RE: c * (positive qualia -negative qualia) + (1-c)* (total complexity of pattern)

From: Ben Goertzel (
Date: Tue Jan 06 2004 - 05:16:51 MST

> > Which Curzio has bigger/more-intense qualia? No doubt Curzio_a is less
> > complex, in terms of enacted brain-complexity (if not "potential
> > complexity", i.e. he might return to something resembling his
> old self if
> > the Orgasmotron were shut off and hidden from him).
> 1. The orgasmotron machine, if it existed, would make sure that
> the brain is
> just as active as it needs to be to generate the maximum qualia
> that can be
> experienced by the human brain.
> 2. But again, what is the enacted brain-complexity of an orgasm?
> Anyway the positive qualia part is the least important part of
> the objective
> morality I was proposing; the more immediate need is to eliminate negative
> ones from sentient beings, I don't think it is as controversial.

You can't separate the issue of the intensity of negative qualia from the
issue of the intensity of positive qualia.

Although, from one perspective (Peirce's First; see, each quale is a kind of universe
unto itself; from another perspective (Peirce's Third), all qualia are

This is the spiritual and metaphysical truth to which Nietzsche referred
when, in Thus Spake Zarathustra, he wrote:

"Did you ever say Yes to one joy? O my friends, then you said Yes to all woe
as well. All things are chained and entwined together, all things are in

and, elsewhere,

"How little you know of human happiness, you comfortable and benevolent
people, for happiness and unhappiness are sisters and even twins that either
grow up together or, as in your case, remain small together."

Eliminating negative qualia, at least in the context of human psychology,
would eliminate positive qualia as well. The extent to which this will also
be true for AI's is an interesting question. There's no doubt that
philosophy like Nietzsche's, while deep and penetrating, is to an extent a
direct reflection of aspects of human psychology.

-- Ben G

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