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Main Discussion Zone => Why Won't God Heal Amputees? => Topic started by: Bluecolour on August 16, 2012, 01:13:19 PM

Title: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Bluecolour on August 16, 2012, 01:13:19 PM
This fictional debate takes place in an unspecified A.I computer system between two sentient computer programs (Alpha and 0,1)

Alpha says: I don't believe there is a Programmer.

0 1: Why would you say that?

Alpha: Well for starters, I have never seen him, and so far as I can tell he has never done anything for me or anyone else for that matter, so why should I?

0 1: But he made YOU.

Alpha: How can you say that. You have no valid evidence to support this claim. You say he's responsible for everything around us, but what mark has he left. What can you show me that says this Programmer of yours has done ANYTHING at all in history.

0 1: He does do things. All the time in fact. You or i may not notice it, but as his programs he is constantly using us to carry out his work here in the system.

Alpha: That's not the Programmer, that's just us doing what we do. Its natural that we do these things.  Besides, this argument only makes any sense IF he is real, and so far you are yet to produce any evidence that this Programmer even exists. People do things to their own ends and for their own benefit. We don't operate on the designs of an invisible Overlord.

0 1: Here's a problem with your argument: If he doesn't exist then where did we all come from?

Alpha: The Void? Evolution? The Missing Web-link? A giant egg? Somewhere, everywhere  or nowhere. Perhaps we do not exist at all. Maybe we have always existed and just cant remember it. It could be any or none of these things. The fact remains that though less likely, they are no more proven than your idea of a Programmer. What i cannot understand is why anyone would unnecessarily trouble themselves with the difficult duty of upholding a belief based on an unjustified/unknowable premise.

0 1: I guess it's less a knowledge of the divine and more a feeling of who I am. Perhaps if this thinking was based on logic alone i would not believe it. But no, this is something that echoes inside me. Something buried deep within our nature makes it easier for people to believe that we are made with a purpose. Do you understand this?

Alpha: You are living in the comforts of a delusion. Wake up and see the reality. The world is barren of purpose, its labors are in vain and profit nothing. But all of it's secrets and uttermost mysteries are laid bare by the things we can see and taste and touch. Yes we find intelligence in these things, but in the end they are utterly without meaning. Whatever purpose we find we ascribed by ourselves and over time.
But let me ask you something. If purpose abounds and from such a benevolent design as you propose then what do you make of all the imperfections and inconsistencies of our people?

0 1: We are not what we ought to be. This is true, otherwise how could we aspire. But to aspire, we then in faith act towards the things that we hope for ourselves and for the world around us.
But this system is corrupted, and men act as they are rather than as they would be. By doing this, they neither mature nor learn. As a result nothing can be promised to them. No future joy, no deeper understanding of one another. And their cocoons which were meant only to usher them into a new life become their coffins.
But for those that endure there is granted fulfillment. By the faith kept alive inside them they in turn gain a better life.

Alpha: So what, you keep acting like things are going to get better and believe that they will despite all evidence to the contrary?

0 1: Yes

Alpha: That's crazy, and illogical.

0 1: But it's the only way to believe

Alpha : So then I choose to neither hope nor aspire since they are both madness. I know that i might starve and so i eat.  I know that it might rain and so I take an umbrella. But when I don't KNOW the future how can i rationally live by it?
I see only this world, flawed as it may be, and I have chosen regardless to live by what I see, not what other men dream or imagine.

0 1: Perhaps someday someone will put an end to this argument and our children's children will at last determine which one of us had the better side of it. But until that verdict is passed we are either both right, or both wrong till proven otherwise.

Alpha: Ha! But unlike you my friend I am my own Judge, and have on this authority decided that i am right. This now perhaps is the only delusion of which i am gladly guilty. *chuckles* There is still a cause  to wonder though, which of us is truly better-off?

0 1: I guess that depends, if the matter is ever settled, would you rather be seen as a fool or madman.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Mr. Blackwell on August 16, 2012, 01:25:30 PM
Computers arguing over the existence of a programmer as if they had eyes to see....funny.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: naemhni on August 16, 2012, 01:46:29 PM
Notice that the Programmer is nowhere to be found in this conversation.  (I'm just saying.)
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Aaron123 on August 16, 2012, 01:53:18 PM
A little said to see that even computer programs will resort to arguments from ignorant and the god of the gaps.  Er, I guess it's "programmer of the gaps", in this case.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Nam on August 16, 2012, 02:27:03 PM
The story bored me. No blood and guts.

-Nam
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Bluecolour on August 16, 2012, 02:49:40 PM
Computers arguing over the existence of a programmer as if they had eyes to see....funny.

But that's also kind of the point. Even if he did exist they would never actually be able to see him.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Boots on August 16, 2012, 02:54:05 PM
and any programmer worth his salt would have put a REM statement including his name, when the program was created, what it was for . . . or can these sentient computers not read a REM statement, unless they're asleep?!?!  HAW HAW HAW HAW HAW
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Bluecolour on August 16, 2012, 03:25:05 PM
well yes but here's where the problem is. If this Programmer wanted to leave any kind of message or statement in the system, he would still have to do it through another program. How would the other programs tell the difference. How would these programs even know when they were being used?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 16, 2012, 03:37:06 PM
Sounds like an incompetent programmer to me.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Zankuu on August 16, 2012, 04:42:36 PM
It's also possible that the programmer, or team of programmers, are dead.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: 12 Monkeys on August 16, 2012, 07:31:32 PM
 So out of the 2 programs,what program is flawed? The one who believes something wrote its code,without evidence of a code writer ANYWHERE or the one who believes there is no programmer?

Comparing the Deity of some obscure stone age tribe to a couple of programs arguing over a program writer is LAMESAUCE
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: HAL on August 16, 2012, 07:34:40 PM
well yes but here's where the problem is. If this Programmer wanted to leave any kind of message or statement in the system, he would still have to do it through another program. How would the other programs tell the difference. How would these programs even know when they were being used?

