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Everything posted by Hrvoje1

  1. Yes, thanks for that too, automatic assistant is not yet that advanced to warn me about such mistakes.
  2. You are right, but now I can rely on magic called common sense of benevolent readers, who can read and assess for themselves what you got. Thank you for the correct phrase I was looking for.
  3. For "that's why is this" Google returns about 2 results, for "that's why this is" Google returns about 29.500.000 results. So, I thought to rewrite it like this: "but obviously termites didn't need to hire a human architect to design a mound for them, that's why this question is without any sense, in general." But then I googled for "this question is without any sense", and that returned no results, and "this question has no sense" returned about 175.000 results, so I think I should have written: "but obviously termites didn't need to hire a human architect to design a mound for them, that's why this question has no sense, in general." Is that correct now, or at least better?
  4. A termite mound is not an automaton, therefore this question is pointless as a response to my post that you quoted, in which I explained that systems that are not designed, and don't require anything but physical laws for their explanation, such as clouds or rivers ("water flowing downhill"), are not automata too, and animals cannot be compared to them, if we assume that animals are automata, as Descartes did. The other important characteristic of automata is that they are "self-acting", while the termite mound is a rather passive object, built by termites. People design a lot of various objects with certain purpose in mind, that are not automata, and require manual operator, such as hammers and axes, but obviously termites didn't need to hire a human architect to design a mound for them, that's why is this question without any sense, in general. Termite's ability to build mounds certainly doesn't prove that they are not aware of their environment, or of themselves, so I really don't know why you raised that question, and how does that disprove anything I said. I didn't ask you to understand it for me, and you are not capable of producing a sensible explanation. To prove the opposite, describe roughly in a few sentences an experiment that proves that plants are not self-aware. If you cannot do that, explain the logic that leads you to think that it must be so. The one presented by Strange is not convincing to me. He said, "let's assume that brain is minimum requirement for self awareness, plants don't have brain, hence plants must be not self-aware, and if any kind of nervous system is sufficient, plants don't have that either, so we are still OK". But we are obviously not, can you do it any better? It is entirely possible that this faulty logic, has sound premises and accidentally yields correct result, ie that some of that really is a minimum requirement for self-awareness, and that animals are driven by self-preservation, and plants are not, as they don't possess notion of "self", and after all it is hard to imagine what perception of themselves plants might have, but it doesn't mean one should disregard possibility that they have some, that we only fail to detect. So how did biologists prove that they don't? I would say that every being that is aware of its environment, should be aware of itself too, as that is a basic distinction related to awareness, "me" against "everything else", if that doesn't exist, it is hard to speak of any awareness. And when I see a plant that manages to catch an insect, and eat it, it's hard for me to reason that it is not aware of its environment. How is that "more automatic" reaction that doesn't require awareness, than when an animal eats a plant, it is up to theoreticians of that "automatism" to explain.
  5. Just now, huh? That’s not so bad, way better than you, you talk nonsense all the time and nobody stops you. In not so many words: shut up.
