Quantum Immortality = interesting

From: Higgo James <james.higgo.domain.name.hidden>
Date: Thu, 10 Dec 1998 09:03:05 -0000

Absolutely. It doesn't matter whether or not you're immortal. I certainly
don't hanker after it. But I'm still curious to know.

On your second point, I am an economist, for my sins, and I assure you we
are interested in what the goals should be.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Wei Dai [SMTP:weidai.domain.name.hidden]
> Sent: 09 December 1998 20:08
> To: Higgo James
> Cc: 'everything-list.domain.name.hidden'
> Subject: Re: Quantum Immortality = deadly important
> On Wed, Dec 09, 1998 at 10:06:23AM -0000, Higgo James wrote:
> > The word 'should' is pretty loaded. What you 'should' do is live in the
> > present and be happy. But if you're an economist you might think that
> you
> > should invest for the greatest happiness of you in the greatest number
> of
> > branches in the multiverse, which is what Deutsch implies. In all
> events,
> > you should invest for universes where you are alive, rather than dead,
> > unless you care about other people.
> But if I should live in the present and be happy, then whether or not I'm
> immortal doesn't really matter, does it? The "greatest happiness in the
> greatest number of branches" idea might be a start, but then I don't think
> you really get the immortality effect since you end up caring a lot about
> the "branches" where you die because they reduce the number of "branches"
> where you're happy. On the other hand, if what you mean is "greatest
> happiness in the greatest percentage of branches where you're live" then
> it seems everyone should commit suicide the moment they are unhappy in the
> slightest.
> In any case, all you have said is what my goals should be, not how I
> can reach them (which is really what decision theory is all about).
> That's why an economist wouldn't talk about happiness, because he doesn't
> know you want to be happy, and he doesn't care. He just tells you whatever
> you want, just apply decision theory, and he guarantees that your effort
> will be optimal.
Received on Thu Dec 10 1998 - 01:17:36 PST

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