On 3/7/2013 5:45 PM, meekerdb wrote:
On 3/7/2013 2:21 PM, Stephen P. King wrote:
On 3/7/2013 12:04 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:
If you have ever worked with Terminal Servers, RDP, Citrix
Metaframe, or the like (and that's what I have been doing
professionally every day for the last 14 years), you will understand
the idea of a Thin Client architecture. Thin clients are as old as
computing, and some of you remember as I do, devices like acoustic
couplers where you can attach a telephone handset to a telephone
cradle, so that the mouth ends of the handset and the earpiece ends
could squeal to each other. In this way, you could, with nothing but
a keyboard and a printer, use your telephone to allow you access to
a mainframe computer at some university.
The relevance here is that the client end is thin computationally.
It passes nothing but keystrokes and printer instructions back and
forth as acoustic codes.
This is what an mp3 file does as well. It passes nothing but binary
instructions that can be used by an audio device to vibrate. Without
a person's ear there to be vibrated, this entire event is described
by linear processes where one physical record is converted into
another physical record. Nothing is encoded or decoded, experienced
or appreciated. There is no sound.
Think about those old plastic headphones in elementary school that
just had hollow plastic tubes as connectors - a system like that
generates sound from the start, and the headphones are simply
funnels for our ears. That's a different thing from an electronic
device which produces sound only in the earbuds.
All of these discussions about semiotics, free will, consciousness,
AI...all come down to understanding the Thin Client. The Thin Client
is Searle's Chinese Room in actual fact. You can log into a massive
server from some mobile device and use it like a glove, but that
doesn't mean that the glove is intelligent. We know that we can
transmit only mouseclicks and keystrokes across the pipe and that it
works without having to have some sophisticated computing
environment (i.e. qualia) get communicated. The Thin Client exposes
Comp as misguided because it shows that instructions can indeed
exist as purely instrumental forms and require none of the semantic
experiences which we enjoy. No matter how much you use the thin
client, it never needs to get any thicker. It's just a glove and a
Excellent post! You have nailed computational immaterialism where
it really hurts. Computations cannot see, per the Turing
neo-Platonists, any hardward at all. This is their view of
computational universality. But here in the thing, it is the reason
why they have a 'body problem'. For a Platonistic Machine, there is
no hardware or physical world at all. So, why do I have the
persistent illusion that I am in a body and interacting with another
computation via its body?
The physical delusion is the thin client, to use your words and
I'm fairly sure Bruno will point out that a delusion is a thought and
so is immaterial. You have an immaterial experience fo being in a body.
But the analogy of the thin client is thin indeed. In the example of
the Mars rover it corresponds to looking a computer bus and saying,
"See there are just bits being transmitted over this wire, therefore
this Mars rover can't have qualia." It's nothing-buttery spread thin.
Meantime the Mars rover and Watson continue to exhibit intelligence of
the same kind you would associate with qualia if exhibted by a human
being, or even by a dog. You have no argument, just wetware racism.
LOL, you really are trying to court favor with the Overlords!
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 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.