[ExI] [Exl] Digital Consciousness

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Fri May 3 08:19:39 UTC 2013

On Fri, May 03, 2013 at 12:58:24AM -0700, Gordon wrote:

> > The matter in the brain follows rigid, mechanistic rules. 
> So many believe. This question is more about the arguments for and against free will.

The difference between free will and no free will is exactly
PRNG vs RNG, and it's exactly none from the user's point of view.
> > The same rules that the matter in computers follows. You claim that mind comes
> > out of the matter in the brain, but it is impossible for mind to come
> > out of the matter in a computer. How can you be so sure about this?
> I've mentioned at least a couple of my reasons:
> 1) Semantics is not intrinsic to syntax. There is no conceivable way that a digital computer running software could know the meanings of the symbols it manipulates.

Where are the symbols located in the space between your ears?
What is the meaning of that particular spike train (you did see it,
right? Sorry, it's gone now) down that particular axon?
> 2) Even if 1) is false; that is, even if the human brain/mind could be modeled as a digital computer that manipulates symbols in such a way it has conscious experience (semantics), there is no real syntax in the brain. We assign it to the physics. We're only imagining it.

And off to la-la land we go.

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