Hi Bruno Marchal 

Thanks again for the enlightening comments below and previously.

You're absolutely right, I not only don't know what
Turing machines can do, I don't know what a Godelian
version of a Turing machine could do.

I need to do some thinking. Thanks again.


Roger , rclo...@verizon.net
8/7/2012 Is life a cause/effect activity  ?
If so, what is the cause agent ?

----- Receiving the following content ----- 
From: Bruno Marchal 
Receiver: everything-list 
Time: 2012-08-07, 05:55:57
Subject: Re: scientists simulate an entire organism in software for the 
firsttime ever


On 06 Aug 2012, at 10:29, rclough wrote:

> Perhaps I am wrong, but I have a problem with the concept of 
> artificial intelligence and hence artificial life-- at least 
> according to my
> understanding of what intelligence is.
>
> As I see it, intelligence is the ability to make choices completely 
> on one's own. Autonomously.
>
> Thus intelligence is simply self-determination of some issue. By 
> self-determination I don't
> mean free will, athough that might be a possibility.The "self" could 
> use anything
> in memory, (including current perceptions or awareness) or even 
> anything ever thought of. Darwin tells us that
> such choices must be mostly appropriate choices, but sometimes they 
> might occur mistakenly,
> sometimes irrationally, or deceptively. That is, to lie, deception 
> being quite common in nature.
>
> But a computer program can only make choices that the programmer 
> previously allowed.
> So in effect the choices are made by the computer programmer, The 
> programmer is
> the puppet master.. But such a programmed "robot" cannot be 
> conscious, for there
> is no self to be aware. There is only the presence of electrical 
> signals, which
> are objective, but no subjectivity.
> .
>
> Thus one might "simulate" life, but one can never create life in a 
> computer.
>
> Materialism has the same fatal defect, for it is completely objective,
> and so cannot have a self, which is subjective, to be aware.

But the notion of self and self-determination (and indetermination) is 
what computer science explains the best. I'm afraid that you have a 
pre-G?elian notion of machine in mind.
Today we have progress tremendously: we know that we don't really know 
what are universal machines, and what they are capable of. They escape 
all complete theory, and prevent psychology/theology of reductionism.
Empirically, we have also good reason to bet on comp.
And methodologically it is a good avenue, as this makes it possible to 
be able to refute comp one day, if false.

Bruno



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



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