[ExI] Meaningless Symbols

Ben Zaiboc bbenzai at yahoo.com
Sun Jan 17 18:37:07 UTC 2010

Eric Messick <eric at m056832107.syzygy.com> asked:
> Gordon writes:
> >In a nutshell: the human brain/mind has capabilities
> that
> > software/hardware systems do not and cannot have.
> Ergo, we cannot
> > duplicate brains on s/h systems; strong AI is false.
> and, later:
> >I allow that most everything in the world including the
> brain lends
> > itself to computation. But this fact means nothing. A
> computational
> > description of a thing amounts to nothing more than a
> description of
> > the thing, and descriptions of things do not equal the
> things they
> > describe.
> Would you say that "description != thing" is the reason
> computer
> systems cannot replicate the capability of brains to
> understand?

Gordon does not seem to appreciate the difference between a description and a simulation, and presumably thinks that possessing a shopping list is equivalent to doing the shopping.  This in addition to believing that only a biological creature can do 'real' shopping, and if a robot does it, it's not real, regardless of the fact that the fridge still gets filled up.

Ben Zaiboc


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