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Old 12-09-2009, 11:48 PM   #11
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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Originally Posted by Molokh View Post
It certainly captures what your position is, but it doesn't do anything for the fact that 'viewpoint' is about as provable and disprovable as a soul: while it might be comforting to think that one's viewpoint exists and is unique (non-copyable), there's no way to detect another person's viewpoint (as separate from their mind!).
There is no need to prove viewpoint. I know that I have a viewpoint, and in fact, my viewpoint is the starting point for all knowledge I have of anything.
And I know that you have a viewpoint and that it's different from mine. Both are axioms that cannot be rejected without abandoning any possibility of reaching rational conclusions or of communication and discussion.

By the very fact that you are discussing what my position is, what I think, and how it differs from what you think, you are accepting that I have a viewpoint. If you didn't believe that, there would be no point in your talking with me.

Bill Stoddard
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Old 12-10-2009, 12:13 AM   #12
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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There is no need to prove viewpoint. I know that I have a viewpoint, and in fact, my viewpoint is the starting point for all knowledge I have of anything.
And I know that you have a viewpoint and that it's different from mine. Both are axioms that cannot be rejected without abandoning any possibility of reaching rational conclusions or of communication and discussion.

By the very fact that you are discussing what my position is, what I think, and how it differs from what you think, you are accepting that I have a viewpoint. If you didn't believe that, there would be no point in your talking with me.

Bill Stoddard
Why is the existence of my viewpoint obvious to you? You can't detect it in any way. You're not replying to me, you're replying to posts, or opinions. Which may or may not be 'mine, even'.

When you ask a magic 8-ball to give you an answer, you don't believe that there's some supernatural observer 'behind' the question-answering process. Why do you believe there is one behind my question-answering process?
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Old 12-10-2009, 12:17 AM   #13
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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Numerical identity is being, for example, the same physical entity.

When I go to a game, and take out my copy of GURPS Powers, and some of my players take out their copies, and they are borrowed by players who don't own copies, and at the end, I ask, "Is this my copy?"—I'm asking about numerical identity. They're all copies of the same book, so they all have the same qualitatitive identity. But each copy has a different numerical identity.

In some cases, they might have subtle differences that do not change their qualitative identity; for example, my copy is autographed by Steve Jackson. In others, if it mattered, we could create such differences to keep track of which was whose copy: I could put a red tag on mine, and my players could put other tags on theirs. In still other cases, we might not have such signs to refer to, but if we had videotaped the session, a careful examination of the videotape could reveal that each book followed a distinct timelike path through space-time.

But even if we didn't do that, and had no way of telling which book was whose, it would not happen that my book, which was being read by JPS, and JT's book, which was being read by MB, who was sitting next to JPS, would suddenly change numerical identities, so that it would be JT's book in JPS's hands and my book in MB's hands. Numerical identity of macroscopic objects does not hop around like that.

Bill Stoddard
You seem to be talking about an object's past as if it's a physical property. That's . . . weird.
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Old 12-10-2009, 01:25 AM   #14
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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You seem to be talking about an object's past as if it's a physical property. That's . . . weird.
Are you suggesting that only what can be observed of objects in the bare instant of the present is real or objective, and that their histories, as we remember them or as we reconstruct them from evidence such as video recordings, are inherently subjective?

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Old 12-10-2009, 01:27 AM   #15
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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Why is the existence of my viewpoint obvious to you? You can't detect it in any way. You're not replying to me, you're replying to posts, or opinions. Which may or may not be 'mine, even'.

When you ask a magic 8-ball to give you an answer, you don't believe that there's some supernatural observer 'behind' the question-answering process. Why do you believe there is one behind my question-answering process?
Since there is no one at the other end of this communication, I am going to ignore it, and not bother to answer it.

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Old 12-10-2009, 01:34 AM   #16
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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Why is the existence of my viewpoint obvious to you? You can't detect it in any way. You're not replying to me, you're replying to posts, or opinions. Which may or may not be 'mine, even'.
No, no! The idea is that the pragmatist kicks the solipsist in the shin, not that the solipsist kick himself in the shin!
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Old 12-10-2009, 01:37 AM   #17
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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No, no! The idea is that the pragmatist kicks the solipsist in the shin, not that the solipsist kick himself in the shin!
"Thus I refute Berkeley"?

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Old 12-10-2009, 01:47 AM   #18
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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Since there is no one at the other end of this communication, I am going to ignore it, and not bother to answer it.

Bill Stoddard
That's strange. You speak as if it is not the posts and opinions themselves that matter, but who (if any) expresses them. Oh well, it had to end somehow, some-when, I suppose.
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Old 12-10-2009, 06:04 AM   #19
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

The problem with Identity is that there aren't really any good, universally recognized definitions of what an "Identity" actually is. I mean, everybody has a vague idea of what it is supposed to be, and there are some "Common Sense" definitions which most people use - but these work only because today each mind is linked to one and only one specific body. Once this is no longer the case - as in the future of Transhuman Space - the "Common Sense" definitions no longer work and start to contradict each other.
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Old 12-10-2009, 08:35 AM   #20
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Default Re: Is Transhuman Space a "silly" genre?

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That's strange. You speak as if it is not the posts and opinions themselves that matter, but who (if any) expresses them. Oh well, it had to end somehow, some-when, I suppose.
What is the purpose of a discussion/argument?

I'd say it's to try and persuade another person your ideas are valid. If there's no-one at the other end, no viewpoint that you want to change, then there's no purpose to the discussion.

I wouldn't get into an argument with ELIZA. What would be the point?
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