Prometheus and Mega Lists, May 1999 (Part Two)

 

Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 12:34:19 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: Feynman the philosopher?


On Tue, 18 May 1999, Fredrik [iso-8859-1] UllÚn wrote:

> >Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 15:54:25 +0200
> >To: "Russell F. Vaughan" <fred@vaughan.cc>
> >From: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>
> >Subject: Re: Feynman the philosopher?
> >
> >At 01:06 1999-05-18 -0700, you wrote:
> >...
> >>This would throw the baby out with the bath water. It's almost like
> >>saying "physics today, maybe religion tomorrow." I think there is a
> >>more consistent approach. I would hypothesize rather that the ultimate
> >>formulation will be more like a statement of *state* than a procedure
> >>and what *works* today is like alchemy compared to a proper mathematical
> >>formulation.
> >
> >This is interesting. Could you develop a bit further what you
> >mean by state/procedure here, Fred?

Pending Fred's response, let me interject. When we get to the cosmological
level of reality theory, the conventional notion of "state" is
meaningless. Why? Because to have a state, we must have a system and an
observer (even if the "observer" is the system itself, which in this case
is the Universe). Thus, we have to account for systemic ontology
(cosmogony) and provide a pansubjective definition of "observation". Read on.

> >Since we're discussing properties of ultimate theories of reality here
> >I also can't help returning to one of my own obsessions, the
> >status of subjective experiences in such a theory.
> >
> >The major problem for all current theories of
> >the relation between conscious states and their physical correlates
> >is what's often referred to as the "hard problem" or the "explanatory
> >gap". The issue in a nutshell is that no matter how well-described
> >and well-understood a conscious physical system - such as a living brain -
> >is in physical terms, there always seems to remain a possibility that
> >the system in reality is a zombie, i.e. behaves "as if" it were
> >conscious. No physical properties seem to necessarily *entail*
> >subjective experiences, yet they are there as a matter of empirical
> >fact.

There are three (philosophical) ways of dealing effectively with a
problem. You can (1) solve it within some formalism recognized as valid
within a particular restricted context; (2) present a new formalism in
which it is transparently demystified; or (3) use the Wittgenstein
approach, showing that the language in which it is formulated is
meaningless and refers to nothing. Stapp, Penrose et al have chosen route
1 (using the formalism of quantum mechanics); Dennet, route 3. But route 1
leaves unexplained the basis of quantum mechanics itself, and route 3 in
this case devolves to epiphenomenalism, a truly asinine approach to the
problem. That leaves route 2. That route has already been taken, and the
problem solved.

> >I think a demand on an ultimate theory of reality - call it "physical" or
> >not - is that it should make intelligible *why* subjective experiences
> >necessarily arise is certain systems. We should not be satisfied
> >with theories where this only comes out as brute, inexplicable
> >facts of neural/mental correlations.

Consciousness (self-awareness) is explained as follows. Cartesian dualism
precludes a viable cosmogony. When we duly remove the Cartesian divider
between mental (subjective, cognitive) and physical (objective,
informational) reality, we get a dual-aspect monism based on "distributed
infocognition". Every part of the universe subjectively processes itself
as information, i.e., is "conscious". Note, however, that at this stage of
reasoning, consciousness is generalized as "self-transduction" and
explained as a cosmogonic necessity. "Emergence" of higher orders of
consciousness is then explained by the Telic Principle, an ingredient of
the CTMU (and generalization of the Anthropic Principle). The Telic
Principle can be thought of as a quantum-coherent self-optimization
function of the Universe. In technical terms, this represents the first
bound state of telesis, the raw material of cosmogony (raw infocognitive
potential).

> >My feeling is that the problem at present is at least partly due
> >to our conceptions of "physical" and "mental", and the question I'd
> >like to throw out in this context is what you
> >think of the possibility that an ultimate theory of reality might
> >be panpsychic in nature. In this case, reality would at the lowest
> >level be described in terms that are neither purely physical, nor
> >purely mental. Perhaps one could say that the world would be built
> >from entities that have both physical and proto-mental properties,
> >although it's admittedly unclear exactly what this might mean.

It's not unclear. The mental is simply a generalization of the
physical...the range of configuration of the abstract syntax of SCSPL
(Self-Configuring, Self-Processing Language), AKA "the Universe".
Physical reality is a selective specification of this distributed
syntax by antecedent restrictions of the syntax itself.

> >In any case, the theory would explain not only why systems
> >behave the way they do physically, but also why they have the
> >subjective experiences they do, where the latter would be some
> >kind of story of how the different parts of the system with their
> >different proto-mental properties interact and thereby produce
> >subjective experience.

Again, subjective experiences are not "produced"; they are *refined* from
a generalized subjective (infocognitive) substrate. The refinement
conforms tightly to predicate logic, a primary ingredient of SCSPL syntax,
and obeys the Telic Principle.

> >I'm fascinated by the possibility that the mind/body
> >problem in the end might turn out to have
> >cosmological consequences.

