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No, our understanding of what it means to have conscience and make conscience choices is what demands that we treat god as an extremely complex mechanism that, if assumed to be the cause of the universe, makes that explanation of origins extremely complex.  Therefore other speculations which do not involve assuming complex machinery on the same scale of complexity are more parsimonious.

Which says precisely nothing. Again you claim that consciousness must be complex, but you don't address the question of whether it is more complex than the assumption of infinities.

It is more complex, because as I've said maybe a hundred times already, the infinity assumption in something like multiverse is a simple regularity with no interacting 'moving' parts in it, unlike consciousness.  It doesn't have any internal interaction that requires defining relationships between things, just that our universe isn't the only universe, but one of infinitely many like it.

It is, of course, a speculation, but as an assumption it doesn't sneak in an elaborate mechanism where it isn't called for.

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If you're referring to multi-verse in this analogy then it is already wrong.  There is no "picking" in the multiverse, since our version of the universe is guaranteed to exist in the infinite pool of universes.  We are guaranteed to "wake up" in our version of the universe since that's baked into the hypothesis.

The multi-verse hypothesis assumes an infinite number of universes. Is infinity of universes less complex than a single finite entity?

Yes, as I've explained a number of times already.  By you not addressing what I said in this graph I'm assuming you tacitly acknowledge that your analogy failed to capture the key element of multiverse speculation, that our particular universe isn't "picked".

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They constitute good practice, nothing more.  There's nothing incorrect about violating good practice, but it does go against convention.  I think "because I believe" is a perfectly valid 'reason' to go against the convention, but I value Occam's razor and will try to the best of my ability follow it as it's a good strategy.

In other words they do not constitute a logical argument. You explicitly stated that this is a convention, which is exactly what I said about a formulation of occam's razor that is not rigorous enough to include probability. That does not constitute a logical argument either. Are we then allowed from a logical standpoint to say that both options are equally valid and we can choose the one we prefer? What is then the value of occam's razor if it does not give us an answer that is logical. Is it Aesthetics? I submit to you that it is an utterly pointless position, with no value whatsoever. Do you not agree that your position is inconsistent with rigorous applications of occam's razor to untestable systems?

It does constitute a logical argument, just one that can be used as proof of anything.  Occam's razor gives us the practical answer, the one that we should use until we find it doesn't work anymore.  It doesn't give us the correct answer, because we always deal with tentative answers and sometimes there are multitudes of them that fit the data.  For practical reasons we pick one and Occam's razor is a good way to do so.

There's nothing inconsistent in my position with this application of Occam's razor.

And again, this is pointless sidetrack to the main disagreement which is whether god hypothesis violates it.  It literally doesn't matter to me what you think Occam's razor is for, I'm only interested in your preposterous argument that the god hypothesis is as simple as naturalistic speculations.

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Ultimately it is about probability, but defining complexity comes first, the likelihood falls out of a common understanding of which is more complex.  Yes, there is no standard way to define complexity and this is what we're arguing about.  The argument that god is as simple as a regularity, despite what we know about how complicated information processing that constitutes intelligence is, is entirely unconvincing, no matter how many Christian philosophers advance it.


Ultimately it comes down to probability but defining complexity comes first? The two are inconsistent. A probabilistic formulation demands that all possible events and physical entities (whether they have occured or not) stipulated by each theory must constitute one assumption.

This is utter nonsense.  It means no such thing.  Each possible event and entity can be treated as separate assumptions.

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Under your rules our own subjective views on simplicity come first. You can't have both.

Again, this makes absolutely zero sense.  I feel like you're pulling premises out of your ass and stipulating them for no reason whatsoever. 

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The probabilistic formulation pits a finite but complex entity against either infinite universes of infinite options for one universe. The finite being comes on top.

No, it does not.  Infinities are weird, but they're not complicated.  Natural numbers are infinite but they're defined by an extremely simple rule, one that has very few "moving" parts.  Consciousness is not a simple rule like that, it is an enormously complicated machine with many moving parts.

