On 17 Mar 2012, at 15:56, Stanley N Salthe wrote:

Bruno -- As an idealist, I think you have it all backward!

I am not an idealist. Just a logician and an inquirer. I show that if you believe in a sufficient amount of arithmetic, and in the assumption that your (generalized) brain(*) is Turing emulable, then it follows that the mind body problem is two times more difficult to solve: not only you need some theory of mind, but you have to derive the beliefs in matter from it. I don't pretend this is obvious. The key notion is the notion of 1- indeterminacy, which makes machines unable to know which universal machine computes them among an infinity of machines.

I have no clue about the truth. I assume mechanism, that is: the invariance of my consciousness through the digital functional substitution of my parts at some description level. I show that it needs some revision in ... theology (to be short).

It makes mechanism also scientifically testable, by deriving physics from machine't theology (the argument shows that physics is uniquely defined), and compare with nature.

(*) The generalized brain is the portion of the physical universe that you have to emulate to get the existence of your consciousness relatively perpetuated. It exists by the comp assumption.

I would argue that cardinal numbers are the most 'crisp' entities that we know, and this disqualifies them or being primeval.

It is not just the number, but their additive and multiplicative structure. It is Turing complete. In fact any first order logical specification of a Turing complete structure will do. Consciousness and matter does not depend on the choice of the initial universal system in the theory. I use numbers only because most people are familiar with them.

That is, I think it makes sense to see all developments as beginning relatively vaguely and then becoming more definite over time. So, then, it will have taken these numbers a very long period of evolution (passing through the 'real' stage) to have become as definite as they are now. Or, even if cardinal numbers became quite crisp at the time, say, of the origin of chemistry, that too will have been a long way from primeval.

I can explain why numbers are confronted to the continuum, indeed also the physical.
The problem is that it is a long reasoning.
I don't want to impose anything, and certainly not the "truth" of mechanism, just the point that mechanism and materialism are not compatible, and if we bet on mechanism, the mind-body problem is transformed into a precise, but complex, problem in machine's theology, itself branch of number theory and metamathematics.

I am not sure that anything I say should change your interest or that it would contradict most posts here. What I am saying concerns the fundamental matter. There, in soccer game language, I would sum by Aristotle 0, Plato 1. But it is not the last match, and it changes only the global picture.

I share many intuitions here, and with INBIOSA, even if I start from what might seems a bit revulsing to many: discrete integers and number- crunching machines, but by taking into account the 1-view/3-view distinction, that we can partially formalise for machine, we can understand that we might have just been guilty of having developed a reductionist conception of numbers and machines.

Arithmetic is not just full of life. Angels, goddesses, and other oracles are also at play :)


On Sat, Mar 17, 2012 at 4:38 AM, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:
On 16 Mar 2012, at 18:43, Guy A Hoelzer wrote:

Greetings All,

While I like to think that I am not limited to reductionistic thinking, I find it difficult to understand any perspective on information that is not limited to physical manifestation. I would appreciate further justification for a non-physicalist perspective on information. How can something exist in the absence of physical manifestation?

If you are realist about elementary arithmetic, that is if you agree that elementary arithmetical proposition like "17 is prime" are true independently of you, then, by arithmetic's Turing universality, you can show that the numbers exchange information relatively to universal numbers, which are playing the role of relative interpreters.

I am not interested in a metaphysical perspective here, which might have heuristic value even if it is not 'real'. The issue of 'content' and 'meaning' strikes me as entirely physical, so mentioning those issues doesn't help me understand what non- physical information might be. I would say that if information is physically manifested by contrasts (gradients, negentropy, …), then content or meaning refers to the internal dynamics of complex systems induced by interaction between the system and the physically manifested information. If there is no affect on internal dynamics, then the system did not 'perceive' the information. If the information merely causes a transient fluctuation of the internal dynamics, then the perceived information was not meaningful to the system. At least this is a sketch of my view that I hope illustrates why the notions of 'content' and 'meaning' does not depart the physical realm for me.

I can prove that if we are machine at some description level, then the physical is both ontologically and epistemologically emerging from numbers relation. The hypothesis of mechanism can be shown logically incompatible with very weak form of materialism. Physics can not be fundamental, it emerges from mathematics, indeed from what has been called the sharable part of mathematics (sharable between classical logicians and intuitionist logicians, it is basically arithmetic or something recursively equivalent). We can already derive propositional quantum logic from classical number self-reference. Arithmetic is full of life at the start, and matter appears to be arithmetical truth as seen from "inside".

Poetically, to be short, numbers dreams, and physical realities are dream sharing. The quantum emerges, if mechanism is correct, from a statistics on all computations. This makes both matter and consciousness NON Turing emulable. In particular digital physics can be shown self-contradictory. Those (actually old) results are not well known but have been verified by many people. I don't think there is a flaw, but we never can be sure, of course.

Bruno Marchal

PS see below for a concise version of the proof:



From: Pedro Clemente Marijuan Fernandez <pcmarijuan.i...@aragon.es<mailto:pcmarijuan.i...@aragon.es >>
Date: Fri, 16 Mar 2012 04:19:31 -0700
To: Foundations of Information Science Information Science <fis@listas.unizar.es <mailto:fis@listas.unizar.es>>
Subject: Re: [Fis] Physics of computing

Dear discussants,

I tend to disagree with the motto "information is physical" if taken too strictly. Obviously if we look "downwards" it is OK, but in the "upward" direction it is different. Info is not only physical then, and the dimension of self-construction along the realization of life cycle has to be entered. Then the signal, the info, has "content" and "meaning". Otherwise if we insist only in the physical downward dimension we have just conventional computing/ info processing. My opinion is that the notion of absence is crucial for advancing in the upward, but useless in the downward. By the way, I already wrote about info and the absence theme in a 1994 or 1995 paper in BioSystems...



walter.riof...@terra.com.pe<mailto:walter.riof...@terra.com.pe> escribió:

Thanks John and Kevin to update issues in information, computation, energy and reality.

I would like point out to other articles morefocused in how coherence and entanglement are used by living systems (far from thermal equilibrium):

Engel G.S., Calhoun T.R., Read E.L., Ahn T.K., Mancal T., Cheng Y.C., Blankenship R.E., Fleming G.R. (2007) Evidence for wavelike energy transfer through quantum coherence in photosynthetic systems. Nature, 446(7137): 782-786.

Collini E., Scholes G. (2009) Coherent intrachain energy in migration in a conjugated polymer at room temperature. Science, vol. 323 No. 5912 pp. 369-373.

Gauger E.M., Rieper E., Morton J.J.L., Benjamin S.C., Vedral V. (2011) Sustained Quantum Coherence and Entanglement in the Avian Compass. Phys. Rev. Lett., 106: 040503.

Cia, J. et al, (2009) Dynamic entanglement in oscillating molecules. arXiv:0809.4906v1 [quant-ph]




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Pedro C. Marijuán
Grupo de Bioinformación / Bioinformation Group
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