User Tag List

First 12345 Last

Results 21 to 30 of 67

  1. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    MBTI
    ISTP
    Enneagram
    9w8 sp/sx
    Posts
    1,636

    Default

    wtf is PC?

  2. #22
    Tier 1 Member LunaLuminosity's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    MBTI
    ENTP
    Enneagram
    7w6 so/sp
    Socionics
    ILE
    Posts
    2,484

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post

    Thoughts?
    Yes, there are thoughts. I know of my thoughts, but you can't... at least not in modern times.

    So here are some words that theoretically resemble my thoughts....

    I am not sure why Hard Problem and Soft Problem are capitalized, so perhaps I should make sure I know what you mean. The Hard Problem concerns the fact that phenomenal consciousness cannot be observed by someone outside that consciousness, and the Soft Problem concerns how the physical can give rise to consciousness? But then you say that the Hard Problem is 'why is anything conscious in the first place'? That seems more like the soft problem, but modified.

    Perhaps the problems here are getting overcomplicated...

    Studies are making it more and more clear that our best bet is to think of the phenomenal consciousness (or one can simply call it the 'mind' ) as being created by neural processes. This standpoint is leading to great insights and is working pretty well so far, so it is at least a good starting point.
    (I will add examples later if necessary.)

    But maybe by 'phenomenal consciousness' you are talking about something more specific than the mind. Particular mental processes? That voice in one's head? Our identity? I am not sure....

    The question of how the brain creates any of these abstract mental constructs is far more difficult. How to go from something physical to something that is.... something else? Maybe the software/hardware analogy will shed light on this. It might need a hugely new approach altogether.

    But it is far too much for me to handle in one night, anyway. I'll continue some other time, but I hope this has framed things a little better...

  3. #23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    This question of existence is not put forth when I ask if or why the country of China exists, why is it being put forth now?
    Actually, I think the question of existence does come up when asking why China exists. In what way does China exist? Do Nation States exist, or they merely constructs? Will the region called "China" still exist if the nation falls apart? Perhaps this example can serve as a model question for why PC exists.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I really don't know how to define existence without limiting the scope of responses. I'd rather the answerer (you) did that.
    OK, I will choose a definition that leads to neither a denial nor a tautology. If we experience something then it exists, but there may be other things that exist. Note here, the color red, and even imagined unicorns exist.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    What's the difference between the experience of consciousness and consciousness itself?
    On one level there is no difference. Just as a set of sets is a set in itself, the experience of experiencing is an experience.

    There is a level of indirection. If the experience of a blue square is an instance of consciousness, then the experience of thinking that the experience of the blue square is an experience is the experience of consciousness. I hope that last sentence made sense.

    I suppose a simpler way to sum it up is that phenomenological consciousness is what we experience.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Yes, now this is an important issue.

    What you are claiming is by reducing consciousness to its correlations, we solve the hard problem. I believe this position is similar to epiphenomenalism.
    I am not sure what to label my position. But I take issue with you saying that a solution to the soft problem merely establishes correlations. One can determine proximal cause in scientific ways too. Mainly by establishing that one thing happens before an other, and isolating other variables (this is what good experimentalists are able to do).

    Now if you say that the time relationship and isolating variables is not enough to establish proximal cause, then how can you answer "Why does China exist?" What caused China to exist in the first place? What causes it to continue to exist? Solving the "soft problem" in this case seems to be enough. If it is not, then I think you are merely defining the problem in such a way that it is "hard." You can make the answer to any question hard in the same way.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    This position, however, has some heavy criticism. Some that I can think of:

    1. That because one has difficulty measuring PC, one cannot determine if a system is conscious.
    2. Specific in these difficulties is that, what is being experienced consciously can only be measured in any sense through the communication of the experiencer. Presumably the experiencer has what are essentially preprogrammed responses that need not have consciousness in order to be made. E.g. you will not be able to get a robot to tell you it is conscious without programming it to, when you didn't know if it was conscious at the time of the programming.
    This again seems like a way of defining consciousness so that it is hard to isolate. So what if the experiencer has had preprogrammed results? Unless we are biasing ourselves to say "if something is programmed then it cannot be conscious," we can just leave that issue open. It is still in the realm of possibility that we, ourselves, are just "programmed" (or "wired" or whatever word you want to use).

