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Old June 15 2011, 10:53 AM   #76
Sean Aaron
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Why not? Quantum computing would seem to make that more possible.
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Old June 15 2011, 11:33 AM   #77
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

From a purely scientific viewpoint, consciousness is the combined effect of electrochemical processes in the brain (neurons firing, storing memories as chemical signatures in certain parts of the brain etc). Since it is a purely physical thing, it can be recreated in exactly the same way whether holographically or physically. Although in the former there are memory issues I don't see how a transporter signature would require any less information to send and rematerialise. It seems to me that the problem is one of energy consumption rather than memory. Most holograms are illusory but a recreated 'real' person would have to be recreated in exact detail every nano-second to include the sub-atomic particle movement appropriate to carbon-based life forms. They would need 'real' lungs, 'real' blood to carry oxygen, and real organs to process waste. The Voyager episode where they created holographic lungs was far more in keeping with this notion than Our Man Bashir.
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Old June 15 2011, 11:34 AM   #78
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

No. Too many variables. You can spend all your life trying to extract an algorithm to define what a single molecule is going to do, or what a single animal is going to do, and you still can't solve the problem. Nobody can predict the future. We can take a best possible guess...rely on our intuition...but that's just about it.
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Old June 15 2011, 11:36 AM   #79
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Pauln6 wrote: View Post
From a purely scientific viewpoint, consciousness is the combined effect of electrochemical processes in the brain (neurons firing, storing memories as chemical signatures in certain parts of the brain etc). Since it is a purely physical thing, it can be recreated in exactly the same way whether holographically or physically. Although in the former there are memory issues I don't see how a transporter signature would require any less information to send and rematerialise. It seems to me that the problem is one of energy consumption rather than memory. Most holograms are illusory but a recreated 'real' person would have to be recreated every nano-second to include the sub-atomic particle movement appropriate to carbon-based life forms.
I think a jury is still out on what is consciousness.
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Old June 15 2011, 11:42 AM   #80
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Math is an art form...no matter what anybody will tell you. It's very specific. It depends on a person for life, for interpretation of something. Nobody can predict the future because their are too many variables; the computer can't do it without the artist(s) expressing the art!
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Old June 15 2011, 12:10 PM   #81
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

True but Trek has traditionally shied away from religious notions and it becomes hard to deal with non-scientific notions of an independent consciousness or soul without straying into that territory. Studies on alzheimers are beginning to yield pretty strong information on how memories are stored and accessed physically. Having said that, Trek has plenty of examples of 'energy beings' who could not exist in our dimension based on our current understanding of physics. But the two notions come into conflict. If our memories are physical then what does that even leave for an independent consciousness? A multidimensional existence seems to me to be the only sensible explanation that covers both bases i.e. our quantum information exists in another dimension as well as our own and transporting simply phases or breaks down the physical copy from this dimension while leaving the 'soul' in the other dimension intact and linked on a quantum level to the energy in the matter stream in our dimension.
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Old June 15 2011, 12:26 PM   #82
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

That's not what I meant when I said a jury is still out about what is consciousness. I'm saying nobody knows what consciousness really is. I did not mention anything supernatural about it. And besides...A lot of time you have to listen to your gut feelings to look for answer and look for clues. A good scientist can articulate his gut feelings better than the average people. If you wanna go into that sort of things, everybody assumes, but whether they have evidence to back it up is another. You have to assume and go with gut feelings to explore other possibility if you want to be a good scientist. Math can be pretty tricky and can blind you to the truth if you don't listen to your gut feelings. Sometime you are looking for the solution in a wrong place. Like I said Math is an art form and it depends on an artist for life, so you have to be willing to go out on a limb to find another possibility to search for a solution. I guess you can call it a good guess!
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Old June 15 2011, 12:56 PM   #83
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Fore me it is less a matter of answering unknowable pholosphical or scietific questions and more a case of coming up with a plausible explanation for conflicting canon - and by plausible I mean plausible within the confines of Trek science where we know that multiple dimensions exist.
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Old June 15 2011, 08:29 PM   #84
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Paradon wrote: View Post
Eh. No one knows what consciousness is in people, except for the fact that it allows us to be conscious and aware of our surrounding and that we somehow exist in the universe. It's far fetched how they are able to recreate people on holodeck with resemble the original copy.
Yep... and here we had Data in "Measure of a Man" being concerned that the replication of his positronic net might be feasible but may not capture the "essence" of his memories. The "flavor." Heck, if an android is concerned about that when you're talking about electronic circuitry and memory storage, the argument for human beings would be much stronger. The "nuances" of how our memories are connected together could be lost as well...

I've always wanted there to be a transporter malfunction episode where people's minds are altered in subtle ways... somehow those nuances were lost, but not immediately perceived. The transporter pattern buffer checksum shows a 0.001% variance error, and somehow the warning routine threshold was accidentally set to 0.01%. You start noticing some psychotic breakdowns occurring in several of the crew. At first, just attributed to some stressful experiences, but eventually realized to be a transporter flaw. Barclay wouldn't be a victim in the episode, but instead an investigator with a passion to find the answers.
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Old June 16 2011, 11:54 AM   #85
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Gary7 wrote: View Post
I've always wanted there to be a transporter malfunction episode where people's minds are altered in subtle ways
Both Enemy Within and Tuvix fit that bill, it would depend on what you meant by "subtle."

People change over time in the Star trek universe, how much of that was natural progression, and how much due to transporter "alteration?"

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Old June 16 2011, 01:31 PM   #86
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Re: A philosophical question regarding transporter technology.

Gary7 wrote: View Post
Paradon wrote: View Post
Eh. No one knows what consciousness is in people, except for the fact that it allows us to be conscious and aware of our surrounding and that we somehow exist in the universe. It's far fetched how they are able to recreate people on holodeck with resemble the original copy.
Yep... and here we had Data in "Measure of a Man" being concerned that the replication of his positronic net might be feasible but may not capture the "essence" of his memories. The "flavor." Heck, if an android is concerned about that when you're talking about electronic circuitry and memory storage, the argument for human beings would be much stronger. The "nuances" of how our memories are connected together could be lost as well...
Except that Our Man Bashir contradicts this, where humanoid brains are copied into digital format and restored with no ill effects. That was more akin to the Ilia Probe where the original information is copied successfully into digital format but subsumed by new additional memories (aka programming). The probe wasn't Ilia because it was artificial (and super strong), although they were quite vague on what she was actually made from. If Ilia Probe had simply been a transporter 'copy' with additional programming would she count as the brainwashed original or an artificial biological mechanism? That's one of the issues I'd like to explore in my Youtube story.
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