The Advent of the Microprocessor, Philosophy and the Next Stage in Information Technology

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos recently expressed the view that a dominance position in technology is transient, adding that Amazon may not escape that fate. The pattern that includes AT&T, Xerox, DEC and IBM indicates that there is an intrinsic difficulty for a technological leader to identify the natural next stage in a given field. Functional overlap among desktop computers, laptops, tablets and cell phones suggest that information technology (IT) is overdue in embarking on the next stage. Current technology leaders seem confronted with this challenge, without a clear direction emerging thus far.

In the late 1960s while I was a doctoral student in philosophy in the graduate center of the City University of New York, I noted that the hardware of fax machines, electronic calculators and word processors can be replaced as application software on a general-purpose computer. This view was combined with my awareness of the rapid increase in transistor density per unit area and the corresponding drop in the cost per transistor. I concluded that user-dedicated information technology would replace both time-sharing computing and the above-mentioned special purpose equipment.

At that time I felt pressed to prove, to myself at least, that philosophy provides powerful problem-solving means that are not available elsewhere. I decided to use that situation as a test. I formed the company Q1 Corporation, dropped out of school, and recruited a core technical team.

In December 1972 Q1 delivered to Litcom, a division of Litton Industries on Long Island, the world’s first microprocessor-based personal computer. It utilized an 8-bit single-chip microprocessor, the Intel 8008. The 8008 became the first member of Intel’s x86 microprocessor family. In 1975 Microsoft was formed. It focused on developing software, including the Windows operating system, for the Intel x86 microprocessors. By the end of the 1970s, “Wintel” (Windows/Intel combination) dominated computing worldwide.

Intel did not design the central processing unit (CPU) for the 8008. Instead, it was designed in 1969 in response to my urging of Computer Terminal Corporation (CTC) to develop a microprocessor-based user-dedicated personal computer. Instead, CTC designed an intelligent terminal with a CPU. After asking Intel to implement the CPU as a single-chip, CTC decided against using such chip. Intel then shelved that project.

I then met with Robert “Bob” Noyce, who was at the time the president of Intel. I pleaded with him to resume the development of the 8-bit microprocessor chip. He said that he would do so after concluding an ongoing project (a 4-bit processor), provided Intel obtain from CTC the permission to sell such chip in the general market. I obtained that permission, and the Intel 8008 was introduced in April 1972. Q1 delivered the first microprocessor-based personal computer in December 1972.

The account below provides a somewhat fuller chronology. The events proved to me that philosophy provides unique and unrecognized problem-solving methods, whereas the accepted analytic philosophy, in contrast, seeks to clarify rather than solve problems. The best way for me to establish that philosophy contributed to my actions and decisions is to undertake the challenge of specifying aspects of the next phase in information processing as it applies to the present situation.

Semiconductor technology
The transistor was invented at Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1947. In 1958 the integrated circuit was invented at Texas Instruments (TI). During the decade of the 1960s, there were five stages of halving the linear distance between transistors. It halved the travel time for electrons (at a given voltage). Another consequence was the quadrupling of the number of transistors per unit area. Thus, the five stages resulted in more than a thousand-fold increase in the number of transistors per unit area. To the extent that the cost per unit area remained the same, the production cost-per-transistor dropped by the same thousand–fold factor. Furthermore, computing cost can be taken as the cost per transistor multiplied by processing time. Thus, the 1960s represented about a thirty thousand-fold drop in computing cost.

IBM
IBM was the world’s dominant computer company during the 1950s and 1960s. Its main product line was the IBM 360 time-sharing computer series. In 1967 I met with Jacques Maisonrouge, who was at that time the president of IBM World Trade Corporation. I conveyed to Maisonrouge my conviction that the rapid density increase of transistors per unit area and the corresponding decline in the cost-per-transistor would transform the computer field by the emergence of user-dedicated personal computing devices. I proposed that IBM explore this new area. Maisonrouge arranged for me to meet J. C. R. Licklider at the Thomas J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, New York. I did not know at the time that Licklider was a key promoter of the time-sharing approach to computing at MIT, DARPA and IBM and that he was about to return to MIT. His book Libraries of the Future (1965) reflects his perspective. Our meeting proved pointless.

Advanced Memory Systems
In 1968, Advanced Memory System (AMS) of Santa Clara, California, developed the first random access memory semiconductor chip with 1,024 transistors. It was a significant milestone. First, at that transistor density, it could replace the older technology of magnetic core memories. Furthermore, a chip with 1,024 transistors was a stage or so away from having the number of transistors necessary to implement the central processing unit (CPU) of a computer on a single chip.

