• Welcome to the new Internet Infidels Discussion Board, formerly Talk Freethought.

The block universe, free will, death, and Nietzsche

but these responsibilities are determined by the initial setup and the rules set by the developer(s)
Responsibility is not zero-sum. The developers are responsible for making other things that are themselves responsible for things in turn, but the responsibility of the developer/initial condition/whatever doesn't change the momentary responsibilities through the evolution of the system.

Causality still happens, the constant conjunction still happens, and things do what they will as they are in the moment.

Is 'responsibility' not the core principle guiding each component of the system? Specifically, is it not the modus operandi of each component?
Introducing programming into the discussion about free will in the block universe is problematic because the programmer exists outside the program and exerts external influence on it. This differs from the block universe concept, where all influences and events, including our thoughts and decisions, are contained within the same spacetime framework.
When conceptualising the block universe, you must "step outside", at least in your imagination. So while it differs from the block universe definition, it does not differ from the concept.

Thinking about what the entire block does requires a "god's eye view", but like gods (and universe programmers), the observer thus created is imaginary; You can imagine yourself observing the block from outside, but you cannot actually observe the block from outside, because you are a part of the universe you are conceptualising.
But is not compatibilist free will itself a predetermined part of the structure of spacetime? The existence of free will, as an unavoidable consequence of imperfect knowledge about the future, is an inherent part of the block. No?

I was beginning to think I was crazy. :ROFLMAO:
That you and I are in agreement is far from being a guarantee that you are not. ;)
Let's take for a moment a special case in which the programmer uses knowledge of a responsibility to find a different deterministic system in a way similar to how agents within a sufficiently complex system could operate:

I run my system forward until an error happens, and I discover a situation that I can't easily track to the initial condition, or for which there's nothing "specific" and "trivial" about the initial condition I can use to resolve it. I know it always happens when there's a specific signature within the next five instructions on the program counter: it shifts a constant zero onto R2's address and then divides.

These instructions have a specific signature (namely the shift of R2 or the reality of 0 in R2 followed subsequently by the division).

In this situation, replacing 0 with a nonzero value, or setting the division instruction instead to an interrupt set up to produce a suitably large number in the result register before returning, or even setting up an interrupt that reads that the system divided by zero and needs this "handled" is going to be important to prevent the default behavior of the system (which here is "halting"). This means identifying things that would be "otherwise responsible for halting", and to address those responsible objects before or as they create their consequences.

How does this relate to reality? Well, we can "read ahead" to see what the "code" ahead of us "would do", and change what it "would do" to something that doesn't cause issues for us. It's the same activity as the gods-eye-view programmer would undertake in rearranging the initial condition (providing a non-breaking interrupt handler to reconfigure the moment), but without needing to be said god or donk with initial conditions.

Responsibility makes sense and is "observably a real thing within the system" from both perspectives.
Top Bottom