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Old 14th April 2018, 11:09 AM   #241
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
Well, I really don't see how given what he quoted.

And didn't we just establish that he thinks consciousness can arise without a brain? I didn't call him out on that because I can see he might be thinking "electronic brain".
Yeah, he does seem to calling the right type of computer an electronic brain.

He also seems to be operating on the assumption that if consciousness isn't an illusion of a sort, the only other option is dualism.
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:11 AM   #242
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
I'm someone who can't recall the impression of a colour. I can tell you that your car is red because I remember looking at it and noticing it was red but that creates no impression of "redness".
Do you think in black, grey and white? What happens when you try to imagine a circle?
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:23 AM   #243
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
You said "there is nothing but evidence that consciousness cannot happen without a brain"...so...

At what point and by what mechanism does a well programmed Siri become conscious?

Do you think AIs can have this?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artificial_consciousness

If you can create a machine/computer advanced enough to behave like a human brain (there are bound to be some differences of course ... since it is not actually a human brain), then all you have done is create an artificial brain. In which case your artificial brain, if it's a good enough copy, will by definition show all the same characteristics and traits that we call "consciousness" (if it fails to do that, then by definition it is NOT producing the same characteristics and powers of a human brain ... it is not such a good copy in that case).

But apart from that - Ron Tomkins is right when he says (I think this is what he was saying), that all genuine published evidence in psychology, neuroscience and relevant fields of medicine, shows that what we call "consciousness" is very clearly just a product of normal brain function (in all higher animals as well as humans). And in fact we already had exactly that discussion here ad-nauseam in several very long threads about so-called Out Of Body Experiences (OBE) and Near Death Experiences (NDE), where some posters (those taking their ideas from philosophy and/or religion) were claiming that consciousness was "the hard problem" and saying it is likely to be something that exists separately from our brain/body, such that it was being claimed as some sort of permanent disembodied intelligent force filling the universe!! ...

... in the end it was shown that it was actually almost always being argued as a God claim (i.e. it was actually the claim that souls exist ... hence God & heaven exists).
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:34 AM   #244
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Quote:
If you can create a machine/computer advanced enough to behave like a human brain
Can you be a tad more specific about what it means to behave like a human brain?

My understanding is that we only know a fraction of what's going on with the human brain.
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:49 AM   #245
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@IanS, Could you edit your post to remove the woo so this thread doesn't get bogged down in all that nonsense? It's bad enough we have Dennett's philosophical/rhetorical argument in this thread already.
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:54 AM   #246
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Can you be a tad more specific about what it means to behave like a human brain?
Good question. Pointing out that an artificial brain has to be a "good enough" copy to demonstrate consciousness doesn't really get us very far. Understanding means knowing what "good enough" actually entails. Do we need glucose metabolism? Left/right brain near symmetry with exactly the same asymmetries?

If, back to the transporter/copier mechanism, we can make a copy of a person (and their brain of course) does it necessarily follow that we understand how the copy is conscious? I don't think so.
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:55 AM   #247
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Oh Jesus Christ for Pete's sake.

Not agreeing that's there's some magical, intangible, intrinsic part of the human mind that isn't reducible to a scientific explanation is not Woo.

Everything in mine and your brains right now is just the natural results of a functioning neurosystem. If that neurosystem could be exactly replicated, it would have same functions.

You want to argue differently then you're arguing for a magic spirit or soul.
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:57 AM   #248
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
If, back to the transporter/copier mechanism, we can make a copy of a person (and their brain of course) does it necessarily follow that we understand how the copy is conscious? I don't think so.
If it's an exact copy yes. THAT'S WHAT COPY MEANS.

If you copy everything material about the brain, the copy is going to have everything unless you want to invoke magic. THAT'S WHAT COPY MEANS.

Jesus I'm having Jabba flash back so bad right now.
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Old 14th April 2018, 11:59 AM   #249
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I'm arguing that making a copy doesn't mean you understand what you copied. Of course the copy will be a copy.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:03 PM   #250
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Nobody's arguing that it's magic or beyond scientific explanation.
We're arguing against the notion that the elucidations of the mechanisms behind metacognition and the phenomenon of consciousness are currently advanced enough to be declared "well understood".

We think the unknowns with consciousness are more akin to the unknowns about what dark matter is, than the unknowns about earthquakes, livers, and volcanoes.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:05 PM   #251
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Here I'll sum it up.

