# Re: Evidence for the simulation argument

From: Mark Peaty <mpeaty.domain.name.hidden>
Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2007 23:36:37 +0800

Bruno:
> With comp, what holds 'your lot" together are the relation between
> numbers. The apparent third person infinite regression stops at the
> level of those relations. The first person is most probably confronted
> with many infinities, but this should not be considered as
> problematical.

MP: But what *relation* is there really? I just feel like this
kind of discussion goes round and round in endless convolutions.
Platonia is some kind of Never-never land; that numbers exist
anywhere except inside human skulls and nowadays within
phenotypic prostheses like electronic computers is NOT a proven
fact, it is a glorious assumption!

I mean the big and unanswered question is WHERE are numbers?
Mathematicians now seem to be very sophisticated with WHAT
numbers could BE, and _do_ also apparently, but very very big
numbers which could represent everything significant about
you, me, or the likelihood of a self referencing computer
working out that it knows that it knows something really
important, how can these 'relate'? Surely they have to be
related by someone or something else! I guess what I am saying
is that numbers need something which is not numbers in which, or
by means of which they can exist for each other. I call it
'existence', and use the name of Janus as my symbol or emblem of
this. But I don't expect any such symbol or emblem to resolve
the paradoxes of our existence and experience of existence. As
far as I can see, which admittedly is not very far, all
explanations that purport to be *ultimate* explanations are
doomed to a process of infinite recursion and regression.

There was an Englishman called Kenneth Craik, who wrote a little
book called 'The Nature of Explanation'. Unfortunately he died
in his early thirties in a car accident in 1945 I think. I go
along with his thesis - as I remember it from reading the book a
decade or more ago - that the representational power of
mathematics stems from its evolution of complex mathematical
objects out of the interactions of simple elements, which can
mirror many significant aspects of the physical/noumenal world
because the latter seems to be manifesting a closely analogous
evolution of aggregations of fundamental chemical elements,
sub-atomic particles and so forth.

For better or worse I must advocate what is hereabouts a virtual
heresy: that people can never be reduced to numbers. To be a
person entails the experience of 'I' and 'thou', 'me' and 'you'.
There can be no me without you and no 'us' without 'them'. If a
modest Loebian machine cannot work this out, then it needs to go
back to school. Perhaps it can though, [if all worlds are
possible and must happen], maybe it is just a matter of time
before one or more smart, introspective, self-sustaining
processors/processes emerges from a BOINC type distributed
system. My bet is that the Silico-Electric ONE [or two, ...]
will coalesce around the control and accounting of money, money
being the embodiment of negative entropy in the cultural world.
For what it's worth I think that such a creature will realise
that ethics is part of the foundation of its world: a
fundamental tool for the maximising of 'negative entropy'.

