[ExI] Essential Upload Data

John Clark johnkclark at gmail.com
Wed May 20 22:05:14 UTC 2020

On Wed, May 20, 2020 at 8:44 AM Re Rose via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> *>Example, natural freezing of increasingly larger and more complex
> creatures (water bears, c.elegans, bugs, bees, frogs), observation of
> mammals (cats, dogs, skiers and other humans) recovering from hours of
> near-freezing with *no damage*, use of deep cooling to do complex surgery. *

Near freezing is fine for a few hours during surgery but it's useless for
Embryos have been frozen solid but no adult mammal has ever been brought
back, none has even reached dry ice temperatures and lived, and dry ice is
much too warm for long term storage.

> >
> *My point here is a demonstration that I do not agree that cryonics is an
> entirely unproven technology  :)*

I'm signed up for Cryonics so I'm certainly not trying to badmouth it, I'm
just saying there is great uncertainty about it, I can't even give a
probability of it working except to say it's greater than zero and less
than 100%.

> >> with the method Alcor currently uses the brain shrinks considerably
>> due to dehydration for heaven's sake, and the shrinking is not symmetrical.
>> I hope the damage just distorts the information and doesn't erase it, and I
>> think that's probably the case,
> -->* HM, I THINK YOUR choice of words indicates that you think of neural
> information storage as being similar to the way a computer encodes data.
> Don't do that. Very different.*

We don't know exactly how the brain encodes memories but we can be certain
that in at least one way it's exactly the same way computers do, they both
do it by changing the position and momentum of atoms; both may alter the
electrical charge on atoms but that can be determined by their position and

> *I believe the information physically coded in the brain (which is by no
> means all of the information necessary to recreate your consciouness)*

So you think your big toe is necessary to be conscious?

> > *might be deranged in a variety of ways: via physical damage to
> neurons, via disruption of correlated pathways, via loss of electrical
> entrainment signalling mechanisims, among others. This is different from
> "distortion" or "erasure" of the data.*

You lost me. I don't see how physical damage of data is different from
distortion or erasure of data. What's different about it?

> *--> UNTIL WE KNOW A MECHANISIM FOR repair I think its premature to say
> cryonic reanimation will *require* nanotechnology. It might, and it might
> not.*

Freezing with Alcor's current technology will push atoms out of place by
enough to make metabolism impossible. Freezing with ASC introduces an
unusual new molecule that will also make metabolism impossible. So to turn
metabolism back on and bring somebody back to life with either technique
you're going to have to do one of the following:

1) Figure out where individual atoms were before they were displaced by
freezing (and hope chaotic flow didn't occur) and then move the individual
atoms back into position.

2) Remove one molecule that obviously does not belong.

I think #2 is easier to do than #1, that's why I think ASC is superior to
the method currently used.

 >> I think proteins are pretty crappy nanomachines, they can't build
>> anything at all with most of the elements in the periodic table, and even
>> for the element they're most comfortable with, carbon, they can't even make
>> something as simple as a cubic lattice, aka a diamond.
> --*> THIS IS A TERRIBLE objection! Biological proteins usually have no
> business using most of the elements in the periodic table.*

There are 80 stable elements but life only figured out how to use 25 of
them, I fail to see why such a extremely limited repertoire is a virtue. We
have managed to find lots of very useful things that Aluminum can do, why
couldn't life do the same thing?  And it's all just carbon so why don't
tigers have carbon fiber skeletons and diamond teeth? Because Evolution is
an incompetent designer that's why, and it's why the retina of every
vertebrate eye is backwards and has a blind spot as a result.

And proteins oversee DNA replication and do a crummy job of it. The typical
error rate for DNA reproduction is about one error per 100 million


Each nucleotides contains 2 bits of information so that’s one error per 50
million bits, and one error in 50 million bits is bad, its LOUSY! Your
computer wouldn’t work it it had an error rate that huge, the internet
would not work, our entire information economy would collapse. But it
hasn’t collapsed because Claude Shannon showed us 70 years ago how to
encode information so it can be transferred and duplicated with arbitrary
low error rates, vastly lower than anything biology managed to come up with.


