[FoRK] Extreme Life Extension: Investing in Cryonics for the Long, Long Term

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Mon Jun 21 20:27:45 PDT 2010

On Jun 21, 2010, at 10:09 PM, silky <michaelslists at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Tue, Jun 22, 2010 at 1:03 PM, Jeff Bone <jbone at mgrep.com> wrote:
>> On Jun 21, 2010, at 9:24 PM, silky <michaelslists at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> So you're not a believer in Mechanism:
>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mechanism_%28philosophy%29 ? I would've
>>> thought you would be. I mean, it doesn't matter what we pereceive as
>>> long as we can reproduce it in something else.
>> I find nothing there that argues for continuity;  in fact, exactly the opposite.  Don't like isms but that one is a
>> pretty good approximation of the hypotheses I hold true absent some contradiction or evidence otherwise.
>>  Confused about why you think that's inconsistent with something else I've asserted...?
> I thought you were suggesting it's just not possible to transfer a
> consciousness into a computer because there is identity is not what we
> think it is, therefore we can't copy it. Let me know if I've assumed
> too far.

Yeah, no, got that exactly backwards vs what I meant:  there are only states.  The notion of continuity between them is (under this hypothesis) an illusion.  The notion of "identity" usually assumes or implies that there is some thing that is greater than some set of states, or at least that requires some specific sequence of states.  I don't buy it.  Copy at will.  

 My point, though, was that EVEN IF you require continuity in your definition of identity, there are possible upload paths that are not equivalent to copying.  Assume that your neurons can be replaced, one at a time, with artificial functional equivalents.  Without your noticing.  This process proceeds.  At which point during the process do "you" die and "your copy" takes over?

(FYI, this is the Ship of Theseus argument I referred to as it applies to this topic.  Over the years, Theseus replaces each plank in his ship in the course of repairs. At which point is it no longer the "same" ship?)
> I think it's just interesting to ask which is the "real" you? Are they
> both the "real" you? 

I'm not sure the questions are about things that have any objectively meaningful interpretation.

Not saying they don't, just saying I don't know the answers nor bother much with them anymore, though I once did.


More information about the FoRK mailing list