Re: The copy paradox

Brent Allsop (
Wed, 5 Nov 1997 11:06:14 -0700

Harvey Newstrom <> had some great objections to
transporters that destroy the original.

> This is a good explanation. My objection to transporters is that I
> may go through one, like Dup1, and never be able to know if Dup2 had
> been created. Is it OK to kill me? I would say no, because I do
> not want to experience death. The existence of Dup2 does not
> influence my decision.

Yes, this is precisely the problem. The way to solve this is
to use merged minds and effing of consciousness. Imagine that the
duplicate has some kind of communications connection that merges it's
consciousness with the original. Essentially making them the same
supper conscious entity.

It's hard for us to imagine this since the conscious space in
our brain is currently primitively very fixed, non expandable, and has
only one point of view. So to make it more intuitive, think of the
seeing part of your consciousness being dup1 and the hearing part of
your consciousness being dup2. Together you can both hear what is
going on in the "to" or copy location and see what is going on in the
"from" or original location but you are, together, one conscious
being. If the dup1 is to be destroyed, it would be like being
temporarily blinded, but you wouldn't be dead. You would of course be
able to reproduce the seeing part of your consciousness within dup2
restoring your sight. Though part of you temporarily died, because of
effing of consciousness all of you would not have died. This would
mostly solve your intuitive objection to the idea through conscious
continuity. Of course destruction of any part of you is always a
problem and avoidance of such is always desirable if possible. But,
if you are consciously spread across multiple platforms, you will
always know that you can regenerate that particular part in some other
location or time if necessary.

The important part is understanding what of and how our
conscious worlds are made, and then learning how to connect these
conscious worlds so that we can eff feelings, sensations... and share
minds to preserve consciously continuity. As you correctly assume,
you must be directly (via effing or actual mind merging) aware of the
creation of dup2 and be able to directly experience what it is

By the way, Hal Finney <>, made some very good
comments about what I said. Thank you for this feedback, Hal, with
which I very much agreed. I'll make modification to address some
of your good criticisms.

Brent Allsop