Re: Identical Copies [was Re: Good exchange with Eliezer]

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Sat Apr 01 2000 - 16:31:32 MST

John Clark wrote:
> Robert Bradbury <> Wrote:
> >The cost of disassembling a large unique collection of atoms
> >(to isotopic specificity) and reassembling it *identically*, is probably *very* large.
> No need to do it identically, I change when I drink a cup of coffee but I'm
> still the same person. I think. Well, at least there's nothing else around
> that could make a better claim to the title.

You are still the 99% physical you that you were a minute ago, so the
coffee is diluted and is incorporated into you by your digestive system.

> >I'm sure that most will agree that the transistors in those processors
> >*are not* identical at the atomic scale.
> And the wires in the power supply of two computers may have different
> colors but if they're running the same program it really doesn't matter.

If the two computers are self aware, it doesn't matter that they have
identical processors and motherboards. Identity is in awareness.

> >Within milliseconds of the copying process however, neither of them
> >is "an original".
> Exactly. It doesn't matter who the original is because you can only have
> a true "original" if there is no change and life by its very nature is change.
> In other words, if it's really original then it's dead.

Uh oh, John is trotting out the old canard that twins are
interchangeable, so its ok to off one of them, since you have a spare. I
mean, they are genetically identical, right? So they are the same
creature, produced in duplicate. By Johns reasoning you can whack one of
them with no consequences. Cops say,"But you killed Bill here." John
replies,"No I didn't, this is an identical copy of Bill right here, so
he is still alive and well. That there was simply an extra copy of Bill
that was hanging around taking up space, making odd noises about how he
was an individual..."

Are there any twins on the list???

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