The Brain with David Eagleman

  • 17 Replies
  • 278 Views

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Madness

  • *
  • Administrator
  • Old Name
  • *****
  • Conversational Batman
  • Posts: 4928
  • Strength on the Journey - Journey Well
    • View Profile
    • The Second Apocalypse
« on: November 01, 2017, 08:23:16 pm »
The Brain with David Eagleman

It's the whole six episodes. I've been meaning to watch it for time and I believe I have the companion book somewhere.

First episode was great - hits a lot of classic Bakker beats. I like Eagleman's writing a fair bit and have been exposed to a bunch of his research over the years. He does well despite seeming to fall into a strictly pop-science personality much of the time.
The Existential Scream
Weaponizing the Warrior Pose - Declare War Inwardly
carnificibus: multus sanguis fluit
Die Better
The Theory-Killer

Madness

  • *
  • Administrator
  • Old Name
  • *****
  • Conversational Batman
  • Posts: 4928
  • Strength on the Journey - Journey Well
    • View Profile
    • The Second Apocalypse
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2017, 04:37:05 pm »
I really need to stop working on posts in open tabs in my browser.

I've watched the first three episodes so far. Midway through the fourth because now the SO is intrigued so I'm watching it slower.

I have criticisms regarding how Eagleman oversimplifies a number of concepts and studies but I think he's done a remarkable job communicating to what was probably a targeted lay-audience.

I'll probably scan through each episode and comment again in thread because there is just so much classic Bakker fare therein. While Eagleman obviously doesn't care to unpack it all as Bakker does, I feel like this is a really good representation of what Bakker takes for granted that his audience also understands and references in his prolific TPB postings.

Bakker fans (and definitely anyone interested in Bakker's philosophating) should definitely watch this show. Six episodes, forty minutes a piece, and you'll come out about a tenth as confused as I've been for going on more than half a decade.

EDIT: I will note that one thing Eagleman doesn't reflect on enough is that all the little noteworthy intricacies are happening all the time, in all of us, or at least those blessed with functioning brains.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2017, 04:39:22 pm by Madness »
The Existential Scream
Weaponizing the Warrior Pose - Declare War Inwardly
carnificibus: multus sanguis fluit
Die Better
The Theory-Killer

TaoHorror

  • *
  • Great Name
  • ****
  • Posts: 433
  • Blueberry Psūkhe Sorcerer
    • View Profile
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2017, 11:35:38 pm »
I watched most of the first episode before being interrupted - pretty cool schtuff, I'll give it a go to complete them.
Remember to brush before bed

TLEILAXU

  • *
  • Kijneta
  • ***
  • Posts: 298
    • View Profile
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2017, 03:21:52 am »
I'm watching episode 3 right now and I'm kinda triggered by how he kinda skirts around free will being an illusion. I get why he's doing it (to make normies more receptive by posing it as a question, easing them into first of all considering the idea instead of having it throw in your face from the start), but free will is trivially nonexistent if you look at it from a physical perspective. Cause and effect.

Edit: I'm halfway through part 4 and he brings up the Hungry Judges study. It turns out that this study might be a bit problematic though http://nautil.us/blog/impossibly-hungry-judges
« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 06:16:47 am by tleilaxu »

BeardFisher-King

  • *
  • Kijneta
  • ***
  • Posts: 268
  • The Trackless Steppe
    • View Profile
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2017, 01:00:26 pm »
I'm watching episode 3 right now and I'm kinda triggered by how he kinda skirts around free will being an illusion. I get why he's doing it (to make normies more receptive by posing it as a question, easing them into first of all considering the idea instead of having it throw in your face from the start), but free will is trivially nonexistent if you look at it from a physical perspective. Cause and effect.

Yes, but the physical perspective is not the only perspective available. In fact, it's not even truly a perspective, since to have a perspective, there would have to be a perceiver.
"The heart of any other, because it has a will, would remain forever mysterious."

-from "Snow Falling On Cedars", by David Guterson

Madness

  • *
  • Administrator
  • Old Name
  • *****
  • Conversational Batman
  • Posts: 4928
  • Strength on the Journey - Journey Well
    • View Profile
    • The Second Apocalypse
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2017, 02:33:44 am »
I watched most of the first episode before being interrupted - pretty cool schtuff, I'll give it a go to complete them.

Sweet.

Edit: I'm halfway through part 4 and he brings up the Hungry Judges study. It turns out that this study might be a bit problematic though http://nautil.us/blog/impossibly-hungry-judges

On the edit, he really does make some crucial oversimplifications and floats questionable studies.

Yes, but the physical perspective is not the only perspective available. In fact, it's not even truly a perspective, since to have a perspective, there would have to be a perceiver.

Eh...