You, me, a mind, a "self", whatever you want to call a consciousness... all of that is just the end results of a normal, functioning neurosystem.

If you can snap your fingers and magically create a device that had that exact same neurosystem, whether it be a grey matter or a circuit board or somehow magically made of potato salad, it would be exactly as "conscious" as the brain it was copied from.

If you make an exact copy of the electrical impulses of a brain it will, by definition, be exactly as conscious as the brain.

To suggest otherwise is to suggest a soul and try to hide it in scientific terms.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:11 PM   #252
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
I'm arguing that making a copy doesn't mean you understand what you copied. Of course the copy will be a copy.
Right. Toddlers can sing in the music time signature of 4/4, but they have to be older to know what distinguishes 4/4 from 3/4, etc.

Chemists "stumble across" new pharmaceuticals as a matter of routine, and can see what the effect is, and the new chemical can be easily synthesized, long before the mechanism of action in the human body is understood at all.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:13 PM   #253
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Here I'll sum it up.

You, me, a mind, a "self", whatever you want to call a consciousness... all of that is just the end results of a normal, functioning neurosystem.

If you can snap your fingers and magically create a device that had that exact same neurosystem, whether it be a grey matter or a circuit board or somehow magically made of potato salad, it would be exactly as "conscious" as the brain it was copied from.

If you make an exact copy of the electrical impulses of a brain it will, by definition, be exactly as conscious as the brain.

To suggest otherwise is to suggest a soul and try to hide it in scientific terms.
Nobody disagrees with any of that. You're arguing a strawman here.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:14 PM   #254
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Repeating kellyb. Joe: Who do you think you're talking to? You're stating the obvious.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:29 PM   #255
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Not if my toe has been treated with a local anesthetic or I am dosed up on painkillers. And according to the classic pzombie definition I am a pzombie since I externally exhibit the behaviours of consciousness but lack qualia of such things as redness.
You're having trouble answering a simple question: do you feel pain? Yes/no. If yes, congrats, you have qualia. If no, you're a zombie.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:31 PM   #256
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Originally Posted by Ron_Tomkins View Post
Again: Brain activity.



The answers to those questions are of course, very complex and long and technical, but there's plenty of literature that develops on this in full detail. VS Ramachandran comes to mind. But even Daniel Dennett's "Consciousness Explained" is a very good start.
No it's not.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:44 PM   #257
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Nobody disagrees with any of that. You're arguing a strawman here.
Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
Repeating kellyb. Joe: Who do you think you're talking to? You're stating the obvious.
Then what is the question?

What problem are we trying to solve?

Okay so we all agree a sufficiently advanced... anything that had neurological pattern identical to that of a "mind" would have to have all qualities of that "mind" including whatever definition for "consciousness" you want to use.

Doesn't that sort of... end the discussion?

There is no hard problem of consciousness. Shut the book, case closed, who wants tacos?

I sort feel like I've walked into a thread entitled "The hard problem of 2+2=4" were nobody wants to admit they don't think 2+2=4 but they just want to keep... talking about like they think they're learn something new or different about it.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:48 PM   #258
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Doesn't that sort of... end the discussion?
It ends a different discussion that I don't think has even occurred in this thread, but certainly not in the posts where you're seeing it.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:51 PM   #259
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
It ends a different discussion that I don't think has even occurred in this thread, but certainly not in the posts where you're seeing it.
Then again I ask, what's the question? What's the problem we're solving?

Because take away that and we're left... arguing over pronouns basically.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:53 PM   #260
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Then what is the question?

What problem are we trying to solve?
Trying to actually figure out how consciousness works. It's one thing to know it where it happens, it's an entirely different thing to understand it. Building a conscious computer would be one example of "what problem are we trying to solve".

Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
There is no hard problem of consciousness. Shut the book, case closed, who wants tacos?
If you think "shut the book, case closed" is the right answer then can you show me the conscious computer you've built?

An irony in your statement is that it should be possible to recognize that consciousness is a hard problem to solve even without understanding what the hard problem actually is.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:54 PM   #261
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Then again I ask, what's the question? What's the problem we're solving?

Because take away that and we're left... arguing over pronouns basically.
I put that in a separate post in an effort to keep woo from seeping in to the thread.
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Old 14th April 2018, 12:59 PM   #262
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Then what is the question?

