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  #1  
Old 10-06-2017, 05:07 PM
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Default is it there?

There is an elephant in the room.

The emperor has no clothes.

How can you tell whether something has subjective experiences, or not.

Bugs? Stars? [hidden]I was still inside the box there[/hidden]
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Old 10-07-2017, 09:53 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by apathist View Post
There is an elephant in the room.

The emperor has no clothes.

How can you tell whether something has subjective experiences, or not.

Bugs? Stars? [hidden]I was still inside the box there[/hidden]
Post has been reformatted to suit this forum,
:pinkele: :haunted:

:livius: :streaker: :nude:

:picasso: :wha: :dunno2:

:bugs: :seestars:

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  #3  
Old 10-07-2017, 11:30 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

If you can't tell whether or not something/somebody has subjective experiences, then it's not an important thing to know.

How do you even know that YOU have subjective experiences? If you can't prove it to someone else then maybe you're just fooling yourself. Maybe subjective experiences don't really exist.
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  #4  
Old 10-09-2017, 05:53 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
If you can't tell whether or not something/somebody has subjective experiences, then it's not an important thing to know.

How do you even know that YOU have subjective experiences? If you can't prove it to someone else then maybe you're just fooling yourself. Maybe subjective experiences don't really exist.
I get that we may not interpret our experiences correctly. But I can easily prove that you and me have all sorts of subjective experiences. I have some pliers and bone saws here. Ready for the proof?
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Old 10-10-2017, 06:25 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

What sort of things have awareness, and how do we know? It isn't that no one tries to answer, it's that no one has any answers. It's a huge encompassing unknown, a Here There Be Dragons appearing all over our map of reality.

Lots of times I've seen people put 'consciousness' 'mind' 'I' 'subjective experience' and so on into quotes and I hear their sigh of relief. Whew! they think, now there's no mystery.
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Old 10-16-2017, 04:17 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

I'm talking to opinionated people, and they are all quiet. I suppose that is to their credit, since even science is clueless here.

It's not as if it were possible that subjective experience does not exist.
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  #7  
Old 10-16-2017, 04:21 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
If you can't tell whether or not something/somebody has subjective experiences, then it's not an important thing to know.
...
So it is okay if we torture you. According to you.
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Old 10-16-2017, 08:01 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Most of us here are old hands and are tired of these "what is consciousness?" threads - we think we explored most of the angles years ago. So unless you can spark off the conversation with some new idea that we've not seen before, you'll probably find it more stimulating to try discussing it in some other forums. :shrug:
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  #9  
Old 10-16-2017, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

We are opinionated about important matters, like was Snow White dating all 7 smurfs or did she date them each in turn?

But ok subjective experiences. Yes of course, all things with a neurological processor experience things subjectively for no other reason than their neurological processor has cut corners, a great example is vision, if you were to take a video feed from an eyeball it would look very strange and incomprehensible because it hasn't been processed and interpreted yet.

There's some interesting conversations to be had about how people build social structure in their brains and often find it hard to accept something socially without trying to pidgeonhole it into other previously held ideas and beliefs but you probably need to add more to the discussion than just, "discuss".
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  #10  
Old 10-18-2017, 05:02 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

So neurons must be involved. No neurons, no subjective experience. Is this insight a scientific fact? No structure other than neuron networks can give rise to mind?
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Old 10-18-2017, 05:06 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
Most of us here are old hands and are tired of these "what is consciousness?" threads - we think we explored most of the angles years ago.
You just told me you are inbred.

Quote:
So unless you can spark off the conversation with some new idea that we've not seen before, you'll probably find it more stimulating to try discussing it in some other forums. :shrug:
The emperor has no clothes, and sending me to some closet somewhere will not save you.
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Old 10-18-2017, 07:02 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Neurons? No.
I would say that any processing system that evolved in a resource competitive environment will have a subjective experience due to corner cutting and resource management.
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Old 10-18-2017, 09:14 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

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  #14  
Old 10-19-2017, 09:37 AM
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Default Re: is it there?

3. A robot dog should bark at squirrels as long as this does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.
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  #15  
Old 10-19-2017, 05:17 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Good jokes. A great mystery, it is embarrassing that we are clueless so let's whistle. The kill bill thing works.
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Old 10-19-2017, 06:09 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by apathist View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
Most of us here are old hands and are tired of these "what is consciousness?" threads - we think we explored most of the angles years ago.
You just told me you are inbred.
We're all inbred to some degree, because every human* is your nth cousin, m times removed, for some values of n and m.

*except those with more specific relation terms like siblings, parents, aunts, uncles, etc.
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Old 10-21-2017, 05:16 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

So we all agree that science is silent on whether your pain actually hurts.

Subjective experience is not known to exist as far as science is concerned.
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Old 10-21-2017, 05:40 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

I don't agree with that.

