Re: Observer-Moment Measure from Universe Measure

From: Bruno Marchal <>
Date: Fri, 10 Jun 2005 15:42:00 +0200

Le 09-juin-05, à 23:00, Jonathan Colvin a écrit :

> Bruno wrote:
>>> I don't believe in observers, if by "observer" one means to assign
>>> special ontological status to mental states over any other
>> arrangement
>>> of matter.
>> I don't believe in matters, if by "matters" one means to
>> assign special ontological status to some substance, by which
>> it is mean (Aristotle) anything entirely determined by its parts.
> Hehe, the usual response to idealism is to drop a rock onto the
> propounder's
> finger, and then ask them if they still do not believe in material
> objects.

And the usual answer of the idealist is that they dream sometimes on
rock dropped on their fingers. That proves nothing. With comp you can
invoke the matrix or Galouye's Simulacron III.

>>> This is similar to the objection to the classic
>> interpretation of QM,
>>> whereby an "observation" is required to collapse the WF (how do you
>>> define "observer"?..a rock?..a chicken?..a person?).
>> Yes, but Everett did succeed his explanation of the apparent collapse
>> by defining an observer by "just" classical memory machine.
> But the point is that observation is not central to Everett's theory
> at all;
> observation is wholly peripheral, and is only discussed insofar as why
> it
> *appears* that a collapse happens.

I have argued at length that this is a weak point in Everett. The idea
is that once you postulate comp like Everett does, then you need to
explain why you take only the quantum computation into account.

> <snip>
>> Perhaps you could try to tell me what do you mean by "matter?"
> Something that kicks back (has an effect on the universe).

I don't take the word "universe" as granted, still less physicalist
type of universe. Actually I search an explanation of just that. With
comp, my point is that universe emerges from all (immaterial,
mathematical) computations. Arithmetical truth alone can be shown to be
a vast "video game" or simulacron ... Perhaps you could study a little
bit of theoretical computer science. They are many conuter-intuitive
results which could help to think that what I say is at least pausible.

> Note that this
> excludes "epiphenomena" such as qualia or some interpretions of
> consciousness, since it appears that the universe would keep running
> exactly
> the same way without them.

All what I say is that if you are right on this point, then comp is
false. (Or there is an error in my thesis, but this I am always
assuming by default).

Received on Fri Jun 10 2005 - 09:47:43 PDT

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