Re: on formally describable universes and measures

From: Marchal <>
Date: Fri Feb 9 06:20:08 2001

Asking Juergen if the first person should take
delays of reconstitution into account when evaluating
first person self-undeterminacy, he wrote:

>No, I do not. I suggest you first define a formal framework for
>measuring delays etc. Then we can continue.

You should have told me this at the preceeding step which was
also informal (although precise).
I am proposing a thought experiment which is
a kind of reductio ad absurdo here (remember that time and
space will disappear at the end of the reasoning).

My feeling is that, for some unknow reason
you have decided to elude the reasoning.

That seems clear with your answer to Russell Standish: you
are saying 2+2=4 and I am saying 2+2=5! You are saying that
I am fully wrong, but you don't tell me where.

How am I suppose to take your disagrement here. You don't really
answer the question.

 What does your theory predict with respect to
the following experience: You are scanned read and annihilate
at Amsterdam. I reconstitute you in Washington tomorrow, and at
Moscow in one billion years. Are your expectations different
from the situation where the two reconstitutions are simultaneous.

If you want to be formal, let us accept classical Newtonian
mechanics for the sake of the argument. You know that with comp
such experience are possible *in principle*, and that is all what
we need for the reasoning.

Should we or should we not take these delays into account when
evaluating the first-person indeterminacy? What does your
theory say? What do you say?

(Remark: it is a practical question for anyone ready to say "yes"
to a surgeon proposing them an artificial brain.
Those who accepts the answer given
by Robert Nozick (which says that after the duplication
we survive in the closer continuer(*)) could as well not
care if a copy of their brain exists. The others will
say yes to the doctor, but will insists no copies of the
brain will be available. There is nothing vague here.)


(*) Rober Nozick, Philosophical Explanations, Oxford
Clarendon Press 1981.
Received on Fri Feb 09 2001 - 06:20:08 PST

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