X-Message-Number: 4407
From:  (Thomas Donaldson)
Subject: Re: CryoNet #4398 - #4405
Date: Tue, 16 May 1995 13:10:43 -0700 (PDT)

Hi again!

To Mr. Eugen Leitl:

I find it paradoxical that you dismiss what I said about brains on the grounds
that it is unproven (it isn't even the result of MY work, I was describing
the opinions of others) and then proceed to discuss first how we can emulate
brains in elaborate NN machines and second how we can read off their contents

... all of which you yourself state are not available at present (ie. unproven).

I have raised the issue of connectivity (neurobiological) before. It may make
it hard for EXISTING neural net computers to emulate brains. 

I will also say, about just how we might wish to be stored as blocks of 
information, that I brought up the question of the longevity of such storage
precisely because it is far safer to depend on something which you know will
last 1000 years than to depend on something which must be copied (copying also
subject to mistakes and failures) every 20 years. And this issue applies to
cryonics too, but not as an objection: someday we will have much better forms
of storage which don't require constant attention. If we are to be preserved
NOW, however, we have no other choice. 

And naturally, any form of preservation will need institutions to maintain it
and bring us out of storage when needed. Those institutions are presently
called cryonics societies.

Finally, as for the issue of uploading into a computer, one major feature 
which all our machines (electrical or mechanical) now lack is the ability for
self-repair. Even our brains have some small ability at self repair (not to
mention other body parts) and I would expect that these will increase much
more in the future. As I've also mentioned, the present consensus about brain
repair in humans compared to that in (say) salamanders is that our ability to
repair is still (in a sense) present, but is blocked by other factors. And
current work is now focused on how to remove that blocking. But of course,
the issue of uploading into a computer not for storage but as a new creature
to be awake and active has been discussed at some length here before, and I
won't go further into those issues here.

			Best and long long life to all,

				Thomas Donaldson

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