  6. I see that you think that you learned the lesson from this thread: and that now you try to repeat all my arguments (not just from that thread), about vitalism, subcellular organisms on the verge of life (viruses and others), protein synthesis, artificial intelligence, etc. in order to oppose me, basically pretending that you are convincing me now of something, that already I was convincing you previously, and neither of us did forget about it, such as the fact that there is no sharp delineation between living and non living things, but despite of that, there is a clear and sharp difference between a rock and a lichen. So yeah, you are not quite there yet, you still didn't learn enough to accomplish such a swindle. For example, you should understand what you are saying, when you say that "many species just respond automatically to the environment", and compare that with "the speed of a simple chemical reaction that may vary depending on temperature or the nature of the substrate", "water flowing downhill", and such things. You are obviously not aware of the fact that automata theory is a study of designed systems, unlike theory of gravity for example (or electromagnetism, or chemical dynamics, ...) that is a study of physical laws. That means that one cannot fully describe and understand functioning of a mechanical automatic device just by understanding mechanical laws, or functioning of electromagnetic device just by understanding principles of electromagnetism, because that component of understanding is only necessary, but not sufficient. Because, automata contain the element of design, that is not contained in physical laws, which are merely basis for their functioning. That means that designers build their idea of how the automaton should behave into it, according to the purpose of that automaton, which is a key to its understanding, and that is the essence of the difference between things that are designed, and those that are not. So, when you basically repeat Descartes's argument: only in a milder form, allowing that not necessarily all non-human species are basically automata, but many of them are, and "just respond automatically to the environment", you unknowingly and unwillingly become a proponent of intelligent design, which of course for Descartes wouldn't be a problem, or a big accusation, since he was a theist and theologist, who in his theology insisted on the absolute freedom of God's act of creation, but for you, an average atheist and science lover in 21st century, that could present a serious identity crisis, since I bet you consider ID biggest possible heresy that should be eradicated from scientific circles by all means possible, and you are obviously rooting for it, unconsciously, at the same time. So, maybe that is a difference that you are looking for, between living and non living things. Instead of that swindle, you could have raised in that thread an argument that machine learning systems have issues with forgetting things they learned, but for that, one should study a little bit things one is talking about, and that requires a little bit of effort:
  7. Descartes thought that people are the only living beings that do not just respond automatically to the environment, ie are capable of something more than just that. Is there a record what biologists thought fifty years ago how many species are there which are self aware, and what do they think now? What data do we have, so that we can conclude that nervous system is a minimum requirement for awareness? Same question for the brain. Again, nobody claims that all species can have the same perception of the world and of themselves, that is not possible already because they don’t have neither the same senses, nor information system/network to process the information from the environment, but all must have something in order to stay alive. Not to mention that global deforestation is the worst crime people routinely do, without any feeling, or thought, or any other kind of awareness that they are actually criminals. Whatever other damage they do, they regret it at least a bit. I suppose. Because rock and water, unlike a lichen, are not alive. That small detail sometimes presents huge difference.
  8. You think? I think you should really stop using the word “ascribing” that much. Although, I see that you changed somewhat the tone and attitude in a later post, but I am not sure how sincere are you in realizing your errors. Water is not alive, living entities have drive and motivation to stay alive, that’s a big difference, in my book. Plants can fight other plants, animals, unfavourable climate events, which means they must be aware of both their environment, otherwise they would stand no chance in that fight, and they must be aware of themselves, otherwise they would have no motivation for that fight. We cannot imagine how does that awareness look like, but we can say the same thing for bats, or dogs, or whatever. We only cannot assume that they have no awareness at all, because that would be unreasonable and arrogant. And yes, there can be no sharp delineation in the phylogenetic tree between organisms that are very developed in their self awareness and those that are not at all, because that simply has no logic whatsoever.
  9. Because you would already have done that.
  10. Can you “describe” how the eyes are prerequisite for self awareness? Or a nervous system? On the other hand, what would drive a potato to survive if it doesn’t have “self”, as a motive for that? Is your definition of self awareness of a living being “the one I can communicate with”? Or the one that “behaves according to my idea of self awareness”? None of that is very objective. Baldrick came up with more intelligent definition, when he defined a cat as a “not a dog”, that was certainly more intelligent than your har argument, so I hope you will not present any new, because I doubt it will be any better.
  11. In fact, I believe that every living being must be aware both of itself and of its environment, in its own specific way, dependent on the species it belongs. The latter is conditio sine qua non of survival, and the former, well, pretty much also. The fact that biologists conducted some experiments and observations from which they concluded that not all species are self aware, doesn’t mean their conclusions were correct, and methods of observation adequate. In fact, such conclusions seem totally illogical to me, so that I must doubt their methods.
  12. In my book, being conscious and being unconscious are opposite states, just as being awake and being asleep, and I am not aware of missing some subtle meaning there. As for the distinction between being self aware and being aware of the environment, I can comprehend that possibility that not both exist, I just don’t think it is very common case, at least among people it is pathological.
  13. I think I never met a person who is awake/alert, not self-aware and successfully pretends self-awareness, does that condition have a name? How do they manage to do that? Besides that, you explained really nice one meaning of the word “conscious”, as “having consciousness”. It reminds me of Baldrick’s definitions from one episode of the Black Adder..