    Here again, we are left with semantics. Is a robot reporting everything it senses, conscious? Is a cow mooing in pain conscious? They way you define consciousness will feed into your answers as to "why" the "experience" happens.

    In short, the difficulties you mentioned above are direct results of the vagueness of the word "consciousness" itself, not results of any philosophical position.

    I think the real question is "why do we as humans experience what we experience." This gets around the problem of using vague terms like "consciousness."

    We have made great strides towards answering that question, and I am hopeful that we will get some solid answers.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    3. That the causal direction is not being determined. It would appear that our own references to PC strongly suggest it is PC itself causing us to reference it. Yet mere correlation does not answer any questions about such causation.
    Again, we can establish causal direction by looking at the time of events and isolating variables.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    4. As you said, it is a scientific explanation (a circular one or a broken linear one), where eventually the "why" twists back on itself or reaches ignorance. Not much of a problem, but worth remembering.
    This is not peculiar to scientific explanation. I challenge you to find any sort of explanation where we do not reach an end of understanding somewhere.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  4. #24
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    MBTI
    INFP
    Enneagram
    5
    Posts
    1,674

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    I am not sure what to label my position. But I take issue with you saying that a solution to the soft problem merely establishes correlations. One can determine proximal cause in scientific ways too. Mainly by establishing that one thing happens before an other, and isolating other variables (this is what good experimentalists are able to do).

    Now if you say that the time relationship and isolating variables is not enough to establish proximal cause, then how can you answer "Why does China exist?" What caused China to exist in the first place? What causes it to continue to exist? Solving the "soft problem" in this case seems to be enough. If it is not, then I think you are merely defining the problem in such a way that it is "hard." You can make the answer to any question hard in the same way.
    I only meant that one cannot measure causation, only infer it from correlation. So the soft problem involves measuring correlation.

    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    This again seems like a way of defining consciousness so that it is hard to isolate. So what if the experiencer has had preprogrammed results? Unless we are biasing ourselves to say "if something is programmed then it cannot be conscious," we can just leave that issue open. It is still in the realm of possibility that we, ourselves, are just "programmed" (or "wired" or whatever word you want to use).
    If the experiencer is preprogrammed to say it is or is not conscious. Then what it says is not reliable because the programmer doesn't know whether it is conscious or not.

    Yes you can parallel that to humans. No I wasn't suggesting something programmed is not conscious.

    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Here again, we are left with semantics. Is a robot reporting everything it senses, conscious? Is a cow mooing in pain conscious? They way you define consciousness will feed into your answers as to "why" the "experience" happens.

    In short, the difficulties you mentioned above are direct results of the vagueness of the word "consciousness" itself, not results of any philosophical position.

    I think the real question is "why do we as humans experience what we experience." This gets around the problem of using vague terms like "consciousness."

    We have made great strides towards answering that question, and I am hopeful that we will get some solid answers.
    I don't know why you keep saying it is semantics. I've been referring to phenomenal consciousness since the start. Qualia, whilst not quite the same, is very similar to phenomenal consciousness.

    If that is not specific enough, I'm not understanding why.

    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Again, we can establish causal direction by looking at the time of events and isolating variables.

    This is not peculiar to scientific explanation. I challenge you to find any sort of explanation where we do not reach an end of understanding somewhere.
    When two things always occur simultaneously, one cannot establish which one is causing the other. It's the real version of the chicken or egg dilemma. If both the release of dopamine and the experience of pleasure occur simultaneously, one cannot establish if one causes the other, or if a third party causes both.

    There are other explanations that avoid the "end of understanding". Tautologies, religious explanations and others. They aren't predictive like scientific explanations are however, and I don't think this topic is worth getting into here.

    Quote Originally Posted by LunaLuminosity View Post
    I am not sure why Hard Problem and Soft Problem are capitalized, so perhaps I should make sure I know what you mean. The Hard Problem concerns the fact that phenomenal consciousness cannot be observed by someone outside that consciousness, and the Soft Problem concerns how the physical can give rise to consciousness? But then you say that the Hard Problem is 'why is anything conscious in the first place'? That seems more like the soft problem, but modified.
    It's clear that I wasn't clear in defining the problems. What you state as the soft problem is what I meant as the hard problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by LunaLuminosity View Post
    Studies are making it more and more clear that our best bet is to think of the phenomenal consciousness (or one can simply call it the 'mind' ) as being created by neural processes. This standpoint is leading to great insights and is working pretty well so far, so it is at least a good starting point.
    (I will add examples later if necessary.)
    I would like to hear those examples.

