In response to comment by on Identity map
Comment author: 15 August 2016 02:31:42PM 1 point [-]

There is a way to escape the cutting leg experiment. It is named create indexical uncertainty.

Lets create million your copies all of which will have the exactly same information as you: than their leg will be cut, but their leg will not be cut after all.

Them everybody is informed about the situation, including original, and all of them are still in the same state of mind, that is they are identical copies.

But each of them could conclude that they have 1 in 1 000 000 chance of leg cut, which is negligible. Original could have the same logic. And he will be surprised when his leg will be cut.

So the question is how properly calculate probabilities from the point of vies of original in this situation. One line of reasoning gives 1 in million probability and another 100 per cent.

In response to comment by on Identity map
Comment author: 15 August 2016 02:50:28PM 1 point [-]

I don't agree that the indexical uncertainty argument works in this case. If you assume there are a million copies of you in the same situation, then every copy's posterior must be that their leg will be cut off.

If you know that only one copy's leg will be cut, however, then I agree that you may hold a posterior of experiencing pain 1/1000000. But that seems to me a different situation where the original question is no longer interesting. It's not interesting because for that situation to arise would mean confirmation of many-worlds theories and the ability to communicate across them, which seems like adding way too much complexity to your original setup.

In response to comment by on Identity map
Comment author: 15 August 2016 01:58:08PM *  1 point [-]

I'm reading Robin Hanson's Age of Em right now, and some of his analysis of mind emulations might help here. He explains that emulations have the ability to copy themselves into other ems that will from the moment of copying onward have different experiences and therefore act and think differently. That is to say, even if you are aware of many copies of yourself existing in other worlds, they are effectively different people from the moment of copying onward. The fact remains that you are the one that will experience the pain and have to live with that memory and without a leg.

Maybe the identity question can be approached with some sort of continuity of experience argument. Even if minds can be copied easily, you can trace an individual identity by what they have experienced and will experience. Many copies may share past experiences, but their experiences will diverge at the point of copying, from which point you can refer to them as separate identities.

In response to comment by on Identity map
Comment author: 15 August 2016 02:12:15PM 0 points [-]

Another way to think about it may be in terms of conservation of experience. You cannot really be comforted by the fact that many copies of you exist in other places, because one of those copies must experience and retain the memory of this horrible event.

In response to Identity map
Comment author: 15 August 2016 12:55:35PM 0 points [-]

Expected pain paradox may be used to demonstrate difficulty of the identity problem. For example you know that tomorrow your leg will be cut without anesthesias and you are obviously afraid. But then a philosopher comes and says that unlimited number of your copies exist in the worlds there your leg will not be cut and moreover there is no persistent Self so it will be not you tomorrow. How it will change your feeling and expectations?

No matter how many your copies exist outside and how many interesting theories of identity you know, it doesn't change the fact that you will have severe pain very soon.

In response to comment by on Identity map
Comment author: 15 August 2016 01:58:08PM *  1 point [-]

I'm reading Robin Hanson's Age of Em right now, and some of his analysis of mind emulations might help here. He explains that emulations have the ability to copy themselves into other ems that will from the moment of copying onward have different experiences and therefore act and think differently. That is to say, even if you are aware of many copies of yourself existing in other worlds, they are effectively different people from the moment of copying onward. The fact remains that you are the one that will experience the pain and have to live with that memory and without a leg.

Maybe the identity question can be approached with some sort of continuity of experience argument. Even if minds can be copied easily, you can trace an individual identity by what they have experienced and will experience. Many copies may share past experiences, but their experiences will diverge at the point of copying, from which point you can refer to them as separate identities.