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Do non-human animals have free will?
Posted: 29 January 2014 06:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 736 ]
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GdB - 29 January 2014 12:44 AM

So you say deterministic systems can have free will? Right, then you just made my point.
LOL

Not me. Seth Lloyd did, in his paper. 

However, from his paper on querying an operating system:

You: Do you make these decisions on your own free will?

OS: Aaargh! (Bright flash. Blue screen of death . . .)

cheese

PS I do not think that unconscious systems can have free will. But I leave that. If an AI system is advanced enough to pass all Turing tests, there is no reason to think it is unconscious.

The operating system passed all the Turing tests, so is it conscious?

What is consciousness?

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consciousness

Consciousness is the quality or state of being aware of an external object or something within oneself. It has been defined as: sentience, awareness, subjectivity, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind. Despite the difficulty in definition, many philosophers believe that there is a broadly shared underlying intuition about what consciousness is. As Max Velmans and Susan Schneider wrote in The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness: “Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness, making conscious experience at once the most familiar and most mysterious aspect of our lives.”

Is it not ludicrous to consider computers as conscious entities?

They are like p-zombies.

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophical_zombie

A philosophical zombie or p-zombie in the philosophy of mind and perception is a hypothetical being that is indistinguishable from a normal human being except in that it lacks conscious experience, qualia, or sentience. For example, a philosophical zombie could be poked with a sharp object, and not feel any pain sensation, but yet, behave exactly as if it does feel pain (it may say “ouch” and recoil from the stimulus, or tell us that it is in intense pain).

GdB, you are hilarious.

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Posted: 29 January 2014 06:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 737 ]
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Bryan - 28 January 2014 04:21 PM
VYAZMA - 28 January 2014 04:20 AM
Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:09 AM

  It’s nonsensical to apply Kane’s definition for ultimate responsibility to a want such as hunger.

A want is an action Bryan.

Notice how you carefully addressed my counterargument?

Yeah, I didn’t notice either.

What was your counter argument? A quote from Kane?
I’m still waiting for you to show me a desire or want that isn’t an action.
You chose hunger.  That was stupid.
I showed hunger was an action.  You said you had a counter argument to this that I ignored?
As far as I can see your counter argument was-“Hunger isn’t an action, it’s a state.”
I already told you a “state” can describe a set of actions.

Word games Bryan. That’s what your good at.(well you’re not that good at it…they don’t work on me.)

Let’s go Bryan! Show me a want, desire or idea, notion, that isn’t an action. I’m still waiting!!

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Posted: 29 January 2014 09:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 738 ]
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kkwan - 29 January 2014 06:06 PM
StephenLawrence - 28 January 2014 06:33 PM

And that some how explains how we’re in control of parts of the process like desires.

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Process_philosophy#Whitehead.27s_Process_and_Reality

It is manifest in what can be called ‘singular causality’. This term may be contrasted with the term ‘nomic causality’. An example of singular causation is that I woke this morning because my alarm clock rang. An example of nomic causation is that alarm clocks generally wake people in the morning. Aristotle recognizes singular causality as efficient causality. For Whitehead, there are many contributory singular causes for an event. A further contributory singular cause of my being awoken by my alarm clock this morning was that I was lying asleep near it till it rang.

An actual entity is a general philosophical term for an utterly determinate and completely concrete individual particular of the actually existing world or universe of changeable entities considered in terms of singular causality, about which categorical statements can be made. Whitehead’s most far-reaching and profound and radical contribution to metaphysics is his invention of a better way of choosing the actual entities. Whitehead chooses a way of defining the actual entities that makes them all alike, qua actual entities, with a single exception.

Pointless

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Posted: 30 January 2014 01:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 739 ]
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VYAZMA - 29 January 2014 06:53 PM

What was your counter argument? A quote from Kane?

Brilliant.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 03:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 740 ]
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Bryan - 30 January 2014 01:56 AM
VYAZMA - 29 January 2014 06:53 PM

What was your counter argument? A quote from Kane?

Brilliant.

