Sunday, February 15, 2009

Theory of Nothing

From Russell Standish's book "Theory of Nothing":

Computationalism is a possible model of observerhood;not only that an appropriately programmed computer might be conscious, but that we all, as conscious observers, are equivalent to some computer program as yet unknown.

2500 years ago, Plato introduced a theory in which there is a Plenitude of ideal forms, to which objects in the real world are imperfect copies.

Jurgen Schmidhuber introduced a different idea of the Plenitude[111], by considering the output of a small computer program called a universal dovetailer, an idea first suggested by Bruno Marchal[93]. The dovetailer creates all possible programs (which are after all nite strings of computer instructions), and after creating each program runs a step of that program, and a step of each previously created program. In this way, the universal dovetailer executes all possible computer programs, which to a computationalist like Schmidhuber includes our universe amongst many other possible universes.

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