On 2/29/2012 9:54 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:
On 29 Feb 2012, at 13:50, Stephen P. King wrote:
On 2/28/2012 5:19 PM, Quentin Anciaux wrote:
2012/2/28 Stephen P. King <stephe...@charter.net
On 2/28/2012 10:43 AM, Quentin Anciaux wrote:
Comp substitute "consciousness"... such as you could not feel
any difference (in your consciousness from your POV) if your
brain was substituted for a digital brain.
OK, but could you elaborate on this statement?
It means an hypothetical "you" after mind uploading would feel as
conscious as you're now in your biological body, and you would steel
*feel* and feel being you and conscious and all...
We need to nail down exactly what continuity of self is. if there
is no "you", as Brent wrote yesterday, what is that which is
invariant with respect to substitution?
As I said, Brent made a sort of pedagogical mistake, but a big one,
which is often done, and which explains perhaps why some materialist
becomes person eliminativist.
The "you" is a construct of the brain. It is abstract. You can see it
as an information pattern, but a real stable one which can exist in
And you can build it for any machine by using Kleene's "second
It is the key of the whole thing. So let me explain again. You can
certainly construct a program D capable of doing some simple
duplication of an arbitrary object x and apply any transformation T
that you want on that duplicated object, perhaps with some parameters:
Dx gives T(...., xx, ....),
Then applying D to itself, that is substituting x for D, leads to a
DD gives T(...., DD, ...).
You might add "quotes" to prevent an infinite loop:
Dx gives T(...'xx' ...) so that
DD gives T(... 'DD'...).
This is the trick used by Gödel, Kleene, Turing, Church, Post, ... in
all incompleteness and insolubility result, but also, in abstract
biology (see my paper "amoeba, planaria, and dreaming machine".
That define a relative "you", trivially relative to you. It is the "I"
of computer science. It allows you to write a program referring to its
entire code/body in the course of its execution. In some programming
language, like the object oriented Smalltalk, for example, it is a
build in control structure called SELF.
This gives, unfortunately only a third person notion of self. It is
more "my body" than my "soul", and that if why, to do the math, we
have to use the conjunction of truth, with belief, to get a notion of
first person. By the non definability of truth, this "I" cannot be
defined by the machine concerned, but it still exist, even if doubly
immaterial---because it is abstract, and in relation with the non
definable (by the machine) truth.
Both are invariant, by definition, when the comp substitution is done
at the right level. It means that the reconstituted person will behave
the same, and feel to be the same.
Forgive the obvious question, but what you wrote here should be the
"blue print" for creating an AI, no? All that needs to be done is to
create a special purpose physical machine that can implement a program
with this structure, such that it is implemented "fast enough" to be
able to interact in our world at our level.
Is the differentiation that one _might_ feel, given the wrong
substitution level, different from what _might_ occur if a
"digital uploading" procedure is conducted that fails to
generate complete continuity?
It depends on the wrongness of the substitution or the lack of
continuity... it's not binary outcome.
At some point it would have to be, for a digital system has a
fine grained level of sensitivity to differences, no? I am trying to
nail down the details of this idea.
The details are in the mathematics of self-reference.
Where? How is the "degree of resolution" or "scope" of a
computation coded in a computation? It seems that this is assumed in the
notion of computer grammars and semantics but has this question been
address directly in literature?
Those "does not feel any difference" terms are a bit ambiguous
and vague, IMHO.
Digital physics says that the whole universe can be substituted
with a program, that obviously imply comp (that we can
substitue your brain with a digital one), but comp shows that
to be inconsistent, because comp implies that any piece of
matter is non-computable... it is the limit of the infinities
of computation that goes through your consciousness current state.
Can you see how this would be a problem for the entire
digital uploading argument if functional substitution cannot
occur in a strictly classical way, for example by strictly
classical level measurement of brain structure?
Yes, and if it is, it is a big indication that comp is somehow wrong...
AFAIK, it would only prevent the continuation of the idea that
"we are only that which is within our skin". We might finally escape
from the modular clock world of gears and levers that the Parminidean
and Newtonian world view entails.
But comp escapes this. If "I" am a machine, then the reality, globally
cannot be a machine, and from the point of view of any machine, his
1-I cannot be a machine either, even if it *is* a machine ... from God
(Truth) point of view.
From what I understand of the idea, the "I" is a fixed point
therefore is sensed as "disconnected" from everything else in any given
1p. Thus it seems that nothing at all within a given 1p is "machine".
This is where your definition of "Free Will" makes a lot of sense, BTW.
You should write more on it as it has very interesting implications.
Here there is a quite difficult idea, made simple by the
self-reference logic, which is that:
G* proves that Bp is extensionally equivalent to Bp & p. (they prove
the same arithmetical p),
But G, and thus the machine, does not prove that, which makes them
intensionally different. The first obeys to G, and the second obeys to
a logic of knowledge (S4Grz).
OK, this is becoming more clear to me and understood, but in the
sense that I just wrote. So G* is equivalent to a computation that
generates a simulacrum universe within which a 1p is a small portion
concentrated withing some "volume" (bounded by a surface)?
Any dependence of consciousness on quantum entanglement will
prevent any form of digital substitution. This might not be a
bad thing for Bruno's ontological argument - as it would show
that 1p indeterminacy is a function or endomorphism of entire
"universes" in the many-worlds sense - but would doom any change
of immortality via digital uploading.
Sure, but if the level is that down... then even if it is still
compatible with comp, for all practical purposes, it's the same as
if it was wrong...
I am not so sure. I think that the way that QM systems are linear
will still allow substitution, but not in the usual way of thinking.
The problem that I see is the lack of understanding of QM's implications.
Comp does not assume QM. It is just not part of the theory. And then
the reasoning shows that as far as QM is a physically correct law, it
has to be derived from comp.
I need more detail on this as I do not understand what you mean by
"COMP does not assume QM". As far as I understand, COMP makes any theory
of a physical world a matter of 1p contingency and choice, therefore
whether one is considering "the physics of the world" as equal to
"Newtonian Physics" or equal to "Quantum physics" is literally
irrelevant. It seems to abandon the entire idea of physical world with
their conservation and motion laws as some secondary afterthought. This
is to be expected for any version of Ideal monism.
To understand comp, you have to abstract yourself of any *theory* on
the physical reality. It is easy, if you grasp Church thesis, which
makes the definition of computation general enough, and purely
While that it true, this "abstraction" cannot go so far as to
remove you from the theory completely or one will have a theory that is
I hope Quentin will not mind too much I answered the question
addressed to him.
I hope also this helps a bit. You should try to have a complete
understanding of the UDA, which asks only for a passive understanding
of Church thesis and of universal Turing machine, before digging on
the more complex translation of UDA in arithmetical terms, where the
billions of confusions possible are handled by the nuances made
obligatory by the subtle counter-intuitive logics of self-reference.
I am interested in the long range implications of COMP, that is
where I see the best chance of testing its veracity. I like COMP, it is
very elegant and expressive but seems to have several blind spots -
issues that it does not even consider. In my humble opinion this is a
problem if it is to be taken as providing a ontological level
explanation of the nature of Existence. I have spent a lot of time
investigating the problem of time in physics and that time spent has
made me very sensitive, perhaps overly so, to the ontological
implications of this problem. It is my fervent hope that your beautiful
result could be expanded so as to be able to address in a more focused
way the problem of time.
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