What’s brilliant?  You don’t see me quoting other people’s opinions do you?
You don’t see me quoting Wikis or using archaic formulas.
Do you have an example of a want or desire that isn’t an action Bryan?

Your one word response here is a sign of frustration?
You attempted to show that “hungry” wasn’t an action….that backfired.
Try something else.  Try to show a want or desire that isn’t an action Bryan.

Or make more funny noises like “brilliant”.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 05:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 741 ]
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VYAZMA - 30 January 2014 03:43 AM

You attempted to show that “hungry” wasn’t an action….that backfired.

It is difficult to keep out of this confusion… Where I do not quite agree with Bryan’s explanation here, he is definitely right that ‘hungry’ is not an action.

Of course there are many processes going on during somebody feels hungry. But one must clearly distinguish between blind processes and movements on one side, and actions on the other side. An action is a movement or process with an intention, a planning into the future. On systems that cannot have intentions at all, the concept ‘action’ simply does not apply: so nerve cells do not count, they just fire their signals as a function of signals that they on their turn receive. Only on systems that can have intentions, i.e. at least humans and possibly animals, the concept ‘action’ can apply.

But still then, not every movement of a human is an action. When I go to the fridge because I am hungry and want something to eat, my walking to the fridge is intentional, and therefore it is an action. When under way to the fridge I stumble and fall, then my falling is not an action, it is only a movement, because I did not intend to fall. Therefore keep standing can be very well an action, even if there is no movement: because I have the intention to keep standing.

So more general: the concept of ‘action’ only applies to the behaviour of systems that can have intentions.

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GdB

“The light is on, but there is nobody at home”

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Posted: 30 January 2014 05:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 742 ]
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There is no intention behind feeling hungry? How so? This is why, GdB, people are confused about what it is you actually believe. I know it may be difficult for you to accept that feeling hungry and killing a person are ultimately the same thing, but that’s what they are. It’s when you say stuff like this I feel like saying, just like Lois, you probably do believe in some type of a ghost in the machine (albeit a very confusing one).

[ Edited: 30 January 2014 05:57 AM by George ]
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Posted: 30 January 2014 06:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 743 ]
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George - 30 January 2014 05:52 AM

There is no intention behind feeling hungry?

Feeling hungry is not an intention. The intention is to stop having that feeling, and therefore to act. Go for the fridge. Being hungry has a biological function, but for an animal that is hungry it is the motivation to act: it has the intention to get food.

If you use gross concepts, you get gross ideas, in which everything is the same as everything else. Then a working volcano, a person stumbling, and a person planning his marriage are all exactly the same. But if you look a little closer, then you see that the person did not plan to stumble (which makes stumbling something else then planning a marriage), and the volcano is not hurt and it will therefore not be more careful (which makes spitting fire something else than a person who falls and gets hurt). If for you that is all the same, then it is no wonder that you do not understand any discussion about free will.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 08:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 744 ]
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If “hungry” isn’t an action, then how does one go about feeling hungry?
If leaves fall off trees is that not an action either because the leaves have no sentience?

I’ll remain in this discussion until the word games ensue.
An example would be: “Hungry” is a feeling, hunger is an action!” or Bryan’s: “Hunger is a state.” or any other type of derailing nonsense.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 08:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 745 ]
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GdB-An action is a movement or process with an intention, a planning into the future.

Yes that’s why we and other animals evolved to feel the action of hunger. To let us know it’s time to eat.
That’s a process that has intention and plans for the future.

You just can’t escape from the conscious-centric-theater viewpoint.
“If I didn’t make myself hungry by thinking about it, it isn’t an action.”
Yes hungry is an action. Saliva is released. Enzymes are released. Muscles contract. Liquids begin to squirt around.
Neurons fire and send signals to the brain. ACTION.


I said it before I’ll say it again GdB, you’re just in this for the conversation. You like to banter back and forth.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 09:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 746 ]
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GdB - 30 January 2014 05:20 AM

But still then, not every movement of a human is an action. When I go to the fridge because I am hungry and want something to eat, my walking to the fridge is intentional, and therefore it is an action. When under way to the fridge I stumble and fall, then my falling is not an action, it is only a movement, because I did not intend to fall. Therefore keep standing can be very well an action, even if there is no movement: because I have the intention to keep standing.

