On Tue, Apr 23, 2013 at 04:01:00PM -0400, John Clark wrote:
> On Tue, Apr 23, 2013 at 3:27 AM, Russell Standish 
> <li...@hpcoders.com.au>wrote:
> > > The last time I had general anaesthetic, I remember the count of the
> > anaesthetist up to 4, but not any number higher than that.
> >
> What was the point of that? I thought you were supposed to do the counting
> not the doctor. 

Well that would make more sense, I suppose. Just shows how unreliable
memory is :).

> It if you were doing the counting you may not remember
> going higher than 4 but I'll bet immediately after you said "4" if the
> doctor asked you a question you could still give a answer, probably fuzzy
> and possibly incorrect but a answer nevertheless. 

It indicates a last remembered moment, which was the point of you

It is a moot point whether one is actually conscious when no memories
are being laid down. Anaesthetics have different components, one of
which is to block memory formation. You can have situations where 3rd
parties believe someone is awake, whereas the person themself insists
they are unconscious at the time, because they have no memory of it.

That is a shade of grey, in that I cannot tell you whether that person is
conscious or not, but they are one or the other, not "somewhere in between".

> > >Yes. I don't see how it could be otherwise.
> >
> My consciousness certainly isn't a all or nothing matter, if yours is then
> your mind must work very differently from mine.

A more likely explanation is that we use the term consciousness in a
different way. Yours sounds more like what I would use the term
"awareness" for.


Prof Russell Standish                  Phone 0425 253119 (mobile)
Principal, High Performance Coders
Visiting Professor of Mathematics      hpco...@hpcoders.com.au
University of New South Wales          http://www.hpcoders.com.au

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