X-Message-Number: 3733
Date: Mon, 23 Jan 1995 19:39:46 -0500
From: "Bruce Zimov" <>
Subject: SCI.CRYONICS: Uploading

On the topic of superconducting brains:
Brian Wowk writes:
>        Frankly this line of thinking is plain nuts.  
and John Clark writes:
>        that's loony.
Of course, it wouldn't be "normal" biochemistry! I agree.
I probably also agree that is "nuts" and "loony".  However,
suggestions such as these are called non-lateral thinking, and
if you don't explore every possibility you might miss something.
I was just thinking that since cryonics is supposed to preserve
the network topology, and since any global mental effects are
on a connectionist view a consequence of electrical activity
on the network and since superconductivity is a "cold" way to
get this activity, that there might be some "effect" to be
discovered.  That the meme produced not one but two ad
hominems is probably a good sign. But, I can't do the experiment and
those that can have read it.  If you're asking me whether or not
I believe as you do that it is a very very low probability event
in a frozen brain, then, of course, I agree. But, in superconductors
in general, I'm sure we can construct a superconducting computer
system. Also, a flat line is defined by the sensitivity of your
John Clark writes:
>The foundation of modern physics is the idea of
>Exchange Forces ,a direct consequence of The Identity Of
First, its not the foundation. Second, its not a direct consequence
of Leibniz's theory, it is more a consequence of gauge theory and
follows from the mathematics of Lie groups, and the fact
that if you take the derivative of a constant you get zero.
>you insist on giving individuality to quantum particles 
No I don't. Their non-locality is described by Bell's theorem.
All I am saying is that at the scale of 2 brains across the
room from each other, quantum effects do not come into play
in your claim that if you were one of them and that one 
terminated then you would somehow continue without loss of
subjective continuity in the other one.
> Where does consciousness exist?
Spatial location does not apply to mental entities. You are pointing
out something that is well known. But, identity theorists hold
that the correspondence to brain structure and function will
eventually be worked out, and so the answer "somewhere within
your skull" is a reasonable one.  That's one reason why we 
freeze heads.
On numerical identity:
Let's consider Parfit's example:
Two white billiard balls, identical in every way except their
position.  Now, you wouldn't say there is one billiard ball
there would you? Yet, everything you have said about identity
has led you to believe that there is only one. There isn't.
There are 2.  
What if you switched them? Of course, you couldn't tell them
apart.  But, if they were subjective and you were one, you
would have moved to the other position! And you'd know it.
Bruce Zimov

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