mind versus machine discussion

About: slashdot | the semantics differentiation of minds and machines

I don't know whether the book being reviewed is as interesting as the comments on this /. article.
Most so-called scientists confuse the difference between the detecting of an electrical impulse moving in the neurons of the brain with the thought. The distinction is between the cause and the effect. An analogy can be found in bubble chambers where what is detectable is the bubbles (the electrical impulse being analogized) and what caused it is the high energy particle (the thought being analogized).   The medium in this case is NOT the message, but where the message shows up for materialistic scientists.

Tags

  1. mind
  2. machine
  3. semantics
  4. process
  5. slashdot
  6. philosophy

Comments


Seth says
Mark 2006-01-21 10:17:58 2582
See - we have the distinction of soul. Whether it is something like the physical body or a hand that you can draw a line around in some kind of sensory world and say you have it like in a drawing or whether is is just functional distinction within the physical body is where the game begins. (And of course whether you could sell it or not)

This "soul" you seek is a process, it is not a substance.  There is a sense in which you are far more materialistic than I; for i no longer look for this substance. Above you jump up and down asserting that you are not a process ... for me that is very telling. 

Seth says
Mark 2006-01-21 10:35:30 2582
Process is a human abstraction 
Yep, and so is matter.  The problem emerges where we attribute some of the fixed qualities associated with our abstraction called "matter", where they do not belong.  We carry the analogy too far.  I find thinking in the abstraction called "process" allows us to apply that abstraction more precisely and to more things.

Mark de LA says
Matter is sensory not an abstraction. If matter is an abstraction, then everything is an abstraction & the word has no meaning.

Seth says
Well i agree that this sums up the argumentation pretty well.  Just for the record, the believes that human beings are processess that have consciousness, free will, and moral responsibility.  There are very few, if any,  machine processess today to which most people would attribute those characteristics.  All of those are charasterics of the social behavior of humans, they are not things that one expects to show up on an oscilloscope, but i would expect them to show up on an stastical analysis of behavioral events. 

Apparently what this article brings to the fore is that machine processess do not establish relationships between their symbols and that which is outside their symbols.  Well, no daaa ... most machines do not even acquire sense data outside of the symbols that they manipulate.  A while back i did an animation of a mentograph of a symantic process similar to ostension ... you might want to watch it.  The animation was done to show the process of quantification, but it does contain the contexts of the symbol processing and the process of binding  one context to another ... and that process of binding symbols in one context to symbols in another context is what they are talking about when they talk abot "ascribing a semantic interpretation" ... it is the drawing of those yellow arrows at the end of the animation that does the "ascribing of an interpertation".  Notice that the animation does not shed any light on how those arrows are drawn.   But the context, simpley called"reality" in mentograph, is in the shared sense data of the social community.  ... i bet most people are not gonna get this.  Oh well ...




Mark de LA says
The etymology of the idea in the word "soul":
soul (1) Look up soul at Dictionary.comO.E. sawol "spiritual and emotional part of a person, animate existence," from P.Gmc. *saiwalo (cf. O.S. seola, O.N. sala, O.Fris. sele, M.Du. siele, Du. ziel, O.H.G. seula, Ger. Seele, Goth. saiwala), of uncertain origin. Sometimes said to mean originally "coming from or belonging to the sea," because that was supposed to be the stopping place of the soul before birth or after death. Hence, from P.Gmc. *saiwaz (see sea). Meaning "spirit of a deceased person" is attested in O.E. from 971. As a synonym for "person, individual" (e.g. every living soul) it dates from c.1320. Soulmate (1822) is first attested in Coleridge. Soul-searching (n.) is attested from 1948, from the phrase used as a pp. adj. (1612).soul (2) Look up soul at Dictionary.com"instinctive quality felt by black persons as an attribute," 1946, jazz slang, from soul (1). Soulful "full of feeling" is attested from 1863. Hence Soul music, essentially gospel music with "girl" in place of "Jesus," etc., first attested 1961; William James used the term in 1900, in a spiritual/romantic sense, but in ref. to inner music. Also from this sense are soul brother (1957), soul food (1957), etc.