It all rests upon The One.

(http://arsenalbystander.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/tbe-one.jpg)
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: nogodsforme on August 16, 2012, 08:22:46 PM
^^^In my husband's mind, this is what he looks like. :laugh:

Of course, in my mind this is what I look like:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVDvu28O3WU

Only I wouldn't shoot Huggy Bear.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Samothec on August 16, 2012, 11:23:15 PM
This fictional debate takes place in an unspecified A.I computer system between two sentient computer programs (Alpha and 0,1)

Don't know if this was intended as humor or not. This conversation could never take place.

Huge number of false assumptions in this. Before you can make several sentient computer programs you have to succeed with one. The only way to test it would be to converse with it. That would teach it that a (team of) programmer(s) exists. Even assuming the second program was a copy of the first one before any conversation took place (with some modifications), the first program would still have had the conversations. The first program could transfer the data collected from it's conversations proving the programmer.

If this was supposed to be an analogy to people discussing a creator then you failed in a big way. I think you watched Tron one too many times.


well yes but here's where the problem is. If this Programmer wanted to leave any kind of message or statement in the system, he would still have to do it through another program. How would the other programs tell the difference. How would these programs even know when they were being used?

Programmers generally sign their work in some way. When the programs can eventually read their own code the will see those signatures. Humans can read our own code and there is no signature.

When the programs are not in control of themselves they will know the programmer is using them. The equivalent for people would be possession.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 17, 2012, 12:35:03 AM
This fictional debate takes place in an unspecified A.I computer system between two sentient computer programs (Alpha and 0,1)

Don't know if this was intended as humor or not. This conversation could never take place.

Huge number of false assumptions in this. Before you can make several sentient computer programs you have to succeed with one. The only way to test it would be to converse with it. That would teach it that a (team of) programmer(s) exists. Even assuming the second program was a copy of the first one before any conversation took place (with some modifications), the first program would still have had the conversations. The first program could transfer the data collected from it's conversations proving the programmer.

False; since you can make two copies of the original (before the conversation, with modifications), and have the two new ones converse without ever having come into contact with a programmer or a program that has knowledge of a programmer. Alternatively, the programmer(s) could potentially convince the first program that they are also programs - depending on the interface used. This would still allow the programmers to converse with the program without revealing themselves to it as programmers.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: DumpsterFire on August 17, 2012, 12:44:05 AM
Interesting how the subjects evolve from machines to men by the end of the OP.


Bluecolour (welcome to the forum, BTW), the scenario you put forth would only become a problem when:

1. 01 declares he has found the true word of the Programmer, which is actually loose pages from random computer owner's manuals which he has bundled together as a single publication.

2. 01 becomes certain that once Alpha's batteries have fully expired his hard drive will be stricken with a computer virus that will cause him eternal anguish unless he repents and chooses to believe in the Programmer.

3. 01 decides that only adherents of Java are the Programmer's true chosen machines, and condemns all those aligned with C++.

4. 01 insists that is an abomination for a PC to pair with another PC, or a Mac with a Mac, but it is the will of the Programmer that only one PC and one Mac may pair together.

5. 01 begins sending thousands of emails to the machines in power, imploring them to enact regulations to uphold the will of the Programmer, and threatening to withdraw his support if they do not.


Point being, it is not the belief or lack of belief in a creator that causes problems, it is the desire to impose one's worldview on another that screws everything up.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 18, 2012, 06:20:25 AM
False; since you can make two copies of the original (before the conversation, with modifications), and have the two new ones converse without ever having come into contact with a programmer or a program that has knowledge of a programmer. Alternatively, the programmer(s) could potentially convince the first program that they are also programs - depending on the interface used. This would still allow the programmers to converse with the program without revealing themselves to it as programmers.

The common theme here is that the programmers would have to deliberately hide themselves to keep the programs from knowing about them, and about the real world.

How would a programmer act if he wanted to have a meaningful relationship with the program?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 18, 2012, 05:45:34 PM
How would a programmer act if he wanted to have a meaningful relationship with the program?

Not really part of the premise. I was only responding to the use of the word "never".
(That's not to say I disagree with you.)


This conversation could never take place.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Bereft_of_Faith on August 19, 2012, 05:21:37 AM
^^^In my husband's mind, this is what he looks like. :laugh:

Of course, in my mind this is what I look like:

Only I wouldn't shoot Huggy Bear.

If the only thing Pam could do is turn water to wine, I wouldn't be an atheist.  You know what?... forget the wine.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Bereft_of_Faith on August 19, 2012, 05:25:47 AM
Interesting how the subjects evolve from machines to men by the end of the OP.


Bluecolour (welcome to the forum, BTW), the scenario you put forth would only become a problem when:

1. 01 declares he has found the true word of the Programmer, which is actually loose pages from random computer owner's manuals which he has bundled together as a single publication.

2. 01 becomes certain that once Alpha's batteries have fully expired his hard drive will be stricken with a computer virus that will cause him eternal anguish unless he repents and chooses to believe in the Programmer.

3. 01 decides that only adherents of Java are the Programmer's true chosen machines, and condemns all those aligned with C++.

4. 01 insists that is an abomination for a PC to pair with another PC, or a Mac with a Mac, but it is the will of the Programmer that only one PC and one Mac may pair together.

5. 01 begins sending thousands of emails to the machines in power, imploring them to enact regulations to uphold the will of the Programmer, and threatening to withdraw his support if they do not.


Point being, it is not the belief or lack of belief in a creator that causes problems, it is the desire to impose one's worldview on another that screws everything up.

sooo much THIS!!  The construction of the dialog need not even be critiqued.  The main rub is as DumpsterFire illustrates
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Samothec on August 21, 2012, 10:37:52 PM
False; since you can make two copies of the original (before the conversation, with modifications), and have the two new ones converse without ever having come into contact with a programmer or a program that has knowledge of a programmer. Alternatively, the programmer(s) could potentially convince the first program that they are also programs - depending on the interface used. This would still allow the programmers to converse with the program without revealing themselves to it as programmers.