    What I mean by PC:

    Qualia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Quote Originally Posted by LunaLuminosity View Post
    The question of how the brain creates any of these abstract mental constructs is far more difficult. How to go from something physical to something that is.... something else? Maybe the software/hardware analogy will shed light on this. It might need a hugely new approach altogether.
    This is the hard problem.

    In light of what you said, I don't think any neurological explanations have made fundamental progress in this area. Consider that thousands of years ago, one could already make the same correlations by smashing one's own head, and seeing that consciousness appears to stop temporarily.

    The only things those theories appear to add is more detail into exactly what physical formation causes (correlates with) what conscious experience. This doesn't help explain why those experiences are conscious in the first place (though maybe it will in the future).

  5. #25
    AKA Nunki Polaris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    451 sp/sx
    Socionics
    INFp Ni
    Posts
    1,373

    Default

    What I mean by PC:

    Qualia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    If we were each born with a video screen on our foreheads that we could manipulate at will, and if we wrote with moving images rather than black-and-white letters, things like the color red would no longer seem mysterious, because our means of communication would capture them perfectly. It would instead be depth, for instance, that would puzzle us, since flat images are incapable of capturing it.

    Should this puzzle us? Not really, since language is a means of representation, which means that it stands for something that it isn't and which it therefore does not in itself accurately convey.

    Of course, in the normal way of things, people consume language and understand it more or less perfectly without ever thinking of such things as "qualia"; and in this way, they're far wiser than most philosophers.
    [ Ni > Ti > Fe > Fi > Ne > Te > Si > Se ][ 4w5 sp/sx ][ RLOAI ][ IEI-Ni ]

  6. #26
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    MBTI
    INTP
    Enneagram
    5w6 so/sx
    Posts
    3,467

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    To be clear, I only disagree with a few things here. Most of what is going on is a large misunderstanding.e.
    I don't think so, the disagreement is largely due to your misconception of the nature of the hard problem.



    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Irrelevant. (semantics).
    Very few disputes are truly merely semantical. Commonly, semantic disagreements evince deeper, conceptual differences between the two participants of the debate.





    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I've already said my position is not dualist as you conceive it.).
    If your position does not adhere to dualism, it is inconsistent with your proclamation that the hard problem is distinct from the easy problem, typically the 'easy problem' is the label used to denote the concept you have in mind, not the 'soft problem'. Easy typically refers to something that does not appear to be tremendously difficult to understand, yet soft refers to something that is intangible or pure abstract (e.g soft sciences, software and so forth). Although this point may seem to be purely semantical and irrelevant to any significant debate in philosophy of mind, the terminology does make a significant difference. If you're talking about the 'soft problem' of consciousness, it seems that you're referring to intangible, mental entities, yet if you're talking about the 'easy problem', your point does not have to have anything to do with the intangible mental entities, it may be merely about a problem a solution to which is foreseeable. Chalmers was discussing the latter rather than the former idea and hence, the distinction was between the easy and the hard problem rather than the hard and soft.

    Now I am going to show how your belief in the existence of the hard problem committs you to dualism.

    You've defined the soft problem as a question regarding what neural activities correlates with mental activity.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    The Soft Problem is essentially what physical make-up correlates with what conscious experience (e.g. dopamine correlates with the experience of pleasure). Much leeway in that area has been made already, as it is merely measuring correlation..
    If you are a physicalist, you can maintain that the neural activity that correlates with physical activity causes the physical activity in question. Thus, anything is conscious in the first place because certain kinds of neural activity cause consciousness.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    The Hard Problem is why anything is phenomenally conscious in the first place (e.g. why is there the experience of pleasure?)...
    Since you have defined the Hard problem as a question regarding why anything is conscious in the first place, you must infer that the existence of such a problem is justified only by dualism because physicalism by definition presupposes an answer to the 'hard problem'. In light of the materialist explanation of consciousness, there is no difference between the hard problem and the easy problem.

    Last year Daniel Dennett visited my philosophy of cognitive sciences class and told us an anecdote about a conversation Chalmers had with his friend. The discussion could be recapitulated as follows.

    Friend: David, I like your distinction between the Hard problem and the Easy problem of consciousness, but you got you got your labels backwards.
    Chalmers: What?

