Re: Objective Anticipation

From: Jeff L Jones (
Date: Sun Mar 16 2008 - 02:53:16 MDT

2 typo corrections, and another comment....

On Sun, Mar 16, 2008 at 1:08 AM, Jeff L Jones <> wrote:
> Reincarnation is a good example of subjective anticipation. Anyone is
> free to believe that when they did, their
> mind/soul/consciousness/essence will be reincarnated as someone else,

(free to believe that when they die...)

> I know that if my brain is copied 100 times and put into 1000
> different bodies and sent out into the world, then it is going to have
> 1000 times the impact on the world.

(if my brain is copied 1000 times...)

And the comment I'd like to add: it may seem that I've contradicted
myself by first saying that "subjective anticipation" has no impact on
the world and then saying "it can seriously cripple your influence on
the world in the future." So I should clarify that. Anticipating
that you are going to be someone who isn't going to have the memory of
that anticipation, or anticipating things in the wrong proportions as
John Clark has done... both of those can have negative impacts on the
future people who have your memories. But if you don't believe that
those future people are really "you" then you haven't actually hurt
yourself, as far as you are free to believe. All you've done is
negatively affected the future of someone else... or in the case of
John Clark, negatively affected the future of a bunch of people who he
believes are all the "same version" of him, even though they each have
different experiences and will be able to go out and each affect the
world in different ways. So in a sense, subjective anticipation is
harmless. But the one measurablely negative effect it does have is
that it fails to maximize your future influence on the world. And
this is really the reason why I would argue for adopting objective
anticipation and forgetting about subjective anticipation.

One further comment: most of my intuitions on this come from thinking
about the Many Worlds Interpretation, something I've believed in for a
number of years. And there is is just crystal clear that you *must*
interpret anticipation in this way. Because nature is always making
copies of you, and they are always fanning out and developing into
different people. If you don't adhere to the objective anticipation
criterion that I have outlined, then you will fail to behave like a
Bayesian would in a quantum world. Furthermore, adopting Clark's
point of view would lead to the absurd conclusion that observers would
behave very different in the Many Worlds Interpretation than they
would in the Copenhagen Interpretation, which is obviously
incorrect... as they are both just different descriptions of the same
*physical* theory. It's just a matter of interpretation, therefore
there cannot be any difference in behavior.


This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 17 2013 - 04:01:02 MDT