What problem are we trying to solve?
Like I said at the beginning of the thread, I think calling it a "problem" of consciousness is something of a misnomer.

The questions are "what is consciousness, how does it work, how can it be tested for, what sort of computers can have it" and things like that.

Answering "What is consciousness?" with "It's well understood, it's an illusion, and just brain activity" is like answering the question of "What is dark matter?" with "It's the component of the universe that isn't ordinary matter. Case closed!"
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:07 PM   #263
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
Trying to actually figure out how consciousness works. It's one thing to know it where it happens, it's an entirely different thing to understand it. Building a conscious computer would be one example of "what problem are we trying to solve".
Okay this has transcended putting the cart before the horse and at this point you're trying to have two carts pull each other.

I keep coming back to this and I keep treating like I'm somehow being unreasonable but this whole thing is still "We have to learn how consciousness works so we can figure out what consciousness is so we can figure out how consciousness works so we can figure out what consciousness is so we can figure out how consciousness works so we can figure out what consciousness is so we can figure out how consciousness works so we can figure out what consciousness is so we can figure out how consciousness works so we can figure out what consciousness is so we can figure out how consciousness works...."

This is like some metaphysical "We have to pass the law to learn what's in it" routine.

Pick one. Either define consciousness so we can argue whether or not it exists with some framework or tell me what problem of the brain we have to solve that you think consciousness is that answer to so I can agree or disagree with some framework.

Because right now you're doing both. You're making up something to answer a question you're making up and in the same breath pointing at the thing you've just made up asking us to explain it.

You've handed me an equation where both sides are notthing but variables and telling me I'm wrong to expect more information. You're not telling me to solve for X you've handed me an equation that says X+X = X+X and asked me to solve for X.

If however you define or conceptualize consciousness requires you to explain it before you test for and test for it before you can explain it... isn't the idea that your version of consciousness just doesn't exist make more sense?

Quote:
An irony in your statement is that it should be possible to recognize that consciousness is a hard problem to solve even without understanding what the hard problem actually is.
Dear God it's recursive nested ironic irony...
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:11 PM   #264
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Answering "What is consciousness?" with "It's well understood, it's an illusion, and just brain activity" is like answering the question of "What is dark matter?" with "It's the component of the universe that isn't ordinary matter. Case closed!"
Because you choose to equate "process" with "illusion."

A series of static hand painted cells being projected at 24 frames a second creates the "illusion" of a cartoon mouse driving a steamboat. But it's an understandable process.
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:14 PM   #265
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Because you choose to equate "process" with "illusion."
No, I think it's a process and also not an illusion.

Ron_Tomkins in this thread and Daniel Dennet of "4 horsemen" fame say it's a process and an illusion.
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:15 PM   #266
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Joe, I don't think you read what I wrote.
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:21 PM   #267
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Okay, Joe:

How does matter give rise to organisms which have the capacity to feel, perceive or experience subjectively?
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:36 PM   #268
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Okay, Joe:

How does matter give rise to organisms which have the capacity to feel, perceive or experience subjectively?
What answer do you have to offer?
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:38 PM   #269
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Okay, Joe:

How does matter give rise to organisms which have the capacity to feel, perceive or experience subjectively?
I don't know and I can already tell you're gonna threat that as a much bigger deal than it is.

This rapidly turning into a "God of the Gaps" style argument we're your goal to argue me into some level of person incredulity and use that... prove... something.

I'll save you the trouble. There's plenty about neurology that I don't personally understand. Not knowing every single possible thing about neurobiology doesn't... change anything.

I don't know (outside of basic college level general biology classes) about the liver but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of protein and Vitamin K production."

I don't know the exactities (that needs to be a word) of how the endocrine system works but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of hormone production."

Hell I don't know how yeast works but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of bread rising."

I don't know how the brain works to... pretty much the same degree so I'm not join everyone in the jump to "Hard problem of Consciousness."

People are not approaching this like a simple "Oh there's still stuff about the brain we don't understand."

