[ExI] [Exl] Digital Consciousness

Gordon gts_2000 at yahoo.com
Fri May 3 05:16:08 UTC 2013

Stathis Papaioannou <stathisp at gmail.com> wrote:

> Apart from the scientific problem, the philosophical problem with

> these theories is that they make consciousness substrate dependent, as
> Brent and Gordon have been arguing, and that leads to absurdity. It
> would mean that if the microtubules in your visual cortex could be
> replaced with functional equivalents you would be blind but you would
> not notice you were blind and you would behave as if you had normal
> vision.

If you are saying here that consciousness cannot be substrate dependent then that leads to the absurdity of multiple realizability. As one philosopher observed, we could in principle train a massive group of pigeons to peck in a manner analogous to how the brain supposedly acts like a digital computer. We could say a peck = 1, and a non-peck = 0. Would that group of pigeons really be a mind?

Multiple-realizability is a sort of unspoken doctrine here on ExI with respect to matters of the mind, at least among many of us here. I have problems with it.


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