So more general: the concept of ‘action’ only applies to the behaviour of systems that can have intentions.

Do you type all of this just to stay super sharp on your English? Why? Why?
Words games.  None of your delineations have any bearing on this subject.

When under way to the fridge I stumble and fall, then my falling is not an action, it is only a movement, because I did not intend to fall.

This is just ridiculous. You’re in too deep.
So by falling you didn’t intend to fall. You didn’t think to fall.
Therefore if somebody thinks something up it’s free-will, but if they have an
accident without thinking, then it is determinism.

So you solved the riddle. If it’s an action-it’s free-will, if it’s a movement it’s determinism.
These are word games.  You want to use the word action fine. You want to use the word movement fine.
They mean the same thing.
Nothing moves without an action behind it. No action happens without another action happening behind it.
Same thing!!!

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Posted: 30 January 2014 09:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 747 ]
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GdB - 30 January 2014 06:20 AM
George - 30 January 2014 05:52 AM

There is no intention behind feeling hungry?

Feeling hungry is not an intention. The intention is to stop having that feeling, and therefore to act. Go for the fridge. Being hungry has a biological function, but for an animal that is hungry it is the motivation to act: it has the intention to get food.

If you use gross concepts, you get gross ideas, in which everything is the same as everything else. Then a working volcano, a person stumbling, and a person planning his marriage are all exactly the same. But if you look a little closer, then you see that the person did not plan to stumble (which makes stumbling something else then planning a marriage), and the volcano is not hurt and it will therefore not be more careful (which makes spitting fire something else than a person who falls and gets hurt). If for you that is all the same, then it is no wonder that you do not understand any discussion about free will.

But “intention” is something we made up because of the belief in free will. “Intentions” are illusions. Yes, a person stumbling or planning a marriage are the same thing, just like is the the eruption of a volcano. You are as confused about free will as are people about evolution. What you are saying here is the same thing as people who say, for example, that we are attracted to hourglass-shaped women “because” they give birth to smarter babies. No. It just happened so that people with a certain mutation happened to be attracted to hourglass-shaped women and they happened to give birth to smarter babies. It paid off and became an adaptation. There are no goals and intentions. It’s all a matter of luck, albeit one dictated by the laws of nature. You keep using the word “determinism,” but I do not think it means what you think it means.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 09:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 748 ]
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George - 30 January 2014 09:30 AM

But “intention” is something we made up because of the belief in free will. “Intentions” are illusions.

I don’t understand this view. Do you believe that when I play chess I don’t make calculations about what will happen if I do this or that and so on and move on the bases of my aim which is to win.

I’m just trying to see what you are saying, not disagreeing although I may well do.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 09:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 749 ]
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[mass noun] the fact or process of doing something, typically to achieve an aim
http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/action?q=action

the process of doing something, especially when dealing with a problem or difficulty
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/action_1?q=action

4:  an act of will
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/action

2. Something done or accomplished; a deed.
3. Organized activity to accomplish an objective
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/action

In philosophy, action has developed into a sub-field called philosophy of action. Action is what an agent can do.

For example, throwing a ball is an instance of action; it involves an intention, a goal, and a bodily movement guided by the agent. On the other hand, catching a cold is not considered an action because it is something which happens to a person, not something done by one.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Action_(philosophy)

Nothing of the above is the one and only meaning, many aspects are discussed, but from the context in which Bryan is using the word ‘action’ it is pretty (not totally) clear what he means. You take it out of this context and then think you have an argument.

At least is the meaning I give a well accepted meaning in dictionaries and philosophy.

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Posted: 30 January 2014 09:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 750 ]
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Interestingly I’m just watching a chess tournament with commentary. The commentators definately appear to be talking about what might happen in the future if players play certain moves.

What’s the no intentions idea all about? Aren’t they really talking about those things?

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