Now you can quibble with this description of complexity.  But so far I haven't seen any alternative description of what constitutes complexity from you.  Simply saying "infinity is more complicated" isn't sufficient.

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Your position is essentially to choose a subjective rule for defining simplicity that favours your argument. Basically it boils down to: The simpler hypothesis must be less complex but we define simplicity subjectively so that the hypothesis we like more is simpler. 
Unfortunately your rule violates the probabilistic premise. If you do that that simplicity and probability of existence must be correlated? That only holds for the probabilistic formulation!!

Another word salad.  This is just utter nonsense again.  My position is that there's a reasonable description of complexity, where it is greater where more parts have to interact in a particular functional way in order for the whole thing to work.  I don't think that's an unreasonable way of looking at complexity, in fact I'm pretty sure it's what's traditionally used by most scientists when Occam's razor is being applied.

You're welcome to disagree, but to disagree you have to have some substance to your posts and it's utterly lacking for the moment.

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Your definition is subjective. You admit explicitly that it is subjective. I submit to you that there exists a very subjective way to define complexity: the probabilistic formulation.

It is not subjective, it is conventional.  It's what we typically use, much like Occam's razor is what we typically use.  Yes, there's no way to prove something here, either prove that some definition of complexity is right or that more parsimonious explanation is more correct.  But that's never been what this argument is about, no matter how much you try to shift these goalposts.  What this is about is whether by any reasonable view on complexity the god hypothesis is as simple as naturalistic explanations.  And your view on complexity is basically incoherent, let alone conventional.  It's basically a song and dance with a lot of words but no substance.

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So the question then is how can such a subjective definition that violates the premises required for correlating simplicity to probability of existence, can be used to support the statement that god is illogical.

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No, it is not a machine with infinite parts any more than a beach with infinite grains of sand is a machine with infinite parts.  A machine with infinite parts is complex because of the strictly defined functional relationships between the parts, that's where the complexity comes from.

You just evaded the question. Certainly a machine with infinite parts is more complex than a beach with infinite grain of sands, but is it more complex than infinite universes each containing objects with strictly defined relationships between them (the natural laws).

Oh man, we were so close. Multiverse specifically says that there is no relationships between each universe, information can't pass between them.  The description of the multiverse is one "rule" with no moving parts and no internal interactions.  It's a regularity, similar to a postulate about infinitely many natural numbers.  Because it has no interacting moving parts it's a lot less complicated than anything that could have intelligence and agency.

Now we can't really meaningfully discuss probabilities of things that we can't even know could exist.  All we can talk about are complexities and use complexity as a kind of a proxy for probability in lieu of actual statistical models.  That's why it is a convention, not statistical model and this is why your insistence on shifting straight away to probabilities is just completely confused.  It can't work this way.

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However that has nothing to do with the actual question. You stated that the complexity required for consciousness is greater than for anything non conscious.

No, I never stated that as a general rule that applies for everything at all times.  Specifically this is about the origins of the universe naturalistic explanations vs the god hypothesis.

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We want to examine if that holds when we compare it to infinity. Is then a machine with infinite parts or even a beach with infinite grains of sand more complex than a single high complex but finite entity? To help you answer that, what is the probability of a beach with infinite grains of sand existing, given that our universe does not have infinite mass in it.

Probability isn't a description of complexity.  You have this completely backwards when it comes to Occam's razor.

Occam's razor treats complexity as a guide towards which is the more likely explanation, not the other way around.  And it is impossible to speculate on probabilities of things we have never observed, be it multiverse or god.  We can't have statistical models based on zero data points.  We can, however, have reasonable models of complexity, given what we know about how consciousness works and given some reasonable understanding of how many things have to line up just right for intelligence to emerge.
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Tech Talk / Re: Wolfram's Image Identification
« Last post by The Latinist on Today at 11:02:03 AM »
Hmm.  Posted a picture of Smaug from "The Hobbit" and it identified him as a seahorse.  Seems unable to identify a bagel, alternating between calling them brioche and a donut (I tried 7 different bagel pictures from Google Image Search).
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I'll go ahead and predict that they will come up with a cure for aging.

