[ExI] Wrestling with Embodiment

Mike Dougherty msd001 at gmail.com
Tue Jan 31 13:10:26 UTC 2012

2012/1/31 Stefano Vaj <stefano.vaj at gmail.com>:
> So, the fact that, eg, Mr. Jones corpse is not Mr. Jones in spite of keeping
> his blue eyes, while a computer behaving closely enough to the precedently
> experienced Mr.s Joneses is likely to be simply considered as Mr. Jones, is
> not something requiring a theoretical investigation or justification, is
> simply a conclusion dictated by what "identity" linguistically means to most
> of us.

identity, disembodied, transhuman <-- they're all just words aren't
they?  What I understand those terms to mean are grounded in my
lifetime and any similarity in nuance to your own definition is likely
related by the degree to which we have some similar histories.

> And we should note that the similarity level required to establish identity
> is pretty low. Just consider how different a person may become with time, or
> after a major turn or trauma in life. Yet, the protests "you are not the
> same person that I married" are pretty rhetorical in nature, since no matter
> what bodily modifications may have taken place, one does not really consider
> the modified Mr. Jones as a *really* different person, as long as some basic
> memories and/or  behavioural patterns are maintained.

100% agreed.  If not for the "from" address of most of the emails on
this list I would have a very difficult time keeping any of your
personality signatures distinct in my mind.  I think it's already
happening that individuals enter into conflicts with "the internet"
because it's easier than facing the millions of others out there as
equals.  Consider the number of possible permutations of 140 character
tweets.  Remove from that total the number of non-communicative
gibberish and examine only the gibberish that remains.  That's what
passes as communication these days.  :)

'makes me love this list that much more.

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