Let us start at the end: David's conclusion upon Brent's (>)remark:
---------------------------- ...
*> The advantage of
> looking at a circle of 'reductions'
>
> NUMBERS -> "MACHINE DREAMS" -> PHYSICAL -> HUMANS -> PHYSICS -> NUMBERS.
>
> is that it cautions one against this kind fundamentalism.  Shall we take
> perspectives as fundamental (Nietzsche), particles (Stenger), numbers
> (Bruno),...  In my view they are all models and one 'reduces' to a level
you
> can understand or manipulate, which will be different in different
> circumstances.

That's nicely agnostic, of course. Frankly, it about sums up my own
views most of the time. However, I appreciate Bruno's efforts to put
some flesh on the bones of one particular departure from agnosticism.
And I still deprecate those of an airily reductive persuasion who
simply cannot see how they are doggedly assuming almost everything
they wish to explain.
**David**
*
*-----------------*
I feel Bruno does not 'depart' from agnosticism: he remarked several time
to be 'even more' agnostic than myself (a confessed all-agnostic). He just
feels awe for his Platonistic base to adore numbers (especially the
primes). I asked him several times to define them, because I cannot find
'single number relations" in the  'natural nature'.
Only when numbers are already introduced ( - by human logic?).

Those whom you call 'of an airily reductive persuasion' are regular
conventional scientists (if...) who find it natural to 'explain' everything
*they THINK they know* (or see, postulate in the 'model' of their
reductionist world so far learned).

IMO *"who give philosophers a bad name":* are the other philosophers (call
them scientists). Motto (taken from a description of lawyers):
99% of philosophers give a bad name for the rest of them.
JM




On Wed, Sep 25, 2013 at 3:42 PM, David Nyman <da...@davidnyman.com> wrote:

> On 25 September 2013 19:42, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:
>
> > I'd say the standard riposte is that the "first person facts" (qualia?)
> are
> > just inherent in the 3p model.  There is feeling that goes with certain
> > kinds of information processing (e.g. creating a personal narrative).
>  This
> > is really implicit in Bruno's theory - that proving certain theorems in
> > arithmetic necessarily entails qualia.
>
> Sure, but in my reply to Bruno I point out that whereas "information
> processing" is an explicit theoretical aspect of comp, it has no
> obvious role to play in reductive materialism. By the way, my critique
> of "reductive materialism" isn't mean to imply a knock-down argument
> against a future account of the first-person in terms of some final
> physical theory. Rather my intention is to stress the often-overlooked
> limitations of existing physical theory in this regard. What role is
> "information processing" supposed to play if what exists is supposed
> to be exhausted by some maximally-reduced material substrate? Is it
> meant as a proxy for some underlying physical process? But then what
> is this proxy supposed to consist of in addition to the process?
>
> As I remarked to Bruno, when one speaks of nations or sports teams (or
> indeed universities, as Ryle famously pointed out, though apparently
> without fully grasping the consequences) one has no difficulty
> realising that all one is speaking of is human beings variously
> arranged. I suppose one might call this reductive peopleism. But
> apparently when one turns to "information processing" it is somehow
> less clear that all one can be speaking of (according to reductive
> materialism) is fundamental material entities variously arranged.
>
> > "Nature" is our model of reality.  We like to compute from "the bottom
> up"
> > because it is usually easier to think of simpler things interacting to
> make
> > more complicated things - but no always.
>
> Yes, of course. But ISTM that this is often understood as implying
> more than merely an explanatory strategy; IOW that "bottom up" - or
> really "bottom only" - is how things "really are", internal
> contradictions be damned. However, I surmise that you are not in this
> simplistic camp. But I would still be interested in an account of
> "information processing" that appeals exclusively to third-personal
> physical processes without begging the question of the distinctive
> first-personal characteristics of any higher-order relational
> phenomena thus adduced.
>
> >> If the foregoing point is fully taken on board, it should be apparent
> >> that our fundamental motivation for ascribing any truly independent
> >> "reality" to derivative or emergent phenomena is actually their
> >> appearance in some first-personal narrative.
> >
> > But that's just taking 1p narratives as fundamental.
>
> Not so fast. It's taking them to be "real", not fundamental. My point
> is that, according to reductive materialism, there is no motivation to
> accept derivative or emergent phenomena as real in any sense, because
> they are ever and always simply the underlying fundamentals tout court
> (i.e. the people not the nation). Of course, looking at things in this
> way has the effect of making such emergent phenomena disappear from
> view even more comprehensively than the Cheshire Cat, which also was
> my point.
>
> > The advantage of
> > looking at a circle of 'reductions'
> >
> > NUMBERS -> "MACHINE DREAMS" -> PHYSICAL -> HUMANS -> PHYSICS -> NUMBERS.
> >
> > is that it cautions one against this kind fundamentalism.  Shall we take
> > perspectives as fundamental (Nietzsche), particles (Stenger), numbers
> > (Bruno),...  In my view they are all models and one 'reduces' to a level
> you
> > can understand or manipulate, which will be different in different
> > circumstances.
>
> That's nicely agnostic, of course. Frankly, it about sums up my own
> views most of the time. However, I appreciate Bruno's efforts to put
> some flesh on the bones of one particular departure from agnosticism.
> And I still deprecate those of an airily reductive persuasion who
> simply cannot see how they are doggedly assuming almost everything
> they wish to explain.
>
> David
>
>
>
> > On 9/25/2013 4:40 AM, David Nyman wrote:
> >>
> >> On 25 September 2013 05:03, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:
> >>
> >>> We will have learned what emotions and feelings
> >>> are at the level of sensors and computation and action.  And when we
> have
> >>> done that 'the hard problem' will be seen to have been an idle
> question -
> >>> like "What is life." proved to be in the 20th century.
> >>
> >> David Chalmers has a good riposte to this, I think. He points out
> >> that, properly framed, the question "What is Life?" was always going to
> >> be answerable in terms of lower-level elements and processes of
> >> systems we regard as alive. Consequently, once these had been fully
> >> elucidated (no matter how difficult this might turn out to be in
> >> practice) we simply would have no motivation to look for further kinds
> >> of explanation. There never really was any reason to anticipate there
> >> being some "hard problem" of Life. OTOH, he argues, even if we
> >> possessed a fully adequate account of the brain in terms of its
> >> relevant physical elements and processes, the question of why any
> >> fully adequate third-person characterisation might imply any further
> >> first-person facts would still remain.
> >>
> >> Of course the standard riposte to this riposte is indeed simply to
> >> deny that there are "really" any such further first-person facts at
> >> all (a position that Dennett has characterised as third person
> >> absolutism).
> >
> >