It sure does, as I've just explained. All of this material has been
published over the last decade in Noesis and Noesis/ECE, the journal(s) of
the Mega Society. Read that summary I sent you, Fredrik. There *is* no
more "hard problem", but only an impending clarification of details.

Chris Langan

 

Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 13:39:21 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: WholyOther@aol.com
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: Feynman the fool


On Tue, 18 May 1999 WholyOther@aol.com wrote:

> His autobigraphies are confessions. He is sorry. Forgive him.
>
> Does anyone in Prometheus really understand his fourth conception of quantum
> physics? It is awfully fucking cool.

Sure they do. It is sometimes noted that Feynman's path-integral approach
to quantum mechanics, involving the interaction of advanced and retarded
waves abstracted from ordinary and time-reversed solutions to Maxwell's
equations, obviates the need for "the collapse of the wavefunction", a
quantum-theoretic bugbear called "the measurement problem". But it is
noted with astonishing *infrequency* that it does so merely by deferring
the problem to the "ends of time"! That is, Feynman effectively uses the
future to explain why the past is what it is, but doesn't explain the
future itself except insofar as it is "the past" relative to a subsequent future.

Feynman's basic approach requires embedment in an advanced model taking
our conceptions of space and time to the next stage. Hawking and Hartle
took a stab at it, but only went part of the way. The process culminates
in a radical new reality theory called the CTMU.

 

Date: Wed, 19 May 1999 20:02:44 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>
cc: "Russell F. Vaughan" <fred@vaughan.cc>, fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: Feynman(, Fredrik and Fred) the philosopher(s)?

This is a very interesting exchange between Fred and Fredrik. I actually
wrote a response to Fred's last post, but thought it better not to post it
on an unarchived list. All of the probems he mentions have already been
solved in the CTMU...every single one of them (even now, the response sits
on my email server). Similarly for those mentioned by Fredrik, which leads
me to believe he hasn't gotten around to reading what I've already sent him.

This presents an opportunity to identify a couple of problems. First,
the people in these societies seem to like to wonder about things, but
they don't like it at all when someone else can actually answer the
questions they've been wondering about. That defeats the purpose of these
groups, for which I refer to you to old Lance Ware. Second, nobody can
safely say anything that he hasn't said already, in print, in this kind of
forum. That limits what can be accomplished.

Suffice it to say that I find it a bit frustrating to see people
continually asking questions I've already answered accurately and
concisely, and then not to be able to explain matters due to the
evanescent nature of the medium.

Chris L.

 

Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 22:32:24 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: Guy Fogleman <gcfogleman@att.net>
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: Chalmers' Theory

On Tue, 18 May 1999, Guy Fogleman wrote:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>
> To: fire@wwwh.com <fire@wwwh.com>
> Date: Tuesday, May 18, 1999 10:06 AM
> Subject: Re: Feynman the philosopher?
> .......
> >
> >My feeling is that the problem at present is at least partly due
> >to our conceptions of "physical" and "mental", and the question I'd
> >like to throw out in this context is what you
> >think of the possibility that an ultimate theory of reality might
> >be panpsychic in nature. In this case, reality would at the lowest
> >level be described in terms that are neither purely physical, nor
> >purely mental. Perhaps one could say that the world would be built
> >from entities that have both physical and proto-mental properties, although
> >it's admittedly unclear exactly what this might mean.
> >
> >In any case, the theory would explain not only why systems
> >behave the way they do physically, but also why they have the
> >subjective experiences they do, where the latter would be some
> >kind of story of how the different parts of the system with their different
> >proto-mental properties interact and thereby produce
> >subjective experience.
> >
> >I'm fascinated by the possibility that the mind/body
> >problem in the end might turn out to have
> >cosmological consequences.
> >
> >Fredrik
> >
> This sounds like the theory of consciousness put forward by David Chalmers
> in, among other places, *The Conscious Mind* (an excellent and up-to-date
> book on the theory of mind). This theory has many desirable features but
> also results in the bizarre and counterintuitive consequence that *any*
> information-processing system (e.g., a thermostat) would have a rudimentary
> subjective consciousness. Also, in Chalmers' theory, consciousness is
> epiphenomenal and therefore not causally engaged with the rest of the
> physical universe. I find this feature unsatisfactory. My subjective
> intuition is that conscious experience does engage its environment causally
> (e.g., making a choice about which action to take based on understanding the
> relevant situation).
>
> - Guy

Again, I hope I might be permitted a word edgewise. Chalmers has no valid
claim to priority regarding most of the features of "his" theory. He's
regarded as an expositor of dual-aspect theory because he's been able to
exploit an advantageous position in academia. But as far as the high IQ
community is concerned, his theory plays second fiddle to the CTMU right
down the line. Why is that? Because the high-IQ community is where I
presented my own work before Chalmers got to first base. Moreover, unlike
Chalmers, I did it right...despite the fact that he had a large and unfair
advantage when it came to finding a publisher (i.e., the gaseous
intellectual epiphenomena known as academic credentials).

