[ExI] Mental Phenomena

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Thu Feb 13 04:00:06 UTC 2020

On Thu, 13 Feb 2020 at 13:30, Brent Allsop via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> Hi Stathis,
>> I do have visual qualia though I can’t prove it to you, you’ll just have
>> to believe me. But for all I know, someone may have replaced my brain with
>> a computer last night while I was sleeping. The fact that I still have
>> visual qualia today does not preclude that possibility.
> Why do you guys always ignore what i'm trying to say and don't even come
> close to answer a simple question: "What is it that is red, what is it that
> is green?"
> Why are you ignoring the fact that nobody knows that.

What I do know is that I can see red and green, and that my intact and
normally functioning brain is needed for that. I also know that if any part
of my brain were changed for another part that allowed the entire system
(that is, me) to behave normally, where behaviour is defined as something
that can be observed by an external party, I would continue to see red and
green normally. So I don't think it is correct to say that any particular
object or physical process is red or green.

> Another thing I keep trying to say, which you completely ignore, or show
> any evidence that you understand in any wa
> :  Once we stop being qualia blind, we'll discover what it is that has a
> redness quality, and this will give us dictionary telling us the color,
> some of our abstract descriptions in the brain are describing.  Once they
> do this, this will falsify all but THE ONE camp that cant be falsified
> amongst the many sub camps to representational qualia theory.  Only then
> will people finally realize the real physical colors of things.  People
> will look back on discussions like this, the terrible effect papers like
> Chalmer's "fading dancing absent" qualia and how sending people down that
> rat hole completely distracted the science away from the real problem.
> Having this dictionary will tell us what color things are, but only in the
> 1. week form.  Everyone will need to assume that something like glutamate
> has the same redness quality in my brain, as it does in your brain.  There
> will surely be doubters, despite all the powerful objective evidence that
> proves exactly what redness is, how it is different from greenness, and who
> does and does not have red/green inverted qualia and so on.

What you fail to appreciate is that it is IMPOSSIBLE for an assertion such
as as redness = glutamate to be true, because if the observable physical
effects of glutamate could be replicated in a different substrate WITHOUT
replicating the redness, then the whole idea of qualia would become
meaningless. I have explained this many times. It does not depend on
actually being able to replicate the effect of glutamate, it is a logical
argument only.

> Another thing I keep trying to point out, which you guys completely ignore
> is there will also be the 2. stronger 3. strongest forms of effing the
> ineffable once we start hacking brians, where we connect our brains with 3
> millions neurons, so we can directly experience the actual physical colors
> in other's brains, the same way the physical knowledge in our left
> hemisphere is directly computationally bound to the physical knowledge in
> our right.  It will be a bit disorienting, if your partner has inverted red
> green qualia - but you will know such things as absolutely as "I think
> therefore I am"

You won't know that, any more than people who have cochlear implants know
what qualia the cochlear implants have; all they know is what qualia the
combined system has after the device is implanted in their head.

> Oh, and I also mentioned, but you guys probably also didn't notice, this
> will falsify solipsism, proving the existence of not only other conscious
> minds, but that there really is an external world, and we aren't jsut some
> kind of brain in a vat.

It won't, just as the cochlear implant does not demonstrate that the
implant has a mind, or what sort of mind.

> But then, all these are just my predictions.  You guys really know what it
> will be like to be uploaded, and how we will know if that upload is
> anything like the real you... right????
> And it's up to the experimentalists.  After all, if the falsify all
> possible physics as something that could have a redness quality, then this
> would prove that it must be some type of new physics, or maybe eve qualia
> are "spiritual" ghostly qualities in some neither world as predicting in
> substance dualism.

If we find after a thousand years of experimentation that only glutamate is
associated with redness, that does not change the LOGICAL fact that if the
glutamate were replaced with another substrate replicating its observable
effects redness would also be replicated.

> But my prediction is that substance dualism and solipsis are far more
> likely than the current popular consensus that "The supervening qualities
> are the result of the ones and zeroes"  And once people start discovering
> what color things really are, and how different they are from
> abstract arbitrary ones and zeros, which are intentionally designed to be
> abstracted away from any physical qualities (i.e. require a dictionary to
> know what they mean)
> And THAT is why I created canonizer.  So when this happens, I can point to
> who was in the right camp, first, and how mistaken others were.
> But, again, you guys believe completely differently, so we'll just have to
> wait for the experimentalists to discover what it is that really is red.
> I'll bet any amount of money, at any odds, that functionalists camps will
> be the first to be experimentally falsified, once experimentalists stop
> being qualia blind.
> Anyone care to put any money, where their mouth is?  I doubt it.  You guys
> aren't even brave enough to join a camp at Canonizer.com.

It is not a question of experimentation. It is like saying experimental
evidence will show that triangles have three sides.

> OK, sorry for the emotional rant.  Please forgive me.  I couldn't help it.

It's good that you are passionate, because you think you are right and I am
wrong, and I think I am right and you are wrong.

Stathis Papaioannou
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