[ExI] Symbol Grounding

Henry Rivera hrivera at alumni.virginia.edu
Wed Apr 26 03:45:04 UTC 2023

I really liked that video about the red strawberries. It's
thought-provoking. I'm curious to get Brent's response. Maybe color is the
wrong simple example to use for communicating about qualia. It worked well
enough until we realized color perception is a subjective contextual
process that did not evolve to favor reflecting (consensus) reality.
Perceived color constancy is more important, that is, has been more
adaptive for us. How about them apples... or strawberries.
To quote my late friend and rapper Sean Byrne: "Nothing exists except for
your perception, the pain of the past only serves as a lesson."

On Mon, Apr 24, 2023 at 7:00 PM Brent Allsop via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> Hi Jason,
> On Mon, Apr 24, 2023 at 3:09 PM Jason Resch via extropy-chat <
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>> as in say the strawberry is red, but it would answer the question: "What
>>> is redness like for you." differently.
>> I don't see why they would answer this question differently if everything
>> got inverted, including all emotional associations. If you changed only the
>> word, but left the emotional associations as they were, then you could
>> perhaps get different descriptions.
> I'm skipping a bunch of stuff that I think is less important, and focusing
> on what I think is most important, but if I skip over something important,
> don't let me brush over it.
> Giovani, evidently you think even a person engineered to have red / green
> qualia inversion, you would consider them to be indistinguishable, and that
> the quality difference of the subjective knowledge wouldn't matter?
> It sounds like Jason at least thinks the two would be qualitatively
> different, and this difference is important, if you are asking what his
> redness is like for each of them.  Jason just has a problem with how we
> would know, or how he would report that.  For the moment, can we just say
> we are God, for a bit.  And we can know if the redness is now greenness,
> even though the person wouldn't know, since all of his memories and
> references have been remapped.
> The prediction is the future, we will be able to read people's minds, and
> objectively observe whether it is Jason's redness, or Jason's greenness,
> via neural ponytails, or whatever.
> The critically important part is we need to focus on only the important
> thing, the quality of the redness.  Not what the person thinks that quality
> is called, whether he is lying or whatever.  Let's only focus on the
> quality of the redness experiences.  Would God say that quality has changed
> or not, regardless of what the person says.
> So, again, if you engineered someone to be a qualia invert.  God could
> honestly tell those two people that one's redness was like the other's
> grenness.
> And even though they would function differently, when asked what is
> redness like for you, they would know, since God told them, that their
> redness was like the other's greenness, so despite them being otherwise
> identical, they were qualitatively different.
> So, would you agree that the quality of their consciousness is dependent
> on what their redness is like, and if one redness quality is like the
> other's greenness, that would be important and objectively observable?
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