    What is the meaning of this? The truly hard problem is determing how exactly neural entities correlate to mental activity, once we understand that, we will have a good reason to believe that we know what causes consciousness. If 'what causes consciousness' should be regard as a question or a problem in its own right, than it is indeed very easy rather than hard.









    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I am suggesting it takes more evidence to show that sexual life is nowhere to be found in the entire galaxy.?)...
    Of course we need more evidence to be absolutely certain, yet we seem to know enough about the galaxy now to be confident that there is no sexually produced life in the universe.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    the latter of what you seem to think my position is..?)...
    The trouble is that your position cannot be sustained without dualism which necessitates a reliance on the former claim.



    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    This is not a successful parallel. Evolution has much evidence to support the parts of it that are complete. Physicalist explanations of consciousness have no evidence whatsoever. ...
    It is a plausible parallel indeed because physicalism and evolution are capable of explaining how some entities at least could have, in principle begun to exist. However, their rival theories that are primarily metaphysical and lack empirical support cannot do so.





    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    The point is, you assume my position is dualist....
    The principle of charity compels me to assume that your position is dualistic as otherwise your position is incoherent.







    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I've already stated that reductionism is dualist by my definition.....
    No, reductionism is not dualistic. Dualism presupposes that the mind is not reducible to the neural activity. Reductionism maintains the opposite, that all mental activity can be explained by a reduction to physical or neural activity, in other words, reductionism presupposes that neural activity causes consciousness. No dualist would accept such a thesis as it is the very anathema to dualism. Dualism is synonymous with non-reductionism, it is the assertion that mental entities cannot be reduced to neural activity and therefore consciousness only correlates with neural activity but is not caused by it.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    It was a response based on a semantic disagreement with the term "materialism"......
    Your misunderstanding of the term materialism rather than a mere disagreement. In fact your misunderstanding of Chalmers's views regarding the 'Hard problem' is the source of the confusion that motivated the principal question of the OP.


    I once had a professor who assigned seemingly tedious and thankless essays that focused on summarizing the nature of doctrines and the views of certain philosophers. He insisted that we should not confuse the definitions of philosophical terminology and I resented that because he seemed to be concerned with trivial matters rather than genuine philosophical questions. Shortly before I dropped his class, I asked him why he placed such a high emphasis on mere terminology and accuracy of recapitulation of the views of eminent philosophers and the response I got was to the effect that it helps to avoid merely verbal disagreements and conceptual confusions. Not until very recently did I begin to appreciate his efforts.


    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    That said, claiming both Consciousness and Non-consciousness (what I called dualism originally) is more complex a claim than claiming merely Consciousness. Which is more complex than claiming merely one's own Consciousness.....
    I have no idea what any of that means.


    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    No,

    It's not relevant to my position......
    Oh, it is very relevant. Had you gotten your semantics right, we would not even be having this debate to begin with. I am sure you've heard of the Linguistic turn that took place in Oxford in the 1950s and how ordinary language philosophers such as Austin and Hart deflated many abstruse metaphysical notions by virtue of ordinary language analysis. I think they have gone too far too assert that they could eliminate philosophical problems altogether, however, I do believe that their method had much merit in the regard that it could expose many ideas that resemble recondite philosophical issues as non-sense disguised in metaphysical speculation founded on a misunderstanding of language.






    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Irrelevant. Hopefully you understand my position enough now to see that.......
    Yes, my understanding of your position helped me see that the refutation of dualism is irrelevant to your views. However, it also helped me realize that I have over-estimated the conceptual integrity of your views by assuming that they are coherent because they presuppose a dualistic background.



    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I've already suggested Idealism as one. I can suggest denial of consciousness as another........
    Do we have any more of a reason to consider Idealism as an explanation of the nature of consciousness than we have a reason to consider the existence of sexually reproducing aliens, dragons, gods and so forth? The main reason why I regard physicalist as the most viable hypothesis is because it offers empirical support for its explanation of how an explanation of consciousness can be founded on its basic tenets. Namely that consciousness is reducible to brain activity. We cannot say the same about dualism, idealism or solipsism.



