RE: Immortality

From: Charles Goodwin <>
Date: Fri, 12 Oct 2001 10:21:35 +1300

Quick reply as usual 'cos I'm at work! :-)

But surely the level of substitution would be non-fundamental, i.e. above the level of matter (Whatever that is or isn't) and hence
would be a *simulation* of a person? I don't understand how one survives through the substitution (or perhaps I've misunderstood how
the substitution is done) ?

Does this have anything to do with the multiverse being thought of as a the output of a huge (but simple) computation?

I guess I'm revealing my fundamental ignorance here...


PS no you're not dreaming, I did say that (perhaps more on the basis of "The Tao is Silent" and "5000BC" than "Forever Undecided")

  -----Original Message-----
  From: Marchal []
  Sent: Friday, 12 October 2001 8:20 a.m.
  Subject: RE: Immortality

  Charles Goodwin wrote:
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Brent Meeker []
>> Sent: Wednesday, 10 October 2001 2:23 a.m.
>> But then why do you say that a duplicate of your brain processes in a
>> computer would not be conscious. You seem to be
>> discriminating between
>> a biological duplicate and a silicon duplicate.
>The use of the word 'duplicate' seems contentious to me. The question is
>whether you *can* duplicate the processes in the brain at a
>suitable level of abstraction, and whether (if you can) such a duplicate
>would be conscious. I don't think anyone knows the answer
>to this (yet) !

  To answer "yes" to that question is exactly what I mean by the
  comp *hypothesis*.

  The comp hypothesis is the hypothesis that there exist a level of
  digital functional description of myself such that I can survive through
  a substitution made at that level.
  The practitionners of comp are those who say yes to their
  digital-specialist doctor.

  It is an hypothesis that has the curious property of entailing its
  own necessarily hypothetical character. Comp entails no one will *never*
  know it to be necessarily true.

  It comp is true, no consistent machines will ever prove it.

  The honest doctor does never assure the succes, and confesses betting
  on a level (+ probable other more technical bets for sure).

  If you meet someone pretending knowing he/she or you are machine,
  you better run!

  The real question is: will the consistent machines remains consistent
  by betting on it?

  Suggestion: derive "the" physics from comp, compare with
  empirical physics. Judge.

  If comp is true there is a danger for the practicionners: having
  survive so many times, having said and resaid yes to their digital
  brain specialist surgeon, and having gone "literaly" through so much
  digital nets that they begin to believe they know comp true. (Then they
  became inconsistent).

  Comp entails some trip *near* inconsistencies. Actually I guess
  that's life. The miracle occurs at each instant. (Not only at
  the mechanist hospital). Well with comp the fall into inconsistency
  *can* occur at each instant too.


  PS The reasoning I propose does not depend on the level of
  substitution. Only that it exists. You can choose the universal
  wave function as a description of your brain (low level), or
  approximation of concentration of chemicals (high level),
  or disposition of neural dynamics (higher level)
  ... or the bible (very very high level). By the bible I mean
  Boolos 1993 of course :-). My thesis in a nutshell is that FOR is
  a missing chapter of that book. FOR and other everything efforts.

  The book bears about what self-referentially correct machines can
  say, and cannot say, about themselves and about their (necessarily
  hypothetical) consistent extensions.It's The manual of machine's
  psychology (my term, sure). If you don't know logic, here is
  a shortcut:
  Jeffrey: Logic, its scope and limit.
  Boolos and Jeffrey: Computability and Logic
  Boolos 1993.

  Or Boolos 1979, it is lighter and easier to digest.

  And recall Smullyan's "Forever Undecided".
  You told me Smullyan is your favorite philosopher,
  or was I dreaming?
Received on Thu Oct 11 2001 - 14:18:35 PDT

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