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Old 27th February 2012, 01:46 AM   #161
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Originally Posted by DevilsAdvocate View Post
A computer simulation can't change the code of the computer simulation. That "person" in Sim City can't decide to change line 1087 of the Sim City code.

Perhaps it is a bad analogy. It certainly gets far from the point. IF everything I believe I experience is not real and is a computer simulation, there is no way I can alter the code for that simulation. I am just a manifestation of that code. And I can't even know if I am in a computer simulation. And even if I suspect that I am, the idea of a soul and an afterlife becomes...well...very strange.

Well, actually, computer subroutines can change the code of an operating system, but that's not even the point. Assuming we are part of the generated construct, we have evolved out of the processes of the construct itself into self aware subroutines that have come to question our own existence. There is nothing conflicting in this model at all so far as I have been able to tell. It is only a matter of time before we create our own AIs .. I'm sure you've read some Kurzweil ... like The Age of Spiritual Machines ... perhaps?
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:54 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
True. I don't fall into any class of "believers" personally. Most of the rest of the post is really good too except this part:





Skeptics sometimes come across as far more abrasive than merely smug or superior sounding ... I've experienced it here many times. Also, skeptics are not always correct despite what you seem to imply. Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking being skeptical. I consider myself to be skeptical in a genuine and positive way. It's essential to consider logical counterpoints if one is going to advance toward the truth. But skepticism isn't our only tool in the toolbox and being skeptical doesn't automatically make someone's conclusions true.

I was going to extrapolate on that more, but I thought my post was more than long. I had addressed it with this:

Originally Posted by DevilsAdvocate View Post
Other skeptics may reject the idea of an afterlife simply because they have no proof, or because they reject a religion that believers in an afterlife, or because they believe that the concept of an afterlife is used by others to control people, or even simply because they want to be like other skeptics.
There are “skeptics” who simply accept and defend the ideas held by the majority of skeptics without actually doing any critical thought—without actually being skeptics. I do think that some skeptics have done the work and get a bit smug and even abrasive when they get tired of going over the same things again and again. And there are pseudo-skeptics who adopt the beliefs of other skeptics and may also adopt the smugness and feel righteous and simply attack opposing views.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:55 AM   #163
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
So if the laws of physics that govern this universe are explained by this universe all being a simulation in a gigantic computer, then what are the laws of physics that govern that giant computer explained by?

Yes ... we still run into the infinite recursion problem ( turtles all the way down ). What I tend to do is think that if we solve things one step at a time, we might get the answers. For example, if the universe we're in now is a generated construct, let's figure out how to navigate it as well as we've figured out how to navigate our planet. We'll no doubt develop some technology and perhaps even learn to communicate beyond this realm through the construct itself. Of course it's all science fiction at this stage ... but if you are into that sort of thing, it's also really interesting to contemplate
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:03 AM   #164
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Well, actually, computer subroutines can change the code of an operating system, but that's not even the point.
Yes. I know. I've even written code that can change its own code. That's why I said it was a bad analogy.

Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Assuming we are part of the generated construct, we have evolved out of the processes of the construct itself into self aware subroutines that have come to question our own existence. There is nothing conflicting in this model at all so far as I have been able to tell. It is only a matter of time before we create our own AIs .. I'm sure you've read some Kurzweil ... like The Age of Spiritual Machines ... perhaps?
But we can't KNOW that we are part of a generated construct. How would we detect this? How could we find the construct, let alone the generator? And if we could, how could we change the generator? Being self aware is one thing. Being aware of the generator of the self is another. Controlling the generator is quite another thing.

And this has spit to do with a belief in an afterlife.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:15 AM   #165
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Originally Posted by DevilsAdvocate View Post
Yes. I know. I've even written code that can change its own code. That's why I said it was a bad analogy.



But we can't KNOW that we are part of a generated construct. How would we detect this? How could we find the construct, let alone the generator? And if we could, how could we change the generator? Being self aware is one thing. Being aware of the generator of the self is another. Controlling the generator is quite another thing.

And this has spit to do with a belief in an afterlife.