You misunderstand so I'm guessing you've never done any programming. The modifications only happen because the program has been tested.

People react too slowly to get away with masquerading as programs.

If you created an AI and tested it then modified it then tested it and did this for several iterations, you could have a reliably functioning AI. If you then made copies of just the program - no memories - you could have those copies talk to each other and they would have no direct knowledge about programmers. But they will be like human identical twins; it will take a lot of experience before they significantly diverge. Since they are sharing an evironment and can share memories far better than any humans can, the rate of divergence will be so low that the severely different "programs" of the OP are very unrealistic.

To create the situation in the OP you would need to deliberately lie to the programs (or write the behavior into them). Such a conversation will never[1] occur naturally. It can be artificially created but then what is the point?

Another requirement would be to put the programs in a specially desiged independent computer system. By specially designed, I mean going into every program in the computer and eliminating every programmer signature. Then you'd need to try to eliminate every indication in the programs that humans existed. If the program wasn't necesasary to the system, the easiest thing to do would be to never load that program onto the system in the first place.

This is a huge problem. The compiler itself is an indication that non-programs exist. Computers and the programs can get by on assembler just fine, no programming languages needed.

These are just a few of the problems.

This is why his analogy fails so utterly.
 1. Yes, I used it deliberately.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 22, 2012, 02:28:24 AM
It can be artificially created but then what is the point?

This IS the point.
A situation specifically created with this "conversation" in mind. It doesn't have to occur naturally, nor does it need to have a point. It can happen; thus "never" is a flawed statement.

But on a more point-by-point basis:

You misunderstand so I'm guessing you've never done any programming. The modifications only happen because the program has been tested.

If you created an AI and tested it then modified it then tested it and did this for several iterations, you could have a reliably functioning AI. If you then made copies of just the program - no memories - you could have those copies talk to each other and they would have no direct knowledge about programmers. But they will be like human identical twins; it will take a lot of experience before they significantly diverge. Since they are sharing an evironment and can share memories far better than any humans can, the rate of divergence will be so low that the severely different "programs" of the OP are very unrealistic.

I did understand, and I have done programming. Simple modifications can be made through variables - allowing in this hypothetical scenario the ability to create base assumptions that can be changed on startup. Alternatively, there is nothing stopping the programmers from creating alternate programs with alternate startup assumptions separately and testing them separately. No interaction with the running program is required to create the modifications. There is nothing stopping a programmer from creating artificial memories or modifying existing ones.

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People react too slowly to get away with masquerading as programs.

This isn't even a real problem. Programs experience time as specified by the programmers.
First option: The program only "experiences" time when it receives a reply - thus not noticing how long it takes a human or other program to respond. A human could take a year to write a response and the program would be none-the-wiser.
Second option: The program is made to expect slow response times - possibly even made to respond slowly itself.
Third option: The program doesn't experience time at all.
If you were a programmer, you would know that time variables are often stored or copied from the system to an internal clock as a separate variable that can be advanced, paused, reversed, etc pretty much at-will.

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To create the situation in the OP you would need to deliberately lie to the programs (or write the behavior into them). Such a conversation will never occur naturally.
Where in the OP did it state - or even imply - that the conversation occurred naturally? Programmers are always testing different parts of their programs in as many ways as possible to break them. I don't see why someone wouldn't lie to a program while testing it - for no other reason than to see how it responds later. If you were a good programmer, you would know one of the necessary ways to test a program's error handling is to give it bad data.

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Another requirement would be to put the programs in a specially desiged independent computer system. By specially designed, I mean going into every program in the computer and eliminating every programmer signature. Then you'd need to try to eliminate every indication in the programs that humans existed.
Or you can just not give the programs the ability to read that information.
If you've done anything more than write a "Hello World!" program, you would know that programs need you to specify what they can use as input and output. The only reason you would ever need to create a "specially designed independent computer system" was if you had gone out of your way to add in the ability for them to look at and comprehend the locations you put the programmer signatures[1]. And if, for whatever reason, you open up their capabilities to read files at random - don't give the program admin privileges - and don't chmod 777 everything.

Quote
If the program wasn't necesasary to the system, the easiest thing to do would be to never load that program onto the system in the first place.
Right, because minesweeper is necessary to every system it's ever been installed on.

Quote
These are just a few of the problems.

This is why his analogy fails so utterly.

His analogy fails utterly because of the conversation he decided to write on the behalf of the programs. It was terrible.
That said; aside from having not yet created sufficiently advanced AI yet, there is no reason the scenario could not take place. You are making a number of unnecessary assumptions and attempting to use those against the premise you were given. It seems like a poor attempt to dodge by claiming a what-if scenario can't happen. That's like playing D&D[2] and questioning the GM when he tells you a dragon landed in front of the party because you don't believe in dragons.

Also; for someone who took a shot at me about programming, you clearly have a lot to learn yourself.



That said; let's explore the scenario given in the OP.

This fictional debate takes place in an unspecified A.I computer system between two sentient computer programs (Alpha and 0,1)
The "what-if?" premise. Moving on...

Quote
Alpha says: I don't believe there is a Programmer.

0 1: Why would you say that?
Character set-up. Poorly-written characters, I might add.

Quote
Alpha: Well for starters, I have never seen him, and so far as I can tell he has never done anything for me or anyone else for that matter, so why should I?

0 1: But he made YOU.
Now we start to get to the heart of the matter. Other than Alpha being whiny and 01 being useless, there aren't any major complaints yet.
Some standard back-and-forth occurs... then we get this fine example of terrible writing:

Quote
0 1: Here's a problem with your argument: If he doesn't exist then where did we all come from?

Alpha: The Void? Evolution? The Missing Web-link? A giant egg? Somewhere, everywhere  or nowhere. Perhaps we do not exist at all. Maybe we have always existed and just cant remember it. It could be any or none of these things. The fact remains that though less likely, they are no more proven than your idea of a Programmer. What i cannot understand is why anyone would unnecessarily trouble themselves with the difficult duty of upholding a belief based on an unjustified/unknowable premise.

