On Thu, Sep 6, 2012 at 2:40 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I find that the least plausible explanation. It means that if a billion
> people talk to each other and give each other information, that some kind of
> consciousness must necessarily arise as a side-effect. You could say that it
> might arise, but the idea that such a side effect is somehow necessary as to
> accomplish certain kinds of information processing is laughably romantic to
> my mind. If I recruit people to recruit people to all do math together, then
> a magical genie will appear. Necessarily. Because of behavior modification.
> Mm. Yeah. No ghost in the machine, but machine that runs on ghost
> power...because...why?

No, it doesn't mean that at all. If the billion people interact so as
to mimic the behaviour of the neurons in a brain, resulting in the
ability to (for example) converse in natural language, then the idea
is that the billion-person brain would have consciousness. This
consciousness would have nothing to do with the consciousness of the
billion people producing it; I don't know what my neurons are doing
and my neurons individually certainly don't know what I am doing.

Stathis Papaioannou

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