Not, you understand, that Chalmers is totally out to lunch. A few of his
insights are impressive if rather obvious, at least to me. But some of
his statements betray unmistakable confusion regarding certain parts of
the issue. In any case, calling his book "up to date" after being given a
glimpse of the CTMU is a bit of an injustice.

I'm not trying to be judgmental, but merely pointing out a fact that
seems relevant to the place of this community in the intellectual life
of mankind.

Chris Langan

 

Date: Wed, 19 May 1999 11:52:43 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>
cc: Guy Fogleman <gcfogleman@att.net>, fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: Chalmers' Theory


On Wed, 19 May 1999, Fredrik [iso-8859-1] UllÚn wrote:

> At 22:32 1999-05-18 -0400, Langan wrote:
> >...
> >A few of his insights are impressive if rather obvious, at least to me.
>
> I love that one :)
>
> Fredrik
>
> Fredrik UllÚn, PhD
> Nobel Institute for Neurophysiology
> Dept of Neuroscience
> S-171 77 Stockholm
> SWEDEN
>
> ph +46-8-728 73 69
> fax +46-8-34 95 44 (not personal)

Let me explain. Whenever an academic makes a *correct* insight, that's
impressive whether it was obvious or not!

Chris

 

Date: Mon, 24 May 1999 00:22:39 -0700
To: Prometheus <theft_of_fire@egroups.com>
From: Kevin Langdon <kevin.langdon@polymath-systems.com>
Subject: [theft_of_fire] Re: Chalmers' Theory


At 10:32 PM 5/18/99 -0400, Chris Langan wrote:

> On Tue, 18 May 1999, Guy Fogleman wrote:

>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>
>> To: fire@wwwh.com <fire@wwwh.com>
>> Date: Tuesday, May 18, 1999 10:06 AM
>> Subject: Re: Feynman the philosopher?

>>> My feeling is that the problem at present is at least partly due
>>> to our conceptions of "physical" and "mental", and the question
>>> I'd like to throw out in this context is what you think of the
>>> possibility that an ultimate theory of reality might be panpsychic
>>> in nature. In this case, reality would at the lowest level be
>>> described in terms that are neither purely physical, nor purely
>>> mental. Perhaps one could say that the world would be built
>>> from entities that have both physical and proto-mental properties,
>>> although it's admittedly unclear exactly what this might mean.
>>>
>>> In any case, the theory would explain not only why systems
>>> behave the way they do physically, but also why they have the
>>> subjective experiences they do, where the latter would be some
>>> kind of story of how the different parts of the system with their
>>> different proto-mental properties interact and thereby produce
>>> subjective experience.
>>>
>>> I'm fascinated by the possibility that the mind/body problem in
>>> the end might turn out to have cosmological consequences.
>>>
>>> Fredrik

>> This sounds like the theory of consciousness put forward by
>> David Chalmers in, among other places, *The Conscious Mind*
>> (an excellent and up-to-date book on the theory of mind). This
>> theory has many desirable features but also results in the bizarre
>> and counterintuitive consequence that *any* information-
>> processing system (e.g., a thermostat) would have a rudimentary
>> subjective consciousness.

This is not unreasonable, in the same sense that a book that's been
dropped in a can of paint still possesses a certain degree of order,
despite losing its usefulness for us.

>> Also, in Chalmers' theory, consciousness is epiphenomenal and
>> therefore not causally engaged with the rest of the physical
>> universe. I find this feature unsatisfactory. My subjective
>> intuition is that conscious experience does engage its environment
>> causally (e.g., making a choice about which action to take based
>> on understanding the relevant situation).
>>
>> - Guy

This is a more serious problem with Chalmers' theory. Although man
harbors illusions about his ability to control his life, causal chains
*do* pass through the activity of the psyche, including consciousness
when it is present.

> Again, I hope I might be permitted a word edgewise. Chalmers has
> no valid claim to priority regarding most of the features of "his"
> theory. He's regarded as an expositor of dual-aspect theory because
> he's been able to exploit an advantageous position in academia.

Big deal. You have exploited an advantageous position at the top of
the food chain.

> But as far as the high IQ community is concerned, his theory plays
> second fiddle to the CTMU right down the line. Why is that?
> Because the high-IQ community is where I presented my own work
> before Chalmers got to first base.

Those of us in Mega have seen a good deal of Chris' exposition
of his theory--though I, for one, am unclear on the details and
unconvinced of its revolutionary character--but members of the
Prometheus Society have barely heard of the CTMU and have no
reason to regard it as anything out of the ordinary.

> Moreover, unlike Chalmers, I did it right...despite the fact that he
> had a large and unfair advantage when it came to finding a
> publisher (i.e., the gaseous intellectual epiphenomena known as
> academic credentials).

Life isn't fair. Academic credentials count for too much in life. So
what else is new?

