[ExI] Fwd: Fwd: Chalmers

Brent Allsop brent.allsop at gmail.com
Sun Dec 22 00:20:43 UTC 2019

Hi Stathis:

1. If glutamate is swapped for glycine and glutamate receptors for glycine
receptors in half the neurons in your brain, all the neurons in your brain
will continue firing in the same sequence, and all the muscles in your body
will continue contracting in the same sequence.

This is where you are problematically removing the binding system that is
directly aware of what glutamate is functionally like and how glycine
functionality is physically different.  You must have the ability to
computationally bind thousands of pixels made up of half glutamate
strawberry and half glycine leaves, and these are all computationally bound
together so you can be aware of all of them at the same time.  When you
remove this ability to distinguish between two different physical
representations in this way, the fading/dancing problems come up.

Where in this system you are describing is the ability to be aware of
redness, which includes the ability to say that anything other than redness
is not redness?  No matter where I add this functionality, you always
remove it with this anti binding system mistaken way.  And of course, when
you make these kinds of logical mistakes, problems like “fading”/”dancing”
qualia emerge.  If you include that functionality, it becomes obvious how
everything just works, and this “fading”/”dancing” problem is just

No matter how many times I say you need to provide this ability to detect
only redness, and nothing else, you just continue to say that doesn’t
matter.  And the fact that you say that is proof that you aren't yet
thinking of it the right way.  This mistake is the cause of all the
fading/dancing problems.  The fact that you keep asserting this doesn’t
matter just proves you are not thinking about qualia in the right way.  You
must include an ability to know when something has physically (or
magically, or functionally) changed.

If you provide there, there will be no "hard" problems.

On Sat, Dec 21, 2019 at 2:17 PM Stathis Papaioannou via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> On Sun, 22 Dec 2019 at 04:02, Brent Allsop via extropy-chat <
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>> Thanks for this version, Stathis.  I think I can better understand and
>> work with this.
>> I think the problem is you are only talking about functionality.  There
>> must also be something in the system that instantiates the data coming from
>> the senses.  There must be something, physical, that is the knowledge that
>> will control whether we want to pick the strawberry or not.  In an abstract
>> system there is a dictionary that maps a 1 to both the word “red” (what to
>> say) and “ripe” (the strawberries to pick).  The what to pick functionality
>> is driven or specified, based on these dictionaries.
>> In the glutamate version of the system, there must be a dictionary that
>> maps the glutamate to the 1.  And in order for the physically different
>> hardware instantiation to work, this dictionary must be changed to map
>> glycine to 1 – so the system that knows we want to pick the 1 strawberries
>> (as John was saying) can work, in a substrate independent way.
>> Again, we on the other hand, run directly on physical qualities.  In
>> other words, we don’t have the additional abstraction dictionary from
>> glutamate to 1.  We instead map glutamate directly to “red” and “that’s the
>> one we pick”.  So, in order for the functionally different robot to be able
>> to pick the right strawberry and say it is red, both these dictionaries
>> need to change when the physics of knowledge change.  It is now glycine
>> that we interpret as the strawberry to pick, where  as the former version
>> definned glutamate to be knowledge of the ones to pick.
>> You are describing two systems that are functionally the same but
>> physically different.  That is just another way to say “3 robots that
>> are functionally the same but qualitatively different.
>> <https://docs.google.com/document/d/1YnTMoU2LKER78bjVJsGkxMsSwvhpPBJZvp9e2oJX9GA/edit>
>> ---------- Forwarded message ---------
>> From: Stathis Papaioannou <stathisp at gmail.com>
>> Date: Fri, Dec 20, 2019 at 5:25 PM
>> Subject: Re: [ExI] Fwd: Chalmers
>> To: Brent Allsop <brent.allsop at gmail.com>
>> Here is another, more physiological thought experiment. I notice that
>> some neurons, when triggered, release glutamate into the synapse connecting
>> them with other neurons. The downstream neurons have glutamate receptors,
>> which detect the glutamate and then trigger an action potential. I have no
>> idea what the purpose of any of this is, but I do have very advanced
>> molecular manipulation techniques. I decide to alter all the glutamate
>> secreting neurons so that they secrete glycine instead, and all the
>> glutamate detecting neurons do that they have glycine receptors instead
>> which trigger an action potential in the presence of glycine. Given this
>> change, do you see that the brain will behave the same? Do you still think
>> that the qualia might be different despite the brain behaving the same?
>>> --
>> Stathis Papaioannou
> I understand what you are saying with the three robots example, but you
> are missing the problem I am presenting.
> 1. If glutamate is swapped for glycine and glutamate receptors for glycine
> receptors in half the neurons in your brain, all the neurons in your brain
> will continue firing in the same sequence, and all the muscles in your body
> will continue contracting in the same sequence.
> 2. If qualia were dependent on a particular substrate, such as red
> requires glutamate and green requires glycine, the change in (1) would
> result in a change in qualia. Something that was previously all red would
> now look partly red and partly green, or perhaps a new colour combining red
> and green.
> 3. But if all the muscles in your body are contracting in the same
> sequence, you will say that everything looks exactly the same as before.
> 4. How can your qualia radically change but you either do not notice the
> change or cannot communicate that there has been a change?
>> --
> Stathis Papaioannou
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