I like the way you pose intelligent questions and responses, so let's not start getting all upset. We're just having a discussion. How would we figure out that we are inside a generated construct? That's what some very bright minds are working on right now. As mentioned above in other posts, we might be able to logically deduce it through certain experiments. We haven't actually measured the distance from the Earth to the Sun, but we still know the distance ... how? From geometry ... logic. Today we've only just scratched the surface of the quantum entanglement mystery ... and that may lead to quantum computing ... that may lead to sufficiently powerful intelligent computers that can test all the ways that we might be able to interface directly with the operating system. As for a belief in the afterlife ... I never said it has to do with belief. I said it has to do with possibility. Belief can only come if you first think it's possible, and so far that's all I believe. BTW: good points in your previous post too. Glad you dropped by to participate.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:51 AM   #166
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
I like the way you pose intelligent questions and responses, so let's not start getting all upset. We're just having a discussion. How would we figure out that we are inside a generated construct? That's what some very bright minds are working on right now. As mentioned above in other posts, we might be able to logically deduce it through certain experiments. We haven't actually measured the distance from the Earth to the Sun, but we still know the distance ... how? From geometry ... logic. Today we've only just scratched the surface of the quantum entanglement mystery ... and that may lead to quantum computing ... that may lead to sufficiently powerful intelligent computers that can test all the ways that we might be able to interface directly with the operating system. As for a belief in the afterlife ... I never said it has to do with belief. I said it has to do with possibility. Belief can only come if you first think it's possible, and so far that's all I believe. BTW: good points in your previous post too. Glad you dropped by to participate.
I would think that quantum computing may lead to sufficiently powerful intelligent computers that can test all the ways that we might be able to interface directly with the generated construct. The generator, although, is a level above. This is asking for artificial intelligence that is aware of itself. And aware of the source of its intellegence. And aware of the source of its intellegence. And is aware of the generator of the source of its intellegence. And is aware and has the ability to alter the generator of the source of its intellegence.

We would have several levels of consciousness to go to get there. If there is a there there. And it still has spit to do with any current belief in an afterlife. We aren't even at level 1 of the concept.
And even if the concept is true, it doesn't neccessitate an afterlife. An "afterlife" is essentially irrelevant to the concept.

As I said, I wish I had some links to some of the philosphies on this subject. People with more time, and possibly more brains, than I have to think about this. The essential question becomes: Can we know whether or not that we are a computer simulation?
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:15 AM   #167
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Originally Posted by DevilsAdvocate View Post
I would think that quantum computing may lead to sufficiently powerful intelligent computers that can test all the ways that we might be able to interface directly with the generated construct. The generator, although, is a level above. This is asking for artificial intelligence that is aware of itself. And aware of the source of its intellegence. And aware of the source of its intellegence. And is aware of the generator of the source of its intellegence. And is aware and has the ability to alter the generator of the source of its intellegence.

We would have several levels of consciousness to go to get there. If there is a there there. And it still has spit to do with any current belief in an afterlife. We aren't even at level 1 of the concept.
And even if the concept is true, it doesn't neccessitate an afterlife. An "afterlife" is essentially irrelevant to the concept.

As I said, I wish I had some links to some of the philosphies on this subject. People with more time, and possibly more brains, than I have to think about this. The essential question becomes: Can we know whether or not that we are a computer simulation?

Good post. But the concept of an afterlife is relevant because a generated construct could possibly facilitate it by way of memory storage of our data. Conceivably our data ( that which makes us us ) could be inserted into any other realm after our death in this one. If there existed a record of our entire existence, then we could be resurrected with complete memories and fully intact bodies. In every meaningful way this would amount to life after death.
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:22 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by Pure Argent View Post
Originally Posted by Akhenaten View Post
You see, ufology, people like Pure Argent who have established their credibility here get some leeway in not having to provide detailed support for every single thing they say.


I have credibility?

WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN


You didn't get the memo? Heads will roll!
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:26 AM   #169
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
So if the laws of physics that govern this universe are explained by this universe all being a simulation in a gigantic computer, then what are the laws of physics that govern that giant computer explained by?


Talking rabbits.
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:33 AM   #170
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Conceivably our data ( that which makes us us ) could be inserted into any other realm after our death in this one. If there existed a record of our entire existence, then we could be resurrected with complete memories and fully intact bodies. In every meaningful way this would amount to life after death.


Congratulations. You've managed to discover the idea behind the Ba, the Ka, the Akh, the Name and the Shadow.