> Not, you understand, that Chalmers is totally out to lunch. A few
> of his insights are impressive if rather obvious, at least to me. But
> some of his statements betray unmistakable confusion regarding
> certain parts of the issue. In any case, calling his book "up to date"
> after being given a glimpse of the CTMU is a bit of an injustice.

> I'm not trying to be judgmental, but merely pointing out a fact that
> seems relevant to the place of this community in the intellectual
> life of mankind.

> Chris Langan

The world doesn't revolve around Chris, nor around these societies.


Kevin Langdon


Date: Wed, 19 May 1999 06:13:23 -0500
To: megalist@brokersys.com
From: Steve Schuessler <bahai@brokersys.com>
Subject: [MegaList] Re: Puzzle with $1.6m prize

At 08:02 PM 5/17/99 -0500, Mike Doyle wrote:

>Yeah, but then all you've got is a million pounds. Pretty trivial when you
>consider the other things you could be expending your neural ATPs on.

As soon as I advance from Maslowe's 5th to the 4th (which may be today
after my interview) I'll be closer to responding to such a statement.


>At 04:49 PM 5/17/99 -0700, Chris Currivan wrote:
>>>>>
>>"I do get disappointed that so many members [of Mensa] spend so much time
>>solving puzzles. It's a form of mental masturbation. Nothing comes of it."
>> -- Dr. Lancelot Ware, co-founder of Mensa

Steve responds: I was there when he made the statement (it was at the Houston
Mensa American Gathering in 1995). Lance Ware was still alert and spritely--
yep, this guy was into the 'social aspect' that predominates at those meetings. He
hugged my then-girlfriend as is the custom amongst them.

Perhaps he wanted to form a 'think tank', and recapture some of the magic of
wartime Bletchly Park. The history I read of early Mensa was interesting; they
dressed up in leopard suits back then too.

Can Mega do more to advance human knowledge than the combined 80,000
partying members of the Mother of All High-IQ Societies? I joined to find out.

>>In the interest of refuting Dr. Ware, I bring to your attention a puzzle
>>that something does come from solving... namely a million-pound prize.
>>
>>The puzzle is called "Eternity" and it consists of 209 pieces of equal
>>area which must be assembled to tile a dodecagonal grid. Each piece is
>>made up of equilateral triangles and split equilateral triangles, and has
>>a total area of six full triangles.

Of course, a survey of Penrose's works would be the first place to begin that
project. Would a generalized solution have rampantly important applications,
like the aperiodic tessellations did with respect to geophysics and chrystalography?

>>The manufacturer's page:
>><http://www.hotbox.co.uk/>http://www.hotbox.co.uk/
>>
>>A site that discusses the puzzle:
>><http://www.mathpuzzle.com/>http://www.mathpuzzle.com/

 

Date: Wed, 19 May 1999 12:20:16 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: megalist@brokersys.com
Subject: Re: [MegaList] Re: Puzzle with $1.6m prize


> At 08:02 PM 5/17/99 -0500, Mike Doyle wrote:
> >Yeah, but then all you've got is a million pounds. Pretty trivial when you
> >consider the other things you could be expending your neural ATPs on.

A most commendable observation. That's all we need...a society full of
greedy nerds, up to their necks in jigsaw puzzle pieces!

> >At 04:49 PM 5/17/99 -0700, Chris Currivan wrote:
> >>>>>
> >>"I do get disappointed that so many members [of Mensa] spend so much time
> >>solving puzzles. It's a form of mental masturbation. Nothing comes of it."
> >> -- Dr. Lancelot Ware, co-founder of Mensa
>
> Steve responds: I was there when he made the statement (it was at the
> Houston Mensa American Gathering in 1995). Lance Ware was still alert
> and spritely--yep, this guy was into the 'social aspect' that
> predominates at those meetings.

Yeah, but the social aspect is supposed to be what good little Mensans get
to enjoy after solving the latest round of urgent, world-threatening
problems. Instead, they jump the gun and get hammered first. Then the only
"urgent problem" they can comprehend is how to get home when they can't
see straight.

> Perhaps he wanted to form a 'think tank', and recapture some of the
> magic of wartime Bletchly Park. The history I read of early Mensa was
> interesting; they dressed up in leopard suits back then too.

The "think tank" aspect was there from the beginning. It was built into
the conception of the group.

> Can Mega do more to advance human knowledge than the combined 80,000
> partying members of the Mother of All High-IQ Societies? I joined to
> find out.

It already has. Of course, this turned out to be a one-man operation
executed in a hailstorm of snide remarks from the peanut gallery.
Hopefully, that will change.

> >>In the interest of refuting Dr. Ware, I bring to your attention a puzzle
> >>that something does come from solving... namely a million-pound prize.
> >>
> >>The puzzle is called "Eternity" and it consists of 209 pieces of equal
> >>area which must be assembled to tile a dodecagonal grid. Each piece is
> >>made up of equilateral triangles and split equilateral triangles, and has
> >>a total area of six full triangles.
>
> Of course, a survey of Penrose's works would be the first place to
> begin that project. Would a generalized solution have rampantly
> important applications, like the aperiodic tessellations did with
> respect to geophysics and chrystalography?

