Re: Conscious of the hard problem

Freeman Craig Presson (
Thu, 24 Jun 1999 09:20:32 -0500

On 23 Jun 99, Billy Brown wrote:
> I highly recomment Douglas Hofstadter's "Godel, Escher, Back: An Eternal
> Golden Braid" for its treatment of this topic. His theory (in very
> simplified form) is that consciousness is a natural result of the inherent
> complexity [...]

The simplified form of "his" theory is not original to him (not that you necessarily meant that it was), although certain refinements are/may be. I heard it first from Asimov, I think, and it would be interesting to know how far back it goes. If someone pointed the idea out in the writings of Turing, or Babbage, or even da Vinci, I would not be surprised. I have (one of my many) defective memory of something germane in von Neumann's writings, but I can't pull it up (time to consult ELTM, obviously -- starting with this list).