Do we need consciousness?

Is the mind the same as the body? What is consciousness? Can machines have it?

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Zelebg
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Zelebg »

Dimebag wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 4:16 am Perceptual sensory modalities, operating with minimal attention, flagging issues where necessary as they interact with prelearned behaviour patterns, guiding those actions and providing sensory feedback to allow the motor areas to perform the correct actions.
How about we represent that with a diagram in terms of personal computer software and hardware components, so we can see where exactly could we fit the "missing link" that gives sentience to a machine? Something like this...

1. camera: wide sensory input
-> feeds into 2.
2. software A: flag issues/novel details, trim information
-> feeds into 3. "focused sensory input"
3. software B: encode for storage/learning, creativity algorithm
-> feeds into 4.
4. neural network software (memory) C: store data and functions
-> feeds into 2. & 3.
5. speake saysr: "I think, therefore I am"

I tried here to describe your view, but for example I don't see where would you put cognitive functions. Please add, remove or modify this diagram to fully represent what you are saying.
Zelebg
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Zelebg »

Eodnhoj7 wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:22 am Assumption of a point of reality, be it an abstraction, intuition or physical action that is percieved.

In assuming, thus being imprinted by this point, the point is inverted into a new set of points and is projected either into the observer or outwards thus forming a pattern.

This pattern is then reassummed, as a point of reality itself, and then divided/multiplied into new patterns that are projected.

Assuming localized portions, points, of reality.

Converging and diverging these patterns into new patterns.
I'm trying to narrow it down by being less abstract and more specific, in order to find a point where this mystery might connect with empirical realm of testing and measurement. You are widening it up. Why?
Dimebag
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Dimebag »

Zelebg wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:04 am
Dimebag wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 4:16 am Perceptual sensory modalities, operating with minimal attention, flagging issues where necessary as they interact with prelearned behaviour patterns, guiding those actions and providing sensory feedback to allow the motor areas to perform the correct actions.
How about we represent that with a diagram in terms of personal computer software and hardware components, so we can see where exactly could we fit the "missing link" that gives sentience to a machine? Something like this...

1. camera: wide sensory input
-> feeds into 2.
2. software A: flag issues/novel details, trim information
-> feeds into 3. "focused sensory input"
3. software B: encode for storage/learning, creativity algorithm
-> feeds into 4.
4. neural network software (memory) C: store data and functions
-> feeds into 2. & 3.
5. speake saysr: "I think, therefore I am"

I tried here to describe your view, but for example I don't see where would you put cognitive functions. Please add, remove or modify this diagram to fully represent what you are saying.
I don’t think software could achieve what perception does. Software would need to process sensory input and essentially “create” an internal representation or model of the incoming sensory signals, the raw signals alone are useless unless an internal world is “created” via a perceptual system.

I am not saying I understand why subjectivity is necessary to achieve global information sharing in the brain, but I believe it is, as that is what it is associated with. When we introduce awareness, or the “observer”, this allows the creation of a self awareness. When this awareness presumes that it is the owner of the body it senses and it’s thoughts and actions, and not merely the space in which they arise, then it creates a sense of agency which awareness assumes it owns. It can form beliefs about itself, limits of action, beliefs about it in relation to others. The “sense” of agency is actually an important limiting mechanism for behaviour, otherwise all possibilities are on the table, even the dangerous ones, or the ones which might get it in trouble with others. This self modelling can also be adapted to focus on people other than itself, which leads to a theory of mind, the ability to imagine what others know, or what they are thinking, and therefore to predict behaviour.
Eodnhoj7
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Eodnhoj7 »

Zelebg wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:41 am
Eodnhoj7 wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:22 am Assumption of a point of reality, be it an abstraction, intuition or physical action that is percieved.

In assuming, thus being imprinted by this point, the point is inverted into a new set of points and is projected either into the observer or outwards thus forming a pattern.

This pattern is then reassummed, as a point of reality itself, and then divided/multiplied into new patterns that are projected.

Assuming localized portions, points, of reality.

