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From: Stephen Paul King <stephenk1.domain.name.hidden>

Date: Wed, 28 Apr 2004 12:15:38 -0400

Dear Bruno,

This touches on a main portion of my difficulty with the notion that a

Platonia based theory can be sufficient.

----- Original Message -----

From: "Bruno Marchal" <marchal.domain.name.hidden>

To: <everything-list.domain.name.hidden>

Sent: Wednesday, April 28, 2004 11:12 AM

Subject: Re: Are we simulated by some massive computer?

*> At 23:16 28/04/04 +1000, Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
*

*>
*

*>
*

*> >There is a single idea underlying much of the confusion in discussions of
*

*> >personal identity: the belief in a soul.
*

*>
*

*> Indeed.
*

[SPK]

This seems to be related to the "homunculus" problem:

http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~harnad/Hypermail/Explaining.Mind96/0258.html

"The homunculus problem is basically "Do we need a homunculus for

understanding imagery?" A homunculus is the idea of a little man in our

heads which sees the images (and words) we see and understands these

words and images for us."

This, of course, implies an infinite regress of homunculi...

http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~harnad/Hypermail/Explaining.Mind97/0103.html

But it seems that the same problem obtains if we replace the

anthropomorphic homunculus with a machine and ignore the limits placed by

quantum gravity (QC) on physical size.

*> >I use this term for a quality or substance which resides in a person
*

*> >throughout his life and is somehow responsible for his identity, and
*

which

*> >(here is the problem) is not captured by a complete description of the
*

*> >person's physical and psychological state. Often, it is a hidden
*

assumption.

*>
*

*>
*

*> That's a nice definition of the soul, quite similar to the provable
*

properties

*> of the "first person", once we will define it precisely (in the Thaetetus
*

*> way). And comp will
*

*> entails, *as a theorem*, the existence of the soul, then!
*

[SPK]

Your idea, Bruno, is VERY interesting to me as it would completely

sidestep this problem (and other problems of QC such as the problem of time

and space) by making all notions of 1st person phenomena, which includes

everything related to physicality, QC included) reducible to modal logical

aspects of eternally existing relationships among eternally existing

Numbers.

I struggle to find the right words to express the difficulty that I see.

My problem is that your work ignores the computational complexity

(NP-Completeness) of grading (defining measures) the relationships. Your

thesis seems to have the same problem as Julian Barbour's thesis.

He assumes that we can ignore the requirement that a computation takes

at least a polynomial number of steps to perform a computation by appealing

to the priori existence of solution of the computation in Platonia.

I do not see how the mere a priori existence of solutions (Integers) and

the relationships between them (also Integers), as a priori existing numbers

is sufficient.

*> The comp reason why the soul or the first person is never captured by any
*

*> complete third person description is akin to the reason truth and
*

knowledge are

*> not arithmetizable (as opposed to provable and consistent).
*

*> Godel's theorem & Co. makes universal machine a highly non trivial type of
*

*> being.
*

[SPK]

Does not this statement, that "truth and knowledge are not

arithmetizable", imply that the postulation of AR is insufficient? Let me

state this in a different way. How does Digital Substitution ( "yes,

Doctor" ) get coded into numbers without involving physical implementation?

Kindest regards,

Stephen

*> Bruno
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*>
*

*> http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/
*

*>
*

*>
*

Received on Wed Apr 28 2004 - 12:43:21 PDT

Date: Wed, 28 Apr 2004 12:15:38 -0400

Dear Bruno,

This touches on a main portion of my difficulty with the notion that a

Platonia based theory can be sufficient.

----- Original Message -----

From: "Bruno Marchal" <marchal.domain.name.hidden>

To: <everything-list.domain.name.hidden>

Sent: Wednesday, April 28, 2004 11:12 AM

Subject: Re: Are we simulated by some massive computer?

[SPK]

This seems to be related to the "homunculus" problem:

http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~harnad/Hypermail/Explaining.Mind96/0258.html

"The homunculus problem is basically "Do we need a homunculus for

understanding imagery?" A homunculus is the idea of a little man in our

heads which sees the images (and words) we see and understands these

words and images for us."

This, of course, implies an infinite regress of homunculi...

http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~harnad/Hypermail/Explaining.Mind97/0103.html

But it seems that the same problem obtains if we replace the

anthropomorphic homunculus with a machine and ignore the limits placed by

quantum gravity (QC) on physical size.

which

assumption.

properties

[SPK]

Your idea, Bruno, is VERY interesting to me as it would completely

sidestep this problem (and other problems of QC such as the problem of time

and space) by making all notions of 1st person phenomena, which includes

everything related to physicality, QC included) reducible to modal logical

aspects of eternally existing relationships among eternally existing

Numbers.

I struggle to find the right words to express the difficulty that I see.

My problem is that your work ignores the computational complexity

(NP-Completeness) of grading (defining measures) the relationships. Your

thesis seems to have the same problem as Julian Barbour's thesis.

He assumes that we can ignore the requirement that a computation takes

at least a polynomial number of steps to perform a computation by appealing

to the priori existence of solution of the computation in Platonia.

I do not see how the mere a priori existence of solutions (Integers) and

the relationships between them (also Integers), as a priori existing numbers

is sufficient.

knowledge are

[SPK]

Does not this statement, that "truth and knowledge are not

arithmetizable", imply that the postulation of AR is insufficient? Let me

state this in a different way. How does Digital Substitution ( "yes,

Doctor" ) get coded into numbers without involving physical implementation?

Kindest regards,

Stephen

Received on Wed Apr 28 2004 - 12:43:21 PDT

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