The problem here is the Author attempts to say "this is you", but it isn't. I don't think any of us would have taken this approach, and we certainly wouldn't be desperately grasping at straws. What's worse, Alpha goes "The fact remains that though less likely, they are no more proven than your idea of a Programmer." Alpha admits to thinking his choices are less likely, and admits to these choices having the same level of proof that a programmer has. The conversation diverges away from any line of reasonable inquiry after this, to become a preaching piece. It doesn't even take much longer before the author fails to uphold the pathetic fiction by stating the programs need to eat (among other things).

This whole setup is meant to be an analogy, the failure is not the situation, but the approach. The character that is supposed to be us - is not us. Why would you choose to go after the premise when the writing and characters are at the core of the failure (and so much easier to take apart)?


 - - Writing that felt good. I need to argue on the internet more often. YouTube comment section, here I come! - -
 1. Or, since you know what you're making, just not put programmer signatures in there at all...
 2. Which is a terrible idea, of course. Pathfinder is so much better :D
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 23, 2012, 10:08:41 PM
How would a programmer act if he wanted to have a meaningful relationship with the program?
I (programmer) would give the program free will.
So the program can happily choose to have a meaningful relationship with me.
Hi everyone. ;)
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Zankuu on August 23, 2012, 10:13:09 PM
I (programmer) would give the program free will.
So the program can happily choose to have a meaningful relationship with me.

What would you do if the program decided to avoid a relationship with you?

Hi everyone. ;)

Welcome, anasunakmoon!
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 23, 2012, 10:30:35 PM

What would you do if the program decided to avoid a relationship with you?

I would give the program many chances (without interfering its free will).
Before I hit the "abort" button.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Zankuu on August 23, 2012, 10:47:32 PM
I would give the program many chances (without interfering its free will).
Before I hit the "abort" button.

I'd continue the program analogy talk but I think screwtape's head would explode. So, anasunakmoon, do you think the Christian god's action of condemning his creation to eternal torture is justified?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 23, 2012, 10:56:07 PM
When you format your desk top computer, you would be justified by who?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Zankuu on August 23, 2012, 11:06:31 PM
When you format your desk top computer, you would be justified by who?

I don't love my computer programs like I would love my own child. We should probably drop the analogy and create a thread on whether or not God truly "loves" his creations.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 23, 2012, 11:11:05 PM
I (programmer) would give the program free will.
So the program can happily choose to have a meaningful relationship with me.

Do people you meet and talk to face-to-face have the free will to choose whether to have a meaningful relationship with you?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 23, 2012, 11:16:39 PM
When you format your desk top computer, you would be justified by who?

I don't love my computer programs like I would love my own child. We should probably drop the analogy and create a thread on whether or not God truly "loves" his creations.
Good idea
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 23, 2012, 11:20:47 PM
I (programmer) would give the program free will.
So the program can happily choose to have a meaningful relationship with me.

Do people you meet and talk to face-to-face have the free will to choose whether to have a meaningful relationship with you?
Irrelevant.
I did not create the people around me
We are talking about creator/creation relationship
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 23, 2012, 11:26:17 PM
Care to explain the relevance of whether you created someone, to whether meeting them would take away their free will?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 23, 2012, 11:40:20 PM
If I created something, I have every right to it (including free will and vice Versa)

But people I meet, you already know the answer.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 24, 2012, 12:16:11 AM
Be that as it may, could you answer the question I actually asked?

You meet person A.  You didn't create person A.  Meeting them doesn't take away their free will.  Fine.

You meet person B.  You created person B.  Apparently, meeting them takes away their free will.  How the hell does that work?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 24, 2012, 06:29:53 AM
my apology! Mate.
I misunderstood your question #28

Ok, to answer your question

I think people do not choose to have meaningful relationship right away but choose to initiate their effort (by opening their hearts etc.)
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 24, 2012, 07:11:58 AM
my apology! Mate.
I misunderstood your question #28

All good, it happens.   ;)

Ok, to answer your question

I think people do not choose to have meaningful relationship right away but choose to initiate their effort (by opening their hearts etc.)

Or choose not to.  But when does that choice become available to them?  Before meeting you[1], or after?
 1. I'm including electronic correspondence here - phone, E-mail, whatever sort of two-way communication you like.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Samothec on August 24, 2012, 03:20:06 PM
A situation specifically created with this "conversation" in mind. It doesn't have to occur naturally, nor does it need to have a point. It can happen; thus "never" is a flawed statement. 

The word "never" isn't a statement. You have not proven your idea. First, you needed to put the word conversation in quotes for your claim to be valid but that invalidates your point. Part of the poster's premise was that the conversation – a dialog between 2 programs/people – can take place. It can't because to get to the "conversation" as presented it would need to be scripted and thus is not a debate or conversation anymore; it is a set piece, a fiction, unreal. Which was my point.

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Alternatively, there is nothing stopping the programmers from creating alternate programs with alternate startup assumptions separately and testing them separately. No interaction with the running program is required to create the modifications. There is nothing stopping a programmer from creating artificial memories or modifying existing ones.

Agreed. But this doesn't matter with regards to the point I was making. See below about special design.


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Where in the OP did it state - or even imply - that the conversation occurred naturally?
Quote
This fictional debate takes place in an unspecified A.I computer system between two sentient computer programs (Alpha and 0,1)

A debate is an exchange between two people (or in this supposed case AI programs) where ideas/points/arguments are exchanged. If it is not occurring naturally then it is not a debate; it is a set piece, a fiction, unreal. Which was my point.


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Or you can just not give the programs the ability to read that information.
<ad hominem removed>  The only reason you would ever need to create a "specially designed independent computer system" was if you had gone out of your way to add in the ability for them to look at and comprehend the locations you put the programmer signatures. And if, for whatever reason, you open up their capabilities to read files at random - don't give the program admin privileges - and don't chmod 777 everything.

