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Poll

Is conciosness real, or is it subjective?

it's real and can be transferred
real and unique to your body
subjective, so it doesn't matter

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Author Topic: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:  (Read 3360 times)

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markuzick

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If you could download all your memories, feelings, personality and thoughts into an android body with a quantum computer based brain, that would be somehow be known to be conscious and experience itself as being you only with a vastly improved intelligence and a perfect never aging body, capable of 100 times as much pleasure, would you do it if that entailed the death of your original self?

If your original self still lived, would you consider your new self a separate person?

If the original you was forced to choose to save either your new self or your old self from death, who would you save?
« Last Edit: February 15, 2007, 07:36:53 PM by markuzick »
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As the state feeds off of the limitation and destruction of legitimate government, anarchy is its essence.

To claim "economic rent" from someone Else's labor when applied to land, which is something no one can own outright, is in itself, to claim landlord status over raw nature. It is an attempt at coercive monopoly power that is at the root of statism.

bonerjoe

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2007, 07:25:01 PM »

Pfft.
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ladyattis

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2007, 08:47:09 PM »

I voted for option two, but I would like to say with a proviso in that a consciousness can be 'transferred' at the quantum scale via entanglement to any substrate necessary. Basically, what you got here is the ship of Theseus argument of Aristotle here. The ship of Theseus is a naval vessel, now imagine something breaks on the ship like a board on the deck. A deck hand goes and replaces the board, now imagine over the years that the ship is in service. The more boards on the deck break, even the mast breaks, each gets replaced over time. Ask this question: is it the same ship? According to Aristotle it is at one level, but at another level it is not, but I forget how he divides among his categories of causes, sorry.

When you use this argument you can argue that consciousness can be transferred if and only if the effective nature of the consciousness remains intact. Meaning while a person is dying as their consciousness is being moved to a new substrate, that person actually feels connected to the new substrate or body, thus proving that their awareness if following where you put it, but if this does not occur, all you have done was clone the person, which is not bad per se, but it's not real immortality.

-- Bridget
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voodoo

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2007, 08:55:33 PM »

When you use this argument you can argue that consciousness can be transferred if and only if the effective nature of the consciousness remains intact. Meaning while a person is dying as their consciousness is being moved to a new substrate, that person actually feels connected to the new substrate or body, thus proving that their awareness if following where you put it, but if this does not occur, all you have done was clone the person, which is not bad per se, but it's not real immortality.

-- Bridget

For lack of a better term, I've envisioned a similar thing, but parallel instead of series.  IOW, if you hooked a computer to my brain and allowed both to run in parallel, where the entire consciousness was running both in my brain and the computer in tandem, then killing me wouldn't have any effect.  The consciousness would survive intact and have no difference to me.

Just cloning my consciousness, however, and allowing it to run its course does my consciousness no good.   :(
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markuzick

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2007, 09:38:29 PM »

When you use this argument you can argue that consciousness can be transferred if and only if the effective nature of the consciousness remains intact. Meaning while a person is dying as their consciousness is being moved to a new substrate, that person actually feels connected to the new substrate or body, thus proving that their awareness if following where you put it, but if this does not occur, all you have done was clone the person, which is not bad per se, but it's not real immortality.

-- Bridget

For lack of a better term, I've envisioned a similar thing, but parallel instead of series.  IOW, if you hooked a computer to my brain and allowed both to run in parallel, where the entire consciousness was running both in my brain and the computer in tandem, then killing me wouldn't have any effect.  The consciousness would survive intact and have no difference to me.

Just cloning my consciousness, however, and allowing it to run its course does my consciousness no good.   :(
Interesting idea, but if the portion of your consciousness running in the computer could survive independently of your brain, then weren't there always two separate persons to begin with?
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As the state feeds off of the limitation and destruction of legitimate government, anarchy is its essence.

To claim "economic rent" from someone Else's labor when applied to land, which is something no one can own outright, is in itself, to claim landlord status over raw nature. It is an attempt at coercive monopoly power that is at the root of statism.

voodoo

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2007, 10:00:18 PM »

Yes.  I didn't explain that well.  I'm talking about a complete copy that parallels for long enough to ensure the computer is stable where I would be aware and able to "homestead" in the computer.  Then, without un-paralleling, my brain is killed, leaving only the computer.  In this way, there are never two separate "me" consciousnesses.
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ladyattis

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2007, 10:16:10 PM »

When you use this argument you can argue that consciousness can be transferred if and only if the effective nature of the consciousness remains intact. Meaning while a person is dying as their consciousness is being moved to a new substrate, that person actually feels connected to the new substrate or body, thus proving that their awareness if following where you put it, but if this does not occur, all you have done was clone the person, which is not bad per se, but it's not real immortality.

-- Bridget

For lack of a better term, I've envisioned a similar thing, but parallel instead of series.  IOW, if you hooked a computer to my brain and allowed both to run in parallel, where the entire consciousness was running both in my brain and the computer in tandem, then killing me wouldn't have any effect.  The consciousness would survive intact and have no difference to me.

Just cloning my consciousness, however, and allowing it to run its course does my consciousness no good.   :(
Interesting idea, but if the portion of your consciousness running in the computer could survive independently of your brain, then weren't there always two separate persons to begin with?

Yep, here's the wikiarticle on the ship of theseus paradox. There are variations of it, but the premise is still the same. If I change am I still the same person?

-- Bridget
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markuzick

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2007, 01:59:03 AM »

Yes.  I didn't explain that well.  I'm talking about a complete copy that parallels for long enough to ensure the computer is stable where I would be aware and able to "homestead" in the computer.  Then, without un-paralleling, my brain is killed, leaving only the computer.  In this way, there are never two separate "me" consciousnesses.
Interesting, but how will you know for sure that after this "transmigration" into the computer that you will really experience an authentic state of consciousness and not just a simulation of it, or possibly it just becomes an authentic copy, but not really you?

Even if you "transmigrate" back and forth between the two brains, to make sure it works, you won't know if that was the real you experiencing life in a computer, if it's just a memory of another mind or a simulation, that was uploaded back.

If the brain and the computer are parallel copies of you, sufficiently independent, so that killing one does not kill the other, then how do you know they are both really you? Can you be two people and yet be one?
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As the state feeds off of the limitation and destruction of legitimate government, anarchy is its essence.

To claim "economic rent" from someone Else's labor when applied to land, which is something no one can own outright, is in itself, to claim landlord status over raw nature. It is an attempt at coercive monopoly power that is at the root of statism.

voodoo

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2007, 07:02:53 AM »

That's the scary part.  I figure someone else can do the beta testing and buy v1.0.  I'll wait for SP2 to come pre-installed!
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blackshard

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2007, 07:31:48 AM »

mmm cyborgs.  :D
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markuzick

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Re: A test of what you really believe about the nature of consciousness:
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2007, 10:22:13 AM »

That's the scary part.  I figure someone else can do the beta testing and buy v1.0.  I'll wait for SP2 to come pre-installed!
This only evades my questions, which in essence, are about how to interpret the results of the tests.
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As the state feeds off of the limitation and destruction of legitimate government, anarchy is its essence.

To claim "economic rent" from someone Else's labor when applied to land, which is something no one can own outright, is in itself, to claim landlord status over raw nature. It is an attempt at coercive monopoly power that is at the root of statism.
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