[ExI] Mental Phenomena

William Flynn Wallace foozler83 at gmail.com
Sun Jan 19 22:40:36 UTC 2020

I have a suggestion:  can we stop using strawberries and red?  Yellow is my
favorite color, though blue is good too.  Just to change up a bit, eh?
bill w

On Sun, Jan 19, 2020 at 4:22 PM Brent Allsop via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> OK very good points. So, let me see if I can address these good points in
> the way I’m saying things.
> If you do a neuro substitution from redness physics to greenness physics,
> (and visa versa) that would be possible if, in one step, you replaced all
> the glutamate being presented to the binding neuron (including any possible
> memory of glutamates colorness property) with glycine and your memory of
> glycine's colorness property, that would be possible as i've pointed out
> many times.
> But, still you must include this binding neuron (or something that
> performs this required functionality) in your thought experiment, otherwise
> composite computationally bound elemental physical qualities like redness
> and greenness aren’t possible.  And also, this same binding mechanism must
> be able to connect a pre inverted system, with a post inverted system, so
> that you can see that redness and grenness are inverted.
> Now, if you are doing a neuro substitution from redness to a binary one or
> word like red (which is intentionally abstracted away from any physical
> properties via additional hardware enabling substrate independence. It
> wouldn’t be possible to include anything like knowledge that has a physical
> redness quality functionality, without such extremely absurd hard
> programmed functionality like:  “If someone asks you what it means to say:
> “My redness is like your greenness, both of which we say is red” you say  I
> understand that, and it is all true.  Even though such is lie, since
> abstract ones and zeros, by definition, are abstracted away from such
> physical properties.
> On Sun, Jan 19, 2020 at 2:32 PM Stathis Papaioannou via extropy-chat <
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>> On Mon, 20 Jan 2020 at 02:59, Brent Allsop via extropy-chat <
>> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>>> On Sat, Jan 18, 2020 at 6:39 PM Stathis Papaioannou via extropy-chat <
>>> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>>>> On Sun, 19 Jan 2020 at 11:57, William Flynn Wallace via extropy-chat <
>>>> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>>>>>  whatever consciousness is, it would be reproduced if the function
>>>>> (the observable behaviour) of anything that has it is reproduced.   stathis
>>>>> I keep reading this and keep thinking that I understand it, and then I
>>>>> think I don't.  Are you saying that if we can get something to act like a
>>>>> human brain it will therefore have all the functions thereof?
>>>> Neurons have observable behaviour: for example, when stimulated by
>>>> other neurons they may “fire”, propagating an action potential along their
>>>> axon, and in turn stimulate neurons to which they connect. Billions of
>>>> neurons in your visual cortex interact in this way and as a result you can
>>>> identify objects in front of your eyes. These neurons, via a relay of
>>>> multiple intermediate neurons, connect to the motor neurons controlling
>>>> speech and you say “I see a strawberry”. If the neurons in your visual
>>>> cortex were destroyed their output would not get through to your vocal
>>>> cords and you would not say “I see a strawberry”, because you would be
>>>> blind. But if the neurons were replaced by an artificial device that
>>>> produced the same output given the same input, your vocal cords would
>>>> receive the same input as before and you would say “I see a strawberry”.
>>> This is all qualia blind.  There is only red things in all this.  You
>>> must also include the physically different redness that we experience as
>>> knowledge of red things.  Also, everything you are saying here are
>>> objective descriptions of behavior in the brain.  There are two ways for us
>>> to be aware of the same physical facts.  One is by objective observation,
>>> which is qualia blind.  The second way is subjective.  The only way to know
>>> the physical quality, all this stuff Stathis is saying is describing, is to
>>> experience those physical facts being described, directly.
>>>> The above is a purely behavioural account.
>>> As is everything stathis is describing, It's all only behavior
>>> descriptions of physical qualities, i.e it is qualia blind.
>>>> As external observers, we can’t be sure if you have visual experiences
>>>> or not.
>>> We can objectively know if people are having visual experiences or not,
>>> via both the week and strongest forms of effing the ineffable.  In order to
>>> do the week form, you just need a dictionary that tells you what phenomenal
>>> color descriptions of stuff in the brain are describing.  If you
>>> objectively see a word like 'red' representing red knowledge, you know that
>>> isn't physically red.  If you see a person representing green things with
>>> knowledge composed of glycine, you know that person is red / green inverted
>>> from you.  With a neural ponytail (does what the corpus callosum does),
>>> where you can directly experience the physical colorness properties in
>>> another's consciousness, you will be aware of all your physical knowledge,
>>> and the same time you are aware of your partners physical knowledge.  You
>>> will know, absolutely, that your partners is red / green inverted from
>>> yourself.
>>>> However, we can be sure that if you had them before the neural
>>>> replacement, you have them afterwards as well.The alternative is that you
>>>> become blind but don’t notice, and still say “I see a strawberry”. This is
>>>> absurd: what meaning could the word “blind” have if you cannot notice that
>>>> you are blind and behave as if you have normal vision?
>>> Again, this is qualia blind.  Consciousness is computationally bound
>>> elemental physical qualities like redness and grenness.  In order to not be
>>> qualia blind, you need to include the physical redness functionality (must
>>> be objectively different than grenness functionality), and a
>>> computationally binding mechanism that enables you to be aware of both of
>>> them at the same time.  The neural substitution mind experiment you propose
>>> can lead people astray in many ways.  For example, if you have a single
>>> binding neuron, that is performing the binding functionally, so you can be
>>> aware of thousands of pixels neurons, each potentially firing with either
>>> glutamate and glycine (or whatever it is that has the redness and grenness
>>> physical qualities)  When you do the neural substitution of the binging
>>> neuron in that case, it is just a slight of hand when you are switching
>>> between glutamate(redness)/glycine(grenness) the 1s(red)/0s(green).   With
>>> that one neuron switching, you are removing any computationally bound
>>> information that was actual computationally bound awareness of redness, and
>>> replacing all of it with 1.
>>> Also, a required functionality is the ability to computationally bind,
>>> via a neural ponytail the two systems both before and after the neural
>>> substitution.  With this required functionality, you must be able to know,
>>> directly, whether the neural substituted system now has redness swapped
>>> with grenness, or 1s.  If you do not provide the ability to do that in your
>>> thought experiment, your thought experiment is qualia blind.  If you
>>> thought experiment is not qualia blind, everything makes sense, there are
>>> no conundrums or absurd things like fading/dancing qualia.  If your thought
>>> experiment is not qualia blind, and if you know the phenomenal physical
>>> quality of stuff (or functionality, if you must) everything is knowable
>>> both objectively and subjectively.  In qualia blind views like this, there
>>> are impossibly hard mind body problems.  If your thought experiment is not
>>> qualia blind, the only problem is an easy color problem.
>>> The conclusion is that an artificial device that correctly replicated
>>>> neural behaviour will also replicate any associated consciousness.
>>> This conclusion can only true in a qualia blind thought experiment that
>>> does not include a necessary redness functionality that necessarily can be
>>> computationally bound.
>> Here is the problem which you seem to be missing. If your visual cortex
>> is replaced, you are qualia blind with respect to visual qualia. However,
>> you behave normally, because the output to the muscles is the same. Also,
>> the rest of your brain works normally because it was not modified, and even
>> blind people are able to think and talk. Why don’t you say “I am qualia
>> blind”? What is the point of having qualia if even you yourself don’t
>> notice if the qualia disappear?
>>> --
>> Stathis Papaioannou
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