SV: Capacity of the brain

Arthur T. Murray uj797 at
Wed Sep 8 12:21:19 EST 1999

Think Different -- like Maynard Handley did on Tue, 07 Sep 1999:

> In article <87r9kcx7cu.fsf at>, Chris Morgan
> <cm at> wrote:
>> handleym at (Maynard Handley) writes re: Penrose's
>> theories on QM, consciousness and AI:

Mentifex/Arthur d'oh:  The Maynard Handley thread-posts on
Penrose/mind/quantum-physics (q.v.) are fascinating to read. "Avoid the
Quantum Mechanical Miasma" is my arguing-from-ignorance dia-
tribe against QM theories of mind -- which I dare to spout
because I think different that mind is sufficiently explained
by switching-theory.  But I link to QM mind theories from the FAQ.

>>> (If anyone is interested in this, it is explained, much more
>>> clearly than I am doing so, in chapters 5 & 6 of _Shadows
>>> of the Mind_ which can be read independently of the rest of
>>> the book, whether or not you agree with Penrose's ideas
>>> about consciousness in humans vs computers.
>> Could you explain the relationship between this book and his
>> "The Emperors New Mind" - which I have read - i.e. which order
>> one should read them and/or if one "supersedes" the other? Thanks.
> I have not read ENM so I can't give details. However in terms of
> his general idea (Turing machines cannot be conscious because
> consciousness in people is intimately tied up with quantum
> phenomena that are non-computable),
That's a weird twist of logic, easily translatable into: "Because
quantum phenomena are non-computable, they are non-conscious."

>                                     ENM came first and SoM was
> written as a followup to flesh out the various pieces of the
> argument that critics of ENM felt were not sufficiently rigorous.
> In terms of the part I care about, the physics, I believe that in
> ENM all he had to say was a vague idea of "collapse of the wave
> function really needs to be understood better, probably through GR",
Relatively speaking, generally, I would advise people to read
Gerald Edelman's books on the Theory of Neuronal Group Selection,
because this Nobelist at least remains on the macrophysical plane
of neuronal switching theory -- where from his "mislungen" Theory
(that's a German word for "failed" or "misadventured") one rescues
his really quite excellent ideas on "reentry" as has been coded in Mind.Forth.

> wherease in SoM he fleshes this out a bit.  Be aware that since SoM
> he has written _The Large, The Small and the Human Mind_ which
> appears to be volume 3 of this material, once again with the
> parts critics complained about covered more carefully. I bought
> this last weekend but have not yet read it so I can't comment
> on whether he expands his physics thesis there or just goes on
> about consciousness. 
> Maynard

More information about the Neur-sci mailing list