On 12/16/2013 9:36 PM, Jason Resch wrote:




On Mon, Dec 16, 2013 at 11:11 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net <mailto:meeke...@verizon.net>> wrote:

    On 12/16/2013 6:17 PM, Jason Resch wrote:



    On Mon, Dec 16, 2013 at 6:07 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net
    <mailto:meeke...@verizon.net>> wrote:

        On 12/16/2013 2:27 PM, Jason Resch wrote:



        On Mon, Dec 16, 2013 at 3:14 PM, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net
        <mailto:meeke...@verizon.net>> wrote:

            On 12/16/2013 12:40 PM, LizR wrote:
            On 17 December 2013 08:06, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net
            <mailto:meeke...@verizon.net>> wrote:

                JKC makes a big point of the complete separation of quantum 
worlds,
                although Everett didn't write about multiple worlds. Everett 
only
                considered one world and wrote about the "relative state" of the
                observer and the observed system.  In some ways this is more
                fundamental because in principle the "different worlds" of MWI 
can
                interfere with one another.  That they usually don't is a 
statistical
                result.

            ("Many worlds" is just a nice (and roughly accurate) description, 
like
            Big Bang (better than Small Hiss) or Black Hole (better than Very 
Faintly
            Glowing Region of Infinite Gravity :)

                I think that's an unfair criticism of Copenhagen. Deterministic
                theories just push the problem back in time. Ultimately there is
                either an uncaused event or an infinite past.  So there is not 
great
                intellectual virtue in rejecting uncaused events. Quantum 
mechanics
                is an interesting intermediate case.  It has randomness, but
                randomness that is strictly limited and limited in such a way 
that it
                produces the classical world at a statistical level.


            The problem is pushed back onto whatever is considered fundamental. 
If
            there is an original event, it is only uncaused if it doesn't emerge
            naturally from (for example) the equations that are believed to 
describe
            the universe. One can say the same about an infinite past.

                Your own theory also introduces uncaused events, namely the
                computations of a universal dovetailer. The whole idea of
                "everythingism" was inspired by QM, but QM itself doesn't 
entail that
                everything happens. If you measure a variable you only get
                eigenvalues of that variable - not every possible value.  If you
                measure it again you get the same eigenvalue again - not any 
value.


            I was given to believe that the computations of the UD aren't 
events, and
            that they simply exist within arithmetic as a logically necessary
            consequence of its existence. Did I get that wrong?

            I wouldn't say "wrong". It depends on whether you think "There 
exists a
            successor of 2." implies that 3 exists.  Personally I think it is a
            confusion to say that a logical formula is satisfied by X is the 
same as
            saying X exists in the ontological sense.


                On the contrary, self-duplication explains the appearance of 
such
                indeterminacy, without adding any further assumptions.

                Well, the existence of self-duplication, even via Everett, is a
                further assumption.

            Surely the existence of duplication (rather than self-duplication) 
arises
            from the equations? So one has self-duplication as a consequence, 
to the
            same extent that one has it within ones own personal past? Or have I
            misunderstood that too?

            (Or are you just talking about the sort of assumptions we have to 
make
            all the time anyway?)

                Occam favors it. Your belief in "3)" substitutes a very simple
                explanation by a call to a form of built-in-non-explainable 
magic.

                No more magic than a UD.

            Why is the UD magic? (Is arithmetic magic?)


            It's hypothetically generating all possible worlds, but where is 
it? It's
            in Platonia.  It's "the word made flesh." Sounds a lot more magical 
than
            "that atom decayed by potential tunneling just like the equations 
say."



        In a sense, one can be more certain about arithmetical reality than the
        physical reality. An evil demon could be responsible for our belief in 
atoms,
        and stars, and photons, etc., but it is may be impossible for that same 
demon
        to give us the experience of factoring 7 in to two integers besides 1 
and 7.

        But that's because we made up 1 and 7 and the defintion of factoring.  
Their
        our language and that's why we have control of them.


    That's what Hilbert thought, but Godel showed he was wrong.


        So while Descartes could doubt physical reality, he could not doubt the
        "unreality of arithmetically impossible experiences".

        I don't think Descartes could doubt physical reality.



    He did.  It could have all be an illusion or a dream, as in the Matrix. 
There is no
    proof that your perceptions correspond to reality any more than the reality
    necessary to create your perceptions.

    Proof is for mathematicians - and they are only relative to axioms. My 
point is not
    that Descarte couldn't say he doubted reality, but that he couldn't act on 
that
    doubt; he couldn't really doubt it because that makes the concept of 
"reality"
    meaningless.



Maybe some people come to that conclusion, and become insane, nihilistic, or depressed as a result.




        Even Bruno rejects solipism and that's just doubting the reality of 
other
        people.  I find it pretty easy to doubt that you can always add one 
more to an
        integer.  I think 10^10^10 + 1 may well equal 10^10^10 in most contexts.


    I don't see the relevance of this to the fact that even a highly doubtful 
person
    (such as Descartes or yourself :-) ), can reason that his possible 
experiences are
    constrained by mathematical possibility (even if all his (or your) 
perceptions are
    created by an evil demon, a dream, or the matrix).

    Descartes gave up too quickly.

    Indeed, all he should have concluded is "This is a thought.".  "I" and "am 
thinking"
    are inferences.


You went from "Descartes went to far" to "Descarte didn't go far enough".

I went from what Descartes could really do to what he could have concluded from 
radical doubt.



    Instead of concluding only that the only thing he could prove is that "he 
exists",
    he might have reasoned further that mathematical laws exist,

    Only by adopting the mathematicians idea of "exists" = "satisfies some 
predicate".


I mean it in a deeper sense than that. They exist in the same way any physical laws exist; they limit and restrict what is possible to experience, they have a genuine perceptible effect.

Indeed, physical laws tell us what to expect - but they don't restrict anything, rather they are restricted to agree with observation. You seem to have picture of a divine lawgiver who gave us the laws on golden tablets.




    and from there he could have proven the existence of the rest of the 
universe
    around him.



        In that sense, arithmetic would in-part control possible experiences, 
and is
        harder to doubt than the possibility that physics is constrains 
experiences.
        Indeed, computationalism suggests this is true.  An appropriately 
programmed
        computer can generate any experience that can be possibly experienced 
in any
        universe: our own "laws of physics" do not constrain our possible 
experience
        whatsoever,

        ?? They seem to constrain my experience of breathing under water and 
flying to
        Mars.


    Those represent constraints on physical possibilities, not experiences.

    More than that, since I have not had the experiences there is no way to 
know when a
    simulation would have succeeded in creating them.


You are just not being imaginative enough. Look at the worlds created in various video games for some inspiration.

Yes, those are other possible worlds - but I only experience playing the game, I don't know how it would actually *feel* to fly. I assume that's what Bruno means by 1p experience is incommunicable.

Brent

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