Re: Consciousness is information?

From: Kelly Harmon <>
Date: Sun, 17 May 2009 21:11:24 -0400

On Fri, May 15, 2009 at 12:32 AM, Jesse Mazer <> wrote:
> I don't have a problem with the idea that a giant lookup table is just a
> sort of "zombie", since after all the way you'd create a lookup table for a
> given algorithmic mind would be to run a huge series of actual simulations
> of that mind with all possible inputs, creating a huge archive of
> "recordings" so that later if anyone supplies the lookup table with a given
> input, the table just looks up the recording of the occasion in which the
> original simulated mind was supplied with that exact input in the past, and
> plays it back. Why should merely replaying a recording of something that
> happened to a simulated observer in the past contribute to the measure of
> that observer-moment? I don't believe that playing a videotape of me being
> happy or sad in the past will increase the measure of happy or sad
> observer-moments involving me, after all. And Olympia seems to be somewhat
> similar to a lookup table in that the only way to construct "her" would be
> to have already run the regular Turing machine program that she is supposed
> to emulate, so that you know in advance the order that the Turing machine's
> read/write head visits different cells, and then you can rearrange the
> positions of those cells so Olympia will visit them in the correct order
> just by going from one cell to the next in line over and over again.

What if you used a lookup table for only a single neuron in a computer
simulation of a brain? So actual calculations for the rest of the
brain's neurons are performed, but this single neuron just does
lookups into a table of pre-calculated outputs. Would consciousness
still be produced in this case?

What if you then re-ran the simulation with 10 neurons doing lookups,
but calculations still being executed for the rest of the simulated
brain? Still consciousness is produced?

What if 10% of the neurons are implemented using lookup tables? 50%?
90%? How about all except 01 neuron is implemented via lookup tables,
but that 1 neuron's outputs are still calculated from inputs?

At what point does the simulation become a zombie?

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Received on Sun May 17 2009 - 21:11:24 PDT

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