Re: Emulation and Stuff

From: Brent Meeker <>
Date: Wed, 19 Aug 2009 10:02:55 -0700

Flammarion wrote:
> On 18 Aug, 18:26, Brent Meeker <> wrote:
>> Flammarion wrote:
>>> Single-universe thinking is a different game from everythingism. It is
>>> not about
>>> explaining everything from logical first priciples. It accepts
>>> contingency as the price
>>> paid for parsimony. Pasimony and lack of arbitrariness are *both*
>>> explanatory
>>> desiderata, so there is no black-and-white sense in which
>>> Everythingism wins.
>> But parsimony in *theory* is what is desirable.
> Everythingists tend to think that, and their opponents tend
> not to.
>> Almost any physics explanation of how the
>> universe came to be is going to predict the existence of many universes. If it's based on
>> QM is will be probabilistic. So then there is a tension with parsimony between an
>> unparsimonious addition to the theory, i.e. "and just one thing happens", and keeping the
>> theory parsimonious, but allowing an unparsimonious ontology in which "they all happen."
> Physical many-world theories are still constrained down to a subset of
> the
> the total of maths. Everythingist theories are not.
>>>> > > In that case you might as well call it "primary ectoplasm" or "primary asdfgh".
>>>>> You might as well call "2" the successor of "0". All symbols are
>>>>> arbitrary.
>>>> My point was just that I think it's *misleading* to use the word "matter" which already has all sorts of intuitive associations for us, when really you're talking about something utterly mysterious whose properties are completely divorced from our experiences, more like Kant's "noumena" which were supposed to be things-in-themselves separate from all phenomenal properties (including quantitative ones).
>>> I don't accept that characterisation of PM. (BTW, phenomenal
>>> properties could be accounted for
>>> as non-mathematical attributes of PM)
>> I think this is a category mistake. Mathematical attributes belong to *the descriptions*
>> or PM, not to PM. And the descriptions are necessarily mathematical simply to be precise
>> and consistent.
> I think that is a bizzare statement. You mean I can;t say that a
> cubic object is cubic,
> because a "cube" is part of geometry, which is part of maths? If the
> attributes belong to the
> descriptions only, the descriptions are never going to be accurate at
> all, since the descriptions
> are attributing the attributes to the objects.

No, what I mean is that when you describe something as cubic the description "cubic" is
mathematical - not the object itself.

>> And the descriptions are necessarily mathematical simply to be precise
>> and consistent.
> a) if they are not precise descriptions *of* something -- of
> properties that things have -- what's the point?

My point is that things can have mathematical properties and yet not be mathematical
objects. An object can be triangular and yet not consist of three intersecting line segments.


> All you are going to achieve is a kind of fictive self-consistency,
> like a set of cooked books.
> b) there is no apriori necessity why the world should be susceptible
> to mathematical description
> at all iTFP
> >

You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group.
To post to this group, send email to
To unsubscribe from this group, send email to
For more options, visit this group at
Received on Wed Aug 19 2009 - 10:02:55 PDT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Feb 16 2018 - 13:20:16 PST