Re: Searles' Fundamental Error

From: Bruno Marchal <>
Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2007 18:18:53 +0100

Le 19-févr.-07, à 20:14, Brent Meeker a écrit :

> Bruno Marchal wrote:
>> Le 18-févr.-07, à 13:57, Mark Peaty a écrit :
>> My main problem with Comp is that it needs several unprovable
>> assumptions to be accepted. For example the Yes Doctor hypothesis,
>> wherein it is assumed that it must be possible to digitally
>> emulate
>> some or all of a person's body/brain function and the person will
>> not notice any difference. The Yes Doctor hypothesis is a
>> particular
>> case of the digital emulation hypothesis in which it is asserted
>> that, basically, ANYTHING can be digitally emulated if one had
>> enough computational resources available. As this seems to me to
>> be
>> almost a version of Comp [at least as far as I have got with
>> reading
>> Bruno's exposition] then from my simple minded perspective it
>> looks
>> rather like assuming the very thing that needs to be demonstrated.
>> I disagree. The main basic lesson from the UDA is that IF I am a
>> machine
>> (whatever I am) then the universe (whatever the universe is) cannot
>> be a
>> machine.
>> Except if I am (literaly) the universe (which I assume to be false).
>> If I survive classical teleportation, then the physical appearances
>> emerge from a randomization of all my consistent continuations,
> What characterizes a consistent continuation?

It is a continuation in which I am unable to prove 0 = 1. I can only
hope *that* exists.

> Does this refer to one's memory and self-identity or does it mean
> consistent with the unfolding of some algorithm or does it mean
> consistent with some physical "law" like unitary evolution in Hilbert
> space?

One's memory and self-identity. This is difficult to define for
arbitrary machine, and that is why I limit myself with correct and
recursively enumerable extensions of Peano Arithmetic. It is enough for
finding the comp-correct physical laws.

>> and this
>> is enough for explaining why comp predicts that the "physical
>> appearance" cannot be entirely computational (cf first person
>> indeterminacy, etc.).
>> You can remember it by a slogan: If I am a machine, then (not-I) is
>> not
>> a machine.
>> Of course something like "arithmetical truth" is not a machine, or
>> cannot be produced by a machine.
>> Remember that one of my goal is to show that the comp hyp is
>> refutable.
>> A priori it entails some highly non computable things, but then
>> computer
>> science makes it less easy to refute quickly comp, and empiry (the
>> quantum) seems to assess comp, until now.
>> However, as far as I can see it is inherent in the nature of
>> consciousness to reify something.
>> Well, it depends what you mean by reifying. I take it as a high level
>> intellectual error. When a cat pursues a mouse, it plausible that the
>> cat believes in the mouse, and reify it in a sense. If that is your
>> sense of reifying, then I am ok with the idea that consciousness
>> reifies
>> things.
>> But I prefer to use "reifying" more technically for making existing
>> something primitively, despite existence of phenomenological
>> explanation.
>> Let me be clear, because it could be confusing. A computationalist can
>> guess there is a universe, atoms, etc. He cannot remain consistent if
>> he
>> believes the universe emerge from its parts, that the universe is made
>> of atoms, etc.
> You are saying that these beliefs entail a logical contradiction.
> What is that contradiction?

OK. I was quick. As I have explained to Peter Jones, it is an
epistemological contradiction. Primary Matter looses all its apparent
explanative power, given that with or without matter, we have only the
arithmetical relation to justify or next OM (by UDA). It is a bit like
the particles in Bohm's interpretation of QM. With comp they are
totally useless.


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Received on Tue Feb 20 2007 - 14:38:16 PST

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