[ExI] Fwd: Is Artificial Life Conscious?

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Fri Apr 29 04:45:59 UTC 2022

On Wed, Apr 27, 2022 at 5:35 AM Colin Hales <col.hales at gmail.com> wrote:

>> The EEG and MEG are tiny residual scalp fields from tissue originating
> 1cm away from scalp. Of course they are messed up by muscle artefacts
> (scalp, facial and heart).  The actual fields in the brain tissue, that
> originate the EEG, are inside the membrane, are many orders of magnitude
> stronger. Transmembrane electric  field dynamics  (1cm away) are 10,000,000
> volts/m and that can completely reverse in direction. Muscle artefacts is
> totally irrelevant there.

### Well, previously you wrote about the "global" EM field of the brain and
the "EM field that pervades the tissue" as the locus of consciousness, and
you never mentioned the transmembrane electric field until now. The
peer-reviewed reference you used was about propagation of global EM waves
in brain slices, not about transmembrane field dynamics. EEG, whether
measured on the scalp or through implanted electrodes (iEEG) is the measure
of the global field and yes, it is swamped by muscle artifact and yes, the
global EM field's ability to encode consciousness is eliminated by muscle
artifact and by other minor electromagnetic interference, just as I said.

If you now switch to talking about transmembrane electric field dynamics,
it's a completely different argument. Obviously, EM fields at the level of
axonal, dendritic and neuron body membrane encode many (6? 8?) orders of
magnitude more information than the global EM fields of the brain and yes,
they are a large part of the informational aspects of brain function that I
previously outlined. You need to make up your mind what argument you want
to defend.

> Everything I have said is straight out of the standard model of particle
> physics, and then interpreted based on my having a PHD in brain
> electromagnetism.

### You are an expert then? Great, it should be easy for you to outline a
detailed, mechanistic and quantitative argument for how the global EM field
encodes consciousness.

> I am clearly in the wrong place to engage these issues. Apologies. I'll
> leave it there.

### To the contrary, on this list you *are* very welcome to provide a
rigorous statement of your position with references to relevant
peer-reviewed literature.

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