On Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:59:17 AM UTC+10, Brent wrote:
>  On 10/1/2013 11:49 PM, Pierz wrote:
> On Wednesday, October 2, 2013 3:15:01 PM UTC+10, Brent wrote: 
>> On 10/1/2013 9:56 PM, Pierz wrote: 
>> > Yes, I understand that to be Chalmer's main point. Although, if the 
>> qualia can be 
>> > different, it does present issues - how much and in what way can it 
>> vary? 
>> Yes, that's a question that interests me because I want to be able to 
>> build intelligent 
>> machines and so I need to know what qualia they will have, if any.  I 
>> think it will depend 
>> on their sensors and on their values/goals.  If I build a very 
>> intelligent Mars Rover, 
>> capable of learning and reasoning, with a goal of discovering whether 
>> there was once life 
>> on Mars; then I expect it will experience pleasure in finding evidence 
>> regarding this.   
>> But no matter how smart I make it, it won't experience lust. 
>>  "Reasoning" being what exactly? The ability to circumnavigate an 
> obstacle for instance? There are no "rewards" in an algorithm. There are 
> just paths which do or don't get followed depending on inputs. Sure, the 
> argument that there must be qualia in a sufficiently sophisticated computer 
> seems compelling. But the argument that there can't be seems equally so. As 
> a programmer I have zero expectation that the computer I am programming 
> will feel pleasure or suffering. It's just as happy to throw an exception 
> as it is to complete its assigned task. *I* am the one who experiences pain 
> when it hits an error! I just can't conceive of the magical point at which 
> the computer goes from total indifference to giving a damn. That's the 
> point Craig keeps pushing and which I agree with. Something is missing from 
> our understanding.
> What's missing is you're considering a computer, not a robot.  As robot 
> has to have values and goals in order to act and react in the world.  It 
> has complex systems and subsystems that may have conflicting subgoals, and 
> in order to learn from experience it keeps a narrative history about what 
> it considers significant events.  At that level it may have the 
> consciousness of a mouse.  If it's a social robot, one that needs to 
> cooperate and compete in a society of other persons, then it will need a 
> self-image and model of other people.  In that case it's quite reasonable 
> to suppose it also has qualia.
> Really? You believe that a robot can experience qualia but a computer 
can't? Well that just makes no sense at all. A robot is a computer with 
peripherals. When I write the code to represent its "self image", I will 
probably write a class called "Self". But once compiled, the name of the 
class will be just another string of bits, and only the programmer will 
understand that it is supposed to represent the position, attitude and 
other states of the physical robot. Do the peripherals need to be real or 
can they just be simulated? Does a brain in a Futurama-style jar lose its 
qualia because it's now a computer not a robot? Come on. 

>> > I'm curious what the literature has to say about that. And if 
>> functionalism means 
>> > reproducing more than the mere functional output of a system, if it 
>> potentially means 
>> > replication down to the elementary particles and possibly their quantum 
>> entanglements, 
>> > then duplication becomes impossible, not merely technically but in 
>> principle. That seems 
>> > against the whole point of functionalism - as the idea of "function" is 
>> reduced to 
>> > something almost meaningless. 
>> I think functionalism must be confined to the classical functions, 
>> discounting the quantum 
>> level effects.  But it must include some behavior that is almost entirely 
>> internal - e.g. 
>> planning, imagining.  Excluding quantum entanglements isn't arbitrary; 
>> there cannot have 
>> been any evolution of goals and values based on quantum entanglement 
>> (beyond the 
>> statistical effects that produce decoherence and quasi-classical 
>> behavior). 
>>  But what do "planning" and "imagining" mean except their functional 
> outputs? It shouldn't matter to you how the planning occurs - it's an 
> "implementation detail" in development speak. 
> You can ask a person about plans and imaginings, and speech in response is 
> an action.
>  Your argument may be valid regarding quantum entanglement, but it is 
> still an argument based on what "seems to make sense" rather than on 
> genuine understanding of the relationship between functions and their 
> putative qualia.
> But I suspect that there is no understanding that would satisfy Craig as 
> "genuine".  Do we have a "genuine" understanding of electrodynamics?  of 
> computation?  What we have is the ability to manipulate them for our 
> purposes.  So when we can make an intelligent robot that interacts with 
> people AS IF it experiences qualia and we can manipulate and anticipate 
> that behavior, then we'll have just as genuine an understanding of qualia 
> as we do of electrodynamics.
> Well if my daughter has a doll that cries until it's picked up - i.e., it 
acts AS IF it had qualia - do we have a genuine understanding of qualia? I 
just fail to comprehend the boundary between that obviously false scenario 
and a more sophisticated robot in which the qualia are supposed to be real. 
I have no answer, but I find it hard to believe that even computationalist 
true believers such as yourself don't secretly find this problem just a 
little bit puzzling too. 


> Brent

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 everything-list@googlegroups.com.
Visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/groups/opt_out.

Reply via email to