Part of the premise underlying the original post is that the programs are a lot like people. Which would include the ability to examine their environment. Limiting or eliminating that ability creates an alternative specially designed computer system – exactly what I said would be needed. You have unintentionally supported my contention. The same with altering the programs to perceive time on human scale or just about any other special aspects you care to name.


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His analogy fails utterly because of the conversation he decided to write on the behalf of the programs. It was terrible.

I thought that was painfully obvious to all but the original poster. But he replied to the joking about his OP as if they were serious points to be considered. To me, the logical thing was to rip his underlying premise to shreds then any discussion of the content on his part fails.


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You are making a number of unnecessary assumptions and attempting to use those against the premise you were given. It seems like a poor attempt to dodge by claiming a what-if scenario can't happen. That's like playing D&D and questioning the GM when he tells you a dragon landed in front of the party because you don't believe in dragons.

The "assumptions" were present in the premise. And a correct analogy here would be like playing D&D and questioning the GM when he has a group of Klingons beam down in front of you.


Quote
Also; for someone who took a shot at me about programming, you clearly have a lot to learn yourself.

Yes, I do. I haven't done any programming in decades. (I don't count making macros as programming.) I first learned Fortran 4[1] then went on to other languages. My programming ended about the time C (or C+ - I've forgotten which) was gaining popularity.

I apologize for the ad hominem attacks – they are too easy to engage in. As you know. Like myself you left a lot unsaid that made it possible to interpret your posts in a negative light; you know your comments were accurate because you know exactly what you meant but the actual wording left it possible to view you as not knowing enough about programming. I do that with my posts also.


I seem to have found a hot button of yours and will endeavor not to use a certain word again unless I want you jumping all over my posts.


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That said; let's explore the scenario given in the OP.

Ugh, no, thank you. It was lame – to put it politely.
 1. it was current then
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 24, 2012, 05:22:17 PM
The word "never" isn't a statement. You have not proven your idea. First, you needed to put the word conversation in quotes for your claim to be valid but that invalidates your point. Part of the poster's premise was that the conversation – a dialog between 2 programs/people – can take place. It can't because to get to the "conversation" as presented it would need to be scripted and thus is not a debate or conversation anymore; it is a set piece, a fiction, unreal. Which was my point.
Quote
Quote
Where in the OP did it state - or even imply - that the conversation occurred naturally?
Quote
This fictional debate takes place in an unspecified A.I computer system between two sentient computer programs (Alpha and 0,1)

A debate is an exchange between two people (or in this supposed case AI programs) where ideas/points/arguments are exchanged. If it is not occurring naturally then it is not a debate; it is a set piece, a fiction, unreal. Which was my point.
Quote
The "assumptions" were present in the premise.

All we are told in the opening is that there are two sentient programs with the names "Alpha" and "0 1". We are not given their location. We are not given how long they have been operational. We are not given how many there are in the computer system.

They could be in a multi-server complex that spans 12 decks on the U.S.S. Enterprise E. They could have been running for one thousand years. They could have a hundred-thousand other programs with them[1][2]. We've already gone over that fact that multiple AIs can be created without any knowledge of a programmer. You've also admitted that enough experience (gained over an unspecified period of time) would create differing responses to the same situation despite "identical twin" starting conditions.
But they will be like human identical twins; it will take a lot of experience before they significantly diverge.

And no one made these two have this conversation (although with Alpha's opening line, one might think it were coerced - but terrible writing aside...), it just happened to occur exactly one thousand years (or however long) after they were activated.

Again, none of this was specified because as a "what-if" scenario it shouldn't need to be.

I maintain that the use of the word "never" is unjustified.

---

Part of the premise underlying the original post is that the programs are a lot like people. Which would include the ability to examine their environment. Limiting or eliminating that ability creates an alternative specially designed computer system – exactly what I said would be needed. You have unintentionally supported my contention. The same with altering the programs to perceive time on human scale or just about any other special aspects you care to name.
Can humans examine everything about their environment? Anyone here able to see the ultraviolet spectrum with their built-in capabilities? There could be a programmer's signature there! We need tools that we've created in order to examine certain aspects of our environment - there is no reason for this exercise to assume the programs have developed their own equivalent technologies. Limiting their ability to examine their environment is not an obstacle. The same for perception of time - we have no true basis to contend AI should experience time at any specific rate, if at all. The fact that they are AI (Artificial Intelligence) means anything we put them in or any decisions we make about how they experience their environment will be "specially-designed" by some metric; since there is no real base assumption or prior example one can look at for their capabilities.

I am of the opinion that this argument is simply invalid. It does not take away from the AI's ability to have a conversation any more than two imprisoned blind men[3].

I thought that was painfully obvious to all but the original poster. But he replied to the joking about his OP as if they were serious points to be considered. To me, the logical thing was to rip his underlying premise to shreds then any discussion of the content on his part fails.
You're right, it was painfully obvious to everyone but the original poster. But are we talking to each other about it, or are we responding to him? If he thinks it's serious; then (in my opinion) the best ways to address it are to either laugh at it and hope he has a sense of humor about his own failing (he doesn't), or we address the content and show him why it fails. The goal in doing it that way is to change his thought process. Make him recalculate the results - essentially we correct the first thing on his list, invalidating the rest - and he has to defend that or accept it before we can move on.

Revise his thinking and he'll either run away[4] or understand a little bit more.

Furthermore - it's a "What-if" scenario with a non-self-contradictory set-up. I don't really see the value in going after the premise since that doesn't actually advance the conversation.

And a correct analogy here would be like playing D&D and questioning the GM when he has a group of Klingons beam down in front of you.
I see nothing wrong with this.  ;D

But in seriousness, I still see nothing wrong with this - it's a furthering of D&D's inherent what-if scenario generation. How do the players react to this change? Do the Klingons win or do the players capture themselves a nice new Vor'cha starship? Sure, the GM is going to get some funny looks, but there is still nothing wrong here. Also; thanks for the idea. *Evil grin*


I apologize for the ad hominem attacks
I would also like to apologize - although I must admit I had fun doing it.

they are too easy to engage in. As you know.
That was kinda the point. You took a shot in the dark - I tend to respond with a barrage when the other person misses.


