Saturday, July 4, 2015

Free Will

So me and Greg, we had a very interesting discussion about free will.
Lets say that free will it is a mathematical function in your brain, f(X), which is decision you make and X is an array of input. 
IF YOU ALREADY FEEL BORED, skip the rest, go to the video below.

Of course we call it a free will, if we go from the idea that this function unrestricted and gives you best possible solution. But in reality f(X) will always be restricted by the environment. The first and foremost restriction is an input X. No matter how we try our decisions will always depend on information we get to initiate decision making. Other people trying to manipulate us to do something by giving us only that input information which supposed to lead us to "right" decision. Even nature does that. 

But here is an interesting thought, how would this function work if it was absolutely unrestricted? Basically how does absolute Free Will looks like?

It is impossible to see, but we can try to imagine it at least. Lets assume that we have spherical person in vacuum. It is an ideal person in ideal environment, where f(X) cannot be restricted at all. In other words absolute Free Will. But there's comes another moment, f(X) cannot work without X, input. In real world your decisions are predictable, limited and not as free as you may think because you have limited information about any particular event, about which you have to make a decision. So returning to our ideal person in vacuum, for it we have to have an ideal input, X should become an array of all possible information, which allows you to make unrestricted, absolute free, ideal and unbiased decision.
The question is how would it look like? You have spherical person in vacuum with absolute free will and all possible information in the world. What kind of answer you can get?

And, funny enough, whatever question you ask to that kind of person in that situation the answer will be always the same: Absolutely random. This is another non existing matter, there is no such thing as absolute randomness. Even though there is such thing as random generator, they will never give you ideal random answer, because they always influenced by environment. How? Because no matter how you try your "random" answer will always depend on initial input that random generator function gets, which cannot be absolutely random. 

So basically, what we coming to is that f(X) is indistinguishable from random generator function given the ideal circumstances. And the only reason we think that our free will is not random is because our input is limited, which allows us to make a weighted decision. But more information we have more random our decisions are.

This whole idea is not purely philosophical, it is widely used in computer science these days, know as heuristic algorithms.
Here's sexplanation:

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Some thoughts about Bill C-24

Perspectives: As a foreigner myself, I'm expected to be, but I'm not really concerned about that Bill. Reasons are simple, I don't think it will last long and conservatives won't be able to abuse it. Bill C-24 is obviously discriminatory and chances for it to be under constant political pressure I consider really high. At the same time, some novelties introduced by C-24 most probably will stay with us for a long time. First of all two-tier citizenship. I think "liberals" may change rules so that it will be slightly harder to take someone's passport (just to satisfy voters), but the whole thing will stay in place, naturalized Canadians will have more chances to loose their citizenship. Why do I think that? Because when asked "do you think is it a good idea to strip from citizenship person who went to fight for ISIS?" majority will answer "Yes".   And another thing is opposition won't be able to take back powers given to Foreign Minister (at least most of them).
But It is all my speculations, I don not perceive Canadian politics well enough yet.

General thoughts: When it comes to citizenship laws conservatives are always lean toward to eliminate dual citizenships, usually under the souse of national security and patriotism. Countries like Germany, for example, do not allow dual citizenship, it means that if you found eligible, to obtain German passport you have get rid of all other citizenships and you have to demonstrate hard evidence of that. Usually by bringing an actual paper from your former Country(s) of citizenship declaring that you are no longer a citizen. 
So if you look at Bill C-24 from that perspective it actually pretty liberal. It allows you to have second passport, the only thing is that you get a certain risk of loosing Canadian one.  If you don't like that risk, all you have to do is obtain papers saying that you no longer a citizen of your homeland country or any other. If you posses only Canadian passport they cannot kick you out, because it makes you become stateless. And government can't do that because of UN’s 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.

One thing I'm totally against in that Bill is phrase about "eligible to obtain another nationality". Because when it comes to foreign born spouses and parents you are too, in many cases, become eligible for their country's citizenship even though you born in Canada and your parents are Canadian. Even if you commit a treason, they have to deal with you as with any other canadian criminal, not expel you to your spouse's homeland. So this rule is completely useless, but puts on the hook lots of Canadians.

To conclude: Basically speaking Bill C-24 is a mild and very liberal version of single citizenship law. In that case it is kind of compromise between two sides of the story.

Some silly thoughts: I guess while C-24 is in place politicians should address the crowd like "My fellow Canadians and "Canadians".
And funny thing is that you can actually call C-24 an antisemitic. And here is why. If you are Jew, no matter where you were born, it means that you are eligible to obtain Israeli citizenship under Law of Return. So, under Bill C-24, all Jews automatically become second class citizens.