On 3/23/2012 11:47 AM, John Mikes wrote:
Stephen, - especially to the 2nd part of your reply -
I do not speak about a 'certain' uncertainty (i.e. 'quantum') I speak about the concept: "uncertainty" is inherent in whatever we think about, because in our 'model' of the knowable world there is only part of the total (see the historical additions and project such to the future) and we THINK about yesterday's knowable as "all of them". Accordingly EVERYTHING is uncertain. Logic, too. Intercourse does not create babies: it gives a chance to a sperm and egg to find each other in a way to start a genome. You can do it in a test-tube. And - the babies are human beings, with (working?) complexity including mental aspects, (even in mentally impaired persons) which develops in the course of gestation - according to Princeton's Singer even later, after birth. So please, do not fall for the political haruspexs who cry 'murder' in case of an abortion, the murder is saved for killing persons, i.e. full complexities developed and evolved from the parasite-state (embryo - fetus) into a substantial HUMAN being.
Now about identicity:
If you look for it... there are similarities in many unexpected relations between off springs and ancestors, maybe not the total ones as e.g. a clone, but the
identicity lives on in the genetic sequences.
BTW: what do you mean by "a mind" - to deem it "absolutely NEW"?
I agree with your rejecting 'randomness, or stochasticity' mainly on the basis of the above mentioned ignorance about the wholeness, but also on the basis that 'unatached' occurrences would make ANY ordered description futile. Russell replied to an earlier such remark of mine with the correction into (as I recall) "conditional randomness". Which is not random in my view.
John M


Dear John,

As to uncertainty, it seems to be a quisicrystal-coated beastie for there are far to many models of it and probabilities in general. I long for the day when a bright young mind figures of the path to unify the best of these models and gives us a clear principle with which to reject the nonsensical ones. The one that I like is Shun'ichi Amari <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shun%27ichi_Amari>'s "information geometry <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_Geometry>" idea merely because it appeals to my visual type thinking.

Fear not for I was only considering the unassisted version of procreation as a default that is independent of the technologies of the time and place... As I see it "personhood" is a function and not a "thing" so I have a well reasoned (IMHO) aversion to the caterwaulings of those that would merely appeal to emotion for as a justification of a claim. Emotional revulsion is never proof to the contrary or impossibility.

Onward!

Stephen


On Thu, Mar 22, 2012 at 5:09 PM, Stephen P. King <stephe...@charter.net <mailto:stephe...@charter.net>> wrote:

    On 3/22/2012 4:47 PM, meekerdb wrote:
    On 3/22/2012 1:31 PM, John Clark wrote:
    On Wed, Mar 21, 2012  Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be
    <mailto:marc...@ulb.ac.be>> wrote:

            >> This illustrates the problem I have with your ideas,
            it's not your mathematics it's the assumption you make
            right at the start which is the foundation for
            everything else.


        > Which assumption?


    Your assumption that if a identical copy of you is made
    everything may seen identical to a third party but to itself, to
    the copy and the original, they would somehow have different
    viewpoints even if everything they saw was the same and they
    remained identical. I think that is just plain wrong. Lately you
    seem to be equivocating somewhat on this point and everybody has
    a right to change their mind, but if you do then you'll have to
    rewrite your proof from page 1 because that assumption was
    important.

        > Those admit precise and simple definition, related to the
        duplication and multiplication thought experience.
        First person = content of a diary bring in the duplication
        devices.


    OK, but the original and the copy will both write in their
    diaries "I walked into the duplicating chamber, the machine was
    turned on and a copy of me appeared right in front of me face to
    face", the copy and the original agree on what occurred, so
    according to you the first person perspective, the one that both
    you and I believe is most important, is identical; so there is
    only one perspective, one consciousness.

    I don't think Bruno disagreed with this.  I know I didn't.  The
    one consciousness only becomes two when there is something
    different - in the perception of the outside (Washington vs
    Moscow) or some random internal change.  Your thought experiment
    shows that comp implies that persons bodies can be duplicated
    without duplicating their consciousness (at least for a moment or
    two).  But as I said I don't see that this invalidates Bruno's
    argument which I take to be that quantum uncertainty can be
    modeled by uncertainty in personal identity.
    Hi Brent,

        Could you offer some sketch of how quantum uncertainty can be
    modeled by uncertainty in personal identity? The uncertainty of QM
    follows from the mathematical properties of canonical conjugates
    (roughly, there exists a Fourier transformation between them) and
    the general non-commutativity of observables (roughly, as they
    have complex number valued amplitudes). Quantum uncertainty is not
    "just randomness" or stochasticity, the evolution of QM systems is
    the template of a deterministic process. It is just that it is
    impossible to recover the information required to make a local
    prediction that makes it seem "classically random" (aka
    decoherence). I think that we are taking the "branching tree"
    analogy used by many to explain the many worlds interpretation way
    too literally here... We should disabuse ourselves of that concept.
        The uncertainty generated by the copy and paste operations of
    computation follows from the fissioning of the first person sense
    of self, so it is indeed generates a "branching tree graph" IFF we
    ignore cul-de-sacs and other delete operations, cycles and
    non-monotic relations. Additionally, we assume that conservation
    laws, which would be "no new rules or data" restrictions for
    computations. Where is the bridge connecting these concepts? What
    about the fact that intercourse between humans create "babies",
    which would be entirely new minds? How do they fix into these scheme?

    Onward!

    Stephen
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