Or at least a treatment for extending life/countering the effects of aging that can keep you going indefinitely as long as you keep going through it (with the treatment improving further with more time).


Overpopulation... one way or another.

I can't see overpopulation. Perhaps new technology to feed everyone and provide fresh drinking water. But I can't see how we overcome our genetic drive to reproduce.


-UPC

I think we already have figured out a lot about how to reduce birth rates. Like separating sex from reproduction, and separating children from the work force. Extending life spans might contribute towards making overpopulation worse, but with fewer children dying early on, people don't have to make a lot of them to have a few of them survive. Give people condoms, and publicly, overtly and repeatedly denounce the likes of the Catholic Church for speaking out against them, and people will use them.

If we can come up with a single pill that makes you sterile until you take a different pill, even better.

Edit: On a pessimistic note, I don't know how many more decades or centuries I would want to live in a world that not only inevitably is going to undergo significant climate change, but a world where we're all still actively contributing towards making it more significant. Fusion might be what finally stops our active contribution. But then what?
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The multi-verse hypothesis assumes an infinite number of universes. Is infinity of universes less complex than a single finite entity?

But the multiverse hypothesis comes from mathematically sound and tested science. We have seen the fingerprints of inflation in the sky, and it turns out you have to assume some very finely-tuned constants to make inflation stop... show me where the mathematically sound and tested foundations for God is.
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Quote from: Dr Textdump
First of all did you just claim that occam's razor demands that we treat the god hypothesis as more complex? Would you not define that as a circular argument?
No, he's pointing out that you're committing the begging the question fallacy by asserting without cause the notion that "godidit" is more elegant than established science.

I am interested in where you found the world elegant or any allusion to it in any form in my posts and what question am I begging exactly?




No, our understanding of what it means to have conscience and make conscience choices is what demands that we treat god as an extremely complex mechanism that, if assumed to be the cause of the universe, makes that explanation of origins extremely complex.  Therefore other speculations which do not involve assuming complex machinery on the same scale of complexity are more parsimonious.

Which says precisely nothing. Again you claim that consciousness must be complex, but you don't address the question of whether it is more complex than the assumption of infinities.

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If you're referring to multi-verse in this analogy then it is already wrong.  There is no "picking" in the multiverse, since our version of the universe is guaranteed to exist in the infinite pool of universes.  We are guaranteed to "wake up" in our version of the universe since that's baked into the hypothesis.

The multi-verse hypothesis assumes an infinite number of universes. Is infinity of universes less complex than a single finite entity?

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They constitute good practice, nothing more.  There's nothing incorrect about violating good practice, but it does go against convention.  I think "because I believe" is a perfectly valid 'reason' to go against the convention, but I value Occam's razor and will try to the best of my ability follow it as it's a good strategy.

In other words they do not constitute a logical argument. You explicitly stated that this is a convention, which is exactly what I said about a formulation of occam's razor that is not rigorous enough to include probability. That does not constitute a logical argument either. Are we then allowed from a logical standpoint to say that both options are equally valid and we can choose the one we prefer? What is then the value of occam's razor if it does not give us an answer that is logical. Is it Aesthetics? I submit to you that it is an utterly pointless position, with no value whatsoever. Do you not agree that your position is inconsistent with rigorous applications of occam's razor to untestable systems?

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Ultimately it is about probability, but defining complexity comes first, the likelihood falls out of a common understanding of which is more complex.  Yes, there is no standard way to define complexity and this is what we're arguing about.  The argument that god is as simple as a regularity, despite what we know about how complicated information processing that constitutes intelligence is, is entirely unconvincing, no matter how many Christian philosophers advance it.


Ultimately it comes down to probability but defining complexity comes first? The two are inconsistent. A probabilistic formulation demands that all possible events and physical entities (whether they have occured or not) stipulated by each theory must each constitute one assumption. Under your rules our own subjective views on simplicity come first. You can't have both. The probabilistic formulation pits a finite but complex entity against either infinite universes of infinite options for one universe. The finite being comes on top. Your position is essentially to choose a subjective rule for defining simplicity that favours your argument. Basically it boils down to: The simpler hypothesis must be less complex [edit - complex is a typo I meant more probable] but we define simplicity subjectively so that the hypothesis we like more is simpler. 
Unfortunately your rule violates the probabilistic premise. If you do that that simplicity and probability of existence cannot still be correlated. That only holds for the probabilistic formulation!!

