On 1 October 2013 18:34, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote: > But then it seems one needs the physical, or at least the subconscious. If > one conceives a "subjective moment" as just what one is conscious of in "a > moment" it doesn't encode very much of the past. And in the digital > simulation paradigm the computational state doesn't encode any of it. So I > think each conscious "moment" must have considerable extent in (physical) > time so as to overlap and provide continuity. Of course physical time need > not correspond in any simple way to computational steps.
I can only agree. I think that Hoyle deliberately didn't try to over-define what he meant by the contents of one of his pigeon holes and indeed one could make the same comment about the related notion of an observer moment. My characterisation of its structure is simply intended to draw attention to what is implicit in the assumptions - i.e. that it entails sufficient "information", however encoded, to encapsulate (not necessarily entirely, or even predominantly, consciously, as you correctly point out) an identity, a situation, and a history. That said, this seems at the least not inconsistent with our current understanding of neural function; indeed, most particularly, with respect to its dis-function, in which specific aspects of identity, situation and history are all too apt suddenly to disappear - well, from moment to moment. As you say, how all this might map in detail to physical or computational structures is somewhat obscure, to put it mildly. The role of the "flow" of experiential time is especially intriguing and in idle moments I sometimes fall to speculating on how it might play out in terms of Hoyle's metaphor. One thing that seems clear is that, for the metaphor to make sense, one must assume an irreducible dynamic already implicit in the relation between present and past occasions assumed to be encoded as a whole within a singular (specious) "present moment". That is, as you say above, "each conscious "moment" must have considerable extent in (physical) time so as to overlap and provide continuity". The reason for this stipulation, of course, is that the abstract "transitions" between one moment and another are not themselves conceived as being encoded within the structure of any given moment. Hence the conceptual role of transition is, in the first place, to establish a singular abstract experiential "fixed point" and, in the second, to delimit experiential content within the span of each of a mutually-exclusive succession of observer moments. Conceived thus, it cannot represent a "flow of time" between such moments; it represents merely an unbiased serialisation, or selection, over the entire class of such moments. Consequently any such "flow", as already stipulated, must either be encoded in the structure of each moment or not at all. Curiously, the experiencing subjects, that are thus momentarily individuated, nonetheless seemingly cannot help being wedded to the notion - indeed to the local illusion - that there "really is" some such continuing transition, despite its unobservability in principle; after all, the alternative would seem to be an infinity of monadic subjects trapped forever, each in a single moment. Considered thus, I think, Hoyle's metaphor allows one to speak genuinely of the illusion of a flow of time while giving at least a conceptual account of how such a trick might be managed. David -- 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 everything-list+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com. To post to this group, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list. For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/groups/opt_out.