AMS contacted Philips, Appel & Walden, who was at that time a Wall Street firm with focus on technology. AMS sought to raise funds through an initial public offering (IPO). James “Jim” Walden, the Managing Partner, asked me to evaluate AMS. First I discussed the state of the technology with Professor Carver Mead, at California Institute of Technology (Caltech). Specifically, I sought his view as to how small a transistor may be and how the rate of increasing transistor density is likely to decline. I was impressed with the technical competence of the AMS team. I found myself overlooking their less than adequate marketing orientation and recommended to Jim Walden that the underwriting the IPO of AMS go ahead.

Computer Terminal Corporation (CTC)
In 1969, CTC of San Antonio, Texas (later renamed Datapoint) developed a computer terminal, the Datapoint 3300. CTC contacted Philips, Appel & Walden seeking to raise $4 million through an IPO. Jim Walden asked me to evaluate their technology. In San Antonio, I had an extended discussion with Austin “Gus” Roche, who was the vice president for research and development. I
repeated to him what I conveyed two years earlier to Jacques Maisonrouge of IBM about transistor density and single-chip CPU implementation revolutionizing computing to be local and user-dedicated. I urged that CTC consider developing a personal computer.

I recommended that CTC:

  • Develop a computer CPU.
  • Make the computer user-dedicated.
  • Locate the computer where the user is.
  • Seek to have the CPU implemented on a single silicon chip.

Roche responded saying that their next product would contain a computer. He thus accepted my first recommendation and their next planned product, the Datapoint 2200, did contain a CPU.

CTC also acted on my last recommendation and asked both Intel and TI to submit proposals for a single-chip implementation of the Datapoint 2200 CPU. But, after receiving microprocessor chip samples from Intel and TI, my recommendation was rejected. Instead, their CPU was implemented using existing technologies.

I later learned that the Datapoint 2200 was designed to be an intelligent terminal to a remote computer, not a personal computer: it did not include a disk drive to provide direct access storage; it did not provide a high-level programming language, and its 2 kilobytes of internal memory was insufficient to function as a general-purpose computer. Thus, my main recommendation was not accepted.

On my return to New York, I told Jim Walden that I liked the company, their technical competence, and “can do” attitude. I added that their product philosophy, as reflected by their initial product – a “dumb” computer terminal, was conceptually obsolete. I mentioned to Walden that I suggested to CTC my views about their next product.

Intel
Intel was formed to develop, manufacture and market semiconductor memory chips. Bob Noyce, the president of Intel at the time, and Gordon Moore, a co-founder, were reportedly concerned that if Intel produced CPU chips it would seem to be competing with its customers for memory chips. This consideration must have played a role in Intel’s decision to shift focus to the development of a chip for Busicom, a Japanese electronic calculator consortium. Intel stopped working on the development of the CTC chip in July 1970.

On hearing this, I flew to California to meet with Bob Noyce. I conveyed to Noyce my view that since the chip Intel was developing for Busicom was 4-bit, it was a limited purpose device with a limited market appeal. I gave as an example the fact that 4-bits is insufficient for representing alphabetic characters; in contrast, the 8-bit single chip microprocessor would unleash a technological revolution. I concluded that if Intel completes the development of the 8-bit microprocessor chip, then Q1 would be Intel’s first customer for that chip.

Noyce said that Intel would resume the development of the 8-bit single chip microprocessor but would first need to obtain the consent of CTC to produce and sell a chip based on the Datapoint 2200 CPU. I told Noyce that I would provide Intel with the required consent. I flew to San Antonio, met with Phil Ray, who was President of Datapoint at the time, obtained the consent for Intel to produce and sell the 8-bit single chip microprocessor based on the Datapoint 2200 CPU, and so informed Noyce.

As Bob Noyce told me when we met, Intel resumed the development of the 8-bit single-chip implementation of the CTC’s CPU after completing the development of the 4-bit chip for Busicom. Busicom went out of business soon thereafter. Intel obtained rights to offer the 4-bit chip to the general market. As I told Noyce, the 4-bit chip proved to have a limited market. In April 1972 Intel introduced the 8-bit single-chip microprocessor, the 8008.

