Re: [sl4] Uploading (was : goals of AI)

From: Frank Adamek (
Date: Thu Dec 03 2009 - 22:09:05 MST

--- On Thu, 12/3/09, Stathis Papaioannou <> wrote:

From: Stathis Papaioannou <>
Subject: Re: [sl4] Uploading (was : goals of AI)
Date: Thursday, December 3, 2009, 4:16 PM

2009/12/4 Frank Adamek <>
> I don't think that my consciousness relies on such a low level of matter, that of atoms and molecules. My guess is the stability of the neurons and their synaptic connections and strengths makes me the same person from moment to moment. Considering the gradual replacement of components in neurons, I don't consider these things to be destroyed over time. With regard to duplication and destruction, is your best estimate that copying the configuration of cells and synapses is sufficient to make another instance of you? This would be the same as my belief that it is that level of organization which makes me "me".

But why would instant replacement of the brain be a problem if gradual
replacement isn't?

That is to say: I put a high probability on the idea that my brain is not gradually replaced, at the relevant level of organization. 

> I admit that it it is possible for subjective experience to be an illusion, and that perhaps we are never justified in expecting to experience the future. I have no strong evidence against this proposition. However, I also have no strong evidence for this proposition. Considering that a life of subjective experience could be at stake, I have a very large preference for a cautious approach in my own uploading.

My present physical body won't be around in a year's time, but there
will be another body made up of different matter in approximately the
same configuration, which will consider itself to be me. These are the
facts of the matter. Whether we say that I survive this process or
that there is only the illusion of survival is a matter of semantics,
and makes no difference to how I feel about myself or my future

Stathis Papaioannou
I  agree that those are the objective facts of the matter. That this is a merely semantic difference to you displays that either you do not believe in a subjective experience, or that you have no concern for it. With regards to your own life I have no problem with the second (no snide remark just a support for self-determination), but for any who might care about the subjective, it seems dangerous and lacking in sufficient evidence to assume that it does not exist. 


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