On 30 Jul 2012, at 20:08, meekerdb wrote:

On 7/30/2012 4:01 AM, Bruno Marchal wrote:

Le 28-juil.-12, à 18:46, John Clark a écrit :

On Sat, Jul 28, 2012  Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:

> You goal does not seem in discussing ideas, but in mocking people.

That is not true, my goal has two parts:

1) Figuring out what you mean by "free will".

Free-will is an informal term use in many informal setting. religious people defined it often by the ability to choose consciously between doing bad things or not, and people from the law can invoke it as a general precondition for making sense of the responsibility idea. In cognitive science we can at least approximate it in different ways, and basically, with computationalism it is the ability to make choice in absence of complete information, and knowledge of that incomplete feature.

I'm not clear on why you emphasize incomplete information? What would constitute complete information? and why how would that obviate 'free will'. Is it coercive?

I agree with Russell's answer. If the information was complete (with respect to what is relevant), then there would be no choice at all. I would know that right I will make a cup of coffee, or perhaps not, instead of hesitating about it.

The "Free" prefix is just an emphasis, and I don't take it too much seriously. It can be mean things like absence of coercion.

2) Figuring out if what you say about "free will" is true.

We cannot know truth, but can propose hypotheses and definition, and then reason from there.

I have never completed the first goal, so it's a bit maddening when you keep claiming over and over and over that sometime in the unspecified past you provided a marvelous exact self consistent definition of "free will" that makes everything clear and that for some unspecified reason, or perhaps for no reason at all, I am ignoring it.

I never said that such a definition makes everything clear, nor do I have said it was marvelous, nor even self-consistent. I did say that you ignore it, for reason which eludes me, but which I guess is a lack of interest in the corresponding mundane notions, which is the object of many studies, books, debate, etc.

>The onoly question is in solving problem. To say "free will" is noise just hides problems.

Before I can solve a problem I need to know what the problem is and I don't, and you don't know either.

You just seem to be unaware of all the questions in the foundation of the cognitive science. May be you could read tthe book by Micahel Tye: "eight problems on consciousness".

I don't find any link to either the book or the author. Can you point to a source?


(yes "ten problems", not eight!, and it is "Michael", not Micahel 'course).

Free will is one of them. It is clear and quite readable. Of course the author is not aware that comp is incompatible with physicalism.

> You really talk like a pseudo-priest having answers to all questions.

Wow, calling a guy who doesn't like religion religious! Never heard that one before, at least not before the sixth grade.

If you don't believe in some fundamental reality, then we are just wasting time when discussing with you, given that this list is devoted in the search of a theory of everything. If you believe in some fundamental reality, then you are religious in the larger (non necessarily christian) sense that I have already given. In the fundamental science, those who pretend not doing religion are the most religious, but probably they are not aware of this.

I'd say that you are more wedded to the words 'religion' and 'God' than the concepts which they formerly denoted. :-)

Yeah ... machines have necessarily a rational part, and a non-rational part, and religion is an attempt to makes them dialog (at least) or fuse, eventually. All machine get religious.

Atheists are doubly religious believer, as they
- 1) seem to give sense to Christian-like <no-name> and Saints, and believe that they don't exist, and - 2) they believe in the Aristotelian Primary Matter, which is a sort of God too, in the former sense of theology as used by the greeks one thousand years before religion get mainly political brainswashing tool.

Amusigly I discover recently a book describing quite similar debate about the question that philosophy is part or not of theology among some neoplatonists.

Theology is just the science of what transcend us. Only solipsist can believe that does not exist.

Science will resume when theology will come back in the academy. Today's science is mainly "don't ask and make money or wait retirement".



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