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Old 11-01-2010, 02:13 PM   #501
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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I think the reason why I cling to the newborn==me idea is because I've got used to it, and now am trying to reconcile the 'precedent' with the first principles. I think similar way of thinking shows up most often in texts of common law and religions. I guess ZMC was at least partially right about some parts of my position.
A useful exercise, and an interesting one—interesting for me, at least, though I would treat the results as metaphysical fantasy—would be for you to work out all the implications of defining identity purely as pattern similarity, and giving zero weight to worldline continuity. What kind of legal system could be based on that? What sort of religion or philosophy could assume it? What sort of sense of self would you have? And—what sort of beings might find it intuitively more plausible than a worldline continuity model?

Bill Stoddard
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Old 11-01-2010, 02:19 PM   #502
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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So have you thought of swearing off all relations with your parents? After all, they were clearly the parents of the younger Tuoni 20 years ago, but if you and that younger Tuoni are not the same person, they are not really your parents, are they?

Bill Stoddard
My mother is a continuing source of love/support/good food. Same with my father, although less frequently what with him being in a different city. My great grandmother however, had minimum interaction with me (children were to be neither seen nor heard) for most of my young life, and then no interaction with me since I was about 12. I swore off any relations with her a long time ago.

Now, if my mother had popped me out and intentionally abandoned me when I was 5 because she couldn't be bothered, and another person took me in and raised me to who I am now, then I would swear off all relations of my biological mother. Genetics are all fine and dandy for a species, but they mean squat to me as an individual.
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Old 11-01-2010, 02:35 PM   #503
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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A useful exercise, and an interesting one—interesting for me, at least, though I would treat the results as metaphysical fantasy—would be for you to work out all the implications of defining identity purely as pattern similarity, and giving zero weight to worldline continuity. What kind of legal system could be based on that? What sort of religion or philosophy could assume it? What sort of sense of self would you have? And—what sort of beings might find it intuitively more plausible than a worldline continuity model?

Bill Stoddard
I think the legal system would actually be more robust. For instance, it wouldn't break down when an infomorph kills someone, then transfers to another chassis to break the worldline continuity.
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Old 11-01-2010, 02:43 PM   #504
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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I think the legal system would actually be more robust. For instance, it wouldn't break down when an infomorph kills someone, then transfers to another chassis to break the worldline continuity.
(a) How robust would it be for organic humans?

(b) Try the following cases:

Infomorph alpha kills someone, and then clones itself a million times, all of the clones sharing memory of the killing.

Infomorph alpha kills somebody, transfers itself to a different cybershell, and has itself edited in the process to remove the memory of killing and even the ability to kill.

Informorph alpha sees a need to kill somebody, cannot overcome its own programming to obey the law against murder, but has itself cloned and edited, creating a version of itself that's not compelled to be honest; the clone, infomorph omega, then sees the same need to kill its enemy, and does so.

In each case, who is guilty of murder or of some other crime?

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Old 11-01-2010, 02:53 PM   #505
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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I think the legal system would actually be more robust. For instance, it wouldn't break down when an infomorph kills someone, then transfers to another chassis to break the worldline continuity.
The wordline model would treat that as suicide plus reproduction, not break down.

But more robust ? After we have two (or a million) Vickys, with whom is your spouse married ? Whom does it have to pay maintenance, or who owes it maintenance ? Who is a legal heir of whom ? Who goes to work, and who gets the salary ? Which one is prime minister of ukraine ? What happens to Vicky-Biological´s property when he uploads and a dozen ghosts are made ?
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:23 PM   #506
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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The wordline model would treat that as suicide plus reproduction, not break down.

But more robust ? After we have two (or a million) Vickys, with whom is your spouse married ? Whom does it have to pay maintenance, or who owes it maintenance ? Who is a legal heir of whom ? Who goes to work, and who gets the salary ? Which one is prime minister of ukraine ? What happens to Vicky-Biological´s property when he uploads and a dozen ghosts are made ?
So you don't see a problem with it letting murderers (or whatever) walk the earth thanks to such a procedure? (I hope you agree that a legal system must prevent further crime while not infringing the rights of people.)

Pays maintenance according to the criteria of the contract. A very literal reading of a very naïve (pre-ghosting style) contract will probably result in a case where paying the maintenance to any one ghost will fulfill the criteria of the contract. But in the age of ghosting, contracts should be written with such criteria as to not break down (e.g. maintenance only paid to the instance with the longest existing uptime as measured by the official clock of the jurisdiction).

With work and pay, it gets even more heavily into the difference between identification and authorization. Just like vicky-15yo and vicky-16yo are both vickies, but only the latter is authorized to matriculate into a university, so only the one doing work should be authorized to take the money.

As things get more and more complicated, laws start needing a more and more genericness.
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:29 PM   #507
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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(a) How robust would it be for organic humans?
If properly designed, then no less robust than for infomorphs.

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(b) Try the following cases:

Infomorph alpha kills someone, and then clones itself a million times, all of the clones sharing memory of the killing.
All guilty.

