Born to do Math 108 - Thou Shalt Not Entail Contradiction With Thyself
Scott Douglas Jacobsen & Rick Rosner
February 15, 2019
[Beginning of recorded material]
Scott Douglas Jacobsen: What does self-consistency mean in the context of information processing in consciousness, in an IC context?
Rick Rosner: First off, nothing means anything except in relation to other things. There's no meaning outside of context. There is not information that's not contained in a system.
That is, when you look at words, there is no word that means anything independent of some language. Words are defined by all the other words in the language. It is a network of words and meanings.
That serves to define everything. What self-consistency means, at least in my mind, is that things that should stay the same regardless of what angle their viewed from, distance their viewed from, or time their viewed at, should be the same; in simple terms, an apple should remain an apple whether you're looking at it from the north or from the east, or from an inch away or a foot away, or on a Monday or a Thursday.
But over time, given the nature of the apple, the apple will not stay the same over time. But it will still stay the same way apples do over time. Given the environment, it can change. If in a freezer, an apple could stay an apple for years.
But an apple on a table will get nasty after a few days. Self-consistency means that things behave reliably. That things don't happen for no reason. Although, randomness can be a reason. All the way down to the quantum level.
But macro events should not happen for no reason. Macro events should behave in a consistent way. They shouldn't change for no reason. They shouldn't change without context. But at some point, there is a way in which you cannot see it anymore.
An apple is not an apple if the only information that you're seeing is from 12 miles in space looking down on the Earth. There is uncertainty that creeps in. But that is built into what you understand in the system.
You understand that when you get far away from something then you will not be able to tell what it is. Self-consistency feels like a conservation law. That gravitation is a universal force. Gravitation behaves - we think - regardless of where you are in the universe.
And there are things conserved. Electric charge is conserved. Mass-energy is conserved. These are all parts or among the self-consistencies that allow the universe to work and to not be chaotic.
Jacobsen: If these self-consistencies permit things to work, how can a complex information processor permit emergent forms of information or emergent forms of information processing?
How do those relate back to the forms of self-consistency seen in the relations of things at the lowest magnitude in the universe in terms of emergent forms of order, of information?
Rosner: It can probably be seen in forms of machine learning and AI. In that, repeated instances experienced by a neural net establish consistencies in that net. If something keeps happening, if some signal is repeatedly tripped, and if the net is registering that, if it is set up to have neural net-like feedback, then it may have something Bayesian.
The nets' estimate that this consistency increases its certainty. That becomes a piece of information within the net. You have a big enough net or big enough interaction between sets of nets.
As long as the net is exposed to consistent phenomena, the net registers those phenomena as being consistent with increasing levels of probability. If the linked nets have sufficient information capacity and bandwidth and interaction amongst each other, then you have something resembling consciousness.
Things with such intricacy and fidelity that those things feel registered within the system.
[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
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
(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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