On Saturday, October 12, 2013 10:11:20 AM UTC-4, stathisp wrote:
> On Saturday, October 12, 2013, Craig Weinberg wrote:
> Do you believe that computers can perform any task a human can perform? If
>>> not, what is an example of a relatively simple task that a computer could
>>> never perform?
>> Perform to whose satisfaction? A cadaver can be made to twitch, or
>> propped up to stand.
> Perform to the satisfaction of anyone you care to nominate. A committee of
> humans examine two people who have had a haircut, one from a human and the
> other from a computer, and try to decide which is which. This is repeated
> several times. If they can't tell the difference then we say the computer
> has succeeded in cutting hair as well as a human. Is there any task you
> think a computer will never be able manage as well as a human in this
> sort of test?
What does performing tasks have to do with anything? We are talking about
the capacity to feel, experience, and care. If you could replace your hands
with machines that would do everything your hands could do and quite a bit
more, but would have no feeling in them at all, would you say that the
robot hands were just as good to you as human hands? If your tongue could
detect any chemical in the universe accurately and provide you with precise
knowledge of it, but never allow you to taste any flavor or feel anything
with your tongue again, would that be equivalent?
>> Being human is nothing to do with performing tasks. Our immune system
>> probably does more complex tasks every minute than the whole history of
>> human beings has ever done (when we build a machine that looks like an
>> insulin molecule, we're still just beginning). Being human is about
>> experiencing with a particular depth of sensitivity. A computer is not even
>> a whole thing except in our mind. It is a collection of switches, which are
>> collections of molecules. Those molecules, I think, do share sensitivity,
>> or rather, there is a sensitivity which appears to our extended senses as
>> molecules, but they are sensitive to very different ranges of presence.
>> By compulsively reducing everything to an expectation of repeatable tasks
>> and behaviors, there is no chance to locate what awareness is, since it is
>> the opposite of all repetition and all that is repeatable.
>>> Stathis Papaioannou
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> Stathis Papaioannou
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