Re: BLUE GENE and confusion about flops and tops and whistles

From: Phillip Huggan (
Date: Fri Apr 07 2006 - 17:35:49 MDT

>"J. Andrew Rogers" <> wrote: >>On Apr 6, 2006, at 11:21 AM, Phillip Huggan wrote:
>> Human neural synchronizations are an entirely different class of
>> phenomena than are the computer programming variety.
>On what grounds do you assert this? You appear to be saying that
>neural synchronization processes have no equivalent description in
>computer science. Apparently you know a lot more about both neuron
>behavior and computer science than the rest of us.
  No I'm saying they perform different functions. Apparently I know a lot more about neuron behaviour than the rest of you. :)

>Synchronization at its broadest abstraction has a pretty simple
>description and well understood mathematics. What kind of
>"synchronization" is this that it is outside the scope of
>conventional mathematics and engineering? Is it supernatural

It is quantum mechanical synchronization in the context of meatty neural nets. No silicon computer corollary. Biology not software.
>> There is no computer programming equivalent to the chemistry
>> hardware our brains run off of.
>This statement makes little sense on a couple different levels. The
>nature of the machinery is irrelevant to the software abstraction,
>except as an engineering detail. Without having any knowledge of the
>computational fundamentals used by the brain, I can still comfortably
>say that a silicon equivalent can be implemented in the language of
>your choice. Computation in its various forms is fungible.

There are few if any computation fundamentals responsible for originating intelligent behaviour in humans. Sure there are brain processes that can be mapped in computer code as computation, but that is misleading at best.
>> Computers don't use chemistry, brains do.
>You seem to think this statement is making some sort of distinction
>that does not exist. Chemistry is not magic nor does it have special
>extra-computational properties, and I have never seen a chemistry-
>free computer in any case.
  Computers won't and don't use chemistry as their basic fundamental process in devising intelligent behaviour. Human brains do.

>Clearly this topic has overwhelmed your imagination and
>understanding, because you are retreating to the position of ceding
>everything to the Big Mystery In The Sky and leaving it at that. It
>was not constructive when neolithic people did it, and it is not
>constructive now. Shock Level 4 indeed.

No I'm trying to deprogram as best I can the absurd notion that consciousness is nothing more than an act of computation. Moravec or Vinge or whoever first forwarded the idea, did so without a grounded understanding of neurochemistry or quantum mechanics.

Yahoo! Messenger with Voice. Make PC-to-Phone Calls to the US (and 30+ countries) for 2¢/min or less.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 17 2013 - 04:00:56 MDT