Q1 Corporation
In December 1972, the first Q1 personal computer was installed at Litcom, a division of Litton Industries in Long Island. This was the world’s first installation of a microprocessor-based general purpose computer.

The Q1 computer was:

  • User-dedicated general-purpose computer system
  • Utilizing an 8-bit single-chip microprocessor
  • It contained random-access external information storage
  • It came with the PL/1 high-level programming language

Early in 1973, Heinz Nixdorf, the president of Nixdorf Computer, invited me to visit his facility in Paderborn, Germany. I went to Paderborn with Dr. Ron Sommer, who was at the time vice president of Q1. Sommer, having received his PhD in mathematics from the University of Vienna, was fluent in German. The meeting resulted in a $40k/month software development agreement for the Intel 8008 and anticipated next generation microprocessor the Intel 8080.

Later in 1973, Q1 received an order, subject to acceptance tests, from the Israel Supply Mission in New York City for four Q1 systems, to be based on the expected second generation Intel 8008. A Q1 computer with a pre-production 8080 microprocessor was delivered during the first quarter of 1974 and later replaced by a computer with production-level 8080 chip.

In 1975, The National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA) NASA ordered Q1/Lite systems for all its eleven worldwide bases. Also in 1975, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) organized its first international conference about the microcomputer revolution, which took place in New York City. I understand that on the recommendation of Bob Noyce, IEEE invited me to organize and chair the opening session. It felt strange: I am neither an electronic engineer, nor a computer scientist, and had no prior association with the IEEE. This fact has been, to me, a validation of the unique problem-solving power of philosophy.

In 1979, the British National Enterprise Board (NEB) invested over ten million dollars in forming a company to represent the production, marketing, and service of Q1 computers in Europe.

Returning to my core interest
I then recruited a president to replace me and returned to my main interest. I believe that I solved some basic problems of knowledge (e.g. 2010 & 2012 US patents). But this claim awaits further
confirmation and acceptance.

The subsequent growth of the x86 personal computers
The introduction of the Intel 8080 prompted Bill Gates and Paul Allen to quit Harvard and form Microsoft. Microsoft developed software, including the Windows operating system, for the Intel 8080 and subsequent members of that family, the x86. By the end of 1970s, Wintel (the Intel x86/Microsoft Windows) became the dominant personal computer engine in the world. Until then, Intel revenues were from selling semiconductor memory chips. By the end of the 1970s, Intel discontinued the memory business, and the x86 became its main source of revenue.

A re-testing the problem-solving capacity of philosophy
Currently, there is considerable functional overlap among user-dedicated computing devices, including desktop computers, laptops, tablets, cell phones, and smart wristwatches. This is a situation
where the optimal next step cannot be reached in bottom-up research of computer science or electronics. It requires conceptual top-down reasoning. This situation presents another opportunity to confirm or disconfirm the methods used in my initial philosophical experiment.

Philosophy, Gene Editing and The Next Phase of Human Evolution

We can now control future human evolution. It is the most far-reaching technological development since humans branched from other primates some six million years ago. There does not exist at present a conceptual framework with which to address this (or any other) long-term global issue. Typically, any long-term global issue is a looming disaster. Consider a few examples: climate change, pollution of the oceans and air, nuclear proliferation and demographic upheavals. This record suggests that the worst outcome is also the most likely in the instant case: that during this century, some national entities would introduce heritable enhancements to the human genome in their country – making the last millennium Homo sapiens’ last.

This book identifies philosophy as the root problem. It then outlines how current science requires updating the 300-year-old foundation of knowledge. It concludes by indicating how such reconstruction provides the ground for formulating normative social policies.

De-nuclearizing North Korea

What has prevented atomic conflict since the Second World War is the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). Kim Jeong Il discovered that this formula is inapplicable to the potential atomic conflict between a superpower and a small country. Instead, the superpower, having more to lose, is in a military disadvantage. This fact confers negotiating advantage in the smaller country. However, such an advantage is limited to negotiations. In an atomic conflict, neither side wins.

In the interim, North Korea is subject to a punishing embargo. It desperately needs a source of income. They have one thing that many entities desire, so naturally, North Korea is in the business of selling atomic know-how. Some well-funded terrorist entities that seek to obtain atomic weapons are not geographically locatable. As a result, there is no way to counter any attack by such entities. China may be among the initial targets for such unilateral attacks. Such prospects are utterly unacceptable. It would force China to prevent opening this Pandora’s box: this means de-nuclearization of North Korea.