It would be nice to think that correctly solving this puzzle would
precipitate a revolution in quasisymmetry. Unfortunately, this would
probably have been accomplished by the guy who invented the puzzle.


Date: Thu, 20 May 1999 10:51:02 -0700
To: Prometheus <theft_of_fire@egroups.com>
From: Kevin Langdon <kevin.langdon@polymath-systems.com>
Subject: [theft_of_fire] Re: Dust off your dreams

At 08:31 AM 5/17/99 EDT, Michael Corrado wrote:

> What I am learning is that reality follows deeply from words we
> say and thoughts we think.

Describe the experiences that you regard as learning this.

Our conditioning certainly colors our perception of the world,
but it's a big leap from there to reality being created by verbal
formulations.

> Jesus said, "You will have what you say." He also said we are
> judged according to our own words. "The measure by which
> you judge..."

Jesus said "Judge not lest ye be judged." The implication is that
fallen man is in no position to prefer justice to mercy. This does
not mean that reality is created by words.

> Reality is profoundly our own existence. It is all that we have.
> We are not strangers here, we are in a place designed for us. (I
> can just imagine the reactions to that statement.)

Or perhaps we are designed to serve some purpose, on a much
larger scale than anything we can see, in places like this, which
are also designed for this purpose. Maybe our souls are food for
purple people eaters.

> In this century we tend to think too much of advancements in
> science on the atomic level, just because we are babes.

This is not clear. What are you talking about here?

> Mendeleev charted the periodic table as "octaves" of the elements.
> Isn't that wonderful?

It's certainly interesting.

> Here is a Biblical proverb I love. "Wise men seek understanding.
> Fools only want to express their own opinions."

> What I love about Prometheus members is not their problem
> solving abilities, but the way they are simply persons. I am glad
> to have the fellowship of others who are like me. It's lonely
> without you, folks. I enjoy what you write in the journal and in
> e-mail. Four sigma intelligence should be the minimum, ya
> know? I will endeavor to contribute more to GoF etc.

> Michael Corrado

I agree strongly with the view expressed here. The community of
the highly gifted has been held back until now by the slow speed
of interaction possible through printed journals, but something
new is happening now, thanks to the Internet.


Kevin Langdon


Date: Thu, 20 May 1999 15:35:22 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: "Russell F. Vaughan" <fred@vaughan.cc>
cc: Fredrik UllÚn <Fredrik.Ullen@neuro.ki.se>, fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: CTMU

On Thu, 20 May 1999, Russell F. Vaughan wrote:

> Fredrik UllÚn wrote:
> ...
> > Chris, I have indeed not have time to read what you sent me more carefully.
> > However, I hereby promise I won't write one more email on the mind/body
> > problem until I've made a serious attempt to understand the CTMU!!! :).
>
> I join the pledge.
>
> > One problem for the CTMU so far seems to be that few, if any, people
> > have been "able to" understand it. One can't avoid the suspicion that
> > your way of presenting the theory is a part of the problem.
>
> My only problem with the promotional data I was sent is that it *is*
> promotional. I like to be able to assess for myself how good something
> is based on the product and not on hype about the product.

Here's where I lose you. That promotional data contains information on a
unique mathematical structure, SCSPL. Granted, the description isn't
complete. But if it's "promotional", then people like Dennet and Chalmers
belong on Madison Avenue, because there's no structure whatsoever in
their meanderings. The closest they get is "heterophenomenalism" -
apparently Dennet's joke equaling (scientific method)^2 - and Chalmers'
idea that one can simultaneously accept, but then again *not* accept,
Cartesian dualism (it's the old half-pregnant thing). Yet you mention
these people as though they're true philosophers. What I sent you is
enough to blow them away all by itself.

But let's proceed. I want to find out which one of us is the "bullshit
artist".

> > So I have a suggestion: Let's discuss the three core principles,
> > the "three M's", of the CTMU one by one here on the list.
>
> I didn't know there were three "M's" but the incremental approach sounds
> ideal to my limited bandwidth capabilities.
>
> > In a little while I hope I will be able to formulate
> > a bunch of question about the first one, the Metaphysical Autology Principle.
> > If you agree with this, Chris, you might also consider
> > mailing that texts you sent me to other interested members.
>
> Me for one.
>
> Fred
>
> PS:
>
> I have tried to capture a few (I only got half way through your
> promotional message with this since I have to go do an errand) some of
> the pithy phrases that I'm going to need some remedial help with. If
> you could write a paragraph of English description on each of these it
> might help distinguish a meaningful concept from what could otherwise
> seem to be bullshit.

Be careful using this term. I can make you eat it.
>
> nomological formulations

Use your dictionary. "A formulation of the laws governing a physical (or
other) system". The formulation may be a mere approximation of the laws
themselves. Or it may be one of many optional configurations of terms.

