[ExI] Digital Consciousness .

Mike Dougherty msd001 at gmail.com
Fri Apr 26 03:38:55 UTC 2013

On Wed, Apr 24, 2013 at 11:12 PM, Gordon <gts_2000 at yahoo.com> wrote:
> The key word there is "described". Yes, we can describe just about anything
> digitally. But a digital description of a thing is not the thing unless that
> thing happens also to actually be digital. We can make identical copies of
> software files on our computers, for example, but we cannot make identical
> digital copies of things that are not digital.

Do you own music on CD or are you rabidly defending your old vinyl
albums?  The physical defects in the substrate caused by dragging the
needle through the grooves on your records gives vinyl a limited
lifetime of so-called "hi fi" audio.  You could make a digital
sampling of the original/master before repeated play abused it.  We
would be listening to a checksum-defended replica of the master on the
ten thousandth performance.  By that many plays on vinyl you'd have
nothing even close to the original that you are defending as the
"soul" of the music.

So I understand when you say that 44.1kHz isn't near-enough to analog
to capture the "essence" of your old vinyl.  I'd even understand if
you claimed 192kHz isn't near-enough to analog for your preference.
What I don't understand is how you are claiming that the digital
version can't possibly be "music" but is instead only an approximate
simulation of music.  Not only are you making this claim, but you
continue to assert that there is NO rate high enough to capture the
ineffable reality of actual analog music.  I've seen people go down
this line of thinking in the audiophile world.  They usually spend
thousands of dollars to create the perfect sound room with perfect
speakers connected by solid gold wires, etc. etc. - only to realize by
the time they have assembled their dream components that their own
biological ears have become the weakest link in the experience.

We can do the same progression in video resolution too.  Eventually
you reach "retina display" where it makes little sense to drive pixel
density higher than the human eye can detect.  Granted, eagles flying
over at 100 meters might appreciate the extra clarity of the latest
super-dense display... but that's just silliness.  To claim that the
image isn't "really" real pushes us into the realm of philosophy,
doesn't it?  What is really real about any of the images we think we
see?  Illusions can show us how our vision can be tricked.  Drugs show
us how our vision processing can be tricked/exploited/subverted.

So if these analog/biological systems fail to distinguish "really
reality" outside the tolerances given to us by evolutionary
adaptation, how would you even know if sufficiently advanced digital
systems have already replaced your high-holy analog world?

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