Re: computationalism and supervenience

From: Brent Meeker <>
Date: Mon, 11 Sep 2006 17:39:23 -0700

Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
> Brent Meeker writes:
>>>I think it goes against standard computationalism if you say that a conscious
>>>computation has some inherent structural property. Opponents of computationalism
>>>have used the absurdity of the conclusion that anything implements any conscious
>>>computation as evidence that there is something special and non-computational
>>>about the brain. Maybe they're right.
>>>Stathis Papaioannou
>>Why not reject the idea that any computation implements every possible computation
>>(which seems absurd to me)? Then allow that only computations with some special
>>structure are conscious.
> It's possible, but once you start in that direction you can say that only computations
> implemented on this machine rather than that machine can be conscious. You need the
> hardware in order to specify structure, unless you can think of a God-given programming
> language against which candidate computations can be measured.

I regard that as a feature - not a bug. :-)

Disembodied computation doesn't quite seem absurd - but our empirical sample argues
for embodiment.

Brent Meeker

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Received on Mon Sep 11 2006 - 20:40:25 PDT

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