Converging and diverging these patterns into new patterns.
I'm trying to narrow it down by being less abstract and more specific, in order to find a point where this mystery might connect with empirical realm of testing and measurement. You are widening it up. Why?
Because abstractions and empirical phenomenon are both space.
SteveKlinko
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by SteveKlinko »

bahman wrote: Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:42 pm There are two sorts of minds: 1) Conscious and 2) Unconscious. The question is whether we even need conscious mind when the very important task like decision is made by unconscious mind (according to Libet's experiment).
Scientists can describe the Neural Activity that occurs in the Brain when we See. But they seem to be completely puzzled by the Conscious Visual experience that we have that is correlated with the Neural Activity. Incredibly, some even come to the conclusion that the Conscious experience is not even necessary! They can not find the Conscious experience in the Neurons so the experience must not have any function in the Visual process. They believe that the Neural Activity is sufficient for us to move around in the world without bumping into things. This is insane denial of the obvious purpose for Visual Consciousness. The Conscious Visual experience is the thing that allows us to move around in the world. Neural Activity is not enough. We would be blind without the Conscious Visual experience. The Conscious Visual experience contains vast amounts of information about the external world all packed up into a single thing. To implement all the functionality of the Conscious Visual experience with only Neural Activity would probably require a Brain as big as a refrigerator.

Scientists should not disregard the Conscious Visual experience. It's just another type of Data that can be analyzed. We should call it Conscious Data. We use and analyze this Conscious Visual Data all the time without realizing it. For example when I reach for my coffee mug I have a Conscious Visual experience where I See my hand moving toward the coffee mug. If My hand is off track I sense this in the Conscious Visual experience and adjust the movement of my hand. If I did not have the Conscious Visual experience I would not be able to pick up my coffee mug, or at least it would be much more difficult with just Neural Activity. So the Conscious Visual experience is just Data that helps us interact with the world. This Conscious Visual Data is absolutely necessary for us to function. Similar arguments can be made for the Conscious Auditory experience, the Conscious Smell experience, the Conscious Taste experience, and the Conscious Touch experience. All these experiences are just a type of Data that our Conscious Minds can analyze.

The Conscious Mind concept can be viewed as a kind of Conscious Processor that takes the Conscious Light, Sound, Smell, Taste, and Touch Experiences as Input Data to help it survive in the world. This is a very strange kind of Processing (although actually very familiar) and it is very different from the Processing that Computers can do. The Processing that the Conscious Mind does is also very different than the Neural Processing that the Brain does. Let's talk about the Color Red. In the Physical World we know that Red Light is an oscillating Electromagnetic phenomenon with a particular wavelength associated with it. In the Brain Red is the coordinated Firing of groups of specific Neurons. In the Conscious Mind Red is an Experience. In Computers Red is usually represented as the hex number 00FF0000 stored in a memory location. Electromagnetic Phenomena, Firing Neurons, the Red Experience, and the Number 00FF0000 are completely different kinds of Data.
Zelebg
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Zelebg »

SteveKlinko wrote: Sun Nov 10, 2019 9:32 pm The Conscious Visual experience is the thing that allows us to move around in the world.
Robots and worms can move around in the world. You are talking about awareness without explaining why it needs to be accompanied by _subjective_ or 1st person experience, as opposed to just have signals and information computation without anything in there experiencing anything.
Walker
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Walker »

Eodnhoj7 wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:49 pm Because abstractions and empirical phenomenon are both space.
Are you saying that abstractions create empirical phenomena?
Dimebag
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Dimebag »

Zelebg wrote: Mon Nov 11, 2019 5:43 am
SteveKlinko wrote: Sun Nov 10, 2019 9:32 pm The Conscious Visual experience is the thing that allows us to move around in the world.
Robots and worms can move around in the world. You are talking about awareness without explaining why it needs to be accompanied by _subjective_ or 1st person experience, as opposed to just have signals and information computation without anything in there experiencing anything.
What would there be to be aware of if there were no subjectivity?
Zelebg
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Zelebg »

SteveKlinko wrote: Sun Nov 10, 2019 9:32 pm Electromagnetic Phenomena, Firing Neurons, the Red Experience, and the Number 00FF0000 are completely different kinds of Data.
Photon contains and transmits information. Neuron firing contain and tranmit information. Color variable in software contains information.

What does experience do with information?
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bahman
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by bahman »

Dimebag wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 4:16 am
bahman wrote: Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:48 pm That doesn't make any sense to me: How something which is byprodcut of matter movement could itself give a task to matter? In materialism the process of motion of matter is blind. There is no experience when something is moving.
How do you view consciousness? Is it an epiphenomenal byproduct of the mind? If that’s the case, of course you view consciousness existing at the END of a causal chain, not as part OF the causal chain of human awareness and action selection. You thereby specify that consciousness has no function, and is then a useless byproduct, which of course is ridiculous. It obviously serves a purpose, otherwise we wouldn’t have it.
You also imagine that consciousness is something apart from the operation of the brain, and so have removed its potency and usefulness. Let us observe. When you are not paying attention to something, your potential for behaviour acting on that thing in question is limited, likely to some specific prelearned task, which no longer requires awareness to achieve a desired result. This is because the sensory and motor pathways have become that systematised that all possible outcomes have been accounted for, nothing unexpected will happen when performing that task, and so attention directs your awareness to more pertinent tasks, like daydreaming about what to have for lunch, or thinking about how consciousness works, or worrying about some meaningless silly thing which contains a higher degree of uncertainty.

