the first person perspective, or you have to show a flaw in the reasoning.

A search for a "global" or universal measure is quixotic at best.

No, it makes sense thanks to Church thesis and computer science, especially when you take the logical self-reference constraints into account, as UDA illustrates the necessity.



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