> spacetime endomorphism

If you don't know what "spacetime" and "endomorphism" mean, then I'd have
to question what I'd thought was your background. Certain predicates of
what we call "spacetime" are reproduced within the chunk of spacetime
described by the predicates in such a way that the image reproduces the
structure of the original chunk.

> most durable logical invariants of scientific nomology

If I write "not (b and not-b)", b a logical variable, then I can plug any
mathematical statement I want to where you see the sentential variable
"b". The expression is therefore logically invariant with respect to
sentential content.

> CTMU puts quantum theory where Einstein put the cosmological constant

The cosmological constant is a term invented by Einstein for the purpose
of explaining why the universe isn't collapsing in upon itself due to
gravitational interactions of matter. I use quantum theory to the same effect.

> > universe is "expanding"...or equivalently, why its contents are "shrinking"

Expansion is actually a binary relation,generally predicated on a variable
x, defined with respect to something relative to which the expansion is
occurring, e.g. y. "The balloon x is expanding (relative to its uninflated
size y)", and so on; here, y is held static for purposes of comparison. So
we say "y is invariant relative to x with respect to the logical operator
*expansion*". Now let x be invariant instead, and consider y to be
changing with respect to it. Translation: "The balloon y is shrinking
relative to its inflated size x". The first expression describes Fred
puffing away on a balloon. The second describes Fred sticking a pin into
the balloon.

> self-creative logic of the Universe

The "Real Universe" contains all that is real; otherwise you can't use the
predicate "real" to describe it. Now suppose that something created the
universe, at least in its present form (i.e., that the universe is not
infinite steady-state). If it's outside the universe, then that which
created it isn't "real". But then it must have created itself, i.e., be
"self-creating". A certain, uh, *logic* describes this scenario.

> jointly-executed endomorphism of a cumulatively-entangled ensemble of
> infocognitive (conscious) wavefunctions

The wavefunctions of objects entangle through topological intersection;
the intersect is then reproduced within its former image. See the above
comments regarding "endomorphism".

> Particle ensembles associated with interactive events expand at light
> speed in the form of wave functions, intersect as space, and internally
> process each other to produce materialistic output events triggering a
> repetition.

Matter has two phases. In one, it's like a wave. In the other, it's like
matter...solid. When it's in its wave condition - when it's wavefunction
is coherent - then it is topologically spacelike, given certain
mathematical qualifications. When the wavefunction decoheres, then it's
like matter again. Now apply this to two ensembles of particles that have
just been involved in two separate interactive events. Their wavefunctions
intersect and are endomorphically reproduced as solid matter within the
spacelike intersects in conjunction with subsequent events.

> a physical process known as "conspansion"

This phrase was followed by a description of its meaning. You can't just
pluck phrases out of context and pronounce them "bullshit".

> models consciousness as a mathematical and physical endomorphism

Get an elementary abstract algebra text. This is worse than when I had to
explain the meaning of "model" and "isomorphism" to your associate Mr.
Langdon.

> self-awareness is mathematically built into the structure of spacetime

I just scanned to the bottom of this list. That's it - suffice it to say
that you understood literally nothing I said despite my effort to be
clear. [This must be how Sidis felt.]

That's OK, Fred. Like I said, I'm used to this. But as I've already shown,
my critics tend to open their mouths before thinking seriously about what
I've written. I still think you're intelligent, but I think we'd better
talk about something you're already used to discussing.

Chris Langan

> infocognition is the monic substance that results from removing the
> Cartesian distinction between self (mind) and other (external reality)
>
> space and time are generalized information and cognition respectively
>
> subjectivity is simply reflexive infocognition or spacetime...an
> infocognitive domain for which the spatiotemporal radius is minimal and
> thus coherent
>
> Enlarge the radius relative to a given conspansive layer of
> spacetime, and the system decoheres into subject-object interaction.
>
> phenomenon is explained by something called "syndiffeonesis", describing
> a paradoxiform identity relation (where paradoxiform means "having the
> nature of a self-resolving paradox")
>
> That's one of three primary metalogical principles
> adjoined to pure logic by the theory.
>
> CTMU conspansion is a logical operation with simultaneous deductive and
> inductive aspects corresponding to directions of time.
>
> cosmology closes around a primal event called "incoversion" at which the
> most general physical restriction of SCSPL syntax is spatiotemporally
> expressed
>
> a physical spacetime singularity can still possess a special
> kind of abstract structure
>
> CTMU rescues most of standard big bang cosmology using special
> dualization principles reminiscent of those utilized in membrane theory.
>
> The universe becomes an infocognitive endomorphism; space
> is a logical form that evolves (literally) by logical substitution, and
> time the implementation of substitutive grammar.
>
> Instead of particles being "transmitted" from one point of space to
> another through the familiar kinematic osmosis based on a dissociation
> of logic and geometry, the motion of a particle is locally expressed
> within its own prior image, i.e., wavefunction.
>
> CTMU self-creative reality
>
> NeST provides a framework in which free will and freedom can
> exist, but to see it, one needs to subject it to a distributed
> involution effecting spatiotemporal closure.
>
> "Self-Configuring
> Self-Processing Language"
>
> ...
>
> just to name a few.

