Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> >>> So what is your definition of computer, and what is your
>> >>> evidence/reasoning
>> >>> that you yourself are not contained in that definition?
>> >>>
>> >> There is no perfect definition of computer. I take computer to mean
>> >> the
>> >> usual physical computer,
>> >
>> > Why not use the notion of a Turing universal machine, which has a
>> > rather well defined and widely understood definition?
>> Because it is an abstract model, not an actual computer.
> It doesn't have to be abstract.  It could be any physical machine that has
> the property of being Turing universal.  It could be your cell phone, for
> example.
OK, then no computers exists because no computer can actually emulate all
programs that run on an universal turing machine due to lack of memory.

But let's say we mean "except for memory and unlimited accuracy".
This would mean that we are computers, but not that we are ONLY computers.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> >
>> >> since this is all that is required for my argument.
>> >>
>> >> I (if I take myself to be human) can't be contained in that definition
>> >> because a human is not a computer according to the everyday
>> >> definition.
>> >
>> > A human may be something a computer can perfectly emulate, therefore a
>> > human could exist with the definition of a computer.  Computers are
>> > very powerful and flexible in what they can do.
>> That is an assumption that I don't buy into at all.
> Have you ever done any computer programming?  If you have, you might
> realize that the possibilities for programs goes beyond your imagination.
Yes, I studied computer science for one semester, so I have programmed a
fair amount.
Again, you are misinterpreting me. Of course programs go beyond our
imagination. Can you imagine the mandel brot set without computing it on a
computer? It is very hard.
I never said that they can't.

I just said that they lack some capability that we have. For example they
can't fundamentally decide which programs to use and which not and which
axioms to use (they can do this relatively, though). There is no
computational way of determining that.

For example how can you computationally determine whether to use the axiom
true=not(false) or use the axiom true=not(true)?
Or how can you determine whether to program a particular program or not? To
do this computationally you would need another program, but how do you
determine if this is the correct one?

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
> You may not buy into this, but the overwhelming majority of computer
> scientists do.  If you have
> no opinion one way or the other, and don't wish to investigate it
> yourself,
> for what reason do you reject the mainstream expert opinion?
That's very simple. Computer science has only something to say about
computers, so an expert on that can't be trusted on issues going beyond that
(what is beyond computation).
To the contrary they are very likely biased towards a computational approach
by their profession.
Or to put it more rudely: Many computer scientists are deluded by their own
dogma of computation being all important (or even real beyond an idea), just
like many priests are deluded about God being all important (or even real
beyond an idea). Inside their respective system, there is nothing to suggest
the contrary, and most are unwilling to step out of them system because they
want to be comfortable and not be rejected by their peers.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> Actually it can't be true due to self-observation.
>> A human that observes its own brain observes something entirely else than
>> a
>> digital brain observing itself (the former will see flesh and blood while
>> the latter will see computer chips and wires), so they behaviour will
>> diverge if they look at their own brains - that is, the digital brain
>> can't
>> an exact emulation, because emulation means behavioural equivalence.
> It could be a brain (computer) in a vat:
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brain_in_a_vat
> But even if it weren't, let's say it was an android.  Why would knowledge
> of being an android make it less capable than any biological human?
I didn't say that. It just can't be an exact emulation with respect to the
actual world and its possibilities.
That it would have to be less capable in some respects is another issue.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> >
>> > Short of injecting infinities, true randomness, or halting-type
>> > problems, you won't find a process that a computer cannot emulate.
>> Really? How come that we never ever emulated anything which isn't already
>> digital?
> Non-digital processes are emulated all the time.  Any continuous/real
> number can be simulated to any desired degree of accuracy.  It is only
> when
> you need infinite accuracy that it becomes impossible for a computer. 
> This
> is an injection of an infinity.
> Note that humans cannot add, or multiply real numbers with infinite
> precision either.
OK, so I would have to correct myself and say non-digital and non-abstract.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> What is the evidence for your statement (or alternatively, why would it
>> think it is true for other reasons)?
> Sit for a few minutes and try to come up with a process that cannot be
> replicated by a computer program, which does not involve one of the three
> things I mentioned.  You may soon become frustrated by the seeming
> impossibility of the task, and develop an intuition for what is meant by
> Turing universality.

Well, actually I can't find any actual process that can be replicated by a
computer program.

If it could be, then I could use virtual things and processes like I use
actual things and processes. But this is empirically obviously not true.