> > I'd say the standard riposte is that the "first person facts" (qualia?)
> are
> > just inherent in the 3p model.  There is feeling that goes with certain
> > kinds of information processing (e.g. creating a personal narrative).
>  This
> > is really implicit in Bruno's theory - that proving certain theorems in
> > arithmetic necessarily entails qualia.
> >
> >
> >> I wonder, however, whether this denial really makes any
> >> sense in its own terms. After all, if one takes the reductive
> >> enterprise as seriously as one ought, anything above the level of
> >> fundamental constituents and their relations is understood as being
> >> derivative or emergent. IOW, in a sense (and a strong sense for our
> >> present purposes) such derivative levels are not independently "real".
> >> It is easy to miss this point because of their explanatory
> >> indispensability (e.g. Deutsch's example of the alternative histories
> >> of the copper atom) but it is central to reductionism that such
> >> emergent levels play no independent role in the fundamental machinery.
> >> Nature, as we might say, seems to compute exclusively from the bottom
> >> up.
> >
> >
> > "Nature" is our model of reality.  We like to compute from "the bottom
> up"
> > because it is usually easier to think of simpler things interacting to
> make
> > more complicated things - but no always.
> >
> >
> >>
> >> If the foregoing point is fully taken on board, it should be apparent
> >> that our fundamental motivation for ascribing any truly independent
> >> "reality" to derivative or emergent phenomena is actually their
> >> appearance in some first-personal narrative.
> >
> >
> > But that's just taking 1p narratives as fundamental.  The advantage of
> > looking at a circle of 'reductions'
> >
> > NUMBERS -> "MACHINE DREAMS" -> PHYSICAL -> HUMANS -> PHYSICS -> NUMBERS.
> >
> > is that it cautions one against this kind fundamentalism.  Shall we take
> > perspectives as fundamental (Nietzsche), particles (Stenger), numbers
> > (Bruno),...  In my view they are all models and one 'reduces' to a level
> you
> > can understand or manipulate, which will be different in different
> > circumstances.
> >
> > Brent
> >
> >
> >
> >> IOW, it makes no
> >> difference to Nature, conceived reductively, whether we choose to
> >> explain the current location of a copper atom in terms of nations and
> >> wars, or the evolution of the wave-function of the universe, or the
> >> structure of the Programmatic Library of Babel for that matter,
> >> because the presumed-to-be-fundamental reality is understood to
> >> subsist independently whatever the case. According to standard
> >> reductionist principles, nations and wars - and indeed atoms and
> >> molecules - are simply higher-order derivatives of more fundamental
> >> entities and their relations. Indeed, more accurately, they simply
> >> *are* those entities and their relations, without addition, in exactly
> >> the sense that football teams or societies simply *are* human beings
> >> in relation, without addition.
> >>
> >> My point here is that these derivatives, in the end, are point-of-view
> >> dependent. This is not to say, of course, that they are thereby simple
> >> or arbitrary; quite the contrary. But there would be no need to appeal
> >> to them at all were it not for the putative existence of
> >> points-of-view in the first place. Nature, conceived purely as a
> >> primary reality of fundamental entities and their relations, has no
> >> truck with explaining the history of any particular copper atom in
> >> terms of nations and wars or, for that matter, with distinguishing a
> >> "copper atom" as worthy of explanation. Hence the primary
> >> "first-person fact" that demands something beyond a strictly reductive
> >> explanation is the peculiarly "non-derivative" status of a
> >> point-of-view and the "emergent" entities in which it apparently
> >> deals. That this may appear less than obvious to us is a consequence
> >> of our seeming inability even to frame the question without assuming
> >> the answer.
> >>
> >> David
> >>
> >>
> >>> On 9/24/2013 8:44 PM, LizR wrote:
> >>>
> >>> On 25 September 2013 15:41, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>> On 9/24/2013 6:32 PM, LizR wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>> On 25 September 2013 13:38, Russell Standish <li...@hpcoders.com.au>
> >>>> wrote:
> >>>>>
> >>>>> This is also true of materialism. Whether you think this is a problem
> >>>>> or not depends on whether you think the "hard problem" is a problem
> or
> >>>>> not.
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>> Indeed. I was about to say something similar (to the effect that it's
> >>>> hard
> >>>> to imagine how "mere atoms" can have sights, sounds, smells etc
> either).
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>> As a rule, if you want to explain X you need to start from something
> >>>> without X.
> >>>>
> >>> Absolutely.
> >>>
> >>> If you know of such an explanation, or even the outlines of one, I'd be
> >>> interested to hear it. As Russell said, this is the so-called "hard
> >>> problem"
> >>> so any light (or sound, touch etc) on it would be welcome.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> My 'solution' to the hard problem is to prognosticate that when we have
> >>> built intelligent robots we will have learned the significance of
> having
> >>> an
> >>> internal narrative memory.  We will have learned what emotions and
> >>> feelings
> >>> are at the level of sensors and computation and action.  And when we
> have
> >>> done that 'the hard problem' will be seen to have been an idle
> question -
> >>> like "What is life." proved to be in the 20th century.
> >>>
> >>> Brent
> >>>
> >>> --
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