Computational theory of mind and chaos theory part 1

Uploaded by pawsoned on 20.02.2011

but I'm in a little different position in this sense
that as a researcher I have another type of approach
because you are speaking about the relationship between consciousness and brainstate
and you use terms like coding, circuitry, information and so on
Sorry, I work on the other side, that is
for me the problem is how the brain manipulates information
What is the relationship between information as we use in biology or in neuropsychology
and the notion of information as used in this computer
and how the complex dynamics of brain,chaotic dynamics
Originally this meeting was also about commeting on Freeman's book
Walter Freeman's approach is strictly related with the discovery of chaotic dynamics in the brain
And so one only has a puzzling and fascinating problem form me.
But also for many physicists is how chaos can manipulate information
And how is it possible to use chaotic dynamic networks
that chaotic dynamic system of neuronetworks
based on chaotic dynamics like is the brain
for solving for instance quantitative problems of memorization
bacause you know that the enormous amout of memory
of information storing that is possible e.g. in the brain
but also this we have a similar problem in genetics
when we use some idea that all the information is in the genetic code.
[unintelligible] at the beginning of the information approach to genetics
made a very simple calculus because science is also matematics
at least hard science and so there's a very simple calculus
because you know that we have 10 power 17 cells in our adult body OK.
And so all of them derive from one only cell
before having it, that is and so you know
very simple when you study information theory at school that
if I have here a system that I need a 1 bit
for putting the system here
and 1 bit for choice between two different lines
And so 2 bits for one choice and then 4 bits for 2 choices
is 8 bit 2 power 3 for eight choices.
So when we pass from 1 to 10 power 17
we need an amout of information
if information is coded in this way of 2 power 10 power 17
That is a number that cannot be calculated at all
No matter in the universe can embody all this information
So it is obvious that information as is computed in biological systems
and also in the brain is absolutely different
from information as we're acquainted with the Shannon theory of information
And so, my approach as a scientist. That is a computer scientist in this field
and as a philosopher, philosopher of science is this:
we have consciousness that is something subjective
You asked for the definition of consciousness
it is like to ask a physicist: "Please give me a definition of energy".
You cannot give it, because it is a primitive notion
that as you use energy in physics
you cannot explain energy in physics
but you suppose that it exists
Likewise in psychology as far as it has to do with consciousness
You cannot define consciousness
because it is a primitive for the disctinction between
physiology and neurology and psychology
Otherwise they are the same. And so also when for instance
I brought with me this last number of Time
because while preparing for our meeting
it discusses a lot of things
Over here, there's a very simple mistake
that is made in all this paper here
that is because now it is obvious that
each mental state is relative to the neural state
so surely brain states have some causal influence
on the mental state, and this is now a scientific evidence
The mistake is this: that is to confuse the necessary condition
I'm a philosopher of science and logician too
the necessary condition with sufficient condition
because it is evident that each psychological state
each conscious state has a corelate in the brain
also the more mysterious one
I'm a priest and also I work a lot on the psychology
of mystique experience of saints and so on
and for catholics, and I'm a catholic
and I'm also aristotelian as a philosopher
it's absolutely obvious that also
the more spiritual experience that you have
has a physical basis. Because in my approach,
not only as a philosopher -aristotelian, but also
as a scientist, a computer scientist
the brainstate is not only matter
the brain state is matter and form
energy and information. And information is a metaphor
that is, it cannot be distinguished from energy and so from matter
only if you consider the classic Turing machine
i.e. the computer according to the mechanistic approach of the Turing machine
I don't know if all the people are acquainted with this notion, but because, effectively,
for implementing the calculus of a Turing machine I need a stable stationary system
from the physical standpoint that is I need essentialy a linear dynamic system
otherwise you cannot predict the final state
and there is a lot of bibliography on this topic that
all the classical mechanics - Newtonian mechanics
you can simulate by the Turing machine
that is by classical computer because there are two ways
two different connotation of the same 'denotatum'
like the morning star and the evening star
denotating the same object - the planet Venus
But if you work with non-linear systems
unstable and non-stationery, like the chaotic system is
and like the brain dynamics is, and like a lot metabolic systems,
you have a strange phenomenon that without
absolutely violating the principle of energy conservation
you have a system that can't generate information,
that is the puzzle of the genetic code
That is not a code, because a code in information theory means
someting related with the Turing machine, so it's not a code
that is, it does not predict the branching of the adult.
It's not a code in a technical sense.
So the secret is this, that the organism, which is growing up
generates information through the relationship also with environment
and likewise the brain - its ability to produce a surplus of information
but this surplus of information is not some spirit,Ok?
Despite the fact that I'm a priest I'm not demonstrating ...
that it's a spirit. Oh, no, no. After, if we have time
But one year ago I wrote a 'nice' paper
on how to spread information
This surplus of information is related to the capability of the system
to generate information that is not given in the initial conditions
And so the correlate of consciousness, or the subjectivity of consciousness
is not only the energetic flow - the circuitry that we can reveal by brain imaging
like tester. If I put a tester on this computer for measuring the energy exiting from each transistor.
I have the informational flow
I make the imaging of this computer, like our colleagues in neurophysiology
that is they put a tester - PET (Positron emission tomography), and so on
or the Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
but they give us in this way the energetic flow of the brain
And it's very nice to see how this energetic flow is related
to a conscious state that is expressed by the patient
i.e. the person whose brain you are observing
But the other correlator of this objective state is the information
manipulated by the brain. And so,
where the chaotic system put the information
And the chaotic system has the capability
of information storing that effectively human brain seems to have
but we don't know how it is that
For instance, in this discussion about information
what I present a lot is that it is completely overcome
that all the approach to the 'grandmother cell'
is to suppose that the brain memorizes the information
like the disc in the computer in some physical space
that I have the cell for recovering, for remembering...
my grandmother, my sister, and so on.
It's the dynamics between hippocampus between the limbic system, amygdala etc. and the cortex
And this completely aggrees with the aspect from the standpoint of the chaotic dynamics approach
and for information processing in the complex system
and so I want to stop here because heretofore I didn't speak
and and now I'm speaking too much. So we need the equilibrium
But the chaotic system is a stable fact from the equilibrium.
This is nice, and so I agree in a lot of this talk
For instance also when you spoke about synchronization
This is a phenomena that we can simulate very easily with the chaotic system
in the laboratory and we can correlate very easily with the properties
and also what the neurophysiologists find in the brain by studying it
so I want to stop and I'm only saying what is my approach.
Namely, that the objective study of the brain, of consciousness
is not only the energetic flow the energetic imaging of the brain
but also the information process in the brain.
The information process in the brain is not the information process in the computer
and one of the most intriguing mysteries for a scientist today, for a physicist today
is to study how a non-linear system can generate and manipulate information
and the brain is surely one of the topics for the study in this field
and I stop.