Regards

Mark Peaty CDES

mpeaty.domain.name.hidden

http://www.arach.net.au/~mpeaty/

Bruno Marchal wrote:
>
> Le 06-mars-07, à 09:44, Mark Peaty a écrit :
>
>>
>> Thank you Bruno!
>>
>> You and Russell between you have managed to strike some sparks of
>> illumination from the rocky inside of my skull. There is no beacon fire
>> to report but I start to get a glimmering of why you want to *assume*
>> comp and see where it leads.
>>
>> It seems that self-reference and recursion are fundamental properties
>> of
>> anything that is "interesting" in all this, which rather seems to be
>> the
>> flavour of the new millennium.
>>
>> Just in thinking superficially about the Many Worlds though, it seems
>> to
>> pose a 'binding problem'. Now, I know that might sound like a leakage
>> of
>> concept from objections to identity theory in brain and mind theory.
>> But
>> what I am thinking about is this bit:
>>
>> 6) this means that if I take the comp hyp seriously, then, to predict
>> the results of any experiment/experience, I have to "localize" all the
>> infinitely many instantiations of my current state in the UD, look at
>> the uncountable comp histories going through that states, and compute
>> the statistics bearing on all consistent first person
>> self-continuation.
>>
>> A human life must be a compilation of all these including the creation
>> of internal [synaptic change, etc] structure/record which endow the
>> ability to *be* the story. But when looking at this as a/n
>> [infinity^infinity] Many Worlds affair, none of the worlds could 'know'
>> that they are like or identical to others, surely? So I am puzzled.
>> What
>> holds 'my lot' together? We seem always to be confronted by yet another
>> infinite regression.
>
>
>
> With comp, what holds 'your lot" together are the relation between
> numbers. The apparent third person infinite regression stops at the
> level of those relations. The first person is most probably confronted
> with many infinities, but this should not be considered as
> problematical.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>> ******
>> A quick aside, hopefully not totally unrelated: Am I right that a valid
>> explanation of the zero point energy is that it is impossible *in
>> principle* to measure the state of something
>
> Why can't we measure the state of something? Even with just QM, the
> many-world idea has been invented for abandoning the idea that a
> measurement pertubates what is observed.
>
>
>
>> and therefore *we* must
>> acknowledge the indeterminacy
>
> We must acknowledge indeterminacy once we postulate comp, given that it
> makes us self-duplicable, and indeed self-duplicated "all the time".
>
> Bruno
>
>
>> and so must everything else which exists
>> because we are nothing special, except we think we know we are here,
>> and
>> if we are bound by quantum indeterminacy, so is everything else [unless
>> it can come up with a good excuse!]?
>>
>> [Perhaps this is more on Stathis's question to Russell: Is a real
>> number
>> an infinite process?]
>>
>> ******
>>
>>
>>
>> Regards
>>
>> Mark Peaty CDES
>>
>> mpeaty.domain.name.hidden
>>
>> http://www.arach.net.au/~mpeaty/
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> Bruno Marchal wrote:
>>> Le 05-mars-07, à 15:03, Mark Peaty a écrit :
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>> Nobody here has yet explained in plain-English why we have entropy.
>>>> Oh
>>>> well, surely, in the Many Worlds, that's just one of the universes
>>>> that
>>>> can happen!
>>>>
>>>
>>> Not really. That would make the comp hyp or the everything idea
>>> trivial, and both the "everything hyp" and the "comp hyp" would loose
>>> any explicative power. (It *is* the problem with Schmidhuber's comp,
>>> *and* with Tegmark's form of mathematicalism: see older posts for
>>> that).
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>> Except that, for plain-English reasons stated above, there
>>>> are *and always have been* infinity x infinity x infinity of entropic
>>>> universes.
>>>>
>>>> It doesn't make sense. Call me a heretic if you like, but I will
>>>> 'stick
>>>> to my guns' here: If it can't be put into plain-English then it
>>>> probably
>>>> isn't true!
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> I will try. I will, by the same token, answer Mohsen question here:
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Mohsen:
>>>
>>>> I don't know if in the hypothesis of simulation, the conflict of
>>>> Countable and Uncountable has been considered.
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> 1) I assume the comp hyp, if only for the sake of the reasoning. The
>>> comp hyp is NOT the hypothesis of simulation, but it is the hypothesis
>>> that we are in principle self-simulable by a digital machine.
>>>
>>> 2) Then we have to distinguish the first person points of view (1-pov)
>>> from third person points of view (3-pov), and eventually we will have
>>> to distinguish all Plotinus' hypostases. With comp, we are
>>> duplicable.
>>> I can be read and cut (copy) in Brussels, and be "pasted" in
>>> Washington
>>> and Moscow simultaneously. This gives a simple example where:
>>> a) from the third point of view, there is no indeterminacy. An
>>> external
>>> (3-pov) observer can predict Bruno will be in Washington AND in
>>> Moscow.
>>> b) from a first person point of view, there is an indeterminacy, I
>>> will
>>> feel myself in washington OR in Moscow, not in the two places at once.
>>>
>>> 3) Whatever means I use to quantify the first person indeterminacy,
>>> the
>>> result will not depend on possible large delays between the
>>> reconstitutions, nor of the virtual/material/purely-mathematical
>>> character of the reconstitution.
>>>
>>> 4) There exist a universal dovetailer (consequence of Church thesis,
>>> but we could drop Church thesis and define comp in term of turing
>>>
>>> 5) Never underestimate the dumbness of the universal dovetailer: not
>>> only it generates all computational histories, but it generates them
>>> all infinitely often, + all variations, + all "real" oracles (and
>>> those
>>> oracles are uncountable).
>>>
>>> 6) this means that if I take the comp hyp seriously, then, to predict
>>> the results of any experiment/experience, I have to "localize" all the
>>> infinitely many instantiations of my current state in the UD, look at
>>> the uncountable comp histories going through that states, and compute
>>> the statistics bearing on all consistent first person
>>> self-continuation.
>>>
>>> 7) A naive reading of this leads to predict white rabbits (indeed the
>>> lewis Carroll one) and perhaps white noise, that is too much entropy
>>> ... This leads to a cheap refutation of comp, ...
>>>
>>> 8) ... except that the math shows this is a bit too cheap. Now if comp
>>> is correct, AND if the physical laws are (approximately) correct, then
>>> we have to extract the physical laws
>>> a) without assuming the existence of a physical universe,
>>> b) from the comp statistics.
>>>
>>> My (more technical) result is that computer science and mathematical
>>> logics gives already clues that indeed we can recover the physical
>>> laws
>>> from computer science, once we get the relevant description of the
>>> different points of view.
>>>
>>> In particular, for Mohsen's question, the conflict between countable
>>> and uncountable appears to be an unavoidable conflict between first
>>> and
>>> third person points of view. The first person is bound up to interact
>>> with uncountable physical apparent reality.
>>> But all self-referentially correct universal machine introspecting
>>> herself can discover the unavoidability of that conflict, and somehow
>>> "meta-solve" it, indeed by distinguishing explicitly those points of
>>> view again. When she does this, she discover a more subtle tension
>>> between recursively countable and non recursively countable. This
>>> tension is creative and can be proposed as a beginning of explanation
>>> of life and local neguentropy.
>>>
>>> All this makes comp, and its related "theology" (theory of everything
>>> including persons, say), empirically testable: derive the comp-physics
>>> and compare with empirical nature.
>>>
>>> Must go. Hope this helps, (see papers in my url for more, or just ask)
>>>
>>> Bruno
>>>
>>> http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
> http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/
>
>
> >
>
>

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Received on Mon Apr 02 2007 - 11:37:00 PDT

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