Like if understand how a heart works would conceptualize it only in comparing to an artificial heart and make the conversation "What unknown quality does the heart have that the artificial heart doesn't?"
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:46 PM   #270
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Joe (and ynot apparently): This thread, for a change, is mercifully free of the people you seem to be arguing with. I'll address some content in your message in a minute. But please, read what people are writing. Don't assume motives that, for one brief period at least, aren't yet in the thread.
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:52 PM   #271
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I'll save you the trouble. There's plenty about neurology that I don't personally understand. Not knowing every single possible thing about neurobiology doesn't... change anything.
Who cares about neurobiology? Most people in this thread seem to think that consciousness is a material process and probably independent of the actual material it's implemented in. Now before you go screaming "DUALISM! DUALISM" that doesn't mean a soul. It means consciousness can probably be implemented in a computer. The same way movies can be record on tape, DVD, memory sticks, etc. Neurobiologists are generally NOT the people who study consciousiness.

Quote:
I don't know (outside of basic college level general biology classes) about the liver but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of protein and Vitamin K production."
Correct, nothing but objective facts there.

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I don't know the exactities (that needs to be a word) of how the endocrine system works but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of hormone production."
Correct, nothing but objective facts there.

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Hell I don't know how yeast works but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of bread rising."
Correct, nothing but objective facts there.

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I don't know how the brain works to... pretty much the same degree so I'm not join everyone in the jump to "Hard problem of Consciousness."
Guess what? This one is different. Your consciousness is where subjective experiences occur and it filters all your inputs. That makes it different.
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Last edited by RecoveringYuppy; 14th April 2018 at 01:56 PM. Reason: Added important missing "NOT"
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:56 PM   #272
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
This one is different. Your consciousness is where subjective experiences occur and it filters all your inputs. That makes it different.
Why?
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:57 PM   #273
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Read the middle sentence. Jesus.
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Old 14th April 2018, 01:59 PM   #274
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I did.

"Subjective experiences" is meaningless twaddle. There's no mystery in my brain receiving inputs from my eyes and processing it than there is in a security camera feeding into a computer running facial recognition software in anything but complexity.
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Old 14th April 2018, 02:00 PM   #275
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So the security camera is conscious?
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Old 14th April 2018, 02:04 PM   #276
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Originally Posted by RecoveringYuppy View Post
So the security camera is conscious?
And we're back to the "How does consciousness work" part of the infinite "What is consciousness / how does consciousness work" loop that answers itself.

I don't have a clue. I've already said I don't know what you're asking when you say that.
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Old 14th April 2018, 02:07 PM   #277
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I don't know and I can already tell you're gonna threat that as a much bigger deal than it is.

This rapidly turning into a "God of the Gaps" style argument we're your goal to argue me into some level of person incredulity and use that... prove... something.
No, Joe. God of the gaps arguments are when you attribute phenomenon of unknown causation to god.

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I'll save you the trouble. There's plenty about neurology that I don't personally understand. Not knowing every single possible thing about neurobiology doesn't... change anything.
Neuroscientists like Sam Harris are some of the main people interested in "the hard problem of consciousness". This isn't a matter of you personally not being some neuroscience expert.

Quote:
I don't know (outside of basic college level general biology classes) about the liver but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of protein and Vitamin K production."

I don't know the exactities (that needs to be a word) of how the endocrine system works but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of hormone production."

Hell I don't know how yeast works but that doesn't mean there's a "Hard problem of bread rising."



Quote:
People are not approaching this like a simple "Oh there's still stuff about the brain we don't understand."
Yes, we are.
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Old 14th April 2018, 02:18 PM   #278
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Do you think in black, grey and white? What happens when you try to imagine a circle?
I don't think in colour at all, I see nothing in my minds eye, I can't "imagine a circle".
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Old 14th April 2018, 02:19 PM   #279
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Originally Posted by 8Sime8 View Post
If I believe that my personal feelings towards someone who is pain isn't relevant to the truth of their being in pain, then the truth of their being in pain reduces to an observer independent description of their behaviour. Such a behavioural description then possesses no notion of what I think of as experience.
I'm afraid you lost me there.
Or did you reply to some other post?

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Old 14th April 2018, 02:20 PM   #280
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
And we're back to the "How does consciousness work" part of the infinite "What is consciousness / how does consciousness work" loop that answers itself.

I don't have a clue. I've already said I don't know what you're asking when you say that.
When you say "There's no mystery in my brain receiving inputs from my eyes and processing it than there is in a security camera feeding into a computer running facial recognition software in anything but complexity" you are making the very silly argument that anything can be considered "understood" if you can just dismiss the missing information as "additional complexity".

Do you also think abiogenesis is "case closed", too? And discussions about it are stupid and lame because life is difficult to define?
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Last edited by kellyb; 14th April 2018 at 02:23 PM.
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