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by TrlstanC
Fri Nov 10, 2017 2:41 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The Assumptions of Searle’s Chinese Room Thought Experiment
Replies: 23
Views: 834

Re: The Assumptions of Searle’s Chinese Room Thought Experiment

I wouldn't say that (phenomenal) consciousness is the subjective experience of a physical force; it's not like, as in your example, magnetism is consciousness, or anything like that. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't? The fact that we have no idea what causes conscious experiences makes it hard to say ei...
by TrlstanC
Fri Nov 10, 2017 2:27 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The Assumptions of Searle’s Chinese Room Thought Experiment
Replies: 23
Views: 834

Re: The Assumptions of Searle’s Chinese Room Thought Experiment

Saying that everything has a first-person experience as a subject isn't really any more interesting or substantive a statement than saying everything has a third-person behavior as an object: okay, but what is its behavior, what is its experience, in short what is its function? That's what really m...
by TrlstanC
Thu Nov 09, 2017 8:37 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The Assumptions of Searle’s Chinese Room Thought Experiment
Replies: 23
Views: 834

The Assumptions of Searle’s Chinese Room Thought Experiment

I recently stumbled on this Talk at Google where Searle discusses the Chinese Room at length. It's a great review of the argument, and a number of raise good, if typical, questions at the end. Here's the wikipedia page for Searle's Chinese room thought experiment . The experiment is part of the foll...
by TrlstanC
Tue Nov 13, 2012 6:06 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

I'm going to try and take this back to some more concrete footing. First, just stating a couple assumptions. I'm not really going to try and defend or justify them here, if anyone has a serious objection to any of them, than that's probably an entirely different discussion: 1. Animals (at least us, ...
by TrlstanC
Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:50 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Voting Third Party.
Replies: 103
Views: 20469

Re: Voting Third Party.

Duverger's law Duverger's Law is slightly more specific in that it looks at the way votes are cast and counted. And it's certainly true that some systems of voting are more likely to create, or reinforce two party systems. But there's a couple reasons why focusing too much on mechanics can be a mis...
by TrlstanC
Mon Nov 05, 2012 4:25 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Voting Third Party.
Replies: 103
Views: 20469

Re: Voting Third Party.

Yep. Non-FPTP exists in other countries, though. How did they get it? I believe it's mostly a matter of how the system was initially set up. Most systems develop a certain degree of inertia, so as they gain size, it's hard to do the kind of sweeping changes you can initially. Most third (or fourth,...
by TrlstanC
Wed Oct 24, 2012 9:05 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: For those of us in non-swing states
Replies: 23
Views: 7399

Re: For those of us in non-swing states

I posted an argument here ( Is it worth going to vote ) that argues that the same reasoning we can use to vote for a third party candidate in non-swing states, can be used to vote for either of the major party candidates as well. Your individual vote isn't going to change the winner of the election,...
by TrlstanC
Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:17 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

Honestly, if it gets the same outcomes, I don't care about the process. I'll call it intelligent if it can act more or less like a human. I'd agree, if something acts more or less human, than we should definitely call it inteligent. And since nothing we've ever made does act more or less human, tha...
by TrlstanC
Thu Oct 18, 2012 5:50 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

After some reflection, I think that this might be a problem of language, more than a problem of research. Particularly in regards to AI which I think our best bet at learning more about human intelligence and consciousness. When we say "Artificial Intelligence" I think most people take it ...
by TrlstanC
Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:56 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is knowledge justified true belief?
Replies: 136
Views: 45273

Re: Is knowledge justified true belief?

Bringing this thread back because I was recently discussing this topic, and there were a couple points that I think are worth clarifying: 1. The only significant change I proposed to the old JTB definition was to replace "justified" with the definition of justified. Apparently though there...
by TrlstanC
Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:59 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it worth going to vote?
Replies: 92
Views: 16780

Re: Is it worth going to vote?

That's information you're obscuring with noise if you make people vote. I WANT presidents to realize when nobody is really that enthused about them, and they lack a convincing mandate. I don't want to make people vote, and if people really don't care either way, then I don't think they should vote ...
by TrlstanC
Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:06 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it worth going to vote?
Replies: 92
Views: 16780

Re: Is it worth going to vote?

I don't see voter turnout as an end in itself. If someone does not care who gets elected, and would prefer to not vote...excellent. Forcing such a person to vote merely increases the signal to noise ratio. Hell, if nobody else opted to vote at all, that makes my vote more valuable. So, it's actuall...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 21, 2012 6:37 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it worth going to vote?
Replies: 92
Views: 16780

Is it worth going to vote?

