[Wittrs] Re: Dennett's paradigm shiftiness--Reply to Stuart

  • From: "gabuddabout" <gabuddabout@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 02 Mar 2010 23:39:29 -0000

--- In WittrsAMR@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "BruceD" <wittrsamr@...> wrote:
> --- In Wittrs@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "gabuddabout" <wittrsamr@> wrote:
> > You assimilate parallel processing in your lexicon to physical
> processes.
> > The claim is vacuous actually but you don't know it.
> > To the extent it is about computation it is vacuous.
> Please elaborate on the vacuity.

All parallel processing (PP) can be done on a serially computing universal 
turing machine (UTM for short).  Stuart constantly thinks PP is both purlely 
computational (though not, wrongly, UTM equivalent) and an example of brute 
causality.  The claims are vacuous because he gets PP wrong by assimilating it 
to physics or not, and when not he assimilates it to complex computation and 
actually ALL PP can be done serially on a UTM.  Searle's CR is UTM equivalent.  
Functonalism shows false positives.  Ergo it fails as a candidate for a theory 
of mind..

> > No one is ever going to find that some process or other is
> intrinsically computational.
> > And on the other hand, everything under the sun can be given a
> computational description.
> This sounds right-on to me but I can't say why. Help me get it.

Can computations be found under a rock or anywhere except in a human brain 
which is computing?  Yes.  Computers are designed to do information processing 
via circuitry, electricity and logic gates.  Is the computer intrinsically 
computing anything?  Not really.  Computation is assigned to the physics but 
all physics is entirely brute causality, including the brute causality which 
serves to cause ontological subjectivity and sleepiness.  Functionalism is a 
whore which gets to have things both ways:  computation is abstract but it is 
claimed as the only physicalist game in town.  It is not.  Stuart often, like 
Armstrong, tends to think that one can't argue against functionalism without 
being a dualist of sorts.  But then again, he too can go read the original 
target article and possibly find out otherwise.  Or not....  :-)

> > So one can say that the stomach does information processing.
> > The upshot of so saying is that it makes it difficult to distinguish
> the truly mental from nonmental.
> Because the truly mental is...

Ontological subjectivity caused by brains or systems that can get over a causal 
threshold that brains allow for.  Computers are functional systems describable, 
functionally, by nothing other than second order properties.  Deny this and one 
flirts with saying that "computers are physical," which is just another way of 
misunderstanding what they are.

And computers are...

See above.
> I'll stop here though there is much more.
> bruce

There weill be less if you read Searle's target article from which the CR is 

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