Re: Platonic materialism

Anders Sandberg (
Wed, 12 Feb 1997 19:02:06 +0100 (MET)

On Wed, 12 Feb 1997, Max More wrote:

> At 12:17 PM 2/12/97 +0100, Anders wrote:
> >
> >Moravec/Egan is as yet untestable (except through the dynamite
> >headband method), but might become more reasonable once we are uploaded...
> I talked with Hans Moravec while we were at a conference at the beginning
> of the month. He's taking his Platonic view further now. Not only does he
> feel cryonics to be pointless, he now finds uploading pointless too. He now
> believes that you can find a mind in *any* object (yes, that wall over
> there, this coffee cup) with a sufficiently clever interpretation. That
> interpretation may be too hard for us to discover so we may not converse
> with that mind, but the mind nevertheless exists.

I agree with it, but it doesn't make cryonics or uploading pointless.
First of all, his ontology could be wrong (happens all the time).
Secondly, if you start seriously believing there is a perfect world where
you live a perfect life, what is to stop you from simply killing yourself
(there is even one such world where you kill yourself only to awaken in
your personal paradise!)? Just as Moravec previously claimed that hurting
simulated beings was bad not because it changed the amount of suffering
in the Manifold (they would get hurt anyway) but because it would change
you to a worse person, I would say avoiding uploading because you would
get it somewhere would change you to a worse person.

I really hope he will not go the same way as Tipler and Penrose, seduced
by his personal philosophy. Sometimes I'm glad I keep to the sane and
practical areas of neuroscience... ;-)

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y