On 2/1/2019 10:58 PM, Philip Thrift wrote:

On Friday, February 1, 2019 at 1:54:15 PM UTC-6, Brent wrote:

    On 2/1/2019 5:52 AM, Philip Thrift wrote:
    In any case, one of the "micropsychists"  has a new paper just out:

    "According to the *fusion* view ... when micro- or protoconscious
    entities come together in the right way, they fuse or 'blend'
    together to form a single unified consciousness. ..."

    *Is Consciousness Intrinsic? A Problem for the Integrated
    Information Theory*
    Hedda Hassel Mørch
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 26 (1-2):133-162(30) (2019)

    https://philpapers.org/rec/MRCICI <https://philpapers.org/rec/MRCICI>

    The Integrated Information Theory of consciousness (IIT) claims
    that consciousness is identical to maximal integrated
    information, or maximal Φ. One objection to IIT is based on what
    may be called the intrinsicality problem: consciousness is an
    intrinsic property, but maximal Φ is an extrinsic property;
    therefore, they cannot be identical.

    A more cogent objection is that it attributes lots of
    consciousness to a Vandermonde matrix:



Scott Aaronson wrote this about 5 years ago. I haven't looked if he has has anything new.

Regarding informationism vs. panpsychism, he only addresses the former.

/I’ve just conjured into my imagination beings whose Φ-values are a thousand, nay a trillion times larger than humans’, yet who are also philosophical zombies: entities that there’s nothing that it’s like to be./

That of course panpsychists agree with.

He procedes:

/Let S=F_p, where p is some prime sufficiently larger than n, and let V be an n×n Vandermonde matrix over F_p—that is, a matrix whose (i,j) entry equals i^(j-1) (mod p).  Then let f:S^n→S^n be the update function defined by f(x)=Vx. /

Concludes: /the fact that Integrated Information Theory is wrong—demonstrably wrong, for reasons that go to its core—puts it in something like the top 2% of all mathematical theories of consciousness ever proposed./

Now here is where panpsychists diverge from this way of thinking: Everything Scott wrote above involves ultimately computing with numerical entities as the "atoms" (so to speak) of what the "computer" is computing with. What the panpsychists are saying is that it is not numerical entities (numericals: Ns) at all that are at the base of the computing, but experiential entities (experientials: Es). /Es are as basic (ontologically) as Ns/.

*Defining what Es are* is the fundamental problem for panpsychists (vs. numerists, or informationists).

Yes, Scott's analysis assumes that consciousness is characterized by some kind of computation...as does Tononi.  But he observes that whatever your theory of consciousness is it needs to at least roughly agree as to who and what is conscious.  A theory that says a large Vandermonde matrix is conscious fails that test.

But to introduce experiential atoms is just words.  It doesn't explain anything.  Where do your experiential atoms go when you are unconscious?  when you die?  How do they interact with non-experiential atoms?  Are experiential atoms necessary for intelligence?


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