A few years ago Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt (the authors of Freakonomics ) published an article that made the argument that it wasn't worth voting, and then questioned why people do it anyways. The argument pretty much boils down to "the chances of your vote changing the outcome of an elec...
by TrlstanC
Wed Sep 19, 2012 6:02 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

And here's another new article that features the otherside of learning about the brain - getting one and cutting it up (and maybe shooting lasers at it). Inside Paul Allen's Quest To Reverse Engineer The Brain While it's great to see the amount of interest and funding these kinds of projects are get...
by TrlstanC
Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:23 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

Here's some new results out of a brain modeling project: Blue Brain Project Accurately Predicts Connections between Neurons

This seems like fairly positive news, since this is still early in the project's development, and they're already getting interesting results.
by TrlstanC
Tue Sep 18, 2012 1:26 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

At some point, we'd hook this shit up to the internet. Not just that--imagine giving a machine 'eyes' so it could see. At somepoint soon, hooking up to the internet will be giving a machine eyes. With the IPv6 protocol virtually every sensor and device on the planet can get it's own IP address. A m...
by TrlstanC
Mon Sep 17, 2012 8:11 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

A lot of innovation is random. Are we sure that innovation is random? Or would it be more accurate to say that we don't have sufficient access to the process of innovation that we can't describe the source(s) of innovation. And this is a great example of why I always keep this rule in mind. Could i...
by TrlstanC
Mon Sep 17, 2012 8:07 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

What I'm saying (perhaps crudely; I think I got carried away with my atom example) is that simulations of reality can only tell us as much as they 'know'. They're only as good as they are accurate. The less accurate they are, the less information they can give us. I think that's only if we focus on...
by TrlstanC
Mon Sep 17, 2012 7:25 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

So... why not just perform the experiments on our brains? Besides the ethical reasons of experimenting on living brains, two good points that Furber made in his article about the SpiNNaker are that besides learning how the human brain works, his (and other similiar projects) can also: 1. help us le...
by TrlstanC
Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:33 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

I'm sorry, but #2 sounds like bizarro-wacky-town. If I want to understand a heart, I don't try to build an artificial heart, then take it apart to figure out how real hearts work. I grab a real heart and study that . Why the hell would we create artificial intelligence, then analyze it to understan...
by TrlstanC
Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:08 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

TrlstanC, I'm trying to understand what the hell you're saying but I'm genuinely clueless. I see AI as currently taking two directions: 1. as a tool - this technology is generally built to compliment human abilities, and takes advantage of the strengths of digital computing, crunching lots of numbe...
by TrlstanC
Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:38 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

When looking at how we got to our current situation through evolution, this observation about the amount of information we have to deal with (or that we have available to us, or that we are completely awash in), can hopefully give us a new perspective on some ideas about our behavior or how our cons...
by TrlstanC
Sun Sep 16, 2012 11:36 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

And perhaps I am mistaken, but we process as much information as we need. Think parsimony. This could easily be taken to be saying that all of our decisions are perfect, given all available (and historically available) information. Or that, there's no way we could've been more evolutionary successf...
by TrlstanC
Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:14 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

There's certainly the discussion to be had about why we evolved the kind of consciousness we did, or why we (and other animals) evolved to be conscious at all. I don't think this rule (that the brain receives many more bits of information than it can process intelligently, and that we can only consc...
by TrlstanC
Sat Sep 15, 2012 1:23 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

Sure, but you're not honestly claiming we have HD-quality memories of *everything*, are you? Oh no, certainly not. In fact the visual data we do remember is probably mostly relationships and patterns, and I'd guess that very little of it is actual visual 'data'. But I'd estimate that the visual inf...
by TrlstanC
Sat Sep 15, 2012 1:46 am UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

Why not? We do process huge amounts of information, even if a lot of that processing is saying "This doesn't matter; throw it out." I know that's a form of processing, but it's certainly not making use of, especially if the throwing out happens way before we get a chance to "think&qu...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 14, 2012 6:36 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

What most people understand by rational is something along the lines of "optimal given the information available". If we did not justify something consciously it does not imply we did not act rationally. I think most people would say rational is "optimal given the information availab...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 14, 2012 6:06 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

I'm not even talking about heart beat, breathing, etc. Although, calling those the "rational" choice seems a bit weird. I mean things like, choosing which route to drive to work, actually driving the car, obeying traffic laws. Even things like conversation, there is research supporting the...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 14, 2012 5:32 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

Re: The first rule of consciousness?

