Seth Lloyd addresses the 'free will' question:
Before Alan Turing made his crucial contributions to the the
ory of computation,
he studied the question of whether quantum mechanics could t
hrow light on the nature
of free will. This article investigates the roles of quantum
mechanics and computation in
free will. Although quantum mechanics implies that events a
re intrinsically unpredictable,
the 'pure stochasticity' of quantum mechanics adds only ran
domness to decision making
processes, not freedom. By contrast, the theory of computat
ion implies that even when
our decisions arise from a completely deterministic decisi
on-making process, the outcomes
of that process can be intrinsically unpredictable, even to
-- especially to -- ourselves. I
argue that this intrinsic computational unpredictability
of the decision making process is
what give rise to our impression that we possess free will. Fi
nally, I propose a 'Turing test'
for free will: a decision maker who passes this test will tend
to believe that he, she, or it
possesses free will, whether the world is deterministic or n
"I cannot prove that electrons exist, but I believe fervently in their existence. And if
you don't believe in them, I have a high voltage cattle prod I'm willing to apply as an
argument on their behalf. Electrons speak for themselves."
--- Seth Lloyd
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