Re: possible solution to modal realism's problem of induction

From: Russell Standish <>
Date: Fri, 17 Jun 2005 10:41:25 +1000

On Thu, Jun 16, 2005 at 06:12:35PM +0200, Bruno Marchal wrote:
> It is a good occasion to sum up the main differences and the main
> similarities between Standish, Schmidhuber, Lewis, Tegmark, Levy,
> Ruhl, Mitra, Mazer, Finney, ... and my own. All approach are indeed
> form of modal realism, and this is indeed what the everything-list is
> all about.

Thanks Bruno - this is a useful summary

> Standish is not yet enough clear about its assumptions, but seems to
> get a pretty derivation of schroedinger equation, which is an
> improvement. He does assume time, with the topology of the reals, which
> is my main critics. The 1-3 distinction is present and used in an
> anthropic way, but I have not yet understood it precisely.

TIME needs to be assumed for the White Rabbit solution, but not the
topology of the reals. The latter assumption is _purely_ to make
contact with the traditional formulation of the Schroedinger
equation. What I sincerely suspect is that the real topology is the
wrong one, and that the Schroedinger equation will need to be modified
to take account of whatever topology time really has.

I cannot see that TIME is a problematic assumption. In many systems -
eg computationalism, TIME is a theorem, a consequence of other
assumptions. More problematic is what precisely it means - hence
discussions of topology etc.

What I claim is that a computationalist model is possible of my
theory. It would probably be useful to do this, as it might shed light
on where my assumptions come from, and also probably forge a link
between my work and Bruno Marchal's for example. I feel a little
inadequate for the task - but perhaps with the eyes and brains of this
group to correct me, it can be done. And you never know - I may be
wrong on the possibility of a computationalist model, which would be a
suprising result in itself.

> Actually I think it would be quite useful if, like we have done
> "joining post", each of us could summarize its own approach in a
> reasonably short post. The present post was just for showing you the
> richness of the our hunting-dragon in the everything (modal) landscape.

It probably requires a series of manifestos, which can then be
prodded, poked and ripped apart, and then maybe melded by this
list. We have manifestos already for Tegmark, Schmidhuber (actually 2
of these), Marchal, Malcolm and myself. Anyone else like to
contribute? I'm not sure I really understand Hal Finney's position,
for example.

Give me a few more months, and I'll have a draft manuscript of my
book ready for you to sharpen your intellectual knives on.

*PS: A number of people ask me about the attachment to my email, which
is of type "application/pgp-signature". Don't worry, it is not a
virus. It is an electronic signature, that may be used to verify this
email came from me if you have PGP or GPG installed. Otherwise, you
may safely ignore this attachment.
A/Prof Russell Standish                  Phone 8308 3119 (mobile)
Mathematics                         	       0425 253119 (")
UNSW SYDNEY 2052                      
            International prefix  +612, Interstate prefix 02

Received on Thu Jun 16 2005 - 20:45:25 PDT

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