Re: Questions for Eliezer, SIAI and consciousness

From: Thomas Buckner (
Date: Tue Oct 26 2004 - 16:58:15 MDT

--- "J. Andrew Rogers"
<> wrote:

> sam kayley wrote:
> > What probability do you give for
> consciousness involving strange physics?
> "strange" physics? How is that different from
> normal physics?
> I would put the probability of some as of yet
> undiscovered attribute of
> physics being required to explain consciousness
> as hovering just above
> zero. Since there are plenty of strong
> theories that do not require
> "strange physics", I would invoke Occam's Razor
> here.
> j. andrew rogers
The only wiggle room I see for 'strange physics'
has to do with free will and
determinism/indeterminism. If we postulate that
all particle interactions can ultimately be
quantified so that a given arrangement and given
energy inputs and interactions MUST give a
certain resulting pattern, then free will is an
illusion. If a human can exist only in N possible
mental states, then the illusion of free will is
actually iteration within a set of states that
may repeat eternally. The only way out of such a
loop is for one's mind to expand (say by
uploading to become part of a much larger AI) or
for there to exist some yet-unidentified
indeterminism in the physics of minds.
If we assume that uploading does preserve the
identity, then subsequent transformations of the
uploaded mind could even 'leak' out of a
confining universe (for example one undergoing a
slow heat death) through mapping onto
mathematically isomorphic entities in other
universes (if quantum computers work as
Is that as good as immortality? Who knows, it's
all blue sky and gorilla dust. But I recall Kaku
said something about escaping from dying
universes, and it seems to me that if it's
possible, that's roughly how it might work.

Tom Buckner

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