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     RUNWAYS

     There are two issues here.

     One, can a machine learn anything with perfect certainty?

     Two, can a conscious unit learn anything with perfect certainty?

     ((Notice a conscious unit can't claim it is perfectly certain that
there are no perfect certainties as that is a self denying absurdity.

     Thus the conscious unit can at best claim that maybe there are
perfect certainties, maybe not, who knows?

     The only question left then, dear Goober, is how would a conscious
unit know a perfect certainty when it ran into one?

     And in being uncertain whether there are perfect certainties, isn't
the conscious unit perfectly certain that it is uncertain?

     And isn't that a perfect certainty?

     Is it even possible to be uncertain of anything, and not be certain
that you are you are uncertain of it?
 
     Is it possible to be uncertain that you are uncertain?

     So we assert the Uncertainty Theorem:

     Uncertainty exists, certainly.  To doubt this is to prove it.))
 
     ((Let's do this again.

     The statement that all certainties can be wrong, can not
be a certainty, for if it were a certainty, it could be wrong.

     Which means that it might be wrong that all certainties can be
wrong, thus there might be some certainties that are right.

     The question then is how do you tell the difference between
a certainty that can be wrong and one that can't.))
 
     The Machine Certainty Theorem (MCT) says that a machine can't learn
anything at all with certainty, including whether or not the machine
itself exists, has changed state, or is in actual contact with exterior
cause.  Nor can it be certain of the existence of space or time or
change of any kind.

     This might seem to be a major statement, but in fact turns out to
be almost self obviously easy to prove.
 
     Nothing new is being stated in the MCT, and any reasoning man of
scientific or critical thinking will readily admit to the truth of the
conclusion, once laid out in all its gory detail as we will soon do.

     In fact once we are done with the MCT, many will wonder why we
spent so long with it, "Let's get on with this!" they will say, "We
already know that machines are dumb animals!"

     The real test comes when we come to study the second statement that
consciousness CAN learn with certainty of its own existence, perceptual
differences, personal agency, states of pain, pleasure, caring, giving a
damn, and changes in state.

     The inevitable conclusion that consciousness is therefore not a
space time machine, nor a process in one, nor arises from one, has
astounding ramifications.

     Once the reader gets absolute reality on both of these two issues,
and on their ramifications, he will go back and study the MCT for a very
long time before finally coming back to the nature of his own
consciousness and begin to doubt every certainty he ever knew.

     Then he will attain perfect certainty of uncertainty.

     The being wants to be a machine more than anything, Lord only knows
why.

     You run into his vested interest in self deceit when trying to
teach him the proof.

     But in pretending to be a machine, he had to make his own perfect
certainty of cause, through self luminous direct perception, a stranger
to himself.
 
     That *HURT*.

     You can't crush out the existence of perfect certainty without
consequences as the universe is made of it.

     So there is resistence to this material at every turn, as learning
the proof turns on that pain again.

     Hopefully he will maintain his certainty of doubt, for those that
doubt that they doubt are mind broke and too gone to talk to.

     As I said, some people seem to have an overriding need to believe
they are machines.

     The perfect certainty of living consciousness and its ramifications
escapes them because it terrifies them.

     So this belief in machinehood is not an innocent error or mistake.

     It is *WILLFUL*, don't ever think it isn't.

     Homer