Mother Nature (Evolution) is a slow and stupid tinkerer, it had over 3
billion years to work on the problem but it couldn't even come up with a
part that could rotate in 360 degrees that was large enough to see with the
naked eye. The vagus nerve that connects the brain of a giraffe to its
larynx is over 15 feet long even though the two organs are less than a foot
apart, the vagus nerve runs all the way down the neck and then double backs
and goes back up the neck to the larynx. If Evolution could think ahead
that would never happen, but it can't and it can't backtrack either and
start over because every change it makes must improve things *right now*.

Evolution has no foresight. A jet engine works better than a prop engine in
an airplane. I give you a prop engine and tell you to turn it into a jet,
but you must do it while the engine is running, you must do it in one
million small steps, and you must do it so every one of those small steps
immediately improves the operation of the engine. Eventually you would get
an improved engine of some sort, but it wouldn't look anything like a jet.
If the tire on your car is getting worn you can take it off and put a new
one on, but evolution could never do something like that because when you
take the old tire off you have temporarily made things worse, now you have
no tire at all. With evolution EVERY step (generation), no matter how many,
MUST be an immediate improvement over the previous one, it can't think more
than one step ahead, it doesn't understand one step backward two steps

And that's why there are no 100 ton supersonic birds or nuclear powered
horses, and that’s why we can’t even move our head by 360 degrees. It's
easy to make a part that moves in 360 degrees if its microscopic because
nutriments can just diffuse in and waste products diffuse out; but as parts
get bigger the volume increases by the cube of the radius but the surface
area only increases by the square, so when things get big diffusion just
isn't good enough. Evolution never figured out how to do better and make a
wheel large enough to see, but rational designers, aka people, did.

> >> I know extraordinarily superb precision is hard, that's why we don't
>> have it right now, and that's the only reason why today people still get
>> old, get sick, and die.
> -->
> * NOT THE ACTUAL REASONS FOR AGING, if thats what you mean....*

There are lots of proximate causes for aging and death, but the
ultimate cause has got to be atoms having the wrong position and momentum.
The only way this view could be wrong is if the Bible Thumpers are right
and vitalism is true, but that possibility is far too remote for me to
worry about.



*> I'm saying (again and again in  grillions of ways) copying the
> information is impossible. Not at all due to physical limitations of
> nanotech, rather, due to the inerent characteristics of the system.*

Then what you're advocating is not science it's pure vitalism because there
is not one scrap of evidence that information can be encoded in a
non-physical way and if it's physical then Nanotechnology can duplicate it.
Well OK... it can't duplicate an atoms quantum state... but at body
temperature that state changes billions of times a second so it doesn't
seem relevant in a discussion about personal identity.

--> *NO! NOT VERY expensive at all, and the problem of fracturing is huge -
> don't dismss that so easily. *

Cracking is a simple displacement, compared to other problems that need to
be overcome to bring somebody back it's the least of your worries because
you don't need to be a Sherlock Holmes to figure out what went where before
the atoms were displaced, its obvious. If the repair technology finds even
that childish problem to be huge then forget Cryonics, we're doomed.

---> OMG HAVE I FAILED TO BE clear as to exactly why I think ASC is not a
> good method to address this??? You don't need to agree, by all means, but
> the reasons are clear!!!

I want to be honest with you. Not only do I not agree with your objection I
don't even have a clear understanding of exactly what your objection is,
just vague stuff about you not being you because of missing information
being encoded in some unknown place in some unknown way not involving atoms
that for a unknown reason Nanotechnology can not duplicate and that for
some other unknown reason ASC does an inferior job of preserving this
mysterious ethereal information than the current method despite what
electron microscopes unambiguously show.

*> *ASC is not going to preserve enough info! Sorry, its very nice and a
> pretty method, but its not right for our goals because its pretty lossy.**

You say ASC is pretty lossy but you can't say just what is lost or why the
current method loses less, or if you can say you haven't so far.

>> Electron microscopes don't lie, if ASC is lossy the existing method is
>> much more lossy.
> ---> NO ITS NOT!!! I've said why in previous email, reallly, in
> quad-grillions of different ways. That's a lot of ways.

But in not one of those quad-grillions of different ways have you explained
how life encodes information without using atoms nor have you explained why
Alcor's method somehow retains this mystical phantom information but ASC
destroys it.

