Re: More on qualia of consciousness and occam's razor

From: Wei Dai <>
Date: Fri, 6 Feb 2004 09:57:08 -0500

On Tue, Feb 03, 2004 at 02:55:53PM -0800, Pete Carlton wrote:
> But even this goes way out in front of what we can possibly know. You
> say we have no idea what these feelings are like to experience--but why
> should we assume we even are entitled to ask this question?

Here's my basic philosophy: we're entitled to ask any question whose
answer is relevant to making a decision. As far as qualia is concerned,
consider this thought experiment:

Two subjects labeled A and B and placed in separate rooms. They're each
given a button and told to choose between pushing it and not pushing it.
If subject A pushes the button, he is rewarded. If subject B doesn't push
the button, he is rewarded. While they consider their choices, they're
both given a real-time high-resolution brain scan of subject A. So if they
can answer the question "is the person being scanned having the same
subjective experiences that I am having?" then they can both obtain the
rewards for sure, otherwise they can only choose blindly.

Does this convince you that it makes sense to ask what other people
Received on Fri Feb 06 2004 - 10:16:19 PST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Feb 16 2018 - 13:20:09 PST