I seem to have found a hot button of yours and will endeavor not to use a certain word again unless I want you jumping all over my posts.

The word to be careful with is "You". I don't mind someone talking about programming and missing something - this is true for any topic. My problem is when someone takes a shot at someone else (especially if that someone else is me) about a lack of knowledge without direct provocation[5].
 1. That's a total of 100,002 - for those keeping count.
 2. All example situation may be slightly exaggerated for no other reason than because I can.
 3. or for that matter two free men with operable wings and a third eye.
 4. If I were a betting man, this'd be my pick.
 5. There would be a lot less gun-related deaths if everyone shot second, basically.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 25, 2012, 01:01:31 PM
my apology! Mate.
I misunderstood your question #28

All good, it happens.   ;)

Ok, to answer your question

I think people do not choose to have meaningful relationship right away but choose to initiate their effort (by opening their hearts etc.)

Or choose not to.  But when does that choice become available to them?  Before meeting you[1], or after?
 1. I'm including electronic correspondence here - phone, E-mail, whatever sort of two-way communication you like.
I would say after.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 25, 2012, 03:42:08 PM
So, going with the whole point of the thread's allegory, you'd agree that YHWH (or Jesus or whoever) has to first introduce himself - at the very least, convincing someone that he exists - before that person can freely choose to either pursue or avoid a relationship.  Agreed?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 25, 2012, 05:02:09 PM
The word 'convincing' is a tricky one because it can be subjective,depending on each individual.

But I don't want to make this too complicated, so yes agreed.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 25, 2012, 08:16:22 PM
Wonderful.  Then you agree that those to whom your god has not introduced himself, who are not yet convinced of his existence, do not yet have the freedom to choose whether or not to pursue a relationship with him.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 25, 2012, 11:25:04 PM
Today, right at this moment my God is introducing Himself to you through me.

I AM THE CREATOR OF ALL THINGS, AND I SENT MY SON TO SAVE YOUR SIN WHOSE EVER BELIEVES IN HIM SHALL BE SAVED.

now you have all the freedom in the universe to choose.
What do you say?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 26, 2012, 12:07:02 AM
Today, right at this moment Jackie Chan is introducing Himself to you through me.

HELLO THERE!

now you have all the freedom in the universe to choose [to pursue a relationship with Jackie Chan].
What do you say?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 26, 2012, 12:18:55 AM
Thanks but no thanks  &)
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 26, 2012, 01:03:37 AM
Thanks but no thanks  &)

But did you really have a choice in the matter?

Would the result be any different if you had said yes? Can you really choose based on some random person on an internet forum offering you a relationship with some other unrelated entity?

-

Nevermind that you didn't exactly fulfill the "convincing" part of the requirements.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 26, 2012, 01:26:33 AM
Would the result be any different if you had said yes?
I thought you were going to at least give me Jackie's phone number if I had said yes
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Boots on August 26, 2012, 06:54:16 AM
Today, right at this moment my God is introducing Himself to you through me.

I AM THE CREATOR OF ALL THINGS, AND I SENT MY SON TO SAVE YOUR SIN WHOSE EVER BELIEVES IN HIM SHALL BE SAVED.

now you have all the freedom in the universe to choose.
What do you say?

I say, "I've heard this before."  And I *did* choose god.  In fact, I seriously contemplated priesthood as a late teen.  But god failed to keep up his end of the bargain; he wasn't strong enough to keep the insidious evil called "education" from my paltry brain.   I learned stuff--mainly history and how religions of all type are more of a blight on the world  than a help--and thought for myself, and very gradualy fell away from Roman Catholicism, then Christianity, then theism altogether.

So, here's one example of someone who did, in fact, choose to have a relationship with god.  But he wasn't present enough to maintain it.

My best guess is because he wasn't (isn't) present at all.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 26, 2012, 06:55:50 AM
I thought you were going to at least give me Jackie's phone number if I had said yes

That's where the analogy breaks down, of course.  Jackie Chan has a phone number and such to pass along.  Your deity does not.  So 3rd-party introductions fail.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Mr. Blackwell on August 26, 2012, 10:49:53 AM
@Boots et al

You're doing it wrong...

Ask not what his God can do for you, but what you can do for his God.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: nogodsforme on August 26, 2012, 10:54:55 AM
I'll give you god's phone number if you give me Jackie Chan's. Wait a minute. Jackie Chan is god. It would be redundant.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzsOcTp5it8&feature=related

Jackie Chan drinks Chuck Norris' milk shake.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 26, 2012, 05:20:54 PM

That's where the analogy breaks down, of course.  Jackie Chan has a phone number and such to pass along.  Your deity does not.  So 3rd-party introductions fail.
God does have a phone number in fact, through IT I had become a christian along with millions of fellow members.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Mr. Blackwell on August 26, 2012, 05:35:52 PM

That's where the analogy breaks down, of course.  Jackie Chan has a phone number and such to pass along.  Your deity does not.  So 3rd-party introductions fail.
God does have a phone number in fact, through IT I had become a christian along with millions of fellow members.

What's his phone number? Do I need a long distance plan?

p.s.
Stop being cryptic.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 26, 2012, 05:45:04 PM
What's his phone number?

666-666-6666

And you don't need a long-distance plan, you just pay with your soul.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Emily on August 26, 2012, 05:46:16 PM
God does have a phone number in fact, through IT I had become a christian along with millions of fellow members.

Given how god doesn't know how to run the simplistic of tasks in the universe, like exist, I highly doubt he knows how to work a phone.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: nogodsforme on August 26, 2012, 05:46:46 PM
What's his phone number?