    Here's what I meant:

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Proving that consciousness is correlated with the brain, or that consciousness is produced by the brain, does not prove that consciousness is limited to the brain.........
    Of course it does not, but it offers us a reason to continue looking for a way to prove that consciousness is indeed produced by the brain.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Just like proving that stars give off light does not prove that there is no light elsewhere..........
    We have to look to stars as the source of explanation for light in all astronomical contexts until we discover that other entities can produce light. Similarly, we have to regard neurons as the sole cause of mental activity until we discover that different entities can produce mental activity. That is one of the fundamental principles of my argument.



    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    My position, for the final time, is that Physicalism has no evidence as a solution to the hard problem...........
    Physicalism presupposes that there is no hard problem. The hard problem rests on a dualistic promissory note, its existence depends on a vindication of dualism.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I agree that it is not good reason to claim that Physicalism is false, which is precisely why I NEVER made that claim............
    You should have done that in order to make your position appear salvageable, as after all, many respectable researchers in neuroscience and philosophy endorse dualism today.



    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I've been saying we shouldn't believe either until they get evidence.

    My position is to acknowledge ignorance where it is due.
    You should not accept this position because in order to go forward, you need to establish a certain method that you will use to continue your investigation of consciousness. Will you elect the Dry Mind approach or the Wet Mind? That is, will you think that consciousness should be studied neurologically or without any reference to the brain? If you're a physicalist, the former is the most obvious and intuitive choice, if you're a dualist, you may wish to investigate the latter approach in greater detail.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

    “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.”---Samuel Johnson

    My blog: www.randommeanderings123.blogspot.com/

  7. #27
    AKA Nunki Polaris's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    451 sp/sx
    Socionics
    INFp Ni
    Posts
    1,373

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker
    The main reason why I regard physicalist as the most viable hypothesis is because it offers empirical support for its explanation of how an explanation of consciousness can be founded on its basic tenets.
    Empiricism stands directly opposite to a deeper understanding of consciousness. One does not learn about a wellspring by turning away from it and traveling down the stream; one must catch the water just as it gushes forth; one must be original.

    Science will never manage this, because though it starts with spontaneous observations and creative hypotheses, these are at once thrown aside in favor of a worldview that only has room for those things which are repeated over and over until, though they are memories through and through, they have quite forgotten the life they emerged from and to which they still retain an attachment.

    Empiricism is a means by which life obscures its nature in order to gain a greater degree of control over itself. Empiricism is the veil of Maya, a power granted at the cost of blindness. The question is, do you search for the truth, or is it strength that you want? In fact, there is no difference between the two; everything you know increases your personal freedom (burden though it may be), and that freedom goes beyond anything that science can ever offer, for each one of us is far more than a formula, a theory, or an organism; we're alive, and to be alive is to transcend everything.
    [ Ni > Ti > Fe > Fi > Ne > Te > Si > Se ][ 4w5 sp/sx ][ RLOAI ][ IEI-Ni ]

  8. #28

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I only meant that one cannot measure causation, only infer it from correlation. So the soft problem involves measuring correlation.
    Here we have a fundamental difference in opinion.

    I think the root of the disagreement is the assumption of simultaneity. There are very few things that happen exactly simultaneously. In fact, as you likely know, our best understanding of simultaneity says that it is dependent on the reference frame of the observer. Furthermore, two things that occur subcutaneously in some reference frame cannot affect each other. So we can immediately rule out causation in both directions (because the two points in space-time are space-like separated).

    So in short, the only correlations between events we care to look at are ones that are between time-like separated events. If we isolate variables further, we will be able to determine causation. Call it an "inference" if you want, but even correlation is an inference. The only difference is the number of steps taken to reach the conclusion.


    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    If the experiencer is preprogrammed to say it is or is not conscious. Then what it says is not reliable because the programmer doesn't know whether it is conscious or not.
    Now you are assuming the programmer doesn't know weather the thing being programed is conscious or not. How do you prove that? It is a very similar statement to saying you cannot measure consciousness. If it is possible to measure consciousness, it seems reasonable to assume some programmer knows how.

    Also, asking the experiencer whether or not it is conscious IS unreliable, but not due to philosophical stance. What philosophical stances beyond tautological ones, would this be a reliable form of measuring consciousness?

    What we need to do is to do measure "qualia" as you call it. Qualia is often defined as "introspectively accessible, phenomenal aspects of our mental lives."

    Here they use the words "our." Therein lies some ambiguity. What do we include in "us"?

    If we ask the experiencer what it/he/she is experiencing and it/he/she is capable of answering, then it/he/she is describing some phenomenal aspect of something.