I'm interested in teasing out these thoughts with you, BFK. I feel like they've come up in a number of separate contemporary threads.
The Existential Scream
Weaponizing the Warrior Pose - Declare War Inwardly
carnificibus: multus sanguis fluit
Die Better
The Theory-Killer

TaoHorror

  • *
  • Great Name
  • ****
  • Posts: 433
  • Blueberry Psūkhe Sorcerer
    • View Profile
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2017, 10:04:37 pm »
I'm interested in teasing out these thoughts with you, BFK. I feel like they've come up in a number of separate contemporary threads.

Another question: If you/we don't have Free Will, then why do we wish we do? What is the evolutionary purpose for wanting a Free Moving Soul? The fact the idea is so disturbing that we may not have Free Will is evidence that we do.

When we finally are able to create an artificial human brain ( not just any brain, but sup together the stuff and build an actual human brain - let's say for example an exact copy at first before we're able to simply cook one up ), I bet the "person" would be unable to really behave like a human and would be awkward and not really experience physical pain as a human does, etc. They would not be "natural" and wouldn't sport Free Will. Scientists still don't know why the brain yields consciousness, nothing about it physically explains it. Something is amiss, more than just what we can determine physically about the brain.

If we don't have Free Will, then we're not guilty of crimes or responsible for our decisions.
Remember to brush before bed

BeardFisher-King

  • *
  • Kijneta
  • ***
  • Posts: 268
  • The Trackless Steppe
    • View Profile
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2017, 11:46:26 pm »
I'm watching episode 3 right now and I'm kinda triggered by how he kinda skirts around free will being an illusion. I get why he's doing it (to make normies more receptive by posing it as a question, easing them into first of all considering the idea instead of having it throw in your face from the start), but free will is trivially nonexistent if you look at it from a physical perspective. Cause and effect.

Yes, but the physical perspective is not the only perspective available. In fact, it's not even truly a perspective, since to have a perspective, there would have to be a perceiver.
Eh...

I'm interested in teasing out these thoughts with you, BFK. I feel like they've come up in a number of separate contemporary threads.

Well, as a newly-minted amateur student of philosophy, I'm game.
"The heart of any other, because it has a will, would remain forever mysterious."

-from "Snow Falling On Cedars", by David Guterson

Athorn "FB" Gallizur

  • *
  • Kcub Sicnarf
  • Momurai
  • *****
  • The Lordlady
  • Posts: 99
    • View Profile
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2017, 01:48:23 am »
Cool, will definitely check these out.

I'm interested in teasing out these thoughts with you, BFK. I feel like they've come up in a number of separate contemporary threads.
Another question: If you/we don't have Free Will, then why do we wish we do? What is the evolutionary purpose for wanting a Free Moving Soul? The fact the idea is so disturbing that we may not have Free Will is evidence that we do.

My totally unsubstantiated 2cents is that it comes down to how/when exposure to the idea occurs. When the idea or at least the science behind the idea is so new and such a shift from convention, it's gonna be disturbing no matter what it is, at least to a certain portion of the population -- particularly when it flies in the face of everything you've been told your whole life. For example, the notion of evolution was enough to shake people's beliefs 150ish years ago, hell it still is for many folks (often people of faith but not necessarily), and I imagine that lacking free will is just as -- if not more -- disturbing for many, many individuals for similar reasons. For whatever reason, I was introduced to the idea of free will at the age and during the right time of my life that the concept in-and-of-itself has never shook me the way it clearly has for others -- although the ramifications of our collective "darkness that comes before" is much more tangibly frightening to myself, particularly given the way technology is growing, with a very big goal for many people being the creation of artificial intelligence. The idea of that doesn't intrinsically bother me by itself, but rather the lack of other people who take it seriously is what disturbs me. We need more folks other than Elon Musk warning people of the potential disasters that could occur by making an A.I. even slightly more intelligent than we are -- and really, we don't even need something smarter than us to royally fuck shit up, just something with enough power and the wrong motivations. It'd be nice to have a working theory of consciousness BEFORE going down that rabbit hole, but it feels a little like the two are racing neck-and-neck at this stage.

TaoHorror

  • *
  • Great Name
  • ****
  • Posts: 433
  • Blueberry Psūkhe Sorcerer
    • View Profile
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2017, 02:52:16 am »
... potential disasters that could occur by making an A.I. even slightly more intelligent than we are -- and really, we don't even need something smarter than us to royally fuck shit up, just something with enough power and the wrong motivations. It'd be nice to have a working theory of consciousness BEFORE going down that rabbit hole, but it feels a little like the two are racing neck-and-neck at this stage.

