On 26 December 2011 19:49, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

>> ISTM that in Bruno's schema, the "physical" computations are to be
>> seen as emerging from (or being filtered by) the "mental" ones.
>
>
> He's often taken that way.  But I think I now understand Bruno's idea that
> consciousness still supervenes on (some kind of) physics. It's just that
> neither is fundamental.  They are both generated by computation.

Yes, I get that too - the recent conversations have been helpful.

>> Or more precisely, the physical computations to which we have access (and
>> which define us) as observers seem so to emerge; but both of these are
>> embedded within the much more extensive totality of computable
>> functions which are neither "physical" nor "mental".  Perhaps this is
>> indeed a neutral background, in something like the sense you intend.
>
>
> Right.

Good.

David


> On 12/26/2011 11:37 AM, David Nyman wrote:
>>
>> On 26 December 2011 17:59, meekerdb<meeke...@verizon.net>  wrote:
>>
>>> Or a neutral monism in which they are different ways of organizing the
>>> same
>>> data - as quantum field theory can be done with either fields or
>>> particles.
>>
>> Yes, perhaps, but then what precisely is the word "neutral" supposed
>> to signify here?  Can one distinguish it meaningfully from
>> "immaterial" (i.e. not material)?
>
>
> You can distinguish computation from both material and consciousness.
>
>
>> At any rate, "organizing data" is
>> an implicit appeal to computation, so in so far as consciousness is
>> deemed to supervene on something, we still seem to be appealing to
>> some sort of computational organisation.  That said, another question
>> obtrudes: if we are to think in terms of two "different ways of
>> organizing the same data" - perhaps "physical" ways and "mental" ways
>> - can either be considered as taking logical precedence over the
>> other?
>>
>> ISTM that in Bruno's schema, the "physical" computations are to be
>> seen as emerging from (or being filtered by) the "mental" ones.
>
>
> He's often taken that way.  But I think I now understand Bruno's idea that
> consciousness still supervenes on (some kind of) physics. It's just that
> neither is fundamental.  They are both generated by computation.
>
>
>>   Or
>> more precisely, the physical computations to which we have access (and
>> which define us) as observers seem so to emerge; but both of these are
>> embedded within the much more extensive totality of computable
>> functions which are neither "physical" nor "mental".  Perhaps this is
>> indeed a neutral background, in something like the sense you intend.
>
>
> Right.
>
> Brent
>
>>
>> David
>>
>>> On 12/26/2011 5:50 AM, David Nyman wrote:
>>>>
>>>> On 26 December 2011 11:06, Russell Standish<li...@hpcoders.com.au>
>>>>  wrote:
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>>>>>  I guess I should make this clearer. SUP-PHYS is SUP-PRIMITIVE-PHYS.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>  This does clarify some things. But I still don't see where
>>>>>>  "primitiveness" is defined, or comes into the argument. Maudlin's
>>>>>>  argument is about regular supervenience, with no mention of
>>>>>> primitiveness.
>>>>
>>>> The confusion is surely a consequence of a studied ambiguity in the
>>>> definition of supervention in the computational theory of mind: it is
>>>> simply not stipulated explicitly whether consciousness is supposed to
>>>> supervene on a physical system - "qua materia" - or on the abstract
>>>> computation it implements - "qua computatio".  Maudlin's argument is
>>>> supposed to pump our intuition about the absurdity of the former
>>>> option, by showing that it is possible to reduce the structure and
>>>> activity of a physical implementation (qua materia) to some
>>>> arbitrarily trivial level.
>>>>
>>>> But if we remove the aforesaid ambiguity, the "qua materia" option is
>>>> surely empty of content from the outset.  If "primitive" physical
>>>> activity is supposed to be what ultimately determines what is real,
>>>> then second-order notions such as "computation" must be, in the final
>>>> analysis, explanatorily irrelevant - we have no need of such
>>>> hypotheses.  The behaviour of any physical system can always be shown
>>>> to be fully adequate, qua materia, in its own terms, and further
>>>> explanation is consequently otiose (i.e. the zombie argument, in
>>>> effect).  The ambiguity in the definition of CTM is that it makes an
>>>> appeal to "computation" without making the explicit ontological
>>>> distinction between "qua computatio" and "qua materia" that is
>>>> required to make any sense of the supervention claim.  On reflection,
>>>> this distinction can be made explicit in two ways: either they are
>>>> distinct and separable (i.e. physico-computational dualism), or they
>>>> are ultimately indistinguishable (i.e. frank eliminativism about
>>>> consciousness, or immaterialism - take your pick).  That's it, in a
>>>> nutshell.
>>>
>>>
>>> Or a neutral monism in which they are different ways of organizing the
>>> same
>>> data - as quantum field theory can be done with either fields or
>>> particles.
>>>
>>> Brent
>>>
>>>
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