On Wed, Sep 26, 2012 at 1:04 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com>wrote:

> I meant more 'your answer to God' - the universal principle of automatic
> functionality which allows you to believe that no being or creation need
> exist.

Religious people think God is important and I think information is
important, but other than that the two have little in common and
information is most certainly not my word for God.

>>> A wire is good at imitating a stumulus with high fidelity.
>> >>Yes, and so is a nerve.
> > Sure. Which begs the question, why have a nerve cell at all?

Nerves transmit a signal from point A to point B, and organisms that are
crummy at that were eaten by those that were good at it thus crummy nerve
making genes were not passed on to the next generation but good nerve
making genes were.

> Why not just have one cell produce sturdy bones filled with potassium and
> calcium ionic microfilaments, and then die?

Because if a cell gets too big the ratio between surface area and volume
gets so large that the cell can't import nutrients and export waste
products fast enough to live.

>Why not put the conscious part in the skull?

I am unable to parse that.

> What makes an animal an animal is having the capacities to experience the
> world as an animal

A rose is a rose is a rose
 - Gertrude Stein

> Farting is part of that.


> Farting doesn't need to be explained to an animal, but a computer can't
> understand it


> if I were human, I would still know that the difference between being
> male and female is of a different order of magnitude than the difference
> between being a person or a brick wall.

If in your entire life all women you had ever seen or heard about were in a
coma you would put them in the same category as you put a brick wall.

> If you made a computer out of something that could be conscious, you
> would not be able to control it

True, the more conscious it became the harder it would be to control, and
with computers doubling in power every 18 months we won't be able to
control them for much longer.

> and it would almost certainly kill you and all living organisms on the
> planet as soon as it figured out how it could.

I wouldn't say that with certainty because you can't with any confidence
predict what the behavior of a mind a thousand times smarter and a million
times faster than your own will be, but what you say is entirely possible,
perhaps even probable; although I like to think that a computer Jupiter
Brain will keep a few of us around for our nostalgic value or as pampered

> Your insistence on death being not much different than life is sophistry
> at best, psychopathy at worst.

I never said death was not much different than life, I said there was an
enormous difference and you can tell the difference by observing behavior.
You also said there was a enormous difference but you insisted that
behavior had nothing to do with it. I then asked how you can tell the
difference, but other than a few remarks about farting I have been unable
to get a straight answer out of you.

> What kind of logic relies on fright and joy to compute?

The sort of logic where "don't die" is an important, although not
necessarily the most important, goal.

> It sounds like you are giving me completely different capacities and a
> free will to motivate my decisions rather than logical 'reasons'.

Cannot comment, don't know what ASCII characters "free will" means.

> My ideas are logically self-consistent

X is not Y and X is not not Y is not logically self-consistent.

> what my ideas explain - concsiousness, is beyond logic.

Nobody would renounce logic if logic supported their ideas, but when it
doesn't and you find the ideas pleasant you do what you need to do to keep
the delusion going.

>Life is simple

Incorrect, life is not simple.

> it just begins on a cellular level of description, not a molecular one.

What the hell? Your mind won't work right if your brain doesn't work right,
and your brain won't work right if your cells don't work right, and your
cells won't work right if your molecules don't work right, and your
molecules won't work right if your atoms don't work right. There is no fine
line dividing life from non-life, there is only a grey blob.

> If my twin brother is under anesthesia, he is likely to be unconscious

And you deduced that by observing his behavior, he is no longer behaving
intelligently so you figure he is not conscious. If he was laughing and
telling jokes and beating you at chess and making the following noise with
his mouth "I am conscious" then you'd conclude that the anesthesia drug was
not working for some reason and he was as conscious as you are. In this
case I can't prove you made the correct conclusion but I have a very strong
hunch you did.

> Ultimately only my brother knows for sure whether he is personally
> conscious.

Exactly true, but what confuses me is you say that not just the smart
computer but you Craig Weinberg also knows if it is personally conscious or
not. How the hell do you do that?

John K Clark

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