Your definition is subjective. You admit explicitly that it is subjective. I submit to you that there exists a very subjective way to define complexity: the probabilistic formulation.

So the question then is how can such a subjective definition that violates the premises required for correlating simplicity to probability of existence, can be used to support the statement that god is illogical.

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No, it is not a machine with infinite parts any more than a beach with infinite grains of sand is a machine with infinite parts.  A machine with infinite parts is complex because of the strictly defined functional relationships between the parts, that's where the complexity comes from.

You just evaded the question. Certainly a machine with infinite parts is more complex than a beach with infinite grain of sands, but is it more complex than infinite universes each containing objects with strictly defined relationships between them (the natural laws). However that has nothing to do with the actual question. You stated that the complexity required for consciousness is greater than for anything non conscious. We want to examine if that holds when we compare it to infinity. Is then a machine with infinite parts or even a beach with infinite grains of sand more complex than a single highly complex but finite entity? To help you answer that, what is the probability of a beach with infinite grains of sand existing, given that our universe does not have infinite mass in it.

[Addition] Your argument about simplicity can be essentially distilled into this: It is only the relationships between individual parts that constitute complexity. The number of individual parts is irrelevant. Do you think this is actually consistent with the premise that the simplest hypothesis must be more likely.
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Music / Re: What's the point of hidden/bonus tracks?
« Last post by Shadow Of A Doubt on Today at 10:14:16 AM »
The early Beatles albums were 12 tracks in the UK, but only 10 in the US, which screwed up the compilation of the LPs for years. As I recall, Capitol, the US label, claimed that quality suffered in pushing the LP format to 12 songs, but even then I think it was more a marketing thing. Recall that almost no single tracks were over three minutes because of the 45 rpm single format.

LPs and singles were also mixed differently. I read recently where one major studio actually mixed the monophonic singles through a pair of 1957 Chevy radio speakers in the studio in order to best recreate that format.

In Ken Caillat's book about Fleetwood Mac's Rumours album (he was the main engineer/producer) there was a major battle over songs because of the maximum album length. Stevie Nicks got one of her songs cut from the album because of this. In those days the break point at which you flipped the album side was a key determinant of track selection and placement, trying to maximize each side and still get a "flow" of music.

That song was called Silver Spring and it is included on the album if you buy it today on CD or mp3.
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TV & Movies / Re: Fear the Walking Dead
« Last post by MikeHz on Today at 10:00:42 AM »
Better episode this time, but the fat kid now bugs me.  He's too aware of the scale of things going down.

There's also this weird thing in this and the original show of nobody using the word "zombie."  Are they pretending that in this universe, such a concept does not exist (yet)?  Are there no zombie movies on DVD that these characters might have seen already?

I like the kid. I think that, as a professional nerd, he's familiar with Post-apocalyptic fiction, and so has a better handle on how things are going down.

I've long wondered why no one uses the term "zombie." I can imagine a scene where Rick and company encounter a group who do use the term.

"Wow--good thing we escaped from those zombies!"

"Zombies? Don't be ridiculous, man--those ain't no zombies. Them there's walkers, is all."
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Forum Games / Re: Fact or Crap? 2015 Edition
« Last post by Swagomatic on Today at 09:57:14 AM »
Well, hmm, I will say CRAP.
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TV & Movies / Re: Rate the last movie you just saw.
« Last post by MikeHz on Today at 09:54:32 AM »
ex machina  9/10 great movie.

Yeah. Good enough that I had to watch it twice. But then, this is Washington State...
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Seems a better charge is reckless endangerment

https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartIV/TitleI/Chapter265/Section13L

I would not be surprised to find manslaughter was charged just to get the defendant to plead to re.
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