[extropy-chat] Fwd: cryonicist living life in reverse

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Mon Mar 12 02:43:51 UTC 2007

On 3/11/07, Lee Corbin <lcorbin at rawbw.com> wrote:

Stathis writes
> > On 3/11/07, Lee Corbin <lcorbin at rawbw.com> wrote:
> > > How do you know that consciousness (and hence benefit over a life
> worth living)
> > > isn't dependent on entropy increase?
> > > Yes, I know that computations can be made reversible, but until a lot
> more is
> > > known about all this, I'll have my computations run in the forward
> direction
> > > with entropy increase, thank you.
> > The "real world" could run forwards while your mind runs backwards.
> That is a good argument, at least under Boltzmann's view.  But that may be
> wrong.
> > Imagine a virtual reality program is written with your entire life
> mapped out,
> > broken up into intervals. Each subprogram thus created will contain
> memories
> > of "past" intervals but not "future" intervals.
> Oh, that's the old 1994 Greg Egan scenario in Permutation City.  Of
> course.
> > The point is, if these programs were run forwards, backwards or all
> jumbled up,
> > you would not be able to tell that anything unusual had happened from
> within
> > the program.
> Of course, at least to outward observers.  You would report what ever you
> report.
> It does not *necessarily* follow that you experience anything. Recall the
> horrible
> GLUT (Giant Lookup Table) which performs no computations but reports vived
> experiences.

Given the set of all computations, those whose information content links
them as related will feel themselves to be related, whether generated by a
GLUT or a UD (whether it can be done in practice or not, as per Eugen's
post, is another question). All the extra, useless, non-me-now computations
going on in the world do not confuse me and stop me from feeling myself to
be me-now, although they might confuse everyone else if, for example, I were
teleporting around the universe or my program were being implemented a
moment at a time on different computers.

I concede that it is *possible* that I would have experiencs under reversed
> computations;  I dispute that it can be proven.

What if your program were broken up into minutes and the minutes run in
reverse order? You could be in such a program right now. Of course, you
remember what you did last minute and don't know what's going to happen next
minute, but that's just because that is the information contained in the
minute presently running. How could you possibly know, without information
from outside the program, when, where, or whether your other minutes were
being run?

Stathis Papaioannou
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