There is still a low level of attention paid to the task being performed, monitoring the task, and flagging anything abnormal which will then direct the attention towards the anomaly, for further inspection. If I am, for instance, wiping the dishes, not paying attention, simply following set routines of wiping motions with the dishcloth to remove excess moisture from the dishes, and all of a sudden, something unexpected enters this lower level of perceptual monitoring, then this will direct my attention, my focus of vision, onto the anomaly in question, a piece of food which hasn’t been cleaned yet, and so the awareness determines that there is someone responsible for this anomaly, the dishwasher, and they must be notified of the issue, and so a novel verbal utterance is instantiated which will resolve the issue.

The awareness is basically the space in which issues are resolved and delegations to other sensory motor areas are tasked, based on previous understandings of routine and rules. If no existing rule or routine exists based on the detected anomaly, awareness then needs to recruit further abstract problem solving centres, and liaises with the various areas required for action, like a director or middle man.

So the system consists of:

Perceptual sensory modalities, operating with minimal attention, flagging issues where necessary as they interact with prelearned behaviour patterns, guiding those actions and providing sensory feedback to allow the motor areas to perform the correct actions. This involves an experiential consciousness, but which does not engage with awareness and so short term memory of these perceptions is very minimal, unless awareness is directed towards such an anomaly.

These lower level perceptions still produce a phenomenal consciousness, as this acts as the trigger or flag for which awareness is directed via attention mechanisms, which themselves exist outside of awareness, they simply pass information back and forth between the senses, awareness, and the motor cortex.

Awareness is a system or layer which exists on top of these lower perceptual and attentional layers, which serves as a space to assemble complex actions which aren’t part of existing learned behaviours. This system directs behaviours and, as those behaviours are repeated, stronger connections are formed between the systems in question, and learning occurs, which removes the need for awareness’ resources to be used to monitor those behaviours.
I think that consciousness is the ability (ability to experience) of the mind so mind through consciousness can actively affect reality. I was mentioning that in materialism (probably your view), consciousness is the result of matter movement. So consciousness is the by-product of matter activity and it cannot affect matter since matter itself moves according to laws of nature. Moreover, even if we accept that consciousness can play a role in reality then there could be tension in the motion of a person since his consciousness could say to go this way and laws of nature say to go that way. Moreover, how experience which is a subjective thing can possibly affect reality which is objective!?
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bahman
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by bahman »

SteveKlinko wrote: Sun Nov 10, 2019 9:32 pm
bahman wrote: Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:42 pm There are two sorts of minds: 1) Conscious and 2) Unconscious. The question is whether we even need conscious mind when the very important task like decision is made by unconscious mind (according to Libet's experiment).
Scientists can describe the Neural Activity that occurs in the Brain when we See. But they seem to be completely puzzled by the Conscious Visual experience that we have that is correlated with the Neural Activity. Incredibly, some even come to the conclusion that the Conscious experience is not even necessary! They can not find the Conscious experience in the Neurons so the experience must not have any function in the Visual process. They believe that the Neural Activity is sufficient for us to move around in the world without bumping into things. This is insane denial of the obvious purpose for Visual Consciousness. The Conscious Visual experience is the thing that allows us to move around in the world. Neural Activity is not enough. We would be blind without the Conscious Visual experience. The Conscious Visual experience contains vast amounts of information about the external world all packed up into a single thing. To implement all the functionality of the Conscious Visual experience with only Neural Activity would probably require a Brain as big as a refrigerator.

Scientists should not disregard the Conscious Visual experience. It's just another type of Data that can be analyzed. We should call it Conscious Data. We use and analyze this Conscious Visual Data all the time without realizing it. For example when I reach for my coffee mug I have a Conscious Visual experience where I See my hand moving toward the coffee mug. If My hand is off track I sense this in the Conscious Visual experience and adjust the movement of my hand. If I did not have the Conscious Visual experience I would not be able to pick up my coffee mug, or at least it would be much more difficult with just Neural Activity. So the Conscious Visual experience is just Data that helps us interact with the world. This Conscious Visual Data is absolutely necessary for us to function. Similar arguments can be made for the Conscious Auditory experience, the Conscious Smell experience, the Conscious Taste experience, and the Conscious Touch experience. All these experiences are just a type of Data that our Conscious Minds can analyze.