Agreed assuming we can pull that off ( artificial consciousness ) - I for one don't think we can - and besides, you want another consciousness, you can go to the 2 million year+ proven method of procreation. I think the bigger threat are robots/automations with enormous responsibilities putting us at the mercy of the competence/agenda of programmers. That's all I need when fucking my robot is to have it squeeze my dick off. That and the tin fucker in charge of the power grid "decides" to have fun.
Remember to brush before bed

Madness

  • *
  • Administrator
  • Old Name
  • *****
  • Conversational Batman
  • Posts: 4928
  • Strength on the Journey - Journey Well
    • View Profile
    • The Second Apocalypse
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2017, 04:18:12 pm »
Another question: If you/we don't have Free Will, then why do we wish we do? What is the evolutionary purpose for wanting a Free Moving Soul? The fact the idea is so disturbing that we may not have Free Will is evidence that we do.

I don't agree with your conclusion but the impulse to think free will deserved or innate does raise interesting questions.

When we finally are able to create an artificial human brain ( not just any brain, but sup together the stuff and build an actual human brain - let's say for example an exact copy at first before we're able to simply cook one up ), I bet the "person" would be unable to really behave like a human and would be awkward and not really experience physical pain as a human does, etc. They would not be "natural" and wouldn't sport Free Will. Scientists still don't know why the brain yields consciousness, nothing about it physically explains it. Something is amiss, more than just what we can determine physically about the brain.

Or they'd be more human than human. Better at it than we could ever be ;).

If we don't have Free Will, then we're not guilty of crimes or responsible for our decisions.

There is a real movement - of which Eagleman is a part of - to bring more scientific rigour in these matters to the courtroom.

Well, as a newly-minted amateur student of philosophy, I'm game.

Nah, this isn't philosophy, friend, this is biology.

...

Pump the breaks ;).

One more episode to go for me. As far as a visual essay goes, Eagleman is concluding as expected.

The Existential Scream
Weaponizing the Warrior Pose - Declare War Inwardly
carnificibus: multus sanguis fluit
Die Better
The Theory-Killer

BeardFisher-King

  • *
  • Kijneta
  • ***
  • Posts: 268
  • The Trackless Steppe
    • View Profile
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2017, 05:41:07 pm »
Yes, but the physical perspective is not the only perspective available. In fact, it's not even truly a perspective, since to have a perspective, there would have to be a perceiver.

Eh...

I'm interested in teasing out these thoughts with you, BFK. I feel like they've come up in a number of separate contemporary threads.

Well, as a newly-minted amateur student of philosophy, I'm game.

Nah, this isn't philosophy, friend, this is biology.

My mistake. Then I literally have nothing to add, if this a exclusively a biological question. Cheers.
"The heart of any other, because it has a will, would remain forever mysterious."

-from "Snow Falling On Cedars", by David Guterson

TaoHorror

  • *
  • Great Name
  • ****
  • Posts: 433
  • Blueberry Psūkhe Sorcerer
    • View Profile
« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2017, 08:11:20 pm »
Quote
Or they'd be more human than human. Better at it than we could ever be ;).

That's all we need, someone/thing "better" at being lazy, criminal, dwelling too much time on the meaning of life, arguing the nature of existence, corrupted at politics, greedy, ...
Remember to brush before bed

TLEILAXU

  • *
  • Kijneta
  • ***
  • Posts: 298
    • View Profile
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2017, 01:13:56 am »
Yes, but the physical perspective is not the only perspective available. In fact, it's not even truly a perspective, since to have a perspective, there would have to be a perceiver.

Eh...

I'm interested in teasing out these thoughts with you, BFK. I feel like they've come up in a number of separate contemporary threads.

Well, as a newly-minted amateur student of philosophy, I'm game.

Nah, this isn't philosophy, friend, this is biology.

My mistake. Then I literally have nothing to add, if this a exclusively a biological question. Cheers.
Each cell has thousands of nanomachines carrying out various tasks. If the behavior of one such machine behaves according to physical laws, i.e. it is not free-moving, it is hard to see how an ensemble of such machines, or an ensemble of ensembles, can be free-moving without invoking a modern version of vitalism.

Also, at the risk of sounding like a broken record: AGI will never happen.

Madness

  • *
  • Administrator
  • Old Name
  • *****
  • Conversational Batman
  • Posts: 4928
  • Strength on the Journey - Journey Well
    • View Profile
    • The Second Apocalypse
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2017, 04:37:01 pm »
My mistake. Then I literally have nothing to add, if this a exclusively a biological question. Cheers.

Nah, you don't get that out, friend. Make your case :).

Quote
Or they'd be more human than human. Better at it than we could ever be ;).

That's all we need, someone/thing "better" at being lazy, criminal, dwelling too much time on the meaning of life, arguing the nature of existence, corrupted at politics, greedy, ...

As Wilshire says, "I show up."

Also, at the risk of sounding like a broken record: AGI will never happen.

AGI?
The Existential Scream
Weaponizing the Warrior Pose - Declare War Inwardly
carnificibus: multus sanguis fluit
Die Better
The Theory-Killer