Pity you're well over 4,000 years too late.
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Old 27th February 2012, 04:39 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by DevilsAdvocate View Post
Perhaps this was just a joke, but it misses the point. A brain in a jar can't contact a lab assistant. There are no other jars. Just your brain. In a jar. Thinking all of this up.
I'm sure Marduk was joking, however:

No. Under this scenario, obviously I make the rules. If I include a lab assistant, and other jars, then it will be so.

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Old 27th February 2012, 04:42 AM   #172
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
So if the laws of physics that govern this universe are explained by this universe all being a simulation in a gigantic computer, then what are the laws of physics that govern that giant computer explained by?
Funny how everything ends in the turtles dilemma.

Hans
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Old 27th February 2012, 07:25 AM   #173
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Nobody is saying that the computational model necessitates an afterlife, only that it would make it possible.
Define 'possible'. Technically it is 'possible' to create an Afterlife in this universe, with a sufficiently advanced technology. The question is not whether it may be 'possible', but whether it is actually occurring.

The problem with a computational model is that in order for a person's mind to exist intact beyond death, it must be copied and stored somewhere before death. Why? Because the mind has probably already been destroyed (by oxygen starvation, trauma or disease) when the body finally dies.

But when does the program decide to back up your mind so that it can be regenerated later? Our minds are constantly changing as we experience life. Imagine that you have a massive stroke and a large part of your brain dies. Your mind has now been markedly diminished, but part of it still exists. Later, when you die, does the computer use a backup copy made before you suffered the stroke, or after? If before then it's not really 'you', but an earlier version. If after, then it's not a fully intact 'you', but a damaged version. In neither case is true Life After Death achieved.

As an analogy, imagine you are typing a story into your computer. To ensure that you don't lose your work, you make a backup copy every few pages. Unfortunately, you were just about to back up the last 3 pages when a power glitch corrupts the document. What do you do? Try to fix up the mess of corrupted text, or reload from the backup and try to remember what you typed into those last 3 pages? Either way, you don't have a good copy of your document!

Quote:
Regarding the part about existing separately from this simulation. That too is entirely possible. Just add another universe ( call it universe_2.exe ) and take our data sets that have been stored in memory and insert them into it. Presto ... we've died in one universe and are alive in another!
With a fully re-entrant program you don't even need another executable, just run it again with other copy of the data sets. But when you run the program on the copied data sets, it executes exactly the same instructions so the mind/person still dies!

In order to achieve true Life After Death, the program must have some way of moving a person's mind to a different environment (another body, an ethereal form etc.), otherwise the mind is not really surviving death, but is just a re-run, doomed to repeat exactly the same death sequence.

Quote:
If there existed a record of our entire existence, then we could be resurrected with complete memories and fully intact bodies. In every meaningful way this would amount to life after death.
Or would it simply be a recording of our existence, and the resurrected bodies merely copies of our own? Let's say I had a machine that could duplicate the position and momentum of every particle in your body, accurately enough that it could create a functionally identical copy of your mind. Would you be happy if I was to kill you now, since your mind will continue to exist in the other body? Or is the clone an imposter?
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Old 27th February 2012, 08:03 AM   #174
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Folo, the construct hypothesis is just sophistry until there's a way, even in principle, that we could distinguish whether we live in a construct or we live in the reality as it seems to us. Without being able to distinguish between the two, you're just multiplying entities, or hypothesizing at best.
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Old 27th February 2012, 08:39 AM   #175
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Good post. But the concept of an afterlife is relevant because a generated construct could possibly facilitate it by way of memory storage of our data. Conceivably our data ( that which makes us us ) could be inserted into any other realm after our death in this one. If there existed a record of our entire existence, then we could be resurrected with complete memories and fully intact bodies. In every meaningful way this would amount to life after death.
Which SF movie are you talking about?
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Old 27th February 2012, 09:21 AM   #176
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Originally Posted by dafydd View Post
Which SF movie are you talking about?
It's the basis of the Battlestar Galactica spinoff Caprica. Not a bad concept, but it underlined the issues with the creation of such a doppleganger.
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Old 27th February 2012, 10:02 AM   #177
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Originally Posted by MRC_Hans View Post
Funny how everything ends in the turtles dilemma.

