Brent_Allsop replied 14 years ago (Apr 20th 2010, 3:33:17 am)
It was great to meet you at TSC 2010, and to learn about your work on consciousness. Thank you so much for bringing your new theory into canonizer.com as a supporting sub camp of this "Approachable Via Science" camp. You really picked things up fast, and this new [http://canonizer.com/topic.asp/88/37 Consciousness From Detection, Reaction, and Association] camp is a great contribution already.
I haven't had time yet to fully read and digest your work, but I wanted to get this quick forum post off now to welcome you to the "Approachable Via Science" team.
You indicated you believed there might be a better structure for things than we currently have. The structure has undergone many significant changes in the past as new people have come on board, and surely there will be much more of this kind of stuff as more people come on board. The best way to resolve such issues is to start by you simply describing to everyone here what structure you think would be best. Then we can work at moving in that direction as much as possible with the ultimate goal of concisely and quantitatively representing what everyone believes and uses in their thinking on this issue.
From what I've seen of your work so far, it looks like a purely functional theory, and I haven't yet seen anything addressing qualia or the 'hard problem' â€“ other than to say: the detection, reaction and association tasks you describe are adequate to achieve consciousness. So it is great to have such a purely functional camp now so well represented here by you and your work. I'm sure there are a lot more people that think similar to you, and expect more people to join your camp going forward.
My recollection, in a brief moment we had to discuss the issue, was that you thought the computational functionalism camp belongs above the "Representational Qualia Theory" camp in a super camp kind of way. If I have any of this wrong, please clear up my mess remembering so I can better understand what would be the best for you.
I think the fact that the current [http://canonizer.com/topic.asp/88/9 Computational Functionalism] camp location is in a different location than what you want clearly shows that this camp is different than what you are describing in your work. Let me see if I can describe this difference I perceive. Hopefully you'll be able to clear up any misconceptions I have. And also, anyone in the current computational functionalism camp, feel free pitch in, or make sure I (in a very different camp) get things right.
I believe the Current "Computational Functionalism" camp, as indicative of its parent camps, differs from your work in that it much more recognizes the primacy of qualia, it being more than just functional behavior, the location of such qualia (a property of our knowledge of the strawberry, not the strawberry) and the fact that these qualia, as Chalmer's argues, arise from any functionally equivalent organization.
From what I know of your work, it seems to differ from that, in more of an eliminativist view like Dennett would espouse. My understanding is that you argue that Detection, Reaction, and association (all functional stuff) is sufficient, and that there is no real hard problem.
While Chalmers argues that there is something extra that, in some yet to be figured out 'hard' way, attaches to anything (from silicone, to water pipes, to people in a Chinese room) that is functionally equivalent.
So, if I'm not missing anything, I think the current structure of camps is the best, and clearly shows the difference between your functionalist camp, and the one Chalmers argues for, which thinks there is more to qualia than just functional behavior.
Also, if there are any of the doctrines in any of these currently competing to your camp that you agree with (such as the location of qualia, that it will be ineffable, or whatever) be sure to let us know so we can create a super camp containing all that we agree on.
Again, welcome, and thanks for your contribution!