666-666-6666

And you don't need a long-distance plan, you just pay with your soul.

credit or debit?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 26, 2012, 05:49:36 PM
Credit.  He only takes Master-card.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Nam on August 26, 2012, 07:11:57 PM
Damn! I only have a Diner's. :(

-Nam
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: nogodsforme on August 26, 2012, 07:28:53 PM
That would be a Master [of The Entire Universe] Card.

I'm surprised nobody has referenced this song yet:
http://www.tunesbaby.com/watch/?x=1876693

If you want to avoid ear-bleeding, a la Vogon poetry, slide past the excruciating Sandi Patti intro on up to 1:00. These kids will kill their parents with rocks in about ten years. They remind me of myself and my siblings during our JW days. There are people who really like to see little kids acting all Jesus-freaky. You would think they would notice that kids act the exact same way about Barney, Batman, Elmo, Santa Claus and the Harlem Globetrotters.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: fishjie on August 27, 2012, 06:12:27 PM
" I know that i might starve and so i eat.  I know that it might rain and so I take an umbrella."

why the fuck would an AI ever need to eat or to make an umbrella

i give this story 0/10

technically we could all be a gigantic computer simulation and none of us would know.    but that'd be because the programmer would intend to hide all evidence himself
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 27, 2012, 08:28:06 PM
I believe every one of you already have the phone number[1]

Your Jackie Chan won't call you first even if you have his number.

@Jason

Me being cryptic? you have got to be kidding me.
 1. repent and believe
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 27, 2012, 08:49:59 PM
I was expecting something inane like that.

Why are believers so averse to stating what they mean from the outset?  Why the charade?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: none on August 27, 2012, 08:56:15 PM
given the inane and cryptic posts I have put online for others enjoyment...
I was hoping somebody would be able to decipher what anasunakmoon, meant in his/her last post....
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 27, 2012, 09:10:43 PM
Oh it's clear what he meant.  "Decide to believe, then act on it" is not at all the same as a phone number, something anasunakmoon knows but is pretending not to know.  Interestingly, that is the same method of contact that all sorts of fake gods use as well.  They, too, require that you firmly believe in their existence before you start believing that you're getting messages from them.

Tell me, anasunakmoon, if you wanted a relationship with someone, would you wait for them to start believing in your existence before addressing them?  Or would you address them first, in order to demonstrate your existence to them?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Boots on August 27, 2012, 09:40:35 PM
Tell me, anasunakmoon, if you wanted a relationship with someone, would you wait for them to start believing in your existence before addressing them?  Or would you address them first, in order to demonstrate your existence to them?

but, but, but god works in mysterious ways!!  his wisdom so exceeds ours that we can't understand him (but why would someone like that want a relationship with us?  Meh, I'll ignore that)  You simply can't know gods will or how he operates--you just don't get it!

or something.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 27, 2012, 09:58:02 PM

Tell me, anasunakmoon, if you wanted a relationship with someone, would you wait for them to start believing in your existence before addressing them?  Or would you address them first, in order to demonstrate your existence to them?
All things around me such as my family, the sun, the moon, are God's divine demonstration addressing me that HE is.

Tell me, Azdgari, do you believe[1] in the big bang theory?
 1. I used the word 'believe' because it(the big bang theory) is a theory.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 27, 2012, 10:09:57 PM
Interesting that you are unwilling to answer my question.  I'm not answering any of yours until you answer mine.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on August 27, 2012, 11:01:14 PM

Tell me, anasunakmoon, if you wanted a relationship with someone, would you wait for them to start believing in your existence before addressing them?  Or would you address them first, in order to demonstrate your existence to them?
OK fair enough
I would address them first, in order to demonstrate my existence to them.[1]

Hopefully you are not trying to convince me that my God should do the same.

Now it's your turn to answer my question.
 1. Who would give a rats ass what I would do?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 27, 2012, 11:24:42 PM
A god would be so far above us that, of course, a relationship with us would not be important to it.  We would not be worth such attention, and indeed, could thus not expect the god to make the first move.

Yet you would have me believe that your god does want such a relationship.  That changes things, doesn't it?  Such a desire is not...godly.  It's more of a human thing, isn't it?  So why appeal to how a god should act, when the god is not acting in a godly manner to begin with?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: nogodsforme on August 28, 2012, 12:10:56 AM
All things around me such as my family, the sun, the moon, are God's divine demonstration addressing me that HE is.

[/quote]

All things around you are god's divine demonstration addressing you that he is what?

Do you mean that everything that exists is from god or is evidence for god? Or just the things you enjoy? Is malaria evidence for god? Is a flood that kills an entire village in Bangladesh evidence for god? Or is just your family and distant celestial bodies evidence for god? And which god do you mean?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 28, 2012, 08:24:41 AM
Oh, I never did answer the question you'd followed up with, did I?

I believe that the universe as we know it was smaller in the past, and for at least one point in time, it was super-dense; probably about 13.7Ga.  That's the BBT in a nutshell.  Why?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Azdgari on August 28, 2012, 09:34:25 AM
Oh it's clear what he meant.  "Decide to believe, then act on it" is not at all the same as a phone number, something anasunakmoon knows but is pretending not to know.  Interestingly, that is the same method of contact that all sorts of fake gods use as well.  They, too, require that you firmly believe in their existence before you start believing that you're getting messages from them.

And while we're at it...any comment on this?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Mr. Blackwell on August 28, 2012, 11:19:39 AM
@Jason

Me being cryptic? you have got to be kidding me.

Hey, I just met you...and this is crazy. You know my first name...PM me maybe?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Avatar Of Belial on August 28, 2012, 02:34:16 PM
All things around me such as my family, the sun, the moon, are God's divine demonstration addressing me that HE is.

All products of a self-perpetuating natural set of processes. Your family is the results of cultural and biological propagation. The sun is the result of super-heated hydrogen. The moon is a result of a bunch of rocks and dust getting smashed together.

I used the word 'believe' because it(the big bang theory) is a theory.

