Re: Objective Meaning Must Exhibit Isomorphism

From: Nick Tarleton (
Date: Fri Mar 07 2008 - 11:21:29 MST

On Fri, Mar 7, 2008 at 9:14 AM, Lee Corbin <> wrote:
> Stathis writes
> > So if two computers implement Monday and Tuesday in isolation from
> > each other, i.e. purely by chance, there *won't* be subjective
> > continuity between them, while if two similar computers implement
> > Monday and Tuesday in a similar way, except the programmer set up
> > Tuesday having knowledge of Monday, there *will* be subjective
> > continuity between them? How is this discrepancy possible, if mental
> > states supervene on physical states?
> Oh, all of Monday will be filled with bonafide conscious experience
> of all entities lucky enough to be emulated, and so will Tuesday,
> But there will be no causal information flow between them, so for
> one instant between Monday 24:59:59.999... and Tuesday 12:00.00
> information flow will not exist. But the internal observers, of course,
> will lose almost nothing. This is not the case with dust between the
> stars, since no causal information flow connects any two instants.

But somewhere in the dust is the transition from moment 0 to moment 1,
somewhere is the transition from moment 1 to moment 2, ..., so every
transition is computed even though it's not the "same" state 1 in
between those two computations (or it is the same, but with a
different physical implementation).

In any case, I don't see that you could notice the lack of information
flow. Since (if) the mental supervenes on the physical, then for there
to be a noticeable difference the computation would have to come out
differently depending on the causal history of the initial state, an
arrant absurdity.

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