On 10 Jun 2012, at 22:57, David Nyman wrote:

On 10 June 2012 17:26, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:

I am not sure I understand your problem with that simultaneity. The
arithmetical relations are out of time. It would not make sense to say that they are simultaneously true, because this refer to some "time", and can
only be used as a metaphor.

I agree with almost everything you say.  I would say also that the
moments of experience, considered as a class, are themselves out of
time.  What it takes to "create (experiential) time" - the notorious
"illusion" - is whatever is held to be responsible for the irreducible
mutual-exclusivity of such moments, from the perspective of the
(universal) knower.  Hoyle does us the service of making this
mutual-exclusivity explicit by invoking his "light beam" to illuminate
the pigeon holes at hazard; those who conclude that this function is
redundant, and that the structure of pigeon holes itself somehow does
the work of "creating personal history", owe us an alternative
explanation of the role of Hoyle's beam.

I understand, of course, that these are just ways of thinking about a
state of affairs that is ultimately not finitely conceivable, but all
the same, I think there is something that cries out for explanation
here and Hoyle is one of the few to have explicitly attempted to
address it.

David, I can't see the role of Hoyles' beam. The reason of the mutual exclusivity of moments seems to me to be explained (in comp) by the fact that a machine cannot address the memory of another machine, or of itself at another moment (except trough memory). Hoyles' beam seem to reintroduce a sort of external reality, which does not solve anything, it seems to me, and introduces more complex events in the picture.

Why do you think that pure indexicality (self-reference) is not enough? It seems clear to me that from the current state of any universal machine, it will look like a special moment is chosen out of the others, for the elementary reason that such a state individuates the "present moment here and now" from her point of view.

Of course, the idea that some time exists is very deep in us, and I understand that the big comp picture is very counter-intuitive, but in this case, it is a kind of difficulty already present in any atemporal "static" view of everything, which already appears with general relativity for example.

It is a bit subtle. "To be conscious here and now" is not an illusion. "To be conscious of "here and now" " is an illusion. The "here and now" is part of the brain (actually the infinities of arithmetical relations) construction.

Feel free to criticize my perhaps too much simple mind view on this, I might miss your point,



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