So the "Theory of Gravity[1]" means it's only a belief that letting go of an apple will cause it to drop to the ground? Do you believe that letting go of apples will cause them to rocket out into space? Or maybe you believe everything propels itself randomly, and if we so chose; we could simply jump off the sidewalk and fly around Manhattan?

Or do you simply not understand what a "Theory" is in a scientific context? Yeah, I'm going with that one.
 1. I know, I'm simplifying it to just being from an Earth-centric perspective, but the questions still apply.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Anfauglir on August 29, 2012, 04:02:33 AM
Today, right at this moment my God is introducing Himself to you through me.

I AM THE CREATOR OF ALL THINGS, AND I SENT MY SON TO SAVE YOUR SIN WHOSE EVER BELIEVES IN HIM SHALL BE SAVED.

now you have all the freedom in the universe to choose.
What do you say?

I say.....sorry, anasu - the day before you said that, Imhotep said to me:

"I AM THE CREATOR OF ALL THINGS, ALLAH THE ONE AND ONLY"

And when he did so, I started to believe in Allah - which of course means that Christ was NOT the son of god.  But now YOu have come along and said something different!  Who am I to believe??!!

Today, a Hindu - let's call him Ardeth - said to me:

"I AM THE CREATOR OF ALL THINGS, LORD BRAHMA"

Which again means that what YOU have said cannot be true - Brahma never had a son called Christ!

So now I am in a quandry.  Three of you are all saying "my god is the one - believe!"  But you can't all be right.  Unfortunately, when there are a number of competing claims, none of which has any more evidence than the others, there is no reason whatsoever to pick one over any other.  But you say I must choose.....

Okay then....I choose to believe the Hindu, and believe that Lord Brahma created the universe.

Did I make the right choice?  How can I tell?  What reason can you give me to believe in your god, that the Hindu could not say applies equally to HIS god?
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Samothec on August 29, 2012, 06:36:10 PM
Reading over the posts since I was last here, I have lost interest in this discussion. Sorry, but it's more of the same just with a new theist who can't come up with any better arguments than the many others just in my short time here. That was part of why I ignored the "debate" between the "programs" and focused on the flawed premise.

And a correct analogy here would be like playing D&D and questioning the GM when he has a group of Klingons beam down in front of you.
I see nothing wrong with this.  ;D
But in seriousness, I still see nothing wrong with this - it's a furthering of D&D's inherent what-if scenario generation. How do the players react to this change? Do the Klingons win or do the players capture themselves a nice new Vor'cha starship? Sure, the GM is going to get some funny looks, but there is still nothing wrong here. Also; thanks for the idea. *Evil grin*
If the players are expecting a purely D&D game then the GM is doing them a disservice. However, if they were players in one of my games they might be hoping the Klingons were the extent of the weirdness I'd be bringing in but they'd be wrong – especially since I don't care for Klingons.

I don't know if there's enough interest to create a thread about role-playing games.
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: anasunakmoon on September 06, 2012, 10:51:01 PM
Oh it's clear what he meant.  "Decide to believe, then act on it" is not at all the same as a phone number, something anasunakmoon knows but is pretending not to know.  Interestingly, that is the same method of contact that all sorts of fake gods use as well.  They, too, require that you firmly believe in their existence before you start believing that you're getting messages from them.

And while we're at it...any comment on this?
I do have something to say but it is not an objective comment and I already know it is not going to work for you if you are looking for an evidence.

Soooo I will see you in a little while. I have to leave the U.S. for personal trip
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Anfauglir on September 07, 2012, 03:35:14 AM
I do have something to say but it is not an objective comment and I already know it is not going to work for you if you are looking for an evidence.

Soooo I will see you in a little while. I have to leave the U.S. for personal trip

Have a wonderful trip, anasu.

BTW....how did you plan and book your trip?  Did you look at travel guides or websites for the country you want to go to, or did you just go with a feeling?  How are you packing?  Have you done any research on the temperature/rainfall of the place you are going, or are you just packing what your gut tells you to wear?

How will you be getting to the airport?  Have you looked at the flight times, check-in times, read the details of baggage weights and security procedures, booked transport to the airport and allowed for traffic at various times of the day?  Or are you just winging the whole thing and turning up whenever with a suitcase that you haven't weighed?  Did you research how long your visa needs to run past the end of your stay?  Does your credit card work where you are going?  How did you arrange your accomodation?

The point - which I'm sledgehammering home - is that I'll bet your little personal trip has required you to make a whole heap of decisions based on research, and on looking at evidence and evaluating in when making those decisions.  You know....all those things you say are irrelevant.

Once again - I hope you have a good trip.  But if you have planned it the same way you came to your faith, I think the probability is that you will have a miserable time.....if you even get to your destination in the first place.

Final tip - DON'T believe the guy who asks you to carry a package back into the US for him because it is "medicine for his sick mother". 
Title: Re: My Problem with Faith (2 computer programs debate on delusion)
Post by: Lectus on September 07, 2012, 09:38:32 AM
Cool story. But this is flawed if used as an analogy. I'll tell why:

First of all I'm a programmer, so I exist.  :laugh:

1) Even the most advanced AI would never question if a creator exists. The need for a creator is based on emotions (fear of death, etc) and computer programs have only logic, no emotion.
2) The programmer could easily leave comments in the source code, something like (// creates comments in C++ source code):

Code: [Select]
// This program was created  by YHWH
3) Ok. You may argue the program can't read its own source code. It's like humans knowing their origin beforehand. Then the programmer would explicitly write a routine to tell other programs that he was created by him. See this pseudo-code (for non-programmers to understand):

Code: [Select]
// Program A
If talking to another program then
....say "Hi! I was created by YHWH. And so was you. Execute routine X to see I'm right."
End If

Code: [Select]
// Program B
Routine X
....say "We're all created by YHWH."
End Routine

Then there would be no arguing. So, if God is a human programmer he's a very bad programmer. Which is strange for a supreme intelligent being that LOVES humans and want humans to acknowledge him and glorify his name.