Some notes relating to the forthcoming publications of the revised The New Foundation of Knowledge (2017)

A. Philosophy

A1. The current state of affairs.

Philosophy is the most basic and most troubled field of knowledge. Present-day knowledge is still based on assumptions about human nature that are now known to be false, that were introduced some 300 years ago. These assumptions underlie normative disciplines, including ethics, law, politics and economics. As a result, human institutions are guided by policies which appear inconsistent with long-term survival.

A2. Bringing the foundation of knowledge up to date

A2.1. Psychological attributes are heritable. The theory of evolution led Darwin to conclude that heritability applies to biological as well as psychological attributes. Present day science proved Darwin right on this point. Specifically, humans possess innate sensations emotions and cognitions. For example, the newborn human (or rodent) likes sweet and dislike bitter. It shows that both the sensations of taste and likes and dislikes are innate. Furthermore, the innateness of the preference constitutes knowledge of the world prior to personal experience.

A2.2. The denial of heritable psychological attributes. Empiricism is the theory of knowledge that is based on the denial that sensations or emotions or cognitions are innate. Empiricism underlie all present-day theories of knowledge. By and large, the philosophic community proved unable to set aside the 300 year epistemology legacy, and do not acknowledge the scientific evidence.

A2.3. Truth and consequences. Innate commonalities of human nature is the ground for deriving universals of human
conducts. In the United States, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a manifestation of the view that some moral principles are universal. But this is an exception. The more basic law is called “positive”, which means non-universal. In contrast, the legal doctrine of natural law is based on the view that these laws should not be relativistic. Relativistic ethics and laws make it impossible to bridge the cultural chasm separating East and West in trying to address the long-term global issue of the future of humanity.

A3. Toward a dawn of a new day.

Updating the foundation of knowledge is the most important and most urgent problem confronting humanity now. The philosophic community ought to undertake the long-term challenge of making explicit the implications of the scientific evidence about biology, mind and brain. It would bring philosophy the recognition and authority it deserves, once it does its job.

The 1951 UN Refugee Convention is inconsistent with the US Constitution

Nations are sovereign: they have exclusive authority over a territory and its borders. A sovereign entity controls entry and stays within its borders. The 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of refugees, commonly known as the Refugee Convention undermines sovereignty by creating the legal right of persons to claim asylum in countries other than their own. Such a claim is subjected to 2-3 stages of the process during which the claim is examined by the selected country. During this period persons claiming asylum are entitled to the following rights:

  1. The right not to be punished for illegal entry
  2. The right to be issued identity and travel
    documents
  3. The right to freedom of movement in that country
  4. The right to access the courts
  5. The right to work
  6. The right to housing
  7. The right to education
  8. The right to public assistance.

In the US the children born to asylum claimants become citizens under the 14th Amendment. Such children are not deportable if the parents & claim for asylum is denied. Separating a child from his father or mother is not a humane or realistic option.

Apart from these considerations of principle, there is a looming reality. The end of the second world war was the period that colonialism in sub-Sahara Africa came to an end. The United Nations introduced several programs aimed at improving health and economic self-sufficiency. It proved successful in the first aim but failed in the second.

The improved health led to a sharp drop in child mortality producing explosive population growth. Food production did not keep up. As a result, migrating to more developed counties appears as the best option. Some states in sub-Saharan Africa are not democratic, and their population is deprived of human rights. Thus, they satisfy the UN criteria of persons entitled to asylum.

It is projected that by the end of the current century the population of sub-Saharan Africa will grow by some three billion persons. Many of them, if not most of them, would migrate to more developed countries.

This human flood could make citizens in developed counties into minorities. This extreme development is as grave as climate change. As climate change, it is a manifestation of human un-wisdom.

 

Why this century is unlike any other

T. Philosophy and survival
T1. The state of the world.
T1.1. Climate change. From the evolutionary perspective species come and go; Homo sapiens is still a work-in-progress. Climate change exemplifies the fact that long-term global consequences of technology are generally toxic, irreversible this century, and raises concerns about the challenge of surviving convergent natural disasters.

T1.2. Demographic trends. Some other long-term trends suggest that Western philosophy may be the implicit cause of self-destructive policies. For example, there is a question Western culture can survive having the white population of Europe and the United States become the minority this century (e.g. non-Hispanic whites in the US would become the minority among the newborn within a year).