> > I don't know what you mean by "hierarchical information". And what difference
>> does it make if all the atoms in your body are replaced every 6 months or
>> every 6 seconds or every 6 nanoseconds if atoms are generic?

I already did, and didn't see even a hint as to how to encode information
without using atoms.

> * > no way can I explain system dynamics and all the other good stuff
> here. *

Too deep to explain here huh... well maybe so, it would have to be very
deep indeed to explain how information can be encoded in something non
physical and still remain inside the scientific method.

> --> *IF YOU THINK ASC IS the best way, you do *NOT* know where the
> information lies. Sorry. For some of that background, there are lots of
> texts on neural coding.*

You need neurons to have neural coding, so please refer me to a text that
proves neurons are not made of atoms and don't obey the same laws of
physics that everything else does.

> >> I'm sorry but that is not a satisfactory response.  Please specify the missing
>> information that is not encoded in a atoms position or momentum and explain
>> why Alcor's current method preserves that information better than ASC can
>> despite what microscopes show
> --> *You're asking me to provide an online compendium of knowledge and
> information*

If it's online then that information is encoded somewhere in a computer
that is made of atoms, so please show me where the connection to that
computer is that says neurons are not made of atoms. Or show me just one
example of life, or anything else, encoding information in a non-physical
way. If you can do either of those things then you've won the argument.

> --> THIS IS NOT a problem I have observed or am particulary worried about.
> As I said in my last post, viscosity increses as temperature decreases.

Yes and the cryoprotectant increases the viscosity too and that gives me
some optimism that the flow during freezing will not be chaotic, but you
should still be far more worried about it than simple cracking because even
if there is no chaos and the shrinking and flow is laminar it's still going
to be a lot more complicated to figure out where things are suposed to go
than with displacement caused by cracking.

> --> I HAVE GIVEN MANY DIFFERENT responses and reasons but you keep
> brushing them aside and asking the same questions over and over.

I'd stop asking the same questions if you gave me a few straight answers.

> *if you think the electron microscpe images capture all the necessary
> information* [...]

I don't know for sure that good electron microscope pictures capture all
the necessary information, but I do know for sure that good pictures
capture more information than bad pictures, and ASC can produce much better
pictures. You'd need to state some huge advantage the current method has to
overcome that fact but I've heard nothing.

*---> ALRIGHT, FIRST OF ALL IT WAS A SCONE! I am far too refined to offer
> you a mere "cookie". And second, I blasted you apart with your permission.
> Why did you give it?*

If you blasted me into atoms after noting what atome went where and then
used other atoms to put me back together and if you did if skillfully
enough you wouldn't even need to ask my permission because I wouldn't even
know you had done it.

* > But the position and momentum are not not not enough to recreate you, I
> cry again.*

Because of some missing phantom stuff that is sounding more and more like a
soul. I believe in information, I don't believe in souls.

> > *And don't get me started on Heisenberg. He's not going to support your
> position-and-momentum thing in the least.*

I think Mr. Heisenberg would be on my side, if absolute perfection was
required for personal identity to continue then you'd become a different
person every Planck Time; from the day you were born 10^44 different Roses
would be born every second and 10^44 Roses would die. And besides, I don't
see why ASC would be more vulnerable to quantum uncertainty than Alcor's
current method, everything must obey Heisenberg's law.

--> YOU KNOW YOU ARE NOT the copy.

That pinpoints your fundamental error. No, I would NOT know if I am the
copy or the original, and personally I would not care.

> *The copy doesn't know.*

Correct, unless the person supervising the copying process told us
neither I or that devilishly handsome charming intelligent fellow right
over there would know if he was the copy or the original.

> --> *YES THE COPY will have a problem, thinking it is me. Poor copy.*

You shouldn't pity the copy because it could be self pity, you could be the
copy. And I don't understand why you'd be upset if you found out you were.

> *But I am still me*

And that is something that both you and the original are saying to

*> Rose is my copy, and she keeps thinking she's me, but I, Regina, have
> written these posts.*

But Rose remembers writing all those posts just as clearly as Regina does,
so both have a equally valid claim to the title "Regina", but to avoid
confusion only one should use it, to decide I suggest a coin flip.

John K Clark

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