Re: Newcomb's paradox (with terrestrial predictor)

From: Bruno Marchal <>
Date: Sat, 27 Jul 2002 18:55:49 +0200

At 11:35 +0200 25/07/2002, Bruno Marchal wrote:
>My opinion: Giving the hypothesis that the predictor is good, I think
>Irene makes the right choice. In both this version and the traditional one.
>In real life, though, I would be doubtful that such a predictor can exist.
>So I am not sure there can be a pragmatic content in those stories.

So let us made the predictor more terrestrial. Let us
suppose, in a first step, that he is lazy, fallible, and naive.
(He = She/He/it...).

He *can* predict, but he does not want, due to the hard task involved.

He can be wrong!

Because his/her strategy is just to ask you if you are causalist, like
Rachel, or evidentialist like Irene. He is naive because he believes you.
So if you say you are evidentialist, he put 1m dollars in each boxes.
If you say you are causalist, he put nothing in the boxes.

Here too Irene has no problem; she say "I am evidentialist" and will
win 1m$ taking one boxes. She thrust the predictor like in the infallible
predictor case, but here the predictor thrust her too.

Rachel can say I'm a causalist and then take the two boxes, and win nothing.
(bad use of honesty! I would think).
Rachel can say I'm a causalist and then take one box, and win nothing too.
But perhaps she enjoys because it looks she want deceive the predictor!
Rachel can say I'm a evidentialist, and then takes the two boxes. She wins
a lot! She loses definitely the predictor thrust. This one will do, now,
the hard predictive task, or may be just buy a lying-test machine!
(H's very lazy!)

Is not Irene a long way from cooperative game?


Received on Sat Jul 27 2002 - 09:57:19 PDT

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