[extropy-chat] I keep asking myself...

John K Clark jonkc at att.net
Fri Apr 21 04:00:13 UTC 2006

"Heartland" <velvet977 at hotmail.com>

> Let me ask you this. How many threads of subjective experience are you
> running  now?  I would expect you say "one,"

Then you would be wrong. I am not running any thread of subjective
experience, my brain is running the John Clark program and that is producing
me. I have no way of knowing if the John Clark program is running in
parallel on any other hardware. My hunch is that it is not, not yet anyway,
but I can't be certain.

> It's the trajectory of your mind hardware in time and space that actually
> gives you individuality. [...] it's the *trajectory* that gives you
> individuality, not mind hardware.

That's about as clear as mud but I assume you mean the trajectory in space
time of every atom that ever has or ever will made up your body, your
hardware. Even if your absurd idea is correct how does an atom join this
exclusive club? Well...., if you grasp some food with your hand and stick it
into a hole in your face that should do it. And if a copying machine looks
at your brain and uses that information to place an atom at a specific
location that should do it too.

Even playing with your own silly rules my copy has as much right to call
himself me as I do.

> Of course it's possible to restart a process. But the whole point is that
> it would  then be a different *instance* of that *type* of process.

My red car is going fast, I slow down then speed up again. Is this a
different "fast" a different "red" or a different "car"? And exactly what is
different about the difference? Or is you entire idea just nonsense.

> > if you ever need major surgery you would refuse a general anesthetic?

> That question is irrelevant to this discussion.

Like hell it is!

> Your instance of mind process would die  either  from mind stopping caused
> by anesthetic or mind stopping caused by natural  death.

Yes yes, your logic is impeccable, if we follow your idea the ultimate
conclusion is that anesthesia is equivalent to death. It was very common for
educated men to also oppose anesthesia, but that was in the 18'th century.

Reductio ad Absurdum: If valid logic leads to an absurdity the premise must
be wrong.

John K Clark

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