If you want an example, take my heart beating. I can't substitute my heart
even with the best simulation of a heart beating, because the simulation
doesn't ACTUALLY pumps my blood. Even if it is completely accurate, this
doesn't help at all with the problem of pumping my blood because all it does
is generate information as output. We would still have the problem of using
that information to actually pump the blood, and this would pretty much
still require a real heart (or an other pump).

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
> The reasoning is, anything that can be described algorithmically, and does
> not require an infinite number of steps to solve, can be solved by a
> computer following that algorithm.  No one has found or constructed any
> algorithm that cannot be followed a computer.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Algorithm

Note the word "described". Everything can be described using language as
well (just invent an abitrary word for any thing you want to describe).
That is precisely the error. Description does NOT equal reality.

Yes, everything can be described using computers, and all descriptions can
be manipulated in abitrary way using computers.
But this is were it stops. Computers can't go beyond symbol manipulation,
simply because that is exactly how we built them. That is the very
definition of a computer. Receive symbols, transform them in the stated way,
output symbols.

If you say that only computers exists, you say that only symbol manipulation
exists. The problem with that is that symbols don't make sense on their own,
as the very definition of a symbol is that it represents something other
than itself. So you CAN'T have only symbols and symbols manipulation because
the symbols are meaningless without something outiside of them and symbol
manipulation is meaningless if symbols are meaningless.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> We have no reason to believe that nature is finite. It just seems to go
>> on
>> in every direction, we never found an edge. I am not saying it contains a
>> completed infinity (in my opinion that's pretty much an oxymoron), but it
>> appears to be inherently incomple.
> I agree, our universe is probably infinite in size, and there are probably
> infinitely many such structures that could be called universes.
> But are humans infinite?  Do our brains or neurons need to process
> continuous variables to infinite precision to function accurately?
They may not be this kind of infinity, but I am only saying that they are
not finite in the mathematical sense if only because humans are not even a
precise entity (they are quantum and thus inherently unprecise).

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
> There are many places where our equations
>> *completely* break down, which implies that there might never be a
>> accurate
>> description there.
>> Occams razor is not an argument against this. It doesn't say "Assume as
>> little entities as possible" (otherwise we had to deny the existence of
>> everything we can't directly observe like planets that are far away). It
>> says "Make the least and the simplest assumptions".
>> We don't need to assume fundamental finiteness to explain anything, so we
>> shouldn't.
> Nor should we assume infinities without reason.  There are some physical
> reasons to assume there are no infinities involved in the brain, however:
> The holographic principle places a finite bound on the amount of physical
> information that there can be in a fixed volume.  This implies there is a
> finite number of possible brain states and infinite precision cannot be a
> requirement for the operation of the brain.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_principle#Limit_on_information_density
That argument does not work if the human brain is entangled with the rest of
the cosmos (because then you can't seperate it as a entity having a fixes
And this seems to be empirically true because there is pretty much no other
way to explain psi.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> I am not saying that nature is infinite in the way we picture it. It may
>> not
>> fit into these categories at all.
>> Quantum mechanics includes true subjective randomness already, so by your
>> own standards nothing that physically exists can be emulated.
> The UD also contains subjective randomness, which is at the heart of
> Bruno's argument.
No, it doesn't even contain a subject.

Bruno assumes COMP, which I don't buy at all.

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> Jason Resch-2 wrote:
>> >
>> > Do you believe humans are hyper computers?  If not, then we are just
>> > special cases of computers.  The particular case can defined by
>> > program, which may be executed on any Turing machine.
>> Nope. We are not computers and also not hyper-computers.
> That is a bit like saying we are not X, but we are also not (not X).
Right, reality is not based on binary logic (even though it seems to play an
important role).

Jason Resch-2 wrote:
> Hyper computers are these imagined things that can do everything normal
> computers
> cannot.  So together, there is nothing the two could not be capable of.
>  What is this magic that makes a human brain more capable than any
> machine?
>  Do you not believe the human brain is fundamentally mechanical?
Nope. I think we will soon realize this as we undoubtably see that the brain
is entangled with the rest of the universe. The presence of psi is already
evidence for that.
The notion of entaglement doesn't make sense for machines, since they can
only process information/symbols, but entanglement is not informational.
Also, machines necessarily work in steps (that's how we built them), yet
entaglement is instantaneous. If you have to machines then they both have to
do a step to know the state of the other one.

And indeed entanglement is somewhat magical, but nevertheless we know it


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