Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

PK comments on Reductive Reference - Less Wrong

20 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 03 April 2008 01:37AM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (39)

Sort By: Old

You are viewing a single comment's thread.

Comment author: PK 04 April 2008 03:29:06AM 0 points [-]

Can someone just tell us dumb asses the differece between describing something and experiencing it?

Um... ok.

Description: If you roll your face on your keyboard you will feel the keys mushing and pressing against your face. The most pronounced features of the tactile experience will be the feeling of the ridges of the keys pressing against your forehead, eyebrows and cheekbones. You will also hear a subtle "thrumping" noise of the keys are being pressed. If you didn't put the cursor in a text editor you might hear some beeps from your computer. Once you lift your head you may still have some residual sensations on your face most likely where the relatively sharp ridges of the keys came in contact with your skin.

Experience: Roll your face on your keyboard. Don't just read this, you have to actually roll your face on the keyboard if you want to experience it. 1, 2, 3, go ... bnkiv7n6ym7n9t675r

Did you notice any difference between the description and the experience?

Anyways, I still hold that you can only define reductionism up to point after which you are just wasting time.

Comment author: danlowlite 08 October 2010 08:49:54PM *  0 points [-]

"Anyways, I still hold that you can only define reductionism up to point after which you are just wasting time."

I agree that we might be wasting time. But what do you mean "up to a point"?

The flaw isn't in the idea, but rather in the way we express it. It appears like we're looking for the right analogy. I don't know if that's going to work. But I guess I could try anyway.

I think it might be more like a computer. We don't function at a "machine code" or even an "assembly language" level; rather, it's more like we're a scripting language on the operating system.

Of course, that's imperfect, too.