On Wed, Nov 14, 2012 at 5:04 PM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com>wrote:

> There is no mathematical justification for geometry though that I can
> think of.

There are ways that numbers can describe geometry and ways that geometry
can describe numbers. What more do you need?

>> So the fact that arithmetic can produce the exact same sort of behavior
>> that minds are so proud of, like playing Chess or solving equations or
>> winning millions on Jeopardy, is all just a big coincidence. If you really
>> believe that then there is a bridge I'd like to sell you.
> > It's not a coincidence at all, but neither is the fact that arithmetic
> fails miserably at producing the sort of behavior that minds take for
> granted, like caring about something or having a personality.

The thing I'm most eager to hear is why you said "minds" and not " Craig
Weinberg's mind".

> They [potassium and sodium ions in your brain] only matter to me because
> of the feelings and experiences their configurations make available to me.

OK, there is no disputing matters of taste.

> what we feel is in no way linked to those objects except through
> empirical relation.

Except for that Mrs. Lincoln how did you like the play?

> There is no theory by which their configuration should lead to anything
> beyond the configuration itself.

To hell with theories. Just because there is no theory to explain a
phenomenon does not mean the phenomenon does not exist; nobody has a theory
worth a damn to explain why the universe is accelerating but all
astronomers know that it is nevertheless doing so. And there may not be a
theory to explain why but there is not the slightest doubt that changes in
those potassium and sodium ions cause PROFOUND changes in your
consciousness and your subjective emotional state. So if ions in a few
pounds of grey goo inside the bone box on your shoulders can create
consciousness I don't understand why its such a stretch to imagine that
electrons in a semiconductor can do the same thing, especially if they
produce the same behavior.

> Einstein made more sense of the data was through imagination and
> discovery,


>  not through mechanistic data processing or accumulation of knowledge.

What's the difference?

> How do you know that Bugs Bunny isn't tasting anything when he eats a
> carrot?

I don't know it for a fact but I strongly suspect it because Bugs fails the
Turing Test.

> we are a single cell which knows how to divide itself into trillions of
> copies.

A cell in your body can divide into two or a trillion cells, but you don't
know how it does it.

> We are not an assembly of disconnected parts.

Nothing is "an assembly of disconnected parts".

>>>  no inorganic lever system seems to aspire to anything other than doing
>>> the same thing over and over again.
> >> A computer calculating the value of PI never repeats itself, it never
>> returns to a previous state.
> > It never leaves the state it's in. Calculating the value of Pi is one of
> the kinds of acts which requires infinite resources to complete, therefore
> it never gets chance to repeat itself.

It's true that a real computer, unlike a theoretical Turing Machine, does
not have a infinite memory and so can't be in a infinite number of states,
but you don't have a infinite memory either and so your brain can't be in a
infinite number of states. You and the computer are in the same boat.

> you have to finish 'peating' to be able to re-peat.

If you believe that a real computer can't finishing peating and thus can't
repeat I take it that you're retracting your comment that a computer just
does "the same thing over and over again".

> > I do think that my approach does solve the Hard Problem of consciousness

And your approach is that people are conscious because they use free will
to make decisions and they use free will to make decisions because they are
conscious. That doesn't sound very hard to me, or very deep.

  John K Clark

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