[Marxism] Materialism and the will. (Was: (no subject))

David Picón Álvarez david at miradoiro.com
Wed Oct 21 04:28:22 MDT 2009


From: "Michael Smith" <mjs at smithbowen.net>
> Really? Perl and LISP seem pretty different to me. "Fully determined" is a
> mighty strong claim. "Constrained", perhaps. A programming language that
> you can't implement in silicon would be pretty useless as long as we have
> to depend on silicon, but then -- who's to say what's not implementable in
> silicon? I don't believe we've exhausted its possibilities even yet.

Hmm, I may have expressed myself badly, perhaps. My point is that a concrete 
machine (just like a concrete mind, and really, aren't they the same) will 
behave fully determined by physical laws. Physical laws do not compell us to 
use a particular programming language or to have a single type of machine or 
of mind, but they determine the functioning of those things that actually 
exist, and presumably they also set some constraints (like limits of 
computation). Whether a given program will halt or have a buffer overflow or 
whatever is, in the end, a question that can, and in principle must (even if 
we can use abstraction to avoid doing so) be answered in reference to the 
physics of the machine where it is running.

But I seem to be in a reductionist minority here, or so it appears.

--David.





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