Good and Real: Demystifying Paradoxes from Physics to Ethics (Bradford Books) Gary L. Drescher

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368 pages


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Good and Real: Demystifying Paradoxes from Physics to Ethics (Bradford Books)  by  Gary L. Drescher

Good and Real: Demystifying Paradoxes from Physics to Ethics (Bradford Books) by Gary L. Drescher
| Kindle Edition | PDF, EPUB, FB2, DjVu, AUDIO, mp3, ZIP | 368 pages | ISBN: | 8.17 Mb

In Good and Real, Gary Drescher examines a series of provocative paradoxes aboutconsciousness, choice, ethics, quantum mechanics, and other topics, in an effort to reconcile apurely mechanical view of the universe with key aspects of our subjectiveMoreIn Good and Real, Gary Drescher examines a series of provocative paradoxes aboutconsciousness, choice, ethics, quantum mechanics, and other topics, in an effort to reconcile apurely mechanical view of the universe with key aspects of our subjective impressions of our ownexistence.Many scientists suspect that the universe can ultimately be described by a simple (perhapseven deterministic) formalism- all that is real unfolds mechanically according to that formalism.But how, then, is it possible for us to be conscious, or to make genuine choices?

And how can therebe an ethical dimension to such choices? Drescher sketches computational models of consciousness,choice, and subjunctive reasoning--what would happen if this or that were to occur?--to show howsuch phenomena are compatible with a mechanical, even deterministic universe. Analyses of NewcombsProblem (a paradox about choice) and the Prisoners Dilemma (a paradox about self-interest vs.altruism, arguably reducible to Newcombs Problem) help bring the problems and proposed solutionsinto focus.

Regarding quantum mechanics, Drescher builds on Everetts relative-stateformulation--but presenting a simplified formalism, accessible to laypersons--to argue that,contrary to some popular impressions, quantum mechanics is compatible with an objective,deterministic physical reality, and that there is no special connection between quantum phenomenaand consciousness.In each of several disparate but intertwined topics ranging from physics toethics, Drescher argues that a missing technical linchpin can make the quest for objectivity seemimpossible, until the elusive technical fix is at hand.



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