On 2/16/2012 3:06 PM, acw wrote:
On 2/16/2012 19:09, Stephen P. King wrote:
On 2/16/2012 1:16 PM, acw wrote:

The assumption in COMP is that a subst. level exists, it's the main
assumption! What does that practically mean? That you can eventually
implement the brain (or a partial version of it) in a (modified)
TM-equivalent machine (by CTT). It does not deny the quantum reality,
merely says that the brain's functionality required for consciousness
is classical (and turing-emulable). Although, I suppose some versions
including oracles should be possible, and a weakening of COMP into
simple functionalism may also be possible.


I understand the UDA, as I have read every one of Bruno's English papers
and participated in these discussions, at least. You do not need to keep
repeating the same lines. ;-)

The point is that the "doctor" assumption already includes the
existence of the equivalent machine and from there the argument
follows. If you think such a doctor can never exist, yet that there
still is an equivalent turing-emulable implementation that is possible
*in principle*, I just direct you at
www.paul-almond.com/ManyWorldsAssistedMindUploading.htm which merely
requires a random oracle to get you there (which is given to you if
MWI happens to be true).

Does this "in principle" proof include the requirements of
thermodynamics or is it a speculation based on a set of assumptions that
might just seem plausible if we ignore physics? I like the idea of a
random Oracles, but to use them is like using sequences of lottery
winnings to code words that one wants to speak. The main problem is that
one has no control at all over which numbers will pop up, so one has to
substitute a scheme to select numbers after they have "rolled into the
This entire idea can be rephrased in terms of how radio signals are
embedded in noise and that a radio is a non-random Oracle.
You can buy or build various RNGs which utilize quantum effects (or even use freely available ones), see:
Many others exist.

If MWI is true, some of these devices will generate true random outputs, that is, because in a world, the state is 0 and in another is 1, and so on for each next state. In the case of the thought experiment, you write a simple program that utilizes such a QRNG to generate a program (or a more advanced program that limits it to some specific types, for example a neural network map or a physics simulation or whatever) then run it.

 Hi ACW,

Let us build a bit more on this thread because it is getting closer to the idea in my head that I have yet to find the exact words for (that is assuming that it can indeed be expressed in English! Some ideas require math...).

"If MWI is true, some of these devices will generate truly random outputs..." These kind of devices are what I was intending when I wrote of Markov process in a previous response to Bruno. I Also mentioned some stuff about Boltzmann brains. Do you recall those ideas? OK, keep that in mind.

In MWI, /*_all possible programs up to some resource bound you specified (as our hardware is resource bound) will run in some world_*/. That's the basic idea. If you think a digital subst. exist, *in principle* a sheaf of continuations will exist somewhere in some world after running this program. It's a rather ad-hoc and not very pretty solution, but if one admits a digital subst., then such an experiment would succeed (although the measure of such continuations may be low). I don't see anything contradicting thermodynamics here.

I have highlighted in bold and underlines that part of what you wrote that I am trying to focus attention on. It is there that the problem that I see in UDA is. This is the problem that Maudlin's argument is leading us down the wrong path. I tried to get some attention on this last year (?) in a discussion of Maudlin's paper, but my thoughts never connected. http://old.nabble.com/Re%3A-A-comment-on-Maudlin%27s-paper-%E2%80%9CComputation-and-Consciousness%E2%80%9D-p30789143.html

If such a substitution is not possible even in principle, then you
consider UDA's first assumption as false and thus also COMP/CTM being
false (neuroscience does suggest that it's not, but we don't know
that, and probably never will 100%, unless we're willing to someday
say "yes" to such a computationalist doctor and find out for ourselves).

All of this substitution stuff is predicated upon the possibility that
the brain can be emulated by a Universal Turing Machine. It would be
helpful if we first established that a Turing Machine is capable of what
we are assuming it do be able to do. I am pretty well convinced that it
cannot based on all that I have studied of QM and its implications. For
example, one has to consider the implications of the Kochen-Specker
<http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kochen-specker/> and Gleason
<http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/qt-quantlog/#1> Theorems - since we
hold mathematical theorems in such high regard!

Then you assume COMP is false. I don't particularly see why a TM wouldn't be able to emulate a human brain at some level (such as neuron level with some reasonable approximation of a neuron). Most neuroscience suggests that such an emulation would be possible, although it might not be perfect. A lot of high-level concepts in the human psychology are assumed to exist at much higher levels than neurons as well. Quantum effects may or may not play a role, but you'd have to show that they do play a substantial role absent which intelligence would be human general intelligence is impossible. That said, even if they would play a substantial role, what about imperfect copies, would they just be utterly broken in your view?

No, as I can see how COMP is true but only in a narrow sense. To me, if a idea is false then it is false in a possible worlds. I am arguing that COMP is true, as I understand it, in worlds that are timeless and where all physical particles are identical and Bosonic <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boson>. I am trying to fix this limitation that I see in UDA, as the kernel of Bruno's result is, IMHO, worthy of a Nobel prize! Sadly I cannot nominate him. :-(

All talk of Copying has to assume a reality where decoherence has
occurred sufficiently to allow the illusion of a classical world to
obtain, or something equivalent... In Sane04 we see discussion that
assume the physical world to be completely classical therefore it
assumes a model of Reality that is not true.

Copying in UDA is done after the digital brain substitution, thus it's all perfectly digital. Your claim would be that no doctor could make an accurate substitution, thus you reject the premise?

That does not make any sense because the act of digital substitution *is* a copy operation. I accept copying only if it is done in accordance with the actual physics of our reality and not just in some fancy possible world where there is no time and all particles are bosons.

The alternate option to COMP being false is usually some form of
infinitely complex matter and infinitely low subst. level. Either way,
one option allows copying(COMP), even if at worst indirect or just
accidentally correct, while the other just assumes that there is no
subst. level.

No, this is only the "primitive matter" assumption that you are
presenting. I have been arguing that, among other things, the idea of
primitive matter is nonsense. It might help if you wanted to discuss
ideas and not straw men with me.

We can discuss the ontology that results after UDA, the arithmetical one, however one should keep in mind that that ontology is the result of a certain argument based on certain assumptions. You seem to reject the assumptions, but seem to be interested in discussing the resulting ontology. I think that's the main point of confusion, because most of us are taking those assumptions for granted when discussing COMP.

Do you understand at all the stuff about material and idea monism that I have mentioned previously? We are exploring the implications of a very sophisticate form of Ideal Monism that I am very much interested in, as it has, among other wonderful things, an unassailable proof that material monism is WRONG. What I am trying to discuss is how this is a good thing but the ontological theory as a whole that it is embedded in has a problem that is being either a) misunderstood, b) ignored or both. I am a student of philosophy and one of the reasons that I participared in the List, actually the only reason, is to learn "applied philosophy". I am interested in the application of various philosophical ideas. I would be doing this in a university setting if it where possible, but I do not qualify. I am too old, poor, married with children and dislexic to be doing the university thing, so I beg your indulgence with my strangeness. I really do appreciate that you are taking the time and effort to have these exchanges with me. ;-)



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