Born to do Math 99 - Jive Metaphysicians (2)
Scott Douglas Jacobsen & Rick Rosner
December 8, 2018
[Beginning of recorded material]
Scott Douglas Jacobsen: So, from a long time ago, you used a phrase. You said, "Agents of the universe." In the first example of Schrodinger's Cat, you spoke to a human being as an observer and a cat in a box as an observer.
What does "an observer" mean in an IC context? How does this work with "agents of the universe"?
Rick Rosner: It is easy to get confused because the universe observes itself. You can use "agents of observation" to apply to observing apparatuses within the universe, observing-and-information-transmitting apparatuses.
Those apparatuses can be something as simple as photons that record the state of something as they are emitted and then spread that information out. An agent of observation can be something as complicated as a conscious being plus some technology that transmits information.
Human beings that build broadcast apparatuses. All those are part of the universe and all of those can be part of how the universe observes itself or fails to observe itself. The universe transmits information about local conditions across time and space.
The sum of all these transmissions defines the universe. There is so much information that a finite universe can transmit about itself. So, the universe is only finitely defined. Things are blurry at the quantum level.
All information transmitting interaction is part of how the universe defines itself. Yes, we, humans, with our information-transmitting activities are part of the way the universe transmits information. But our significance is very local.
Although, we can imagine more advanced civilizations have more information transmitting significance across greater distances. You can imagine a Star Wars galaxy where that civilization transmits information across what we could consider vast distances.
They set up a network that transmits information across a big chunk of their galaxy, which kind of requires breaking the laws of physics in the Star Wars model; in that, you can't break the speed of light. It is possible that there is a civilization that has figured out how to conduct business across the distances between stars.
That would be part of the informational business of the universe. But it is still pretty limited, especially if some civilization learned how to live long enough and to do business across an entire galaxy. That is still only one out of a hundred billion galaxies of the universe.
So, the significance of even a galaxy-wide civilization in terms of the overall information business of the universe may still be trivial. But the issues of how trivial this stuff needs to wait on an overall model of an information-based universe.
Where the macro affairs of evolved civilizations of the universe may have almost nothing to do with how information is perceived and processed within the consciousness of the universe itself, which may be more based on the overall or macro distribution and dynamics of matter in the universe if the universe is itself a conscious information processor or even if it is an unconscious information processor.
Jacobsen: If the universe is a conscious information processor rather than an unconscious information processor, how does this change the Schrodinger's Cat experiment, as this adds a global third observer?
Rosner: It doesn't. It doesn't. The nature of the business of the universe isn't changed, which is the sharing of information.
Jacobsen: How can this be misinterpreted in an IC context?
Rosner: We don't have a good model yet. Nobody has a good model of the universe as an information processor. That means that you're subject to nothing but a misunderstanding. But one thing is clear, according to the laws of quantum mechanics, the situation doesn't change, regardless of the overall nature of the universe with regard to the information that is confined in the box with the cat.
It doesn't matter if the universe is conscious or not. It can't get to the information inside of the box because the universe, including us, set it up that way. You can't get the information in the box regardless of the overall state of the universe.
Jacobsen: Why doesn't box count as an observer?
Rosner: Because the box is the wall. When I say the universe is transactional, I mean things that happen in the universe don't matter, as if they didn't happen at all, if they are not communicated to the wider universe; it is an "as if" universe.
If information about what happened someplace is not recorded in the wider universe, it is as if that did not happen. There are subtleties to that, where it matters to us locally. You can build a whole planet inside of a Schrodinger Box. You could build a whole Schrodinger Box over the whole Earth with the entire probability of everyone on Earth dying or not being 50/50.
It is the analogy between the fate of humanity and the fate of the cat. But if you set up a shield between the Earth and the rest of the universe, it is as if the events happening in the rest of the shield never happened, because they never got information out.
Things signify locally if the information is conveyed or signaled locally. They only are signified wider if their information is signified to the wider universe. It is similar to consciousness. Some of your consciousness can be aware of some events that other parts of your consciousness are not aware of.
In the most brutally mechanistic way, there are people who have been subject to split-brain surgery. Some people with epilepsy have their corpus callosum severed where there is no direct way for each side of the brain to share information with the other side.
These people still have a complete consciousness. In that, they still find a way for the brain to be exposed to roughly the same information. You have two eyes feeding each half of the brain and so on. Those people function relatively normally, even though they have split-brain.
But you can sow with specialized experiments that they have two consciousnesses in that brain, where each awareness has a slightly different experience base and analysis base than the other. It is perfectly possible for parts of consciousness to aware of things that other parts of that same overall consciousness is not aware of.
It is all part of the transactional deal. Things only signify to the extent that they can share information with other parts of the universe. Then you can get into the wider argument that there is no permanent existence.
In that, if you wipe out the information in the universe, so there is no absolute existence of anything Because information can be obliterated.
[End of recorded material]
American Television Writer
According to semi-reputable sources, Rick Rosner has the world’s second-highest IQ. He earned 12 years of college credit in less than a year and graduated with the equivalent of 8 majors. He has received 8 Writer’s Guild Award and Emmy nominations, and was named 2013 North American Genius of the Year by The World Genius Registry.
He has written for Remote Control, Crank Yankers, The Man Show, The Emmy Awards, The Grammy Awards, and Jimmy Kimmel Live!. He has also worked as a stripper, a bouncer, a roller-skating waiter, and a nude model. In a TV commercial, Domino’s Pizza named him the World’s Smartest Man. He was also named Best Bouncer in the Denver Area by Westwood Magazine.
He spent the disco era as an undercover high school student. 25 years as a bar bouncer, American fake ID-catcher, 25+ years as a stripper, and nude art model, and nearly 30 years as a writer for more than 2,500 hours of network television. He lost on Jeopardy!, sued Who Wants to Be a Millionaire over a bad question, and lost the lawsuit. He spent 35+ years on a modified version of Big Bang Theory. Now, he mostly sits around tweeting in a towel. He lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife and daughter.
You can send an email or a direct message via Twitter, or find him on LinkedIn, or see him on YouTube.
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
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(Updated September 28, 2016)
Scott Douglas Jacobsen founded In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. He authored/co-authored some e-books, free or low-cost. If you want to contact Scott: Scott.D.Jacobsen@Gmail.com, Scott.Jacobsen@TrustedClothes.Com, Scott@ConatusNews.Com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Scott@Karmik.Ca, or SJacobsen@AlmasJiwaniFoundation.Org.
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