Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness

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Irreverend (September 16, 2009, 20:54:05 PM):
Also, considering how closely scientific and technological progress has been tied to digital computing over the last few decades it might simply be a lack of interest or focus.
Not likely. Read what Mefi wrote. Ask yourself what's special about it that the digital revolution happened so quickly and comprehensively. Even in things like photography and music that are as analog as analog can be. Hint: it has a lot to do with convenience & versatility.
Peter Grant (September 16, 2009, 21:23:41 PM):
Also, considering how closely scientific and technological progress has been tied to digital computing over the last few decades it might simply be a lack of interest or focus.
Not likely. Read what Mefi wrote. Ask yourself what's special about it that the digital revolution happened so quickly and comprehensively. Even in things like photography and music that are as analog as analog can be. Hint: it has a lot to do with convenience & versatility.

I agree completely. For storing and transmitting information, digital is far more efficient. But, it is more efficient because it actually contains less information. An analogue photograph or recording contains far more information than your eyes or ears are capable of processing.

Hey, cool, this is post number 42 ;D
Irreverend (September 16, 2009, 22:00:47 PM):
I agree completely. For storing and transmitting information, digital is far more efficient. But, it is more efficient because it actually contains less information. An analogue photograph or recording contains far more information than your eyes or ears are capable of processing.
Uh-uh, not necessarily. You can rasterize a photo at a resolution higher than the grain size of the photographic film it was taken on (or of your eyes' photoreceptor spacing) and apply a complex interpolation scheme in between. Then the digital pic will contain more info. You can sample a sound clip at time intervals shorter than the peak-to-peak of the highest resonant frequency of the recording device it was made on (or that of your eardrums) and again interpolate between. Then the digital sound will contain more info. In any case "information" is a digital concept formally. Ask Claude Shannon who came up with its definition. Again, why should that be?

Hey, cool, this is post number 42 ;D
Your real name Arthur Dent maybe? ;)
Peter Grant (September 16, 2009, 22:45:26 PM):
Uh-uh, not necessarily. You can rasterize a photo at a resolution higher than the grain size of the photographic film it was taken on (or of your eyes' photoreceptor spacing) and apply a complex interpolation scheme in between. Then the digital pic will contain more info.


Is this like spreading the pixels out and filling in the spaces between with the averages of the adjacent pixels?

You can sample a sound clip at time intervals shorter than the peak-to-peak of the highest resonant frequency of the recording device it was made on (or that of your eardrums) and again interpolate between. Then the digital sound will contain more info. In any case "information" is a digital concept formally. Ask Claude Shannon who came up with its definition. Again, why should that be?


Well, I think it's because our nervous systems sense information that way.

Hey, cool, this is post number 42 ;D
Your real name Arthur Dent maybe? ;)


Hey, a fellow Adams fan! :)
Teleological (September 17, 2009, 07:44:21 AM):
Agreed but it takes longer. That is why this quantum consciousness was proposed originally, wasn't it?
Not really. The Copenhagen interpretation (CI) of QM implies that nothing is definite until it is observed by a conscious entity. This led Schrödinger to propose his dead-alive cat thought experiment in order to illustrate the apparent absurdity of this conception. Based thereon, Roger Penrose much later hypothesised that quantum wave function collapse (reduction) – the technical term for finding a particle or group of coordinated particles in a definite state – is missing some essential ingredient that is perhaps also instrumental in manifestations of consciousness. Penrose conjectures that this is to be found in a proper quantum gravity formulation (still conspicuously lacking), and calls it “objective reduction” (OR), as opposed to the “subjective reduction” done by conscious observers. A neuroscientist, Hameroff, proposes that OR on a (relatively speaking) large coordinated scale within neural microtubules accounts for consciousness. That’s the picture painted in very broad strokes.

Look who has finally got it... Do you think it is testable?

What do you think these guys are proposing and doing here?
Information processing mechanisms in microtubules at physiological temperature: Model predictions for experimental tests.
Towards Quantum Superpositions of a Mirror
Comments on Proposed Gravitational Modifications of Schrodinger Dynamics and their Experimental Implications

Concerning my understanding of quantum mechanics: It seems logical to me that if everything is based on quantum mechanics, then the entire universe is essentially one big quantum computer. This isn't a belief I hold, I just don't know what else to think. What is it I am missing?

I don't blame you. You might like the Simulation Argument. What kind of simulation hypothesis though?

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