On Wednesday, February 20, 2013 4:58:49 AM UTC-5, stathisp wrote:
> On Wed, Feb 20, 2013 at 3:37 PM, Craig Weinberg 
> <whats...@gmail.com<javascript:>> 
> wrote: 
> >> You can't, because it's a chaotic system. If you eschew computers and 
> >> "simulate" the stock market by building an entire world with humans and 
> an 
> >> economy you would get a stock market that functions similarly to the 
> >> original but not the same as the original, so it would be almost 
> useless for 
> >> predicting a particular stock movement. A computer simulation can't be 
> >> expected to be better than a simulation with real humans living in a 
> real 
> >> world. In other words, you would be simulating *a* stock market, not 
> *the* 
> >> stock market. 
> > 
> > 
> > How can you explain that we can predict our own decisions? Or better 
> yet, 
> > how do we make decisions in the first place? 
> We can't predict our own decisions, since there is always the 
> possibility that we can change our minds.

But we are in control of that possibility to some extent. If I bet you $100 
that I will post something about tree frogs later today, then I can be sure 
that I will follow through on that, barring unforeseen events beyond my 


> This is where the feeling of 
> "free will" comes from. Note that this has no bearing on the question 
> of whether our decisions are determined or not: the only requirement 
> for the feeling of freedom is that we not know what we're going to do 
> until we do it. 

I think that you are confusing freedom with farting. Not knowing what we 
are going to do is meaningless if we don't have the possibility to freely 
exercise control over what we do. Why would there be a feeling associated 
with some process which has no consequences that we could do anything about?

> >> > The brain has the same issue - you can't tell what it is going to do 
> >> > from 
> >> > the outside, because the behavior on the outside is often driven by 
>  the 
> >> > story going on the inside - which cannot be known unless you too are 
> on 
> >> > the 
> >> > inside. 
> >> 
> >> But that's the case for everything. Its behaviour is driven by what is 
> >> going on on the inside as well as what's going on on the outside. 
> > 
> > 
> > Some things are more predictable to us from the behavior  we can observe 
> > though. 
> Yes, but other things aren't. As per the Wolfram article referenced by 
> Stephen above, this is also the case for some computer programs, such 
> as cellular automata. No-one knows what they're going to do, as in 
> real life you just have to run the program and see what happens. 

The existence of automated variation doesn't mean that it is the source of 
intention. I see it as just the opposite. In cellular automata you can see 
the signature of impersonal emptiness. Monotonous, a-signifying, 
relentlessly blank.


> -- 
> Stathis Papaioannou 

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