 

Date: Thu, 20 May 1999 15:53:57 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: Cardano <cardano@intergate.bc.ca>
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: CTMU

On Thu, 20 May 1999, Cardano wrote:

> At 11:03 AM 5/20/99 -0700, you wrote:
> >Fredrik UllÚn wrote:
> >
> >> In a little while I hope I will be able to formulate
> >> a bunch of question about the first one, the Metaphysical Autology
> >> Principle. If you agree with this, Chris, you might also consider
> >> mailing that texts you sent me to other interested members.
> >
> >Me for one.
> >
> >Fred
>
> >I have tried to capture a few (I only got half way through your
> >promotional message with this since I have to go do an errand) some of
> >the pithy phrases that I'm going to need some remedial help with. If
> >you could write a paragraph of English description on each of these it
> >might help distinguish a meaningful concept from what could otherwise
> >seem to be bullshit.
> >
> >nomological formulations
> >
> >spacetime endomorphism
> >
> >most durable logical invariants of scientific nomology
>
> etc........
>
> I too would like to see this document. It appears that this theory
> involves many neologisms, and that these would all require careful
> definitions in some sort of operational fashion in order for the theory to
> be both intelligible and falsifiable, the latter being especially
> important. If a theory doesn't have substantial portions leading to
> falsifiable claims about the real world, then it doesn't make much
> difference one way or the other whether or not the statements made or
> entailed by the theory are true.
>
> Fred B.

Well, that's actually not true, Fred. A logical tautology cannot be
falsified, and yet it's true. So a theory formulated tautologically, in
the logical sense, is also both true and nonfalsifiable. Does that mean
that it's free of meaningful content? No. All of logic is formulated
within the tautologies, and yet it contains many meaningful formulations
applying differentially to reality.

Time to move beyond Old Man Popper.

 

Date: Fri, 21 May 1999 01:43:17 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: John Scoville <johnscoville@hotmail.com>
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: CTMU


[Quoted material moved from end.]

On Thu, 20 May 1999, John Scoville wrote:

> >I just scanned to the bottom of this list. That's it - suffice it to say
> >that you understood literally nothing I said despite my effort to be
> >clear. [This must be how Sidis felt.]
>
> You may feel the same emotions as Sidis, but he appears to have been
> more justified in feeling them. Sidis's writing is clear. He avoids using
> jargon if possible, and if he must use it, he introduces it in a logical
> fashion. If you want people to take the CTMU seriously, you must make it
> accessible to your audience.

If I may ask Mr. Scoville a question: just how much of Mr. Sidis' writing
have you read? Not very much, if I'm not mistaken. Why not? There doesn't
seem to be that much of it to read, that's why not. Moreover, what's out
there has to do with simple topics. So again, unless I miss my guess, you
really don't know *how* Sidis wrote about extremely complex issues like
the ones I've been trying to explain. Or do you?

Secondly, whenever I use a neologism, the definition is given in the piece
itself. The definition may not look like "Def. 2: The blah is a bleh with
the property that bluh." But it's there. My writing is extremely simple
and concise given the complexity I'm trying to address.

It's like Feynman said - some people are always waiting for a magical
expositor who can spare them the need to grapple with difficult concepts
and mathematical details, making it all painless. But not all knowledge is
painless, and if one really wants to learn, he must eventually suck it up,
roll up his sleeves, and wade on in.

Maybe I'm like a weightlifter who's shocked when someone else can't
even press a hundred pound dumbell over his head (as a matter of fact, I
am!). I'm used to reading math books and papers...sometimes you have to
proceed through dozens of cumulative abstract definitions just to get to
page three. Talk about neologisms...

I'm writing a book on the CTMU now. I really bend over backwards to
explain all my concepts as lucidly as possible. But what you may not
realize is that it takes literally ten times the space to do that! All
those jawbreakers and neologisms contain compressed information, and in
order to express it in what you call "plain English", you'd have to
decompress it at a ratio of 1-to-10(20,30,...)! I can't afford to spend
all day writing email for an unarchived list.

In any case, I shouldn't have to write in moronese to spare everyone the
heavy labor of cracking a dictionary. After all, this is supposed to be a
1-in-30,000 high IQ society.

Take it easy,

Chris

 

Date: Fri, 21 May 1999 13:51:24 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: John Scoville <johnscoville@hotmail.com>
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: CTMU

On Fri, 21 May 1999, John Scoville wrote:

> >If I may ask Mr. Scoville a question: just how much of Mr. Sidis' writing
> >have you read? Not very much, if I'm not mistaken. Why not? There doesn't
> >seem to be that much of it to read, that's why not. Moreover, what's out
> >there has to do with simple topics. So again, unless I miss my guess, you
> >really don't know *how* Sidis wrote about extremely complex issues like
> >the ones I've been trying to explain. Or do you?
>
> True, very few of Sidis's writings are extant. If he did, as you suggest,
> write in an utterly incomprehensible fashion, perhaps that is WHY they have
> been forgotten.