T1.3. The prospect of controlling our future evolution. Biotechnology now makes possible to introduce heritable enhancements in the human genome. If any national entity undertakes to do that then, whether or not others follow, the last millennium would prove Homos sapiens last.

T2. Philosophy
T2.1. Updating the foundation of philosophy is a priority. Philosophy is the only part of knowledge that could have served as a survival manual in confronting the looming upheavals. But philosophy is not only the most fundamental part of knowledge but also the most troubled. This makes bringing the foundation of knowledge up to date a priority.

T2.2. A single factual issue. Neuroscience has recently established the fact that sensations are innate. For the last 300 years, the most basic assumption at the foundation of knowledge was the direct opposite – that no sensation is innate. John Locke (1689) introduced that assumption, concluded that the brain of the newborn is like a blank slate (tabula rasa).

T2.3. The challenge. It is now necessary to make explicit the epistemological implications of replacing the tabula rasa by its direct opposite. This would be the most basic change in the foundation of knowledge since Locke introduced his factually false assumption.

T2.4. The philosophic community. Updating the foundations of knowledge would establish the central role of philosophy in guiding social policy. But it would take time before the philosophic community is ready to set aside the 300-years of epistemological legacy. In the interim, the most pressing philosophical issue confronting humanity now is virtually terra incognita.

T2.5. The forthcoming revision of my 2017 book. The forthcoming revision of The New Foundation of Knowledge (2017) reviews the evidence for the innateness of sensations and provides an initial glimpse of the new epistemological landscape.

T3. Sensations are innate.
T3.1. The sensation of sound. The electrical stimulation of the cochlea elicits sensations of sound in the normal hearing and in the deaf. The heard pitch is determined by the cochlear locus stimulated. It proves that heard sound is not a property of air vibration. Some children are born with a dysfunctional auditory nerve. They can be made to hear by an implant that electrically stimulates hearing-related brain loci (e.g. brainstem, thalamus, or cortex). This proves that heard sound is innate and elicited by the brain: it is neither a property of air vibration nor originates in the ears.

T3.2. Any sensation. In every sensory modality (e.g. vision, hearing, touch, taste or smell), the same type of electrical stimulus elicits the modality-specific sensation as determined by the modality-specific area stimulated. This proves that said electrical stimuli do not contribute to the resulting qualitative sensation; it is the stimulated brain loci that determine the qualitative aspect of the sensation. Thus, sensations are innate and are elicited by the brain.

T4. The first empirical proof that consciousness exists. Innateness of sensations and consciousness. Evolution stumbled on consciousness, and natural selection let it be. From an evolutionary perspective, the role of conscious knowledge is to improve survival. Yet, to date all attempts to account for what consciousness is and what it does have failed. The reason for this failure is the denial of the fact that sensations are innate.
The physical is publicly observable. Innate sensations are private or alternatively termed subjective, phenomenal, or mental. Thus, our knowledge of the physical is an inference from the phenomenal. This conclusion confers epistemological priority on the phenomenal relative to the physical. The hope that Physicalism could account for consciousness is not realizable.

T5. Spatiality and Ubiquity. Physical objects, such as triangular tiles, are locatable in space. The concept of triangularity is not. The phenomenal cannot be said to be located in space. It is ubiquitous.

T6. Some top-down implications
T6.1. Pain. The tabula rasa assumption presumes that pain originates in the body and is imported into the brain by afferent C-fibers. Pain, like all sensations, is innate and is elicited by the brain. Based on the tabula rasa misconceptions, neurosurgeons performed numerous operations to disconnect the presumed source of pain from the brain, hoping to stop painful stimuli. In many of those cases, the pain returns with a vengeance. The continued failure of medicine to effectively address chronic pain is based on the philosophical error.

T6.2. Light. Like all sensations, the sensation of light is innate. The electric stimulation of visual cortex elicits the visual sensation of spots of light, called phosphenes both in normally seeing subjects and in the blind. On the basis of this fact, visual cortical prostheses were developed. Such prostheses are about to be available for the born blind. As in the case of auditory prostheses, it is best to implant prostheses in the subject during childhood. I expect visual prostheses for the born blind would be demonstrated within five years.

This century whites are due to become minorities in the US and EU

It is projected that whites in the EU and US will become the minority by the end of the century. In the EU, that transition is expected in the second half of the century. In the US (non-Hispanic) whites will be a minority within a generation and among the newborn, within a year.

