On 12/31/2011 1:49 PM, Evgenii Rudnyi wrote:
On 31.12.2011 22:05 meekerdb said the following:
On 12/31/2011 6:07 AM, Evgenii Rudnyi wrote:
So a self-driving car is probably much more close to have a
first person view than a rock, especially if you make it possible
for the car to memorize its short term instances of computation
(sensing, planning, etc.) into a "long scenario involving
herself".

Good point. Thanks Bruno. A self-driving car does have an estimate
of its current state and then it updates it both internally and
based on external measurements. It also makes some planning, soft
of what to do next.

Yet, if we consider a self-driving car and a rock from the
viewpoint of physicalism (or could be even better atomism), then
the difference will be much more difficult to find. After all there
are in both cases interacting electrons and nuclei (well probably
some electromagnetic waves as well) and nothing more.

Evgenii

That kind of "nothing buttery" applies to all explanations because
any real explanation is in terms of simpler things and relations. You
could as well say Bruno's explanation is nothing but arithmetic.

Well, I guess, it is still an interesting question. Let us take for example the next sequence

A rock - a ballcock in a toilet - a PID controller in a thermostat - a 
self-driving car

What is the difference from the viewpoint of atomism?

It's in the organization of the atoms. But of course you knew that. But why would you want to force that constraint on the explanation? Why not from the viewpoint of function, or the viewpoint of evolution or the viewpoint of economics. My brain isn't equipped to go from the level of atoms to function. A description of a ballcock in terms of atoms contains too much extraneous information for something that's defined in terms of it's function for human purposes.

If you know some speculations in this direction, I would really appreciate a link, as this question puzzles me now.

It well might be that a good answer could help us to understand what for example supervenience is. Otherwise, it is for me just a buzzword like emergent properties.

I tend to agree. On the one hand it seems to be a relation of x to y such that Sxy => ~Sxz for all z=/=y. But y can take different values for the same x at different times.

Brent

I agree, this concerns Bruno theorem as well. It would be nice to learn what is the difference along this sequence from Bruno's viewpoint as well. Well, probably some difference here in this respect is a diary.

Evgenii


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