If anyone missed the point about consciousness then: Rc, the Rate at which we can consciously understand the information available to us, is much much less than the rate at which information becomes available. People often make the assumption that we're rational, or mostly rational, that we consciou...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 14, 2012 2:52 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: The first rule of consciousness?
Replies: 92
Views: 20283

The first rule of consciousness?

As I've read more about trying to replicate human consciousness or at least intelligence, as well as attempts to set a standard for consciousness, either artificial, or in other animals, there's one area that seems overlooked to me. The fact that our understanding of the world is based on our consci...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:22 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: US political culture - How did we get here?
Replies: 65
Views: 13165

Re: US political culture - How did we get here?

Voter turnout is a problem for both parties in the sense that over 1/3 of registered voters, don't. But low voter turnout, including policies that restrict voting, tend to benefit republicans. It's also why we're seeing laws aimed at restricting voter turnout being enacted by republican state congre...
by TrlstanC
Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:35 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: US political culture - How did we get here?
Replies: 65
Views: 13165

Re: US political culture - How did we get here?

I'm pretty suspicious of any piece that manages to wholly blame one party. Oh, the republicans have a list of democrats that are commies. Yeah, that's NEVER happened before . Both parties blame each other of ridiculous things all the time. Suspicion is appropriate, but the argument they present is ...
by TrlstanC
Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:28 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: US political culture - How did we get here?
Replies: 65
Views: 13165

Re: US political culture - How did we get here?

A good opinion piece in the Washington Post that covers this issue, and pretty much lays the blame at the radicalization of the Republican party over the 20 years. Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem. I'd still argue that the fault ultimately lies with us, the American voter, for lett...
by TrlstanC
Wed Sep 05, 2012 4:28 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: US political culture - How did we get here?
Replies: 65
Views: 13165

Re: US political culture - How did we get here?

I think that the biggest problem is the voters. We generally don't pay enough (or often any) attention, a huge proportion don't bother to vote at all, and when we do vote we overwhelming vote along party lines. Worst of all, almost everyone thinks they're right, and thinks that anyone that disagrees...
by TrlstanC
Fri Aug 24, 2012 3:29 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warming?
Replies: 1714
Views: 275928

Re: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warmi

This isn't a discussion about what's a "reasonable response to different kinds of advice", it's a discussion of "can you trust experts?" And unless someone wants to try and prove that "you should question everything, and only trust what you can independently verify" the...
by TrlstanC
Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:09 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warming?
Replies: 1714
Views: 275928

Re: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warmi

An overwhelming majority of experts agree that: it's gotten warmer, and human actions have an influence. That isn't what I'd call justification for massive projects aimed at sequestration or eliminating CO2 emissions. But it could be justification of at least looking for less disruptive solutions? ...
by TrlstanC
Thu Aug 23, 2012 8:33 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warming?
Replies: 1714
Views: 275928

Re: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warmi

If we look at it from a simple perspective like "is warming happening", then yes, we absolutely have wide consensus. However, we get vastly more disagreement when you look at more detailed issues, like how much warming, what is most economical to do about it, etc. It is fair to say that l...
by TrlstanC
Thu Aug 23, 2012 7:53 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warming?
Replies: 1714
Views: 275928

Re: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warmi

In fact it is the presentation of evidence as "overwhelming" and "settled" which makes me more apt to question it. Science is never settled, anyone who claims that it is so is lying, full stop. I don't think anyone who's seriously spoken on the topic has called the issue of glob...
by TrlstanC
Thu Aug 23, 2012 6:02 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warming?
Replies: 1714
Views: 275928

Re: Is it possible to have a rational debate on global warmi

I think that a rational discussion of a response to global climate change is inevitable. Every year the weather is getting more extreme, and it's not just hotter max temps, its lower lows, worse droughts, and worse floods. The changes aren't so extreme right now that people can't adapt, but if these...
by TrlstanC
Thu Aug 23, 2012 3:17 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: What’s the best piece of advice you could give to everyone?
Replies: 121
Views: 26696

Re: What’s the best piece of advice you could give to everyo

I really like "Don't be an asshole"; it's less vague than "do unto others..." and I believe it fairly well matches the ground rules in the OP. People very rarely intend to be an ass, and most of the time when they are, they don't realize it. The few times that that is their inte...

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