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post #61 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by JadeEast View Post

A flower opening in reaction to the morning sun is an observable behaviour, but we don't normally attribute consciousness to a flower.  My white blood cells will move inside my blood stream and attack foreign bacteria. Again, we don't consider a white blood cell to have (or be) consciousness. The construct we have of consciousness seems to depend on more than just observable behaviours. 


Well the construct we have of consciousness obviously comes from being burdened with it. Nailing down the precise recipe of self-awareness, persistent associative memory, perceptual processing and response, not to mention whatever the hell dreaming is -- that's a whole different matter. It could be an emergent property of complexity. If defined in terms of information processing it could scale from the very basic processing abilities of DNA/RNA molecules, though the trend is to place the limit at the development of a central nervous system. Observable behavior has different meanings in different contexts; for instance one could observe the behavior of a particle collision, but of course then it's physics jargon. In behavioral psychology observable behaviors are defined as the interactions of an organism with its environment, so observations of a flower would qualify whereas those of a white blood may not. Radical behaviorism rejects the classical notions of consciousness altogether in favor of conditioning. Although it might seem absurd, this approach simply doesn't care whether we're dealing with a plant or a man.

 

I'm taking the reductionist approach on the question of consciousness and qualia because it challenges the premise of this thread. It's much easier and more practical to not even worry about individual perception of music/audio gear and default to a mutual respect for the various ideologies regardless of whether they are empirically true. But we are here at the sound science forum, so let's at least consider the notion that we could all be nothing more than fleshy automata.


Edited by anetode - 5/5/13 at 11:40am
post #62 of 64

I guess that's why anetode wrote "complex pattern". In fact so complex, that we don't understand it yet.

post #63 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by anetode View Post


Well the construct we have of consciousness obviously comes from being burdened with it. Nailing down the precise recipe of self-awareness, persistent associative memory, perceptual processing and response, not to mention whatever the hell dreaming is -- that's a whole different matter. It could be an emergent property of complexity. If defined in terms of information processing it could scale from the very basic processing abilities of DNA/RNA molecules, though the trend is to place the limit at the development of a central nervous system. Observable behavior has different meanings in different contexts; for instance one could observe the behavior of a particle collision, but of course then it's physics jargon. In behavioral psychology observable behaviors are defined as the interactions of an organism with its environment, so observations of a flower would qualify whereas those of a white blood may not. Radical behaviorism rejects the classical notions of consciousness altogether in favor of conditioning. Although it might seem absurd, this approach simply doesn't care whether we're dealing with a plant or a man.

 

I'm taking the reductionist approach on the question of consciousness and qualia because it challenges the premise of this thread. It's much easier and more practical to not even worry about individual perception of music/audio gear and default to a mutual respect for the various ideologies regardless of whether they are empirically true. But we are here at the sound science forum, so let's at least consider the notion that we could all be nothing more than fleshy automata.

 

I actually lost this thread, don't know how, perhaps emergent sentience on the BBS's part.

 

I somehow think the reductionist approach is rather at odds with the hints of complex system behaviour (your Gringo spell checker is driving me nuts!).

Kahnemans work and observations really put a lot of first rate examples forth for the programmed response theory. And yet we still have creativity and genius which have not been satisfactorily explained at all.

 

From an earlier post this intrigued me.

 

"While our understanding of the human brain is currently incomplete, it is not true that neuroscience lacks the capacity to -- at some point in the future -- explain the totality of human functioning without the need for psychology of thought. "

 

Why, I wouldn't have expected blind faith from an objectivist.wink_face.gif  Seriously though , this type of reasoning is one of the key issues I have with the current state of some branches of science. That explaination is merely a probability and banking on it eliminates multitudes of possibilities.

 

The human race could become extinct before then.

 

The species could either naturally or synthetically evolve in another direction.

 

We could go through another dark age where science is halted if not banned altogether.

 

or several other million combinations of events could occur that would make that impossible.

 

Back to fleshy automata then. There is something to this in that we are being conditioned into perceiving what the manufacturers sell us a being the definitive sound. At some point there has been a disconnect from the actual Artists rendition and we have been guided to believe the equipment hawkers are the definitive authority (and boy do they have the measurements to prove it). This is a complete reversal of the circumstances that were the driving force behind home audio in the first place. We measure equipment against equipment but not against the original source material. This bewilders me (and before I get labelled as some kind of anti equipment nut, I once actually considered knocking out a portion of second floor in a condo for an enclosure for a pair of Grand Slamms, reason and a very irate girlfriend prevailed) as originally an audiophile was usually found to have the most extensive music library around.  These days it seems to be more defined by the term gearhead, and the music treated a mere test material. It would seem we have been conditioned into consumerism on a grand scale here.

 

 And the monkey pushes the play buttonbiggrin.gif

 

 

Dear god please don't make me read any more skinner. Brilliant as he was in many ways, he was still the father of the "pidgeon guided missle".eek.gif

post #64 of 64
Quote:

Originally Posted by Hutnicks View Post

 

And yet we still have creativity and genius which have not been satisfactorily explained at all.

 

From an earlier post this intrigued me.

 

"While our understanding of the human brain is currently incomplete, it is not true that neuroscience lacks the capacity to -- at some point in the future -- explain the totality of human functioning without the need for psychology of thought. "

 

Why, I wouldn't have expected blind faith from an objectivist.wink_face.gif  Seriously though , this type of reasoning is one of the key issues I have with the current state of some branches of science. That explaination is merely a probability and banking on it eliminates multitudes of possibilities.

 
*That should've been "philosophy of thought", though I doubt that's the only term I've fudged up so far.

 

A genius is simply an outlier within a population as determined by some arbitrary performance measure(s). I would argue that the combination of scarcity and utility lead us to so term and revere these quirks of statistical distribution. What we consider to be creativity can be thought of as the combination of novelty and complexity; both are emergent properties.

 

Sure there's uncertainty and potentially infinite divisibility of probability, but if you're going to play that card then I can cheat and say that there's a probability of a multiverse where everything that can happen will and so somewhere out there you have compiled the compendium of neuroscience, with or without the aid of a million monkeys on typewriters.

 

I agree with the assessment of the potential of neuroscience which is backed up by a few very productive decades of research and our overall understanding of physics and chemistry. It is hampered only by philosophical models and there I must say that Skinner has nothing on the longwinded pomp & pointlessness of the examples of such given in Koons' anthology, "The Waning of Materialism".

 

Nonetheless I agree that military pigeons weren't perhaps as great of a contribution as the Manhattan project (kinda puts psychology in perspective).


Edited by anetode - 5/5/13 at 10:49pm
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