[extropy-chat] Cryonics and uploading

Heartland velvethum at hotmail.com
Sun Jan 29 23:22:58 UTC 2006

> Heartland <velvethum at hotmail.com> Wrote:
>> Of course my copy will still like chocolate but my
>> point is that the original is dead and will not
>> *enjoy the feeling* of eating chocolate because
>> his mind hardware is gone.

> So you think the copy of you would be conscious but he just wouldn't be 
> you,
> even though he looks acts and thinks just like you, even though he 
> remembers being you, even though he is absolutely convinced he is you;

Yes. The aim of my "chocolate" example is to point out why the brain 
structure of the copy has absolutely no influence over whether original 
*lives* or not. It shows why the pattern view fails.

thus you think
> the original is dead. If so then you could be dead right NOW because one
> nanosecond before I said "now" I made a destructive copy of you.

I, the person who typed this sentence, might be the copy of the original who 
might be dead.

 In fact I
> have been making a destructive copy of you a billion times a second for 
> the
> last year, and yet you go about your business with no difficulty. A
> billionth of a second if far too short to form a conscious thought, but
> nevertheless something has been conscious for the last year, something has
> continued, and I think a good name for that something is "you".

"You" in the sense of identity, the memories of who you are as a person, 
opinions, memories of your life experiences, but not the life of the 
original being who carried that identity.

>> If my perfect clone and I are in the room and he starts eating chocolate
>> it doesn't mean that I will automatically feel chocolate in my mouth.
> Don't be silly, if one perfect clone is eating chocolate and the other is
> not then they are no longer perfect.

My word "perfect" means that both copy and the original share the same brain 
structure. Do you mean that in order for a copy to be "perfect" means that 
they have not only the same brain structure but also share the exact same 

>>This is basically a natural occurrence of Moravec transfer which does
>>preserve life. The reason why this transfer works is that it doesn't
>>destroy the original mind process. Destructive uploading does.
> Why? Both are doing the same thing both are replacing all the atoms in 
> your
> brain but you say one works and one does not. Why?

Brain is not the mind. Don't focus on the brain structure. Instead, focus on 
the activity of atoms (not the atoms, just the activity) that causes mind to 
arise. In other words, please focus on the mind process.

Here's an analogy that I've come up with over the years that should show why 
destructive uploading destroys mind process/life and Moravec transfer 

Consider a network of paths through which streams flow. Even though water 
molecules are being continuously replaced, the stream remains the same. 
Brain is like the network of paths and mind process is the actual flow of 
the stream.

Moravec transfer maintains *the flow* even though the stuff that is 
necessary for the flow to exist is being constantly replaced. I could even 
replace water molecules with, say, mercury and the earth paths with concrete 
paths, the flow would still exist.

On the other hand, destructive uploading simply evaporates both water 
molecules and erases the stream path so that flow cannot continue.

> And could somebody explain to me what "Cryonics should be preserving life,
> not just identity" means, I can't make heads or tails out of it.
>   John K Clark

I hope that the above stream analogy should help explain the difference. 
Identity is the brain structure, merely a "map" of the path network of 
existing streams. Life is the collective "flow" of these streams.


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