Re: physics of uploading minds

From: Heartland (
Date: Tue Nov 01 2005 - 12:10:24 MST

> On Tue, 1 Nov 2005 "Heartland" <>
>> Unfortunately, mind transfers are usually debated in
>> terms of brain structure and preservation of continuity
>> of consciousness. In reality these concepts are somewhat marginal
> What an extraordinary thing to say! I would humbly suggest that
> subjective continuity of consciousness is absolutely positively 100% the
> ONLY thing that matters.

BTW, few years ago I was almost certain that, "subjective continuity of
consciousness is absolutely positively 100% the ONLY thing that matters." At
least this view is closer to the truth than "brain pattern is absolutely
positively 100% the ONLY thing that matters." :)

>>What really matters, IMO, is a "mind-producing activity
>> of matter in space-time,"
> And I would also humbly suggest that the term "space - time" be used
> only when the words "time" and "place" are insufficient.

That's exactly why I'm using "space" instead of "place". Minds exist in 4D
space-time, not in a 2D "time and place".

>> consciousness which is merely a subset of
>> "mind-producing activity of matter
>> in space-time."
> Translation: At a time and place.

All the words in my definitions are there for a reason. No translations are
necessary. I meant "space", really.

>> Just because people sometimes lose consciousness
>> doesn't mean their brains stop working.
> When the brain of a surgery patients is cooled way down and they are
> under very deep anesthesia there is still some minimal metabolism going
> on in the neurons, but nothing you wouldn't find in a liver or skin
> cell; and there is virtually no communication between neurons; in other
> words no thought, conscious or unconscious.

And even in this extreme case the person remains the same because the
potential for original presence still exists. In fact, maintaining
*potential for presence* should be *the* main goal of uploading.

>> I can be present without being conscious.
> At that moment you not only have no consciousness you don't even have
> reflexes, and are no more intelligent that a house plant. Are you
> absolutely certain you really want to claim that is you?

Of course. If it were otherwise then every loss of consciousness would
result in death. You are certainly not saying that, are you?

>> So yes, I agree that consciousness isn't a relevant criterion

It's not, sorry.

> My question is this: If you are correct then why should you care if
> you're dead or not,

Because being alive gives me opportunity to experience something, preferably
something positive, while death takes away that opportunity. I would hold
that view even if was wrong.

> and why should anyone care about this mysterious and
> mystical "presence" that just sounds like a soul dressed up in its best
> Sunday go to meeting words like "Space Time Continuum".
> John K Clark

The meaning of what I call presence (no, it's not a synonym for
"consciousness") is somewhat abstract but the definition is very simple -
mind-producing activity of matter in space-time (or space and time, if you
wish). It's the activity itself.

Basically, presence is to the brain what motion is to a car.

And no, it's not a soul. :)


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