On 13 Jun 2012, at 01:44, Pierz wrote:



On Wednesday, June 13, 2012 4:27:29 AM UTC+10, Bruno Marchal wrote:

On 12 Jun 2012, at 04:19, Pierz wrote:

<snip>

Yes, of course, and I made this exact point in relation to free will and determinism. One should not mix up levels. But I think there is still a distinction in perspectives if all things occur as opposed to only some. If the range of experiences that occur is finite, then my actions one way or another will change the sum total of happiness in the experiences I will have as the universal subject, whereas in an 'everything happens' model, I may still have grounds for moral action, but knowing I go through everything anyway seems to make the case for altruism a little less compelling! Mind you (and this is my gripe with comp as an explanatory framework), it is never clear in an infinite field what local conditions might apply. Perhaps we live in a universe created by an old testament god who thinks its an abomination for a man to lie with a man or to eat goat's flesh on Wednesdays. Such a possibility cannot be excluded because of the infinite calculation depth of the UD - indeed somewhere in a universe just like ours, that is the case!

OK, but we belong to all universe at once (among those who reaches our computational states), never in one universe. You have to manage the statistics. So our choice, with respect to our most probable universal neighboors/computation, can change our proportion of accessible internal universes, and altruism/egoism makes sense.

Ah yes, I'd lost sight of that detail.

That is why you take the lift instead of jumping out of the window. That is why some people quit smoking.

Bruno, it may be why *you* don't jump out the window. But most people aren't thinking about their proportion of accessible universes when they take the stairs!

Yeah, the tree distracts from the multi-tree.

yet, people naturally think about the possible normal consequences of their act (when not too much sleepy). They don't jump out the window because they feel that it would normally end at the hospital, or cemetery, when taking the stairs ends normally with home and family and friends, and dogs and cats. They intuit correctly the (perhaps correct) theory. What they feel naturally reflect the theory, a bit like when I do a cup of coffee, I don't think at all about all the physical laws involved in the process, yet the coffee is made possible by the laws, and the knowledge of the laws can help to improve the coffee, waste less energy, etc.

Likewise, some people will say "yes" to the doctor, without given a damn to any metaphysical question. They will say: "Doctor, just do what you need to do so that I have a chance to see the next soccer cup, and please preserve me from any bloody technical details".

Theories are true of false independently of those who believe or disbelieve those theories. The truth of a belief is independent of the believer, except for first person self-referential beliefs (which can be objects of science, but cannot be part of science).

Bruno
http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/



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