Re: [sl4] Is belief in immortality computable?

From: John K Clark (
Date: Sat May 23 2009 - 10:45:16 MDT


>> The analogous statement for physics would be
>> that there will always be observations that cannot
>> be explained by existing laws of physics.


> If by "observation" you mean "phenomenon expressible
> as a mathematical sentence", yes.

I most certainly do NOT mean that! In the 19íth century it was observed
that the Earth must be at least a billion years old but the Sun could be
no more than 50 million years old because no known physical process
could supply the energy to power it for a longer time. These
contradictory observations could not be explained by the then known laws
of physics; and it has absolutely nothing to do with ďmathematical
sentencesĒ expressible or otherwise.

>> If it can be proven then it can be derived from axioms;
>> thatís what proven means.


> That's why I said that this goal is trivial.

No itís not trivial, itís IDENTICAL. Derived is just another word for
proved. I donít know why you even bring it up.

> it's probably practically impossible to derive
> the properties of water from quantum mechanics

If true and you canít even figure out that water is wet how can you hope
to deduce the existence of Shakespeare from quantum mechanics, or figure
out that the universe will be hospitable to life, not for a
astronomically large number of years but for a INFINITE number of years?

> If approximations are sufficient [Ö]

Obviously approximations are NOT sufficient if youíre dealing with
infinite amounts of time, and probably not sufficient if youíre dealing
with next week.

 John K Clark

  John K Clark
-- - Faster than the air-speed velocity of an
                          unladen european swallow

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