    Is it "introspectively accessible?" Here in, lies one aspect of "defining in" the difference between the hard problem and the soft problem. How you define "introspection" directly feeds whether or not you can know if the experiencer is introspecting.

    The second part of "defining in" the difference between the hard problem and the soft problem, comes from the definition of "mental life." If you are assuming that the "mental life" is different from what the measurer believes is consiousness, then of course you are going to conclude to conclude that we cannot measure qualia.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Yes you can parallel that to humans. No I wasn't suggesting something programmed is not conscious.
    Then what is the basis of the criticism you offered?

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I don't know why you keep saying it is semantics. I've been referring to phenomenal consciousness since the start. Qualia, whilst not quite the same, is very similar to phenomenal consciousness.

    If that is not specific enough, I'm not understanding why.
    Well, I say it because it seems like a matter of semantics to me. You say that Qualia is not the same as PC here, but to Luna you say that's what you meant.

    It is clear that the semantics involved here is a source of confusion, at the very least.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    When two things always occur simultaneously, one cannot establish which one is causing the other. It's the real version of the chicken or egg dilemma. If both the release of dopamine and the experience of pleasure occur simultaneously, one cannot establish if one causes the other, or if a third party causes both.
    I went over our disagreement here. Correlations between time-like separated events is what we use to determine causation. I think the examples Luna will provide (she's a cognitive science person) may illustrate how this can be done.

    One example of direct measurement of qualia is a bit of Japanese research where they directly measured the words an experiencer was reading by interpreting the electrical impulses from the brain.

    Now if it can be further established that the electrical impulses precede when the experiencer actually experience the words being read, then we would have found proximal cause of a bit of qualia.

    The last part was a hypothetical (not yet established by current research as far as I know) but we have been able to establish, for instance, that a prick on the finger occurs a large portion of a second before the person experiences the prick. They did controls by pricking directly in the brain which was "felt" significantly more quickly. Standard errors of experimenting provide the evidence that the difference is significant.

    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    There are other explanations that avoid the "end of understanding". Tautologies, religious explanations and others. They aren't predictive like scientific explanations are however, and I don't think this topic is worth getting into here.
    Well I definitely disagree here. Tautologies represent the "end of understanding" as well, and in what religion is there no "end of understanding?" Present me with a concrete example of something that doesn't have an end of understanding, and I will simply ask why that is true. If you can answer that, I will ask the question again...ad infinitum. If you can provide be with an inductive proof that my "why is this true" questions are answered, then I can question the induction itself. You are them left with an answer that needs to answer all why questions. If you answer with something like "All that is true is due to God." Then we have a "twisted up" answer.

    If you are saying that the main difference is that science is not satisfied with such answers, than I agree with you. But then the criticism you gave seems irrelevant.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  9. #29
    Senior Member Into It's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    MBTI
    ENFP
    Posts
    664

    Default

    Nearly impossible question...it is one I think about all the time, and yet I really have nothing to say...
    An inscription above the gate to Hell:
    "Eternal Love also created me"

  10. #30
    Senior Member Into It's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    MBTI
    ENFP
    Posts
    664

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post

    We have made great strides towards answering that question, and I am hopeful that we will get some solid answers.

    Have we? No matter what we can explain physically, it is the gap between the physical and "experiential" that must be bridged, and I don't know if I agree that we have made great strides in that area...but truthfully, I may just not have heard the information. Would you explain what strides have been made in bridging that gap? Intuitively it appears to me impossible to explain.
    An inscription above the gate to Hell:
    "Eternal Love also created me"

Similar Threads

  1. [ENFP] My Friend Learning the Hard Way...AGAIN!
    By Turtledove in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 06-15-2012, 07:38 PM
  2. The hardness of a job actually commensurate with pay?
    By Venom in forum Academics and Careers
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 07-02-2011, 02:36 PM
  3. The Easy to be Hard problem
    By onemoretime in forum Philosophy and Spirituality
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: 06-16-2010, 06:52 PM
  4. The "Easy" Problem
    By ragashree in forum Philosophy and Spirituality
    Replies: 32
    Last Post: 06-09-2010, 12:09 PM
  5. [NT] Face of the Hard
    By entropie in forum The NT Rationale (ENTP, INTP, ENTJ, INTJ)
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-02-2008, 03:08 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO