On 12/18/2011 3:46 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:


On 17 Dec 2011, at 22:05, meekerdb wrote:

On 12/17/2011 8:24 AM, Quentin Anciaux wrote:


2011/12/17 Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com <mailto:whatsons...@gmail.com>>

    On Dec 17, 7:30 am, Quentin Anciaux <allco...@gmail.com
    <mailto:allco...@gmail.com>> wrote:

    > N- you can build a machine that implements and can only run 3 but that
    > can't handle counterfactual, but as the computation is the same as 3, it
    > must be as conscious as when it was running on a complete physical 
computer.
    > N+1- you can restore the handling of conterfactual by adding inactive
    > piece. But If N was not conscious, adding inactive pieces shouldn't render
    > it conscious.

    Conscious of what? It sounds like this assumes that consciousness is a
    binary feature.


You didn't read, that's not the argument.

It begins by *assuming we have a conscious program*. The argument is not about what is consciousness, it's about assuming consciousness to be computational and assuming physical supervenience thesis true and showing a contradiction.

But it seems like a play on our intuition as to what constitutes a computation. We hypothesize consciousness supervenes on computation because computation is the kind of thing needed to make intelligent (and therefore "conscious") acting machines. But then there is a subtle shift from computation as the basis of intelligent action, to computation as a sequence of physical states to sequence of physical states as the playback of a recording. Then we intuit that something as simple as a playback can't be a computation that would support consciousness - but why should we still regard it as a computation?

To save the physical supervenience thesis, some people does that. But it is a confusion between a computation and a description of a computation.

I don't understand that remark. Are you saying the playback is only a description of a computation and not a computation? Or is the sequence of physical states only a description?

Brent

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