Re: all of me or one of me

From: Marchal <>
Date: Tue Apr 6 02:44:19 1999

Wei Dai wrote:
>Given the MWI or one of the "everything" theories we've discussed, the
>universe must contain multiple observers who have exactly the same
>memories and experiences as you do. Should you identify with all of them,
>or should you think, "I am one of these people, but I don't know which"?
>I think the following thought experiment shows the latter is more
>appropriate ...

I have the same understanding.
Nevertheless I would like to try to make something a little more precise.

Suppose, for the sake of the argument, that there are two and only two
identical non-interacting and non-interfering newtonian-like universes.
So there are two copies of you, one in each universe.
In this situation you can say:

"I am one of these people, but I don't know which"

You can even say

"I am one of these people, I don't know which, AND I don't care"

But suppose that in the course of your "life time", the two universes
"diverge" for some reason, so that a detectable (in principle) difference

In that case, even if the difference is not detected, you MUST say
"I am one of these people, but I don't know which", and you must take that
into account if you hope to describe a coherent way to quantify the
indeterminism coming from the "everything" axiom.
The "probabilities" depends on the relative proportion of relatively
undistinguishable environments.
Do you see what I am trying to say ? Do you agree ?

Received on Tue Apr 06 1999 - 02:44:19 PDT

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