Re: [sl4] Re: More silly but friendly ideas

From: John K Clark (
Date: Thu Jul 03 2008 - 11:35:09 MDT

On Thu, 3 Jul 2008 08:32:14 -0700, "Lee Corbin" <>

> Examine in what sense?

In the sense of predicting what a mind canít do.

> It makes no sense to me that someone should examine
> my mind---even if they have 25th century technology
> and *because* of GŲdel's theorem prove that
> I have limitations.

If the above is true then it is an example of a true statement you
cannot understand. There are an infinity more of them.

> My only limitations---and thus the limitations
> of any mind, when you really come down to it
> are only that there is only so much time and so
> much effort that can be applied.

No, even if I give you infinite time there are some things you wonít

> That's true, but *only* if that mind
> limits itself to formal proofs.

Nobody is saying a mind will use the same procedures to decide things
that formal logic does, youíre right that is far too long and
cumbersome, but formal logic can show that any mind that is good enough
to do arithmetic is susceptible to getting into infinite loops
regardless of the details of its operation.

A real mind has the ability to detect when things are becoming
unproductive. Itís not a fool proof procedure; Turing proved that is
imposable, itís just some rules of thumb and the ability to become
impatient. A real mind can say ďIím bored with that, Iíll think about
something elseĒ; a slave AI with fixed goals couldnít do that. Infinite
loop time.

> What about a "fixed-goal mind" whose only passion
> was to find a scheme that unified GR and QM?

Then he will die because heís concentrating so hard on the intricacies
of string theory he fails to notice the cement truck heading right for
him as he crosses the street.

   John K Clark

  John K Clark
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