[ExI] Wrestling with Embodiment
anders at aleph.se
Fri Jan 27 22:58:32 UTC 2012
On 27/01/2012 14:45, Natasha Vita-More wrote:
> Anders wrote:
> On 26/01/2012 13:25, Natasha Vita-More wrote:
>> "I think computational codes are universal, so that any form of
>> transhuman modification/extension can be seen as modifying the code."
>> Are you saying that all perceptual and psychological attributes of the
>> body can be negotiated and in doing so, can transform these
>> molecular/chemical actions and reactions into computer codes?
No, it is not certain they can be determined. While I think computation
is universal, it is not always possible to get the data necessary to
copy a computation. For example, this happens a lot in quantum mechanics
due to the No Cloning Theorem. Whether this is relevant for mapping the
body remains to be seen. I am optimistic that it is fairly classical and
accessible for measurement, analysis and copying, but I recognize this
is an assumption I am making.
(Thanks for telling me that meaning of 'negotiated', I have never heard
that usage before.)
> "I think the answer is: sometimes.
> It depends a bit on the project: some domains have much more degrees of
> freedom and hence depend more on who is doing them and their style of
> work. But even in very constrained domains there is often space for
> different choices (what kind of joints in the drawers?), and if there
> are enough such choice points style will be noticeable."
> Is the chemistry of the brain and it electrical firings, that sometimes are
> different (as with Dyslectic and Aspersers) based on choice?
> I'm not necessarily looking at the outcome, although your bring up an
> important point. Maybe the processes don't matter and we should be just
> focused on the outcome, but I am not convinced.
We are dynamical systems that change the way we work based on our
decisions. I trivially change my brain chemistry and structure by what I
eat, what I read, what decisions I make. And these decisions are of
course based on past ones, and so on. Plus genetics and environment.
In some domains circumstances and logic might force convergent actions
and convergent brain structure (say training to become a London
taxidriver). But I suspect a lot of what happens during our life makes
us ever more different in outlook, function and results. We are born as
copies and die as originals.
Future of Humanity Institute
Philosophy Faculty of Oxford University
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