Re: computationalism and supervenience

From: Hal Finney <>
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2006 00:25:10 -0700 (PDT)

Russel Standish writes:
> Or my point that in a Multiverse, counterfactuals are instantiated
> anyway. Physical supervenience and computationalism are not
> incompatible in a multiverse, where "physical" means the observed
> properties of things like electrons and so on.

I'd think that in the context of a multiverse, physical supervenience
would say that whether consciousness is instantiated would depend only
on physical conditions here, at this point in the multiverse, and would
not depend on conditions elsewhere. It would be a sort of "locality
condition" for the multiverse. In that case it seems you still have
a problem because even if counterfactuals are tested elsewhere in the
multiverse, whether they are handled correctly will not be visible

So you'd still have a contradiction, with supervenience saying
that consciousness depends only on local physical conditions, while
computationalism would say that consciousness depends on the results of
counterfactual tests done in other branches or worlds of the multiverse.

Hal Finney

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Received on Wed Sep 06 2006 - 03:31:35 PDT

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