On Wed, Oct 30, 2013 at 3:16 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net> wrote:

>  On 10/29/2013 11:03 PM, Jason Resch wrote:
> On Tue, Oct 29, 2013 at 10:25 PM, chris peck <chris_peck...@hotmail.com>wrote:
>>  Hi Jason (again)
>> in your response to Brent:
>> *
>> >>Personally I believe no theory that aims to attach persons to one
>> psychological or physiological continuity can be successful.*
>>  ok, but in Bruno's step 3 it is taken as axiomatic that you survive in
>> both branches because there is a continuity of psychological phenomena like
>> memory.
>  When I said "one" psychological or physiological continuity, I mean
> exactly that.  It is impossible to attach (define an identity) as any one
> (1/single) continuation. If you try to define a person as some
> physiological, material, or biological continuation, you can throw a wrench
> in that with any kind of duplication / slow matter replacement experiment.
> If you try to define someone as being one particular psychological
> continuation, you fork them or duplicate them, or slowly alter their
> psychology so they have a different personality, memories, etc., and you
> can end up with quite a different psychology than you started with.  Is it
> still the same person?  To remain consistent, either the definition of
> person must collapse to that of a single observer moment (a single lone
> thought or experience), or it must be expanded quite broadly. But if you
> expand it broadly, that leads to an ever-spreading spectrum which
> encompasses all experiences and all beings.  There is then only a single
> person.  This is all that I meant, that one cannot consistently say that a
> person is only this or that individual and no one else.
> That argument seems entirely fallacious to me.  It proves that because I
> can take the parts of a Rolls Royce and substitute them into my Volkswagen
> that a Volkswagen and Rolls are the same car.  But this is not only wrong
> it's even impossible.  If I take the fuel injection system off the Rolls
> and substitute it for the Volks, it won't work because it's made for 8
> cylinders instead of four and it's designed to work with a different ECU.
> Now you may object that I've just chosen the wrong level of subsitution,
> and to be sure I could make substitutions at the molecular or atomic level
> - but then my Volks would still be a Volks, just made of different atoms.
> The Volkswagen and Rolls Royce are systems and you can't just swap parts.
> And so are brains.  If you took a neuron from my brain and tried to
> substitute it in your brain it wouldn't function as it does in either brain
> (or maybe not at all) because it's connectivity wouldn't match.

You can take the absolutist position, that if things are not identical they
are not and cannot be the same, and then a person is something that can
only be associated with one experience.

If, on the other hand, you say the same person can exist in two different
states, then you have identified two things which have some non-zero
distance from each other. Imagine the space of all possible people as some
high-dimensional space.  If two different states (having some distance
between them in this space) can be associated with the same person, then so
can other nearby things in that space be associated with other slightly
different states in this space.  It is like saying 1.00000 and 1.0000001
are close enough that we can consider them part of the same set.  Well by
that logic 1.0000001 and 1.0000002 also belong to the same set, and so
does 1.0000003, etc., and before you know it 1, 2, 10, and all reals are
part of the same set.

You therefore lose the ability to delineate that person from any other in
that space.  Perhaps you can argue there are isolated islands of persons in
this space, and get around it, but it is difficult for me to see how they
can exist since any conscious moment can evolve / build up from a simpler
one, and complex ones can build down to simpler ones.

What car is a Rolls Royce or not is a matter of opinion, whether or not you
will one day experience some other person's point of view is not. Your
opinion might be that it is not *you*, but that would still be only an
opinion (unless you take an absolutist view of personhood).


> Brent
>>  this is the 'yes doctor' axiom. Being an axiom Bruno doesn't need to
>> defend it. We are obliged to assume it.
>  Yes, for the purpose of the reasoning that follows.
>> That said, taking issue with it is tantamount to admitting that we do not
>> survive the teleportation, in which case the probability of me seeing
>> Moscow or Washington is 0.
>  That is my understanding.
>> There is a concept of the observer moment. A discrete snippet of
>> experience and the UD is churning these out willy nilly in a digital form.
>> Or maybe they're all just there in an infinite plenitude of blah. Now the
>> observer moments can be in any old order. A moment from tomorrow can be
>> churned out before a moment from yesterday. Identity emerges as a trace of
>> coherent memory. There is no need for an inherent order between the
>> elements so long as there is some means of coherently connecting the
>> observer moments. In this scheme the order is implicit in the notion of
>> coherent memory.
>  That may be one way to view it, but I am not sure if that is how Bruno
> sees it.  He sees the "flow" of consciousness as governed/ordered by the
> future directions of the (infinite) computational processes that support
> one's current (to use your term) observer moment.  If you could identify
> your current experience right now with any one of an infinite number of
> programs, then your future experiences would consist of a future
> continuation of any one of (from your perspective, chosen at random) those
> infinite programs supporting your current state.
>>  To use an analogy from IT , I suspect its the difference between
>> sorting an array of shuffled digital cards or just keeping track of
>> pointers to cards in an array when shuffling. Like wise physics emerges in
>> this coherent trace. For example, in one observer moment a pen is dropped.
>> Whats next? An observer moment where the pen goes down? One where it goes
>> up? One where it goes right or left? All these moments are catered for in
>> the infinite plenitude. So physics, here the law of gravity, becomes an
>> investigation into a psychologically consistent trace of pen moments. All
>> those where the pen keeps going down in my trace. Its going to be tricky to
>> keep track of traces because they criss-cross. That is, all moments in some
>> sense are coherent with one another.
>  This is where Bruno speaks of the importance of "long histories".  To
> get to your current state, probable explanations include evolution of life,
> etc., which required stable laws, and many other assumptions about how the
> world looks.  If the majority of those programs are shorter than the longer
> programs which are more complex and contain exceptions to these rules which
> have worked for billions of years, then with a high probability, the laws
> that have held true and led to your current experience will continue to
> remain true.  Though of course, this is not guaranteed, and such cases are
> known as "white rabbit" universes, after Alice in Wonderland.
>>  The pen down one vertical voxel is a consistent with moments where the
>> pen is at any of the voxel neighbors, up down, left right, back forward.
>> Taking different velocities into account it doesn't even have to be a
>> neighboring voxel. Where is velocity anyway? Is it between the moments?
>> Within the moments. A problem here I think.
>  It may look something like this:
> http://www.weidai.com/qm-interpretation.txt
>  Mathematics and mathematical truth, are after all, unchanging.  Yet
> there is an defined ordering to computational states of recursive
> functions.  Consider the evolution of a recursive function that executed
> the Game of Life, and within this game of life are complex self-aware
> patterns, that observe the entire state of their world change from each
> state to the next.  There would be a time-like ordering to each of these
> states, and change would appear to occur from within the inside of entities
> existing as a pattern within this recursive function.
>> Anyway, the point is that continuity between moments seems to me to be a
>> big, big deal in this scenario. So, if you are of the view that continuity
>> isn't even sufficient to maintain identity then I wonder to what degree you
>> really are on the same page as Bruno.
>  My point was only that the traditional notions of personal identity:
> saying this person is that one particular continuation of that biological
> organism, or of that one brain, do not work.  They fail in cases of fusion,
> fission, duplication, radical change, amnesia, etc. and must be rejected in
> favor of more consistent definitions of personal identity.
>  Jason
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