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Infomorph alpha kills somebody, transfers itself to a different cybershell, and has itself edited in the process to remove the memory of killing and even the ability to kill.
Not guilty of murder, but most likely still guilty of planning/attempting it - whatever that is called in English (warning: opinion subjective, since I make the assumption that it couldn't perfectly remove the motivation behind the kill). The reduced punishment is reasonable, because the suspect has already removed the risk of committing a repeat offense of this level.

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Informorph alpha sees a need to kill somebody, cannot overcome its own programming to obey the law against murder, but has itself cloned and edited, creating a version of itself that's not compelled to be honest; the clone, infomorph omega, then sees the same need to kill its enemy, and does so.
Alpha guilty of organizing a kill (equivalent to hiring an assassin, most likely), omega guilty of killing.

What would the verdicts look like under your system?
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:41 PM   #508
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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So you don't see a problem with it letting murderers (or whatever) walk the earth thanks to such a procedure?
The murderer is dead if one accepts the worldline model.

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Pays maintenance according to the criteria of the contract. A very literal reading of a very naïve (pre-ghosting style) contract will probably result in a case where paying the maintenance to any one ghost will fulfill the criteria of the contract. But in the age of ghosting, contracts should be written with such criteria as to not break down (e.g. maintenance only paid to the instance with the longest existing uptime as measured by the official clock of the jurisdiction).
Why ? Remember, they are all the same person. If Vicky-1 has more rights to the money than Vicky-2 and all later Vickys, how can they be the same ?

And again, with whom is the spouse married ? What happens to property owned by the original ?

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With work and pay, it gets even more heavily into the difference between identification and authorization. Just like vicky-15yo and vicky-16yo are both vickies, but only the latter is authorized to matriculate into a university, so only the one doing work should be authorized to take the money.
Agreed. But who decides ? I am the employer and suddenly 500 Vickys show up to work and earn a salary. Which one is the one with whom I have a contract ?

I am the landlord. Which one is the tenant ?

The wordline model has no problems in all those cases. Each new copy is a new person, and destructive uploading is death. The only problem we have is whether we define copying as asexual reproduction and postulate parent-child legal relationships, or whether we treat it like spontaneous generation and postulate no legal relationship at all.
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Old 11-01-2010, 05:35 PM   #509
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

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The murderer is dead if one accepts the worldline model.
I was talking about the fact that a mind which remembers doing a kill, and possibly even having motivation for further kills (in case of a serial murderer or just an all around violent thug) walks the streets.

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Why ? Remember, they are all the same person. If Vicky-1 has more rights to the money than Vicky-2 and all later Vickys, how can they be the same ?

And again, with whom is the spouse married ? What happens to property owned by the original ?
They are the same person, doesn't mean that all of these persons have the same rights. There are lots of ducks, not all ducks have the same color of feathers. How can all be the same species if they have different feathers?

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Agreed. But who decides ? I am the employer and suddenly 500 Vickys show up to work and earn a salary. Which one is the one with whom I have a contract ?
If your contract didn't foresee the possibility, probably whatever one.

(I wonder what's your answer if you are an employer and you find out one of your employees is a super with Duplication. Do you write new contracts each time the fella duplicates/merges?)

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I am the landlord. Which one is the tenant ?
As above.

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The wordline model has no problems in all those cases. Each new copy is a new person, and destructive uploading is death. The only problem we have is whether we define copying as asexual reproduction and postulate parent-child legal relationships, or whether we treat it like spontaneous generation and postulate no legal relationship at all.
Actually, it encounters the problem that it allows a ghost to kill, transfer to a different shell, and kill again with no legal way to stop him. No, deleting the new ghost is not a solution, because that would be a killing of an innocent person under your legal system.
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Old 11-01-2010, 07:49 PM   #510
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Default Re: Ghosts and Mind Copies - The Identity Question

I said that I would comment more on my view of consciousness. Here it is.

To me, the essential fact about consciousness is <i>viewpoint</i>. A consciousness is a focusing of attention on some object or activity.

But "focusing of attention" means that we have a unified field of information processing going on. Information in one part of the field can induce a different part of the field to aim at a different object. Two different information processing centers can be part of the same consciousness if they are linked together with high enough bandwidth, so that it routinely happens that information being processes in one migrates to the other, and vice versa. My left and right hemispheres contribute to one consciousness because my corpus callosum has fairly high bandwidth; my brain and another person's are linked through lower-bandwidth channels—speech, facial expression, posture—and do not support a single consciousness.

Signal strength is finite, so to have a lot of subsystems interacting with high bandwidth, it helps to have them physically unified in a single organ, such as the brain. But a physically unified organ, and for that matter the physically unified organism that houses it, naturally has a single worldline. So there's a natural link between unity and continuity of consciousness, and continuity of worldline.

All of this is a product of the actual facts about how information flows through human nervous systems, and between them. A technology that provided sufficiently high bandwidth might change that. But I don't see that THS has such a technology.

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