In the EU, that prospect is a subject for intense discussions, for example, see The Strange Death of Europe by Douglas Murray (2017). In contrast, the US is still in denial of the inevitable transition. For example, the media addresses immigration issues on daily basis, but discussion of the impending transition is avoided.

The EU is the primary destination of asylum seekers. States in Sub-Saharan Africa cannot feed their rapidly growing populations. Many are under a dictatorship and are known for human rights abuses. Thus, immigrants from these countries satisfy the asylum seeker criteria. The United Nations projects that by the end of the current century the Sub-Saharan African population would grow by some billions. At present, there is no real or conceivable mechanism to stem the expected tidal wave of migration. Include the fact that immigrants during the initial two generations double in number, while Europeans, like Americans, do not even reach replacement levels: the demographic shifts will be massive.

Murray in his book addresses only Europe and only from the perspective of a journalist. However, the issue applies to Western culture on both sides of the Atlantic, and the root cause is not political in that people did not vote for this consequence. Western culture has been dominant for the last
100 years. The only explanation for its current predicament is that it is the consequence of principles implicit in the philosophy ascribed to in the West. Philosophy is the only knowledge area that can address this failure of self-preservation. With authority comes responsibility. The philosophic community has let us down by retreating to the position of a spectator on vital issues of survival.

It is now imperative that the philosophic community confronts the challenge of bringing the foundation of knowledge up to date and, recognize, for the first time, the innate commonalities of human nature, and derive survival imperatives to guide policy.

Philosophy: toward a dawn of a new day

A. Consciousness

A1. The consciousness enigma. Being Conscious is the central fact of personal existence. Yet, to date, attempts to account for what consciousness is and what it does have failed. This issue is addressed below.

A2. A criterion of physicality. The physical is publicly observable. Your dentist can see your aching tooth but not your toothache. The tooth, being publicly observable is physical; your toothache, being private, is not. Such observations are deemed objective. In contrast, a toothache, being private is considered subjective.

A3. The tabula rasa assumption. The most basic assumption that underlies present-day theories of knowledge is that sensations are imported into the brain, none innate (Locke 1689).

A4. Sensations are innate. Recent findings in neuroscience demonstrate that information from the senses to the brain is devoid of qualitative attributes. Sensations are innate and are evoked by the brain.

A5. An epistemological consequence. Making explicit the epistemological implications of the fact that sensations are innate would constitute the most fundamental advance in knowledge since Locke introduced the tabula rasa assumption. Consider one such implication.

B. The physical is inferred from the mental

B1. Sensations are private. The fact that sensory qualities are not received from the senses nor from the external world through the senses determines them to be private, subjective, phenomenal or mental.

B2. Knowledge of the physical is inferred from sensory information. Knowledge of the physical is inferred from sensory information that is innate, private, and thus mental.

B3. A proof that consciousness exists. The above subsection B2 confers epistemological priority on the mental relative to the physical. It constitutes a proof that non-physical consciousness exists. It is the first to do so.

C. The Mind matters

C1. Imagining selectively activates the brain. Brain-computer interface prostheses (BCIs) for persons paralyzed from the neck down are based on the fact that performing, as well as imagining, a voluntary movement creates a characteristic pattern of activation in the motor cortex.

C2. Selective brain activation by imagination is exemplified by BCIs. The BCI detects the activation pattern of the motor cortex, identifies the intended movement, and initiates commands to the servomechanism, to fulfill the desired movement be it control of an electric a wheelchair or moving a cursor on a computer screen.

C3. The mind affecting brain and behavior is commonplace. The brain is physical, while imagination is not. The fact that imagination activators the brain show that the mind affecting the brain is common places.

D. The conscious brain does things that the non-conscious brain cannot.

Exemplified below are some things that the conscious brain can do that the non-conscious brain cannot.

D1. Qualia. The physicist’s description of nature is devoid of qualitative attributes of sensory modalities of exteroception (Locke’s secondary qualities). Yet, these are the qualities through which we know the physical world. Such qualia provide us the simplest representation of the outside world.

D2. Perceptual binding. A percept combines several sensory modalities and submodalities, each of which is represented in a different part of the brain. There is no known location in the brain that represents a percept. Thus, ordinary perception does not correspond to any brain location. What the mind does simply, neuroscience cannot explain yet other than the synchronous activation of these multiple brain loci.

D3. Concepts. Theoretical physics is formulated by use of mathematical concepts and operations. For example, the concept of triangularity or of a