There is no emergence

How does science work? And what's all this about quantum mechanics?

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Skepdick
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:31 pm

PTH wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 3:25 pm
In fairness, that's not a maybe. Its a no.
In fairness, nobody can hold you to account on this meaningless assertion.

Even if science were to pull an artificial consciousness out of a hat tomorrow, we can't even establish whether it meets your expectations for being a "sufficient explanation". You are working over-time at avoiding commitment as to what your expectations from an "explanation" are.

Philosophical insurance is the equivalent of "not even wrong".

PTH
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by PTH » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:18 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:31 pm
PTH wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 3:25 pm
In fairness, that's not a maybe. Its a no.
In fairness, nobody can hold you to account on this meaningless assertion.

Even if science were to pull an artificial consciousness out of a hat tomorrow, we can't even establish whether it meets your expectations for being a "sufficient explanation". You are working over-time at avoiding commitment as to what your expectations from an "explanation" are.

Philosophical insurance is the equivalent of "not even wrong".
Tbh, I think its more that you're not taking into account where the matter rests.

Absolutely, part of the problem is not being clear about what exactly consciousness is (as in what exactly we mean when we say 'consciousness') - and what would demonstrate it, if we were all able to agree on what we mean. And this is a difficult question; if it was easy, someone would have an answer that we'd all agree with, a definition or meaning that we all saw to be adequate.

Where it currently stands, some of us regard consciousness as a thing that can't be denied - and it looks unconvincing when someone makes statements that either deny it, or say some that is close to denying it.

And, also filling out the context, is the fact that we don't have machines wandering around that seem so human we can't tell the difference. So, for now, there's no more need to consider how exactly we'd test for consciousness, any more than we need to consider how exactly we test someone claiming to be a time traveller.

If a someone switched on a chess programme on a computer, and the computer replied "I just don't want to play chess today" - in a context where this wasn't an expected feature of the computer - it might mean there was something to explain. Until then, there really isn't.

Again, that might be something to reflect on to understand why folk don't just accept your view as satifactory. The point isn't whether Alexa switching on the lights is a good example of conscious behavior, making it identical to any other entity that we might claim to have consciousness. Up to a point, its nearly about how Alexa doesn't do inexplicable things. Like demanding full political rights, and voting for Nigel Farage.

Skepdick
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:27 pm

PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:18 pm
Tbh, I think its more that you're not taking into account where the matter rests.
I am. The matter rests with epistemology and the problem of criterion.

Your admission criteria for "knowledge" are entirely 100% subjective. Is X knowledge? Does X explain? You get to decide that all for yourself.
PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:18 pm
Absolutely, part of the problem is not being clear about what exactly consciousness is (as in what exactly we mean when we say 'consciousness') - and what would demonstrate it, if we were all able to agree on what we mean. And this is a difficult question; if it was easy, someone would have an answer that we'd all agree with, a definition or meaning that we all saw to be adequate.
That's a moot point. The scientific method (as practiced by humans) is 100% subjective. It has nothing to do with agreeing with others. Science is about agreeing with yourself first, then convincing others that you are right (or convincing yourself that you are wrong).

If you can't even be certain (all by yourself) what would explain a phenomenon ANY phenomenon to you - you are epistemically fucked.
And if you happen to be absolutely certain that nothing could ever explain it to you, then why bother seeking an explanation?
PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:18 pm
it looks unconvincing when someone makes statements that either deny it, or say some that is close to denying it.
You miss the point. Scientific explanation IS metaphysical denial.

If I can account for consciousness with a scientific model, THEN consciousness doesn't "exist"!
If science explains gravity in terms of gravitons THEN gravity will cease to "exist"!

Because the existential quantifier is just a metaphysical artefact.

The fact that you don't understand this shows tremendous gaps in your epistemology.

It is an entirely different matter altogether whether our epistemic standards are aligned. What convinces you needs not convince me.

Skepdick
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:41 pm

PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:18 pm
Where it currently stands, some of us regard consciousness as a thing that can't be denied
Of course it can be denied. Anything can be denied. It's just a word.

All I know is that I exist.

Am I conscious? How can I even answer that question if I don't know what consciousness is?

If I don't understand the question, how can I meaningfully utter the sentence "I am conscious."?

PTH
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by PTH » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:47 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:27 pm
Your admission criteria for "knowledge" are entirely 100% subjective. Is X knowledge? Does X explain? You get to decide that all for yourself.
It really isn't; its just pointing out that (unless we want to retreat into pedantry) some things are not worth doubting.

That fact is independent of my subjective views. Actually, the point is that this is true, even if I want to doubt it. I could tract back over the last 5 million posts, and remind you of that comment by Russell. I once received a letter from an eminent logician, Mrs. Christine Ladd-Franklin, saying that she was a solipsist, and was surprised that there were no others..

Again, if we'd any doubts about us both being conscious, we wouldn't be having this engagement.

If your next reply is "404 Not Found", I'll start doubting consciousness.

