On Friday, September 14, 2012 4:28:13 PM UTC-4, John Clark wrote:
>
> On Thu, Sep 13, 2012 at 4:52 PM, Craig Weinberg 
> <whats...@gmail.com<javascript:>
> > wrote:
>
> > the human genome is at least 700Mb, but yeah it's not a lot. 
>>
>
> Let's see, the human genome is about 3 billion base pairs long, there are 
> 4 bases so each base can represent 2 bits and there are 8 bits per byte. 
> That comes out to 750 meg, so you're right and I was wrong when I said 400 
> meg. Maybe there wouldn't be much room to put pop songs onto a CD after  
> the human genome was on it after all.  
>
> > You can look at what this means in at least two ways though:
>> 1) Simple rules generate enormous complexity in the universe.
>> or 
>> 2) Rules are just a tiny part of what the universe is about - it's what 
>> executes the rules that matters 
>>
>
> Both are true because some of the rules, probably most of them, are rules 
> about what rules to activate and what rules to turn off.
>
> > and experiences.
>>
>
> Those are memories, 750 meg will only get you as you were the day you were 
> born. Calculating the memory capacity of the brain is more difficult but we 
> can find a upper limit assuming, as seems very likely, that memory works by 
> Long Term Potentiation (LTP). There are about 10^11 neurons in the brain 
> and each neuron has about 10^4 synapses. I have not seen any evidence that 
> LTP can store more than one bit so that gives us a figure of 10^15 bits or 
> about 10^14 bytes of storage memory capacity for the human brain. A 
> 3*10^12  byte hard drive cost about $150 and you'd need about 33 of them to 
> get up to 10^14 and that would cost you about $5000, but the price is 
> dropping like a rock and next year it will be less than half that.
>
> And this figure of 10^14 is almost certainly a considerable overestimate, 
> I don't know the true figure but it must be less than that. In the January 
> 28 1994 issue of Science Dan Madison and Erin Schuman found that LTP 
> spreads out over a large area so you have lots of copies of the same thing.
>

Memories of what though? We use storage in a computer to access a sensory 
experience for ourselves, typically an optical or acoustically triggered 
experience.The experience is the reality, while the organization we utilize 
to access that reality is the vehicle.

In the past you said that the Chinese Room fails because the book would 
have to be infinite size. I don't know if that is your only objection, but 
to me it's clear that the size that the rule book would have to be would be 
directly proportional to the length of the conversation and the desired 
likelihood of passing the Turing test. 

Imagine instead that I am being held prisoner by a goon from the Chinese 
mafia. With a gun to my head, he instructs me to call his boss and say 
(something something something in Chinese). I do this and the boss tells me 
to tell the thug (something something something in Chinese). If I knew 
Chinese, I might avoid getting shot in the head, but since the fact that I 
can pass data from the thug to the boss and back does not imbue me with 
telepathic insight.

Searle goes one further and makes the boss a book, such that there is no 
second person on the other end. I think that this successfully models the 
disconnect between syntactic and semantic layers which computation 
presents, since the book, regardless of how well crafted and extensive, is 
completely passive and inert to queries against it. It's a database. The 
authors of the database have no telepathic insight that their work is being 
used as an oracle, I have none of the semantic insight of the authors 
understanding of Chinese, and the outsiders have no insight into my lack of 
understanding. This illustrates how intelligence can be trivially simulated 
to any degree of precision. I'm liking it more and more.
 

>
> > so I would say that it really is a view which tainted with reductionist 
>> ideology.
>>
>
> Tainted? Without reductionist ideology we still be swinging in the trees 
> and wouldn't even have stone tools.
>

The skills of reductive analysis are productive, ideology is not. 
Skepticism without curiosity would have us still in the trees.

Craig

 

>
>   John K Clark
>
>

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