Nah, it's just your confirmation bias trying to water it down. " He argues that a particular kind of strong free will and "downward" mental causation are realized in rapid synaptic plasticity." http://books.google.com/books/about/The_Neural_Basis_of_Free_Will.html?id=b8nlvzon-80C neurons evaluate information they receive, which can change the way that other neurons will evaluate information and "fire" in the future. Read more at: http://medicalxpress.com/news/2013-03-dartmouth-neuroscientist-free-neural-basis.html#jCp > > "The key point is that criteria will be met in unpredictable ways if there > is inherent > variability or noise in inputs, such as can be introduced by the > randomness inherent in > neurotransmitter molecules crossing the synapse. Just because new criteria > are set up by a > nervous system in a manner dictated by the satisfaction of preexisting > criteria does not > mean that either the future or present criteria will be met in a > predetermined manner. > Moreover, because our neurons set criteria for the firing of other neurons > in response to > their future input, the choices realized in the satisfying of those > criteria are our own > choices." > > Up to that point it is just compatibilit determinism plus some noise > (randomness). But > then he gratuitously asserts that this constitutes in 'strong free will' > (whatever that > means). > It means that exactly what you did to compose your comment is the same process which is seen in the neural evidence. > > > "Ontological indeterminism and neuronal criterial causation permits a > physical causal > basis for a strong free will." > > He assumes that the randomness is really the brain determining it's future > behavior, which > is metaphorically true of any learning but is a mixing of levels He blurs > over the point > he had made that the change is random insofar as it is not deterministic > and implies that > "criterial causation" is something called "free will". > The randomness is not important. That just provides a margin in physics for us to directly control changes in the brain, now and in the future. > > "Criterial causation therefore offers a path toward free will where a > brain can determine > how it will behave given particular types of future input. This can be > milliseconds in the > future or, in some cases, even years away." > > I've no reason to doubt his theory that neurons change the synaptic > strength of their > connections (both excitory and inhibitory) as they fire and that there is > a random > component to this change and that the cumulative effect is that future > responses will not > be strictly predictable in any practical sense, but it may be broadly > predictable in the > sense of learned behavior. > I don't think so. The change in synaptic strength is driven by semantic intent, which is why it can be telegraphed into some future criteria being realized rather than some generic expiration date. > > However there's nothing in this theory of "criterial causation" that would > prevent a robot > from having it. > Yeah, I would think that it's likely going to take a long time for that dream to die. Maybe 50 years. Some people will never give it up. Craig > > Brent > -- You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group. To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com. To post to this group, send email to email@example.com. Visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list?hl=en. For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/groups/opt_out.