John Clark (
Tue, 24 Nov 1998 16:21:32 -0500

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Eliezer S. Yudkowsky Wrote:

>Is it a real instantiation or just a recording?

You asked some other questions too but near as I can tell they all boil down to the same thing. If an intelligent Turing machine is in a particular logical state, that is, if it has a particular thought, and sometime much later it or another machine finds itself in exactly the same logical state, are there two thoughts or only one? I would say there is only one, a thought can not detect the passage of time so that can not differentiate it. Besides, a thought should not be held responsible the machine that happens to think it. That's why Nietzsche's Eternal Return would not ease the sting of death for me in the slightest even if it were proven to be correct. If I'm locked in a jail cell I don't feel free because I can walk endlessly in a 5-foot diameter circle. Of course in the real world we never see intelligent Turing machines in exactly the same state.

As for consciousness, it must be an unavoidable byproduct of intelligence, otherwise random mutation and natural selection would never have never come up with it.

>Nobody will change their opinion as a result of this debate.

You're probably right but what the hell, it's more fun than arguing about football.

John K Clark

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