What are you actually driving at? To me, your posts seem to consist of non sequiturs.
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  #19  
Old 10-21-2017, 06:09 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
I don't agree with that.

What are you actually driving at? To me, your posts seem to consist of non sequiturs.
So in your opinion, our science can identify whether or not a given structure has subjective experiences. Please clue me in.

I'm driving at our current inability to do just that! You think the emperor isn't naked, so make your case.
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Old 10-21-2017, 06:32 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Most people would agree that people have subjective experiences - and plenty of people would agree that some "smart" animals also have them.

Where do you draw the line? Chimp? dolphin? dog? mouse? ant? tree? bacterium? rock?

When you get this sort of problem where there's no clear agreement on where to draw the line, you should start to ask yourself how well-defined your question was.

If I ask how many US-dollar-billionaires there are in the world, then I suppose that technically there is a correct answer, but if I ask how many wealthy people there are, then we first have to define what we mean by 'wealthy' - is it just to do with monetary value or should we include other qualities and so on.

Your line of questioning seems to treat 'subjective experiences' as if they are a concrete thing that either exists or doesn't - but I view 'subjective experiences' as a more qualitative term with no clear dividing line between existing and not.

I think there are questions like, "Are you pregnant?" that have reasonably clear yes-or-no answers - though even then there are gray areas around the times of conception and giving birth - and there are other questions like "Are you happy?" that don't have a clear yes/no answer and really you need something like a scale of happiness from, say, zero to ten.

I think subjective experiences also are a matter of degree, so we could say that an alert fit human has a subjective experience level of ten, a rock has a subjective experience level of zero - and I would put dogs and mice up at ten too (though you may disagree) and I'd put ants at maybe two - but I'm just guessing. :shrug:
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  #21  
Old 10-22-2017, 05:34 AM
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Default Re: is it there?

When handling animals it becomes of importance. In the past both science and religion seem to have labeled animals as empty vessels or automatons that we shouldn't ascribe human feelings too, but frankly that's bullshit when it comes to mammals. As fellow mammals we can a pretty good understanding of how other mammals act, especially since the human difference seems to be logic and symbolism based and not anything core to basic existence. So while it takes a frame shift, you can generally understand whatever mammal you're dealing with based on your own experiences. Whereas other large variations, like reptiles, or in my recent case, spiders, you can't be as certain how they interpret the world around them and have to guess based on what you see.
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  #22  
Old 10-22-2017, 06:09 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
...
Your line of questioning seems to treat 'subjective experiences' as if they are a concrete thing that either exists or doesn't - ...
I think subjective experiences also are a matter of degree, ...
You don't see the contradiction in your view? You imply that it is a mistake to treat SE as if it exists, and then you claim that it exists.

This is not the way forward.
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Old 10-22-2017, 06:26 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

No. I said if it was such a big deal to "prove" that it exists then it's easier to say that perhaps it doesn't.

It's the same with happiness. How do I know that anyone or anything other than me is ever happy? I don't I suppose - but it seems more sensible to accept that others are happy when they're talking and writing about it all the time, and were doing the same for thousands of years before I was even born.

I still don't understand the point you're trying to make. Subjective experiences are an emergent phenomenon that occur in sufficiently complex mechanisms that are able to sense their environment. They're not a yes/no thing. What does it matter to you whether or not they're a real, scientifically testable thing? What difference will it make?

Let's pretend for the sake of argument that we have a special instrument that we can point at a person or a computer or a rock or whatever, and it gives a readout of what level of subjective experiences that object has. Then what?
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Old 10-23-2017, 04:55 PM
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Default Re: is it there?

Quote:
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No. I said if it was such a big deal to "prove" that it exists then it's easier to say that perhaps it doesn't.
Trying to understand reality. Big deal.

Quote:
It's the same with happiness. How do I know that anyone or anything other than me is ever happy? I don't I suppose - but it seems more sensible to accept that others are happy when they're talking and writing about it all the time, and were doing the same for thousands of years before I was even born.
No one can be happy if subjective experience does not exist.

Quote:
I still don't understand the point you're trying to make. Subjective experiences are an emergent phenomenon that occur in sufficiently complex mechanisms that are able to sense their environment. They're not a yes/no thing. What does it matter to you whether or not they're a real, scientifically testable thing? What difference will it make?
You start by presenting a hypothesis, and then got weird! I'm asking the exact sort of question that inspects your hypothesis.

Quote:
Let's pretend for the sake of argument that we have a special instrument that we can point at a person or a computer or a rock or whatever, and it gives a readout of what level of subjective experiences that object has. Then what?
I don't know, since our best efforts have yet to get that far.

You think the emperor is wearing clothes.
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Old 10-24-2017, 01:09 AM
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Default Re: is it there?

Is the emperor sexy? Do I want to see the emperor naked?

This is important.
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