RE: ASSA and Many-Worlds

From: Stathis Papaioannou <>
Date: Sat, 27 Jan 2007 22:24:09 +1100

William Vandenberghe writes:> On Jan 25, 3:50 am, Russell Standish <> wrote:> > On Fri, Jan 26, 2007 at 03:54:32PM -0500, John M wrote:> >> > > PS I still would appreciate to be directed to a short text explaining the essence of ASSA (RSSA?). JIt is in my book. Here is the relevant excerpt:> >> > \section[ASSA vs RSSA]{Absolute vs Relative Self Sampl\-ing Assumption}> >> > In the course of a lengthy, and at times heated debate between Jacques> > Mallah and myself, it became clear we were always arguing from> > disparate positions\cite{Mallah-Standish}. At the heart of our> > difference of opinion was how the strong self sampling> > assumption\index{self sampling assumption!strong|emph} should be> > applied. Jacques Mallah assumed that each observer moment had an> > absolute positive measure, and that our current observer moment is> > selected at random from that distribution.> >> > Since I accept the TIME postulate,\index{TIME postulate} only the> > birth moment is selected at random, according to the self sampling> > assumption. Thereafter, each observer moment's measure can be> > determined {\em relative} to its predecessor by means of Born's> > rule\index{Born rule}> > (\ref{proj-prob}). Arguing with this notion of observer measure, first> > person immortality follows provided the no cul-de-sac conjecture\index{no cul-de-sac conjecture} is> > true.> >> > The Everything List adopted the term {\em Absolute Self Sampling> > Assumption}\index{self sampling assumption!absolute|emph} to> > refer to Mallah's use of strong self sampling, and the {\em Relative> > Self Sampling Assumption}\index{self sampling assumption!relative|emph} for the version I use. Since this> > debate took place, other debates have taken place between members of> > the ``absolute'' camp, which includes such names as Jacques> > Mallah,\index{Mallah, Jacques}> > Saibal Mitra,\index{Mitra, Saibal} Hal Finney\index{Finney, Hal} and the ``relative'' camp which includes> > Bruno Marchal,\index{Marchal, Bruno} Stathis> > Papaioannou, and myself.> >> > \index{Papaioannou, Stathis}\index{Standish, Russell}> >> > Both of these ``camps'' appear to have internally consistent pictures.> > The fact that I'm not currently experiencing childhood, is for me> > strong evidence that the ASSA is an incorrect application of the> > strong self sampling assumption.> >> > ----------------------------------------------------------------------------> > A/Prof Russell Standish Phone 0425 253119 (mobile)> > Mathematics > > UNSW SYDNEY 2052> > Australia> > ----------------------------------------------------------------------------> > I think you can add me to the ASSA camp :)> > How does the fact that you're not experiencing childhood provide> evidence that ASSA is incorrect, as chances of experiencing childhood> or adulthood are both significant so I don't see why that would rule> out ASSA ... I kind of expected a different definition for RSSA as this> definition does not even solve any of the crazy paradoxes ASSA has ...> Well, anyway, time to look up the time postulate :)Suppose for simplicity that there is only one world: you live your life from birth to death and that's it. God reveals to you that you will live to be 100, but on your 50th birthday he will create a zillion copies of you which will all run in parallel for one minute and then all but one of the copies will be instantly destroyed. This means that almost all of your measure will be contained in that one minute on your 50th birthday. You can add variations to this thought experiment: God planned this before you were born; God will not decide to do this until you are 45; God will wait until the eve of your 50th birthday and toss a coin to decide whether he will make the copies or not; God does not tell you of his decision and you have to come up with a method to test whether he makes the copies or not. I claim that it will be impossible to notice anything unusual happening at any point in your life as a result of God's action or inaction. The first minute of your 50th birthday will last exactly one minute and will feel exactly the same as the preceding and the following minute. What do you think the ASSA predicts you will experience? Can you design a test to see what God is up to if he doesn't tell you? Stathis Papaioannou
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Received on Sat Jan 27 2007 - 06:24:25 PST

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