On Saturday, March 9, 2013 9:50:10 PM UTC-5, stathisp wrote:
> On Sun, Mar 10, 2013 at 1:23 PM, Craig Weinberg 
> <whats...@gmail.com<javascript:>> 
> wrote: 
> >> In the normal use of the word "control" a deterministic system can 
> >> control things. For example, an automatic pilot can control the plane. 
> > 
> > 
> > An automatic pilot only controls the plane to the extent that it extends 
> > human intentions to control the plane. The automatic pilot can just as 
> > easily be set to crash the plane into a mountain as soon as possible and 
> it 
> > won't know the difference or care. 
> Similarly with the human. He has been programmed by his genes 
> interacting with the environment. 
If the programming goes awry, 
> whether due to genetic or environmental factors, he might do something 
> erratic, such as try to kill himself. This happens not infrequently. 

A person can resist their both their environment and genetic programming, 
but an automatic pilot cannot. Our entire science of genetics proves that 
we are interested in taking control of our own genetic destiny.

> >> It's not impossible to care. I could care if I have the winning 
> >> lottery ticket if I know it has been drawn but not yet revealed. 
> > 
> > 
> > Only because you live in a universe where winning the lottery is 
> meaningful 
> > for you because it represents the opportunity to amplify your own free 
> will. 
> > If there were only determinism, winning the lottery could not possibly 
> > matter to you. 
> The lottery *is* determined, I *know* it's determined, yet I still 
> care about whether I have won or not. Therefore caring and determinism 
> are not mutually exclusive. 

You care because your values arise from a universe of free will rather than 
determinism. Caring and determinism are mutually exclusive ontologically, 
as a square and a circle. Your example is a fallacy, and a glaringly 
obvious one at that. You can't use examples from the world as it actually 
is and smuggle them into this made up world which has never existed which 
is only deterministic or random. 

> >> Not at all, the fundamental physics may be the same but in one case a 
> >> person can assess the situation and change his behaviour while in the 
> >> other case he can't. The automatic pilot is broken. 
> > 
> > 
> > Under what circumstances is a an automatic pilot legally responsible for 
> its 
> > actions? Can an automatic pilot be put in prison for failing at a 
> critical 
> > moment? Why not? 
> Because its intelligence is extremely limited. Infants aren't put into 
> prison either for this reason, even though they have free will. When 
> automatic pilots develop to the point where they can have a normal 
> conversations with people on a variety of topics then they will 
> probably be held legally responsible and punished, assuming they are 
> not so intelligent that they take over to prevent us doing this. 

Spoiler alert - that will never happen. In a few decades all of these 
fantastic overestimates of strong AI will probably be considered charming, 
like Jules Verne and journeys to the center of the Earth. Putting an 
automatic pilot in prison will never be an option no matter how 
sophisticated its simulated intelligence seems to be to us. Prison is 
meaningless to it because it is not a person with free will. It has no 
capacity to conceive of freedom or will. Prison is no different from where 
it always is - which is nowhere.

> >> > No judge could make any judgment against a person if they really 
> >> > believed 
> >> > that everything must be determined or random. That would mean that 
> their 
> >> > judgments would also be deterministic or random, so that they would 
> not 
> >> > be a 
> >> > judge at all, but rather a pawn of "inevitable and necessary 
> >> > consequences of 
> >> > antecedent states of affairs." 
> >> > 
> >> > Judgment is impossible under determinism. 
> >> 
> >> In that case judges are deluded about making judgements - but it 
> >> doesn't deter them. 
> > 
> > 
> > Your invisible floating castle has plumbing problems. 
> What do you think we would find if we surveyed judges on this topic? 

I would think that they would say that they became judges because they 
believe that determining responsibility is something which only a human 
being can ultimately do, and that human beings are sometimes the victims of 
circumstances beyond their control, and other times create problems 
themselves by their own immoral intentions.

Why, do you think that judges would say "My role is irrelevant. I am 
nothing more than a robot who rubber stamps mindless verdicts as the roll 
into my mind from my genes and down through the lives of these other meat 
puppets acting out their own mindless and utterly involuntary scripts."?


> -- 
> Stathis Papaioannou 

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