(Except, I won't now because I just suggested it. As Monty Python pointed out, only the true Messiah denies his divinity.)
Skepdick wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:27 pm
If I can account for consciousness with a scientific model, THEN consciousness doesn't "exist"!
In a manner of speaking.

How close do you think science is to accounting for consciousness?

Skepdick
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:51 pm

PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:47 pm
It really isn't; its just pointing out that (unless we want to retreat into pedantry) some things are not worth doubting.
Guess we can never agree here. If you want to understand - you must doubt everything. Even the language you are using.

If pedantry is the cost - I pay it gladly.

But it's not a cost, it's an investment. If you don't understand how language works, your mind is in a prison made of other people's words.
Have you ever doubted the very meaning of the verb "understand". How do you know that you understand?

If you can't answer that for yourself - you are epistemically fucked.
PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:47 pm
Again, if we'd any doubts about us both being conscious, we wouldn't be having this engagement.
Again. I don't know if you or I are conscious. But I know we are having this conversation.

I am certain about our existence, I am doubtful of our "consciousness". After all - you admit that we don't even know what the word means, so how could we possibly assert this about ourselves; or ascribe this property to ourselves?

If "consciousness" was just the ability to communicate, use and evolve language - AI can do that.
PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:47 pm
If your next reply is "404 Not Found", I'll start doubting consciousness.
Don't doubt it - just explain to me how you use that word. I have just discarded it from my vocabulary.

Since as far as I am concerned it doesn't exist.
PTH wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:47 pm
How close do you think science is to accounting for consciousness?
From my epistemic criterion? It has already been accounted for (and therefore - it doesn't exist). I cannot speak for you.

But you already asked me this question and I already answered you here.

Like I said - if you can't account for your own expectations, you are epistemically fucked.

PTH
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by PTH » Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:30 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:51 pm
If pedantry is the cost - I pay it gladly.
What does gladly mean?

Skepdick
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:42 pm

PTH wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:30 pm
Skepdick wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:51 pm
If pedantry is the cost - I pay it gladly.
What does gladly mean?
What do you mean by 'mean'?
We cannot define anything precisely. If we attempt to, we get into that paralysis of thought that comes to philosophers, who sit opposite each other, one saying to the other, "You don't know what you are talking about!". The second one says, "What do you mean by know? What do you mean by talking? What do you mean by you?" --Richard Feynman
I just know how to use these words, it doesn't mean I know what they mean.

PTH
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by PTH » Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:02 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:42 pm
PTH wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:30 pm
Skepdick wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:51 pm
If pedantry is the cost - I pay it gladly.
What does gladly mean?
What do you mean by 'mean'?
When would you say "I pay it" and when would you say "I pay it gladly"?

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Sculptor
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Sculptor » Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:51 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:42 pm
PTH wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:30 pm
Skepdick wrote:
Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:51 pm
If pedantry is the cost - I pay it gladly.
What does gladly mean?
What do you mean by 'mean'?
We cannot define anything precisely. If we attempt to, we get into that paralysis of thought that comes to philosophers, who sit opposite each other, one saying to the other, "You don't know what you are talking about!". The second one says, "What do you mean by know? What do you mean by talking? What do you mean by you?" --Richard Feynman
I just know how to use these words, it doesn't mean I know what they mean.
What does mean mean? What is what? What the f u c k ?
I see the conversation has descended into the gloop of philosophic turpitude.

Skepdick
Posts: 1725
Joined: Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:16 am

Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:41 pm

PTH wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:02 pm
When would you say "I pay it" and when would you say "I pay it gladly"?
Whenever I feel like it. Why do you ask?
Last edited by Skepdick on Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Skepdick
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Joined: Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:16 am

Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:42 pm

Sculptor wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:51 pm
What does mean mean? What is what? What the f u c k ?
I see the conversation has descended into the gloop of philosophic turpitude.
Isn't that how all philosophistry/analysis implodes? Language games without any rules - anything goes.

That's the price you pay for ignoring the problem of criterion.

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Sculptor
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Sculptor » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:56 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:42 pm
Sculptor wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:51 pm
What does mean mean? What is what? What the f u c k ?
I see the conversation has descended into the gloop of philosophic turpitude.
Isn't that how all philosophistry/analysis implodes? Language games without any rules - anything goes.
Not always,no.

That's the price you pay for ignoring the problem of criterion.
And what is "the problem of criterion"?

Skepdick
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Skepdick » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:58 pm

Sculptor wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:56 pm
And what is "the problem of criterion"?
https://www.iep.utm.edu/criterio/

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Sculptor
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Re: There is no emergence

Post by Sculptor » Thu Sep 12, 2019 9:12 pm

Skepdick wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:58 pm
Sculptor wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:56 pm
And what is "the problem of criterion"?
https://www.iep.utm.edu/criterio/
I've seen this expressed in several ways before but never with this phrase.
There is no entry for it in Stanford, and I can't see how "criterion" is an apt word for what is being asked.
It is the standard opening gambit of epistemology.

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