Are you willing to become part of a simulation?

Jeff Bone jbone at
Tue Apr 29 10:59:35 PDT 2003

On Tuesday, Apr 29, 2003, at 09:32 US/Central, Gregory Alan Bolcer 

> I think the issue I always had with "A Conversation
> with Einstein's Brain" was that paper is so static and
> that wetware is very dynamic and once you shoot the
> book off into space, how would you go about changing
> it?  There's no learning involved, no dynamic change,
> so it'll never be anything more than a static
> snapshot.  At the point it's split off and "finished"
> it'll be nothing more than a cheap copy.

This is a reasonable point of view.  The problem here is that some 
interpretations of quantum mechanics assume that, in some macro sense 
not (usually) directly accessible to us, the phase space "exists" in 
its entirety, all at once.  Hence, the sense of "learning" and "dynamic 
change" you experience is nothing more than state change between 
subsequent slices of the phase space, and those slices are sequenced 
only by virtue of the probabilities attached to the transitions between 
them, which have more to do w/ the amount and kinds of change between 
them than any necessary structural arrangement.  (The latter is the 
point of looking at the phase space as e.g. being representable in 
Champerknowne's number.)

If you were adequately encoded declaratively on those pages of paper, 
they would capture your illusion of learning and change, and you 
wouldn't know the difference.  (As well they would capture your sense 
of dismay at realizing that, in some global sense, this all adds up to 
a macro kind of determinism. ;-)

Also note that, despite anticipated protestations to the contrary, 
other QM concepts like Feynman's summing over histories maps fairly 
well to what we're talking about here.  Think about it.


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