On 15 Jan 2012, at 19:33, John Clark wrote:

> On Sat, Jan 14, 2012  Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:

> If computationalism argues that zombies can't exist, therefore anything that we cannot distinguish from a conscious person must be conscious, that also means that it is impossible to create something that acts like a person which is not a person. Zombies are not Turing emulable.

Maybe. Zombie behavior is certainly Turing emulable but you are asking more than that and there is no way to prove what you want to know because it hinges on one important question: how can you tell if a zombie is a zombie? Brains are not my favorite meal but I don't think dietary preference or even unsightly skin blemishes are a good test for consciousness; I believe zombies have little if any consciousness because, at least as depicted in the movies, zombies act really really dumb. But maybe the film industry is inflicting an unfair stereotype on a persecuted minority and there are good hard working zombies out there who you don't hear about that write love poetry and teach at Harvard, if so then I think those zombies are conscious even if I would still find a polite excuse to decline their invitation to dinner.

> This to me reveals an absurdity of arithmetic realism. Pinocchio the boy is possible to simulate mechanically, but Pinocchio the puppet is impossible. Doesn't that strike anyone else as an obvious deal breaker?

I find nothing absurd about that and neither did Evolution. The parts of our brain that so dramatically separate us from other animals, the parts that deal with language and long term planing and mathematics took HUNDREDS of times longer to evolve than the parts responsible for intense emotion like pleasure, pain, fear, hate, jealousy and love. And why do you think it is that in this group and elsewhere everybody and their brother is pushing their own General Theory of Consciousness but nobody even attempts a General Theory of Intelligence?

There are general theory of learning, like those of Case and Smith, Blum, Osherson, etc. But they are necessarily non constructive. They are not usable neither for building AI, nor for verifying if something is intelligent. It shows that Intelligence (competence) is an intrinsic hard subject with many non-comparable degrees of intelligence. Intelligence is not programmable. It is only self-programmable, and it interests nobody, except philosophers and theologians. When machine will be intelligent, we will send them in camps or jails. Intelligence leads to dissidence. We pretend appreciating intelligence, but we invest a lost in preventing it, in both children and machine.

The reason is that theorizing about the one is easy but theorizing about the other is hard, hellishly hard, and because when intelligence theories fail they fail with a loud thud that is obvious to all, but one consciousness theory works as well, or as badly, as any other.

See the work of Case and Smith. It is not well know because it is based on theoretical computer science (recursion theory) which is not well known. Those are definite interesting result there, even if not applicable. The "non-union theorem" of Blum shows that there is something uncomputably much more intelligent than a machine: a couple of machine. The theory is super-non-linear.

Consciousness theories are easy because there are no facts they need to explain,

What? With comp, not only you have to explain the qualia, but it has been proved that you have to explain the quanta as well, and this without assuming a physical reality.

but there is an astronomical number of things that need to be explained to understand how intelligence works.

Not really. It is just that intelligent things organize themselves in non predictable way, at all. The basic are simple (addition and multiplication) but the consequences are not boundable.



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