X-Message-Number: 23383
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 2004 21:51:00 -0700
From: Mike Perry <>
Subject: Re: Are the Obliterated Restorable?

Reply to Paul Wakfer, #23373, replying to my #23367:
>  >The possibility always exists, however, that in some fashion an exact
>  >or near copy of the original individual could be recreated, even if
>  >only through guesswork or random, unintelligent means, without
>  >knowledge of the original at all.
>But even if you could generate such a magnitude of all likely instances
>(ie. all having the known information in common) of the original (which
>I don't even accept as possible in principle), it would not be possible
>to tell which was the original. In fact, each individual generated would
>feel just as alive and restored as any other (albeit with very impaired
>memory of his past unless you also gave them false memories relating to
>anything which was not known information, as in Blade Runner).

My philosophical view is that, with certain assumptions about multiple 
universes, history does not have a unique timeline, and loss of information 
means the past is ambiguous. If past information is lost, it means that 
different reconstructions of individuals, using information not 
contradicted in surviving records, have more-or-less equal claims of 
validity and do correspond to people who really lived as part of our 
timestream. These and related issues are discussed at some length in my 
book. As for the possibility of carrying out an infinite number of 
operations over infinite time (more than would be needed to recreate a 
finite number of individuals), the right sort of universe would allow it. 
It has not been demonstrated that no such universes can exist or even that 
our own universe is not one of this class.

>  >then maybe you'll agree 100 percent with Paul Wakfer's position.
>Please do not presume to know what my "position" is until I have fully
>stated it.

Sorry for any confusion over my intended meaning. The "position" I was 
talking about was what was stated as "there will also always be situations 
which are so devastating that restoration to life is truly 
impossible"--that's all I meant here.

Mike Perry

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