[ExI] Fwd: Paper on "Detecting Qualia" presentation at 2015 MTA conference

John Clark johnkclark at gmail.com
Mon Feb 2 17:22:36 UTC 2015

Hi Brent

 >> And I still don't think you answered my question about consciousness
>> being fundamental.
> > I guess I just don't understand what you are asking, then.

I'm saying that eventually you will get to "consciousness is the way data
feels like when it is being processed", and after that it would be
pointless to ask how data actually does it because  "consciousness is the
way data feels like when it is being processed" is the end of that chain of
"how" questions, that chain is not infinitely long but eventually reaches a
brute fact and terminates, eventually it reaches something fundamental.

> > Because the prediction is that the brute fact will be proven that
> something in our brain has a fundamental redness quality.

I would agree with that except I'd substitute "mind" for "brain" because
mind is what a brain does, and I know with a certainty far beyond any need
of proof that mind, or at least one mind, can produce redness.

> >>> Everything behaves the same, at least until you ask them: "What is red
>>> like for you".
>> >> And one of them would say "red is what gives black contrast, without
>> it vision would be useless", and the other one would say "I understand
>> completely, in my language we call that white".
>   > I guess if you can't see all the obvious mistakes and confusion in
> these kinds of statements, and how "calling" something white (White is a
> piece of zombie information), has nothing to do with the quality being
> called "white",

I'm not confused, I understand exactly what you're saying, I'm just saying
you're wrong. In another post you talked about putting on red and green
inverting glasses and you said and I agreed, that things would look very
strange when I first put them on because they contradicted previous
memories. Then you said, and I agreed, that after a period of time my mind
would reassign all those huge number of memory associations and nested
links so that they were no longer contradictory and things would look
normal again.

However you then said "but you will know that your knowledge is very
qualitatively different than before you put on those glasses". If all the
links have been rearranged where was that knowledge stored? If I followed
the nerves in your tongue that make it create the noise "things looked
different in the past" where did they originate? It can't be anyplace in
the brain as all those links have been changed, so your only option is to
invoke the soul. As for me I don't believe the tongue would make that noise
because I don't believe in the soul, although I do believe that information
is as close as you can get to the traditional idea of the soul and still
stay within the scientific method.

Well... actually to tell the truth I am a bit confused, I'm still not clear
what "zombie red" is. And if I receive a sequence of binary digits how can
I determine if it's zombie information or non-zombie information?

> > we are not talking about smoething being tagged, but the qualitative
> nature of the tag,

I understand that also, you're interested in the tag itself and I am too,
it's a very interesting tag.  And I'm saying that every single objective
property of that tag and, much more important, every single SUBJECTIVE
property of that tag comes ONLY from it's association with previous
memories and links.  Redness IS the memories and links.

> Isn't all that matters is the following? The prediction is that we will
> be able to develop the ability to throw a switch turning on a new hack in
> your brain, and when we do this, you will for the first time, experience a
> new blue you have never experienced before.

Humans can see about 10 million colors, beyond that 2 colors are too
similar for us to tell apart. If a transhuman wished to have better color
discrimination he would need to see more than 10 million colors, and so
obviously he would subjectively experience more colors than we do.

  John K Clark
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.extropy.org/pipermail/extropy-chat/attachments/20150202/b3670a0f/attachment.html>

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list