The implementation problem

From: Jacques M Mallah <>
Date: Mon, 18 Jan 1999 19:53:57 -0500

On Fri, 15 Jan 1999, Wei Dai wrote:
> If consciousness is based on computation, than it must be that some
> computations are instantiated "more often" than others. What "more often"
> means depends on what "instantiated" means, but so far we don't have a
> formal definition of "instantiation of a computation," which is why I
> currently lean towards the position that consciousness is based on
> information.

        However, the whole problem with trying to determine when a
computation is implemented (or instantiated as you call it) is precisely
that we don't have a definition of when a physical system contains the
proper information. Implementation has two critera: a mapping to formal
states must have the correct causal relationships (which is trivial for a
system which is an initial value problem) and it must be true to the
information structure (e.g. index labeling) of the formal states.
        I have attempted to try to solve the problem. My thoughts can be
found on my web page under 'interpretation of quantum mechanics', in the
section on implementation and the 'latest thoughts' appendix.

                         - - - - - - -
              Jacques Mallah (
       Graduate Student / Many Worlder / Devil's Advocate
"I know what no one else knows" - 'Runaway Train', Soul Asylum
            My URL:
Received on Mon Jan 18 1999 - 16:56:20 PST

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