Mark de LA says
See - we have the distinction of soul. Whether it is something like the physical body or a hand that you can draw a line around in some kind of sensory world and say you have it like in a drawing or whether is is just functional distinction within the physical body is where the game begins. (And of course whether you could sell it or not)


Mark de LA says
& this comment gets to the meat of the argumentation uri http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=174543&cid=14521489 often found in the Turing Test argumentation mentioned inhere


Mark de LA says
I wonder if we could wind this back into the comments on the original Slashdot article & get it in the comments of that article. 


Mark de LA says
Process is a human abstraction just like time is an abstraction from movement (or change). It is all one thing, but just like an iceberg you may not be able to "see" it all at once. From astrology (or philosophy) we can get the perpendicularity of our points of view (Scorpio-Dynamics) & (Virgo-Phenomenology)


Mark de LA says
Your mentograph, while interesting, is hard to read - it needs a button to recycle the animation for one thing. From NLP I grok that the "map is not the territory" . From ontology I get that there is context & distinction & that context itself is another distinction. What are you saying in English with your mentograph ? Your yellow arrows require a leap of faith , much like the leap of faith that the brain produces the soul qualities of your experience of reality.

Seth says
Mark 2006-01-21 09:58:16 2582
Your mentograph, while interesting, is hard to read - it needs a button to recycle the animation for one thing. From NLP I grok that the "map is not the territory" . From ontology I get that there is context & distinction & that context itself is another distinction. What are you saying in English with your mentograph ? Your yellow arrows require a leap of faith , much like the leap of faith that the brain produces the soul qualities of your experience of reality.
Perhaps a little history is in order.  Yes, the yellow arrows require a leap of faith. I was surprised to learn that a formal semantic interpertation always requires this leap of faith.  Take for example the penultimate semantic interpertation of our time, RDF Semantics, by Pat Hayes of the w3c working group. The context of the interpertation always exists in the human mind, it does not exist in the symbols being manipulated.  At least with mentography, we can put it on the page .  Pat Hayes, did not like that, but he did it in his diagrams too.  

Mark de LA says
process (n.) Look up process at Dictionary.comc.1330, "fact of being carried on" (e.g. in process), from O.Fr. proces "journey" (13c.), from L. processus "process, advance, progress," from pp. stem of procedere "go forward" (see proceed). Meaning "course or method of action" is from 1340; sense of "continuous series of actions meant to accomplish some result" (the main modern sense) is from 1627. Legal sense of "course of action of a suit at law" is attested from c.1325. Verb meaning "prepare by special process" first recorded 1884; processor is 1909; data processor is 1958; word processor is c.1974; food processor is 1977.I am a human being.  I am NOT a process. People including myself can ascribe processes to various parts of my internal and external behavior, BUT I am NOT my behavior - I have behavior - the semantics of this are important!


Mark de LA says
This comment from a slash-dotiot may indicate the value of the book.
uri http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=174543&cid=14521470


Mark de LA says
seth 2006-01-21 10:54:55 2582
Mark 2006-01-21 10:47:27 2582
everything is an abstraction & the word has no meaning.
Well ... err ... everything that you are aware of is in your mind ... your mind cannot be aware of procesess that do not impinge upon it, do not leave traces in it.  It takes a leap of faith to believe in the existance of things outside of your mind that you can only experience within your solipsistic perdicament.  I have no problem with that leap of faith, but some people revel in not taking it.  
Hmmm... - you lost the first part of the sentence in your quoting. There are processes & stuff that is within your thoughts & mind which can lead you elsewhere.

Mark de LA says
Just to complete the circle my comment on this article pointed slashdot to this item at FastBlogIt.


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