The Conscious Mind concept can be viewed as a kind of Conscious Processor that takes the Conscious Light, Sound, Smell, Taste, and Touch Experiences as Input Data to help it survive in the world. This is a very strange kind of Processing (although actually very familiar) and it is very different from the Processing that Computers can do. The Processing that the Conscious Mind does is also very different than the Neural Processing that the Brain does. Let's talk about the Color Red. In the Physical World we know that Red Light is an oscillating Electromagnetic phenomenon with a particular wavelength associated with it. In the Brain Red is the coordinated Firing of groups of specific Neurons. In the Conscious Mind Red is an Experience. In Computers Red is usually represented as the hex number 00FF0000 stored in a memory location. Electromagnetic Phenomena, Firing Neurons, the Red Experience, and the Number 00FF0000 are completely different kinds of Data.
How do you know that consciousness is required for the motion of an agent? As I mentioned any decision is made by unconscious mind, therefore, any motion is the result of the unconscious activity (like sleepwalking).
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bahman
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by bahman »

Zelebg wrote: Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:46 am
SteveKlinko wrote: Sun Nov 10, 2019 9:32 pm Electromagnetic Phenomena, Firing Neurons, the Red Experience, and the Number 00FF0000 are completely different kinds of Data.
Photon contains and transmits information. Neuron firing contain and tranmit information. Color variable in software contains information.

What does experience do with information?
Yeah, that is an important question. Moreover, how experience can affect information?
Dimebag
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Dimebag »

bahman wrote: Mon Nov 11, 2019 11:01 am I think that consciousness is the ability (ability to experience) of the mind so mind through consciousness can actively affect reality. I was mentioning that in materialism (probably your view), consciousness is the result of matter movement. So consciousness is the by-product of matter activity and it cannot affect matter since matter itself moves according to laws of nature. Moreover, even if we accept that consciousness can play a role in reality then there could be tension in the motion of a person since his consciousness could say to go this way and laws of nature say to go that way. Moreover, how experience which is a subjective thing can possibly affect reality which is objective!?
What is mind to you?

My view is that, consciousness emerges from specific activity of the brain. It could be materialism, however, materialism doesn’t always capture the way things emerge from complexity, so you could say I am a complex systems emergentist. There is a stigma associated with materialism that it is interested only in the most fundamental, which is physics, however, we don’t use physics to understand biology, we need chemistry which is a layer of complexity which emerges from physics, and then biology then emerges from the complexity of organic chemistry. Our biology consists of a system of complexity we call genetics. From this layer of complexity, proteins emerge, which are the building blocks of organisms, and greater structures of the body are created. Then we have the nervous system, which is the basis for signalling, and is good enough to produce reflexes to stimuli.

But in order to produce more novel behaviour, another layer of complexity must be built, the brain, an extension of the nervous system, which senses signals from the body and creates worlds from signals from sense organs. These worlds are the brains ability to break up signals and make some sense of them, interpreting what is useful to the organism. It allows learning as without this inner world, there is only reaction. More complex behaviour is possible now that this world of representation. Then we have the cortex which is literally a crumpled up sheet or layer existing on top of the lower brain, this is where this inner world is created. The cortex also allows concepts based on the inner world, which can be used for internal cognition, or even communicated externally.

On top of all this, awareness sits, observing the inner world. Sometimes it is engrossed in it, and is along for the ride, watching as stimulus leads to action, and execution of complex learned behaviours, ensuring all goes to plan and adjusting when necessary.

So from fundamental physics we have at minimum, nine levels of complexity, sitting atop one another. Each level can be understood based on its own frame of reference, only requiring the explanation of how its fundamental constituents combine to produce this new emergent layer with its own rules theories to be applied.

I am sure there are several layers of emergence from brain to consciousness which are either not yet understood, or not even yet described by science.
Eodnhoj7
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Eodnhoj7 »

Walker wrote: Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:03 am
Eodnhoj7 wrote: Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:49 pm Because abstractions and empirical phenomenon are both space.
Are you saying that abstractions create empirical phenomena?
They form them, yes. They are inherently interlinked.

Example:

A picture of a table in the mind.

A tree is harvested. The wood is formed according to the abstractions (image, ratios of lengths, etc.).

At the more advanced level you get the tech we are having this discussion on.

At the more advanced level gravity manipulation and time travel as time is a material.

Etc.


Technology is a projection of our values, nothing more or less.
Skepdick
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Re: Do we need consciousness?

Post by Skepdick »

Walker wrote: Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:03 am Are you saying that abstractions create empirical phenomena?
According to Kant - yes.

Noumena are said to exist independent of human minds, but we know nothing about them. in so far as we speak about noumena (and ignore Wittgenstein's sacred 'Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.') they are only a concept - an empty abstraction.

A contour devoid of fidelity.
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