On 7/16/2013 2:08 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:


On Tuesday, July 16, 2013 4:44:20 PM UTC-4, Brent wrote:

    On 7/16/2013 1:38 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:


    On Tuesday, July 16, 2013 4:18:09 PM UTC-4, Brent wrote:

        On 7/16/2013 12:37 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:


        On Monday, July 15, 2013 6:32:28 PM UTC-4, Brent wrote:

            On 7/15/2013 2:30 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:
            Would this kind of universality of human sense-making be likely if 
the
            connections between words, shapes, and feelings were purely 
computational?

            Why not?  Being a broken line vs a differentiable line is a 
computable
            property.  The difference between "k" sounds and "b" sounds is
            computable.  So I'm not sure what you're getting at.  Or are you 
asking
            how "k" came to be associated with "broken line" or how the written 
letter
            "k" was associated with the phonetic sound of "k"?


        I'm saying that a computer which is programmed to differentiate between 
the
        phonemes of 'ki-ki' and 'bou-ba' would have zero chance of associating 
either
        of them with the curvy figure or the pointy figure without some 
arbitrary link
        being provided programmatically. This suggests that there exists within 
human
        experience purely aesthetic, elemental associations which are synthetic 
a
        priori rather than arrived at mechanically. A computer can't tell that 
there
        is anything inherently curvy about the sound of bouba, but a person can.

        Sez you.  I think you're just suffering from a failure of imagination.


    You say failure of imagination, I say success avoiding the pathetic fallacy.

    And success in stroking your ego that wants humans to be special.


Humans are special to humans. Something that cannot be said of machines.

Consider this. If I were to try to invent the polar opposite of God, what would 
it be?

God = Anthropomorphic, intentional, conscious, aesthetic, moralizing, 
miraculous.

Computation = Mechanemorphic, unintentional, unconscious, anesthetic, amoral, 
prosaic.

Wouldn't you say that the symmetry is remarkable?

I don't see anything remarkable about you making up a lot of negative assertions about computation for which you don't even have an argument, much less a proof. Nor about you sticking together a bunch of human attributes and tagging the conglomerate "God". Theologians have been doing that for millenia.

In both cases, there is an originator whose origin is unquestioned.

Sez who?

The difference is that the former is like us, only superlative in every qualitative measure,

Like us?  Does God like sex, beer and rock&roll?  Did God eliminate smallpox?  
polio?

while the latter is like inanimate objects, utterly devoid of all qualitative measure. What is it that God super-signifies and computation de-signifies?

Like you, I see that anthropomorphism is a psychological defense mechanism, but unlike you I see that the simple reaction against it is not necessarily the antidote (like throwing liquid nitrogen on a burn is not an improvement).

The Anti-god of Mechanism substitutes the opposite kind of vanity - the arrogance of false humility. To witness all things as a pure vessel of skeptical clarity, capable of self-compensating for all flawed perceptions and cognitive bias. Self-importance merely pivots to self-insignficance as the ego then identifies with the objectifier of the self rather than the self directly. It's a psychological compensation strategy, one which I think would bear out neuroscientifically.

??

Brent

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