People have gotten lazy about written English these days...spoiled by Mad
Ave and the sound byte, TV and scandal sheet headlines. "You deserve the
best! And you have so little time in your busy day! So if it's not easy,
it's not worth understanding!" If some of Sidis' writings have disappeared
for that reason, what a miserable, degenerate shame.

> > >Maybe I'm like a weightlifter who's shocked when someone else can't
> >even press a hundred pound dumbell over his head (as a matter of fact, I
> >am!). I'm used to reading math books and papers...sometimes you have to
> >proceed through dozens of cumulative abstract definitions just to get to
> >page three. Talk about neologisms...
> >
> You lift? Me too. If you can effortlessly military press (I assume that is
> what you are talking about, extending it upward it with one arm) standard
> 100 lb. dumbells, you must be a hulk. Many gyms don't even carry dumbells
> in such large denominations. Several members of an SEC varsity football
> team lift in a gym I freqent, and many of them would not be capable of such
> a feat, at least not with ease. 100lbs is a lot to lift vertically with one
> arm. This leaves me with three possible interpretations: 1. You are
> referring to some other type of press. 2. You are referring to a barbell
> designed to be pressed with both hands, in which case you need to watch your
> terminology. 3. You are both very strong and foolish, expecting a typical
> human to be able to lift such weight.

It's easy to do a one-arm 100 lb. press. And when something is easy, you
expect others to be able to do it...regardless of how "abnormal" they
might find it. In my (sometimes) line of work, one can never assume that
whomever he's dealing with is physically weak...unless she's a girl or
something. Of course, I can usually tell just by looking (can't you?).

> >In any case, I shouldn't have to write in moronese to spare everyone the
> >heavy labor of cracking a dictionary. After all, this is supposed to be a
> >1-in-30,000 high IQ society.
> >
> >Take it easy,
> >
> >Chris
>
> I'm not attempting to critique the CTMU. I'm just saying that if you want
> other people to make (and be able to make) a serious effort to understand
> it, you must make it comprehensible. If members of this 1-in-30,000 high IQ
> society can't understand it, who will?

Well, one might be tempted to move up to the members of a more rarified
society...but then I'd just be going back the way I came. What I really
wanted to find out is whether the people in Prometheus are really as smart
as some of those in Mega...or maybe even smarter in some ways.

Chris

 

Date: Sat, 22 May 1999 16:11:39 -0400 (EDT)
From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
To: David H Slater <dave.slater@telinco.co.uk>
cc: fire@wwwh.com
Subject: Re: CTMU

On Sat, 22 May 1999, David H Slater wrote:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Langan <clangan@suffolk.lib.ny.us>
>
> >Make no mistake, the CTMU is the best and most coherent
> >intellectual product ever to emerge from the Mega Society;
>
> To an outsider, the exchanges on CTMU have made fascinating reading. It
> appears the the Mega society, or a faction thereof, believes it has
> developed a major intellectual product. I have some questions:-
>
> 1. When can we expect this product to be shared with the rest of the world?
> If CTMU is a major advance then the world needs it and it is unfair to
> restrict its use to a very few people. This would require that it be
> expressed in terms comprehensible to society's intelligentsia in general.
> The idiosyncratic terminology quoted in one e-mail would need to be purged.

I agree. The CTMU has already been expressed in terms intelligible to
society's intelligentsia (or at least to the small part of the
intelligentsia that actually *is* intelligent). It follows that no
terminology need be "purged".

> 2. What attempts have been or will be made to have the product refereed by a
> wider scholarly community? This is important as the product may contain
> serious flaws that have been missed by its originators. If it is a major
> product, then the use of a flawed version could have serious detrimental
> effects.

The CTMU is interdisciplinary. Unfortunately, that makes it very difficult
to get it "refereed by the scholarly community". Especially when the
academics to whom I've sent it are such ethereal "geniuses", or so busy
*not* solving the world's problems, that they can't be bothered responding
to non-academics. But in a way, that's fine. Because I'm a better judge of
the theory's flaws, such as they may be, than any professional academic
I've seen (that's why I call 'em "acadummies").

> 3. How can those of us who do not have 4.75 sigma IQs get access to the
> product in a form we can understand, at least in summary form?

Ask and it shall be done.

> 4. What is the purpose of CTMU? If its use is to remain restricted to a
> select few, then one assumes one of its purposes is to give the select few
> an advantage over the rest of us. But I assume that it has some other, more
> noble, purpose.

Yes, it has a noble purpose. But unfortunately, that doesn't necessarily
mean that a monkey can understand it.

> I really am fascinated by this and long to hear more. It is not currently
> clear to me whether CTMU is a significant intellectual advance, as suggested
> by Chris, or a vapourous intellectual folly. I would like to make an
> assessment myself, but have neither the mind nor the patience to struggle
> with a long and obscure description.

See attachment on correspondence to follow.

Chris