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1 Achilles Tang  Sat, Jul 21, 2012 7:26:09am

What all these speculations of "moving" our selves to a supercomputer miss, while the theory isn't completely bonkers, is that we are made as much of emotions and states of mind due to chemicals produced in other parts of the body and primitive parts of the brain, as we are of logic and memory (the latter often flawed).

None of this would reproduce what an attached body does to brain function and even if such an entity could reproduce something similar to sentience, it would not be the same person. It would likely only be something that knew things that the original person knew, and not human.

2 researchok  Sat, Jul 21, 2012 7:50:29am

Some truth there, but we still don't really understand just how separate emotions are from our cerebral 'selves' if they are at all.

The idea however is fascinating.

3 Achilles Tang  Sat, Jul 21, 2012 8:31:58am

We know that chemicals affect our thinking in profound ways, whether it is produced by the body, like dopamin or adrenalin or testosterone, or others like alcohol or cocaine or pot or ecstasy, or say chocolate.

A computer would have to simulate reactions like that, randomly to some degree, in order to replicate who we are.

4 researchok  Sat, Jul 21, 2012 9:02:44am

re: #3 Achilles Tang

That said, once influenced do the effects of the drugs remain (on the brain) to some degree? In other words can be be 'imprinted'? Are the brain chemicals interdependent of the rest of the body? Or is it all physiologically based?

This is an area I do not know a whole lot about (I'm a behaviorist by trade) but as science/technology advances I suspect our understanding of what makes us tick and why is going to change dramatically.

5 Achilles Tang  Sat, Jul 21, 2012 10:53:38am

Some drugs certainly do, as evidenced by addiction and clear changes in thinking as well as physiological effects. Think of it as rewiring in neuron connections.

However, we do all change with time (remember when you were 13?) so one could argue that a phased transition to a "cyber" mind could take these changes into account within a personality and it could come to accept these differences while remembering the previous personality and seeing it as an evolution of maturity.

I do not however think one can really imagine a simple "copy" and expect it to be the same person in any significant way.

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