Re: on formally describable universes and measures

From: <>
Date: Mon, 12 Feb 2001 17:17:29 +0100

> Resent-Date: Fri, 9 Feb 2001 06:15:47 -0800
> Subject: Re: on formally describable universes and measures
> From: Marchal <>
> >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.

But how to answer an ill-posed question? You promise that "time and
space will disappear at the end of the reasoning", but your question
is about delays, and how can we speak about delays without defining
time? Simulation time? Real time? Both? How? There is no way to continue
without formal framework.

> 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.

Expectations with respect to what? Moscow one billion years from
now might be different from Washington tomorrow, so there seem to be
two different possible futures. The essential question is: what is the
distribution on the possible futures? Is the distribution computable?
How does the distribution depend on your delays and other computable (?)
things? Are there just 2 possible futures? Or 10? Or infinitely many?

> 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?

Again I fail to understand the question. Please define delays! How
many possible delays are there? Are they computable? What exactly is this
indeterminacy? Is it something different from an ordinary distribution?
If so, what is it? If not, why don't you call it a distribution?

The theory first asks: what is the distribution on all possible
futures? Maybe you say you do not know. Since it is an algorithmic
theory, it answers: ok, distribution unknown, but if it is describable
(GTM-computable in the limit), then I still can say something, namely,
I can exclude almost all infinite futures (those without finite
descriptions) with probability one. And among those I cannot exclude,
the weird ones with very long minimal descriptions are very unlikely.

Maybe you now say you don't buy the describability assumption. Then the
theory can't say nothing nontrivial no more. Neither can you though.

Received on Mon Feb 12 2001 - 08:30:30 PST

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