Hi Bruno Marchal Yes, complete autonomy of the mind may not be possible, I agree, but we seem to survive this problem.
My objection that sufficent computer autonomy may not be possible to emulate life is still a doubt in my mind. In both of these cases, the ultimate limitation might be language, meaning words or the symbols of calculation. Peirce said that we think in symbols. But symbols are Thirdness, the raw stuff filtered (or distorted) from a particular point of view. Words are known to be cultural products. Symbols of computation depend on what a computation can do and how we define the symbols, which I suppose goes back to the limitations and distortions of words. Let me try this: 1) Computer programs use selected symbols and program designs. 2) These symbols and designs are man-made and hence sometimes distorted and imperfect. I admit that simple calculations can be perfect. 3) So computer programs are quite possibly reflections of whoever made the program, and of the distortions of computer language, not life itself. In essence what I am saying here is that only a perfect being can create life. But maybe I am being too hard on the possibilities or impossibilities. A golem would still be interesting. "Forever is a long time, especially near the end." -Woody Allen ----- Receiving the following content ----- From: Bruno Marchal Receiver: everything-list Time: 2012-10-02, 05:48:09 Subject: Re: Attacking the brain transplant experiment On 01 Oct 2012, at 19:37, Roger Clough wrote: > Hi Bruno Marchal > > A brain in a vat would probably have an autonomous self, > which is needed for everything the brain does. > > I don't see how an autonomous self can be present in > a computer, because autonomous means it can't depend > on anything--- especially not hardware or software. Only God does not depend on anything. An autonomous self depends can only be partially autonomous, it depends on its brain, on its flesh, on food, water, taxes, and many things, in its contingent terrestrial manifestations. Autonomy for any being (? God) is always relative to its self and its neighboors. > > Let me also say it this alternate way. The output > of an algorithm (let's say a choice, given an input) > is always dependent on what the algorithm did. > And algorithms are software. But a software can change itself in an autonomous way, relatively to its most probable universal numbers (arithmetical computers). Bruno http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/ -- You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group. To post to this group, send email to email@example.com. To unsubscribe from this group, send email to everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com. For more options, visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list?hl=en. -- You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group. To post to this group, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. To unsubscribe from this group, send email to everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com. For more options, visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list?hl=en.