  14. Maybe, but I don’t think I ever met an unconscious person that was any good in imitation of being conscious, let alone one who does that perfectly.
  15. Accidents never happen, in a perfect world. Says Blondie. But Freud would most probably agree, at least with respect to slips and mistakes, he invented the whole theory about it. So, there is a reason why I mentioned nucleotides instead of proteinogenic amino acids. Namely, they are both categorized as "generic resources" in Constructor Theory of Life, by Deutsch and Marletto, and presented with the same letter N, in the model of self-reproducer, although the former appear as a substrate only in a copy phase (DNA replication), and the latter only in a construction phase (protein synthesis): So, there is a difference in a raw material, that is not reflected in a detailed schema. At least that's the case in a currently only known implementation of life (Life v1.0). Of course, that detail is intentionally abstracted from the picture, as not important, but those who talk about concrete implementation (as I did) should be aware of that.
  16. As per Phil Foglio (who was paraphrasing a line misattributed to Larry Niven, which was itself an inversion of Arthur C. Clarke), “any sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from technology”.
  17. I googled for "protein synthesis rate" and found a lot of interesting articles, but none of them answered the question. Then I googled for "spontaneous protein synthesis", and found some interesting and relevant results. First one is about answering the question: Is protein synthesis a spontaneous or a non-spontaneous process? There, the second answer by Robert Bywater mentions that spontaneity is not very clearly defined notion in the context of that question. But, whatever sensible way you define it, protein synthesis is definitely not spontaneous process. That doesn't mean that it requires some external factors that are not normally present in vivo medium, because that would not be sensible definition. But without the accuracy of a molecular machine called ribosome, how else could amino acids be assembled into a protein? And without information stored in DNA, and transcripted into mRNA, how would ribosome know what protein it is supposed to assemble, ie what needs to be translated into protein? Let alone amino acids by themselves, without the mentioned machinery? Second one is about answering the question: How is the balance between protein synthesis and degradation achieved? There it says: So, I don't know how anything I said provoked you to tell me your story about how enzymes were introduced by random mutation to living organisms, but you might have noticed that this is a science discussion board, so what is easy to imagine to you, isn't necessarily representative or relevant. Relevant is only a scientific fact: proteins do not assemble themselves spontaneously, even if you give them all the time in the world. Right?
  18. OK, maybe my question is such that you don't intend to answer. On the other hand, some people don't react unless notified about their quoting, or react very slowly, so to catalyze a bit your response:
  19. OK, but how slower exactly? What is the ratio between protein synthesis rate when there is a normal concentration (density) of all required components present, and when there is for example no ribosomes, no RNA polymerase, no chaperones, and no DNA, but there is a sufficient supply of proteinogenic amino acids present in its usual concentration? I believe that's the monomer stuff that gets assembled (and not nucleotides as I said previously) into proteins, which are polymer stuff made of those. I also probably shouldn't have mentioned other components, because most probably I didn't mention all that is required.
  20. Now you are on the right track, when you mention spontaneity. Some chemical reactions are more spontaneous then the others, in that regard that they don't require catalysts to lower the activation energy, ie beat the energy barrier. For some, even that is not sufficient, they require another component that stores information and acts as a program for that catalyst, that is, sort of speaking, programmable. Such is case with the enzymes that synthesize proteins, they require DNA that contains the information based on which they operate. Without it, nucleotides would never assemble them selves spontaneously into proteins.
  21. Probably both, but I don't think I made any of it, by examining the analogy between that kind of information, and the information that is stored for example in a brain, which FreeWill is talking about, or the one that is stored for example in DNA, and is used by enzymes to perform the task of protein synthesis.
  22. So, you make more emphasis on the equivalence, than on the distinction between knowledge and energy? Because, I don't think these can be counted as any kind of energy, maybe as information, but not as energy. And that poses the further question of distinction between knowledge and information.
  23. Is there an analogy, and is there a difference, between the ability to perform a task based on stored information, that can be called knowledge, and the ability to perform work based on stored work, that can be called energy?