Hans

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Old 27th February 2012, 01:00 PM   #178
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Yes ... we still run into the infinite recursion problem ( turtles all the way down ).
Right, so there's no evidence to support it and it doesn't explain anything. Not a great hypothesis, then.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:12 PM   #179
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WRT the idea of a computer-generated copy of yourself existing after you die, I've actually seen this talked about a few times as being more or less real. In World Of Warcraft everything you do is recorded. If you, the real person, dies, then your avatar could live on as an NPC - using the records of how you acted to act like you were still controlling them. That's a step towards the idea of recording your brain patterns into a computer and letting them live on there.

I can't find the more in-depth things I've seen about this, but this link has this:

Quote:
In the book you say: "WoW may have the potential to become the first real afterlife." How?

Every movement a player makes in WoW is recorded, even their interactions with others. The avatar captures their social self. To what extent the avatar is its controller is a philosophical question, but the avatar can outlive its creator and continue functioning in WoW as a non-player character (NPC). Research is under way that will make NPCs behave more like specific people.
Very cool, although I'm not a WoWer myself (watching The Guild is about as close as I get). What I think it shows, though, is that even if we did get a computer to record and replicate our brains 100% accurately, then the copy that would live on would be just that - a copy. The person that looks out from behind our eyes would still be gone, even though someone identical might be still around.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:12 PM   #180
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
Folo, the construct hypothesis is just sophistry until there's a way, even in principle, that we could distinguish whether we live in a construct or we live in the reality as it seems to us. Without being able to distinguish between the two, you're just multiplying entities, or hypothesizing at best.

Not exactly. What I've done is show that the progressive brain destruction rationale as illustrated in your video does not apply to the possibility of an afterlife within a computational model of existence. I've shown further that serious scientific minds take the computational model seriously and that there is scientific circumstantial evidence in favor of the hypothesis. The computational model does not rely on a supernatural being or religious belief.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:18 PM   #181
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
Right, so there's no evidence to support it and it doesn't explain anything. Not a great hypothesis, then.

Saying the computational model doesn't explain anything is not accurate. It provides for the possibility of an afterlife ... which is the topic of this thread. You seem to relate to idea of a WOW character just fine, which is a generated construct. Why is the idea that we ourselves might be something similar but much more detailed so far fetched to you?

Point of Interest:

"Scientists at the Max-Planck-Institute for Astrophysics, together with collaborators in the Virgo consortium, have recently completed the largest cosmological N-body simulation ever performed. This calculation solved for the gravitational interactions between more than 300 billion particles over the equivalent of more than 13 billion years, thus simultaneously making predictions for the mass distribution in the Universe on very large and very small scales."

Full article here: http://www.mpa-garching.mpg.de/mpa/r...-en-print.html
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:22 PM   #182
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
Very cool, although I'm not a WoWer myself (watching The Guild is about as close as I get). What I think it shows, though, is that even if we did get a computer to record and replicate our brains 100% accurately, then the copy that would live on would be just that - a copy. The person that looks out from behind our eyes would still be gone, even though someone identical might be still around.
Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Saying the computational model doesn't explain anything is not accurate. It provides for the possibility of an afterlife ... which is the topic of this thread. You seem to relate to idea of a WOW character just fine, which is a generated construct. Why is the idea that we ourselves might be something similar but much more detailed so far fetched to you?
Except that's not an "afterlife". I, the original, do not continue forward. A copy of me does. To all others, that copy may seem like having the old RobRoy back, but to the original, I'm no longer living and my conscious self does not continue. The term "afterlife" is defined by my ability, my conscious self, to continue experiencing life, in some way, after I shrug off this mortal coil. A "computational model" does not meet that criteria. As Squeegee Beckenheim pointed out, an avatar in WoW might act in the exact same way after my death as it did prior, but that's not me controlling it, and while a crude form of the "computational model" the parallel is correct. It's not afterlife, it's a mimic.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:22 PM   #183
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
Folo, the construct hypothesis is just sophistry until there's a way, even in principle, that we could distinguish whether we live in a construct or we live in the reality as it seems to us. Without being able to distinguish between the two, you're just multiplying entities, or hypothesizing at best.
I think he's hypothesizing at worst.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:28 PM   #184
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Not exactly. What I've done is show that the progressive brain destruction rationale as illustrated in your video does not apply to the possibility of an afterlife within a computational model of existence.
The content of that video has nothing necessarily to do with whether your ideas about the construct are a sophistry or not. If the content of the video has some connection to your stance, your stance could be evaluated without reference to the video anyway.
Originally Posted by ufology View Post
I've shown further that serious scientific minds take the computational model seriously . . .
Irrelevant. Help me out, JREFers, what's the name of the fallacy?
Originally Posted by ufology View Post
and that there is scientific circumstantial evidence in favor of the hypothesis. The computational model does not rely on a supernatural being or religious belief.
Irrelevant for whether your stance is sophistry or not.

Just because some data are consistent with the construct doesn't do it.
The only thing that will prevent your stance from sophistry is some way imaginable that we could distinguish whether our world is the construct or not. If every piece of data can be explained via the construct or not, then you don't need the construct.
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Old 27th February 2012, 01:43 PM   #185
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Folo, allow me to backtrack a bit on my post above, if only in tone.

If science already has a way to distinguish between a construct hypothesis and a "reality" hypothesis (for lack of a better word), I'm all ears.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:06 PM   #186
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Saying the computational model doesn't explain anything is not accurate.
No, I'm afraid it is accurate.

Quote:
It provides for the possibility of an afterlife ... which is the topic of this thread.
There is no evidence an afterlife exists, so it does not need explaining.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:07 PM   #187
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
Irrelevant. Help me out, JREFers, what's the name of the fallacy?
Appeal to authority.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:21 PM   #188
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Originally Posted by RobRoy View Post
Except that's not an "afterlife". I, the original, do not continue forward. A copy of me does. To all others, that copy may seem like having the old RobRoy back, but to the original, I'm no longer living and my conscious self does not continue. The term "afterlife" is defined by my ability, my conscious self, to continue experiencing life, in some way, after I shrug off this mortal coil. A "computational model" does not meet that criteria. As Squeegee Beckenheim pointed out, an avatar in WoW might act in the exact same way after my death as it did prior, but that's not me controlling it, and while a crude form of the "computational model" the parallel is correct. It's not afterlife, it's a mimic.

Fair comments but there are a couple of issues. In the computational model, everything including your consciousness is a part of the data, therefore it is a part of you ... and consequently if you die here and are reconstituted from your data in another realm, you are still you. The only time the issue of a copy would enter the picture is if two of you were created at the same time, each with independent consciousness. Otherwise the issue of copying and continuity of consciousness is still as intact as it is in our everyday lives. For example cells in your body are being copied and replaced even as you read this. Some years from now you will literally no longer the same person. Even some brain cells formerly believed to not regenerate are now being found to have regenerative properties and capable of self-replacement and repair. For those that don't regenerate, they die off, again making you different. You're never quite the same person after a night of heavy drinking. And our continuity of consciousness lapses every night when we fall asleep. The next morning we reboot out of sleep mode and even more cells have been copied and replaced. A lot of repair work goes on while we sleep. So you see, in every meaningful way, the computational model allows for life after death. Lastly if the computational model is correct, it also solves Zeno's Paradox. Movement is an illusion. What is actually happening is that with each new coordinate corresponding to movement, we are being redrawn by the rendering mechanism ... essentially erased, buffered and redrawn in a new location ... for every step you take, every blink of your eyes, every keystroke. There is essentially no difference between that and simply having you data set erased here in some manner we interpret as death and redrawn someplace else we interpret as an afterlife.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:26 PM   #189
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Originally Posted by Porterboy View Post
It makes sense superficially, but let's read between the lines here. it means that somebody who does not believe in the Afterlife can say:

BUT… I can face it! I know I’m going to cease to exist when I die and I can face up to it! The 'ordinary inferior people' need this comfort-blanket myth of an Afterlife, but I have the strength, the courage, the manliness and general superiority to get through my day without that crutch!”
It does not mean that someone who doesn't believe must think this.

My tack is "I have to face it." Whether I face it well or not is another matter.
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:28 PM   #190
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Saying the computational model doesn't explain anything is not accurate. It provides for the possibility of an afterlife ... which is the topic of this thread. You seem to relate to idea of a WOW character just fine, which is a generated construct. Why is the idea that we ourselves might be something similar but much more detailed so far fetched to you?

Point of Interest:

"Scientists at the Max-Planck-Institute for Astrophysics, together with collaborators in the Virgo consortium, have recently completed the largest cosmological N-body simulation ever performed. This calculation solved for the gravitational interactions between more than 300 billion particles over the equivalent of more than 13 billion years, thus simultaneously making predictions for the mass distribution in the Universe on very large and very small scales."

Full article here: http://www.mpa-garching.mpg.de/mpa/r...-en-print.html
What does the linked article have to do with your afterlife hypothesis?
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Old 27th February 2012, 02:43 PM   #191
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Fair comments but there are a couple of issues. In the computational model, everything including your consciousness is a part of the data, therefore it is a part of you ... and consequently if you die here and are reconstituted from your data in another realm, you are still you.
You'd have to go further to proving that consciousness itself, not just the data, is capable of being copied, and thus transferred. Right now, I'm seeing that as an insurmountable obstacle to either an "afterlife" or some kind of immortality. In the case of consciousness, we are all more than the sum of our parts/data. No matter how mundane and average my wit, wisdom, intelligence and creativity, I am still the one, only and unique RobRoy, just as you are the one, only and unique ufology. As mentioned previously, while the data, based on experience and interpretation, that makes me up could be copied, my own consciousness cannot. For all intents and purposes, even in a "computational model" only the data could "live" on, I would cease to exist.

Thus, there is no "afterlife" in this case.

Of course, if consciousness can be transferred, then it's still not an "afterlife", it's just this life with better parts.
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:07 PM   #192
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Originally Posted by RobRoy View Post
I actually admire atheists who can conceive of their own death, and not be scared by the thought of being here one minute, and completely gone the next.
Thank you for your admiration. Part of it comes from knowing that it happens to everyone and every living thing. I'm sure you are aware that I am a hunter. I kill things and eat them. Sometimes I watch them die and sometimes they run just out of sight and I hear them fall over. I don't expect any better when my time comes. I have personally euthanized a pet (humanely). I have watched people deteriorate with age, some were still of keen mind and others lost their mental faculties. I have no reason to expect anything different. I don't know for certain there is no after-life, but the idea seems such a remote possibility that I cannot act as if there is. When I die, my energy will dissipate according to the laws of thermodynamics, my body will similarly decompose and I will simply be gone.

I think the idea of an after-life is based on a belief in souls. Know one seems to know exactly what a soul is, where they come from and what happens to them when a person dies. Personally, I don't believe in souls either. Like a lot of other silly notions, no has been able to prove a single thing about them.
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:40 PM   #193
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Originally Posted by RenaissanceBiker View Post
Thank you for your admiration. Part of it comes from knowing that it happens to everyone and every living thing. I'm sure you are aware that I am a hunter. I kill things and eat them. Sometimes I watch them die and sometimes they run just out of sight and I hear them fall over. I don't expect any better when my time comes. I have personally euthanized a pet (humanely). I have watched people deteriorate with age, some were still of keen mind and others lost their mental faculties. I have no reason to expect anything different. I don't know for certain there is no after-life, but the idea seems such a remote possibility that I cannot act as if there is. When I die, my energy will dissipate according to the laws of thermodynamics, my body will similarly decompose and I will simply be gone.
I also, if I remember correctly, know that you've got me by about a decade or so. Perhaps all that life (and death) experience has helped inure you to those realities. Or perhaps you, individually, are better geared towards that vast acceptance of flat-out death. The ultimate end according to atheists.

I either haven't gotten that far, or I'm not geared toward such acceptance.

Quote:
I think the idea of an after-life is based on a belief in souls. Know one seems to know exactly what a soul is, where they come from and what happens to them when a person dies. Personally, I don't believe in souls either. Like a lot of other silly notions, no has been able to prove a single thing about them.
I don't know that it's so much silly as it is a romanticized way of dealing with death (or souls and such are real). The draw to believe in such things, to think that this isn't all there is, that there is something more, better, greater, longer-lasting, is quite obvious to me. But I would say it goes the other way around: that belief in souls is based on belief in an afterlife. The consciousness of an individual, all that is within their grey matter, their particular chemical and biological systems, the sum that is greater than the parts, is gone with death. To think that it "goes" somewhere is not just appealing, but, to some extent, realistic from a primitive point of view.

Of course, then some jerks go and wrap an entire religion around the whole affair, and here we are.
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Old 27th February 2012, 03:43 PM   #194
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
Appeal to authority.
Doh! I knew that, someone I respect very much told me about that fallacy, so I believed him. . . .
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Old 27th February 2012, 07:13 PM   #195
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Originally Posted by Resume View Post
What does the linked article have to do with your afterlife hypothesis?

It's a point of interest related to supercomputing models of the universe based on physics principles rather than as an art from someones imagination. The more detail we can pack into a universe simulation, the closer we get ourselves to creating a VR universe capable of being inhabited by VR intelligences ... which can die in the VR universe and be resurrected at will. Basically we're looking at the baby steps in these supercomputer models toward having that ability. A thousand years from now, assuming computer technology continues to advance at the rate it has been for the last 50 years, I don't see any reason why such a system with such capability could not come into existence ... maybe even sooner. In this respect it's sort of a thought experiment based on real science that is analogous to what some people propose is the way it is for us now in our present existence ... and as I've mentioned before, this would enable the possibility of an afterlife.
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Old 27th February 2012, 07:19 PM   #196
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Originally Posted by RobRoy View Post
You'd have to go further to proving that consciousness itself, not just the data, is capable of being copied, and thus transferred. Right now, I'm seeing that as an insurmountable obstacle to either an "afterlife" or some kind of immortality. In the case of consciousness, we are all more than the sum of our parts/data. No matter how mundane and average my wit, wisdom, intelligence and creativity, I am still the one, only and unique RobRoy, just as you are the one, only and unique ufology. As mentioned previously, while the data, based on experience and interpretation, that makes me up could be copied, my own consciousness cannot. For all intents and purposes, even in a "computational model" only the data could "live" on, I would cease to exist.

Thus, there is no "afterlife" in this case.

Of course, if consciousness can be transferred, then it's still not an "afterlife", it's just this life with better parts.

Well ... being more than the sum of our individual parts is sort of a mystical belief. Not that I don't agree that the effect seems apparent. But in what way do we quantify it? In the computational model, your data set would still be unique to you, no matter where it was manifested. You would not lose your individual identity and you would be no more or less you than you are now.
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Old 27th February 2012, 07:27 PM   #197
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Originally Posted by Paul2 View Post
Folo, allow me to backtrack a bit on my post above, if only in tone.

If science already has a way to distinguish between a construct hypothesis and a "reality" hypothesis (for lack of a better word), I'm all ears.

Paul, if you want to backtrack, then backtrack all the way. This entire segment of discussion has everything to do with my first post positing the position that an afterlife is possible and your rebuttal with the skeptic in the video you posted. Based on his construct of an afterlife, he makes sense. However his rationale doesn't apply to my position and therefore does nothing to nullify it. Can we agree on that much at least?
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Old 27th February 2012, 07:30 PM   #198
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
Appeal to authority.

Ironic ... the position of the scientific skeptic is an appeal to sceince as an authority ... so are you saying science doesn't count now either?
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Old 27th February 2012, 08:20 PM   #199
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
It's a point of interest related to supercomputing models of the universe based on physics principles rather than as an art from someones imagination.


Since you appear to have either forgotten or completeley ignored it, this is from the OP:

Originally Posted by Porterboy View Post
Hi, I've not posted for a while, but I've been pondering an issue I thought I'd share: It's about belief in the Afterlife, Life-After-Death, Heaven, whatever you want to call it. I know there are threads here discussing whether it's real or not; I know Skeptics say it's not. I have my own opinions on that, but the point I want to address here is not whether it exists or not, but why do people think it does.


As you can see, this Matrixesque nonsense that you seem determined to rabbit on about has absolutely nothing to do with it.


Originally Posted by ufology View Post
The more detail we can pack into a universe simulation, the closer we get ourselves to creating a VR universe capable of being inhabited by VR intelligences ... which can die in the VR universe and be resurrected at will.


How is this addressing the reasons that people believe in an afterlife?


Originally Posted by ufology View Post

<more of the same>

. . . and as I've mentioned before, this would enable the possibility of an afterlife.


And as you've been told repeatedly, it's not an afterlife at all, particularly in the context in which the OP was using the word.
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Old 27th February 2012, 08:25 PM   #200
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Originally Posted by ufology View Post
Ironic ... the position of the scientific skeptic is an appeal to sceince as an authority ... so are you saying science doesn't count now either?

You didn't say "science" ufology, you said "scientific minds."

"I've shown further that serious scientific minds take the computational model seriously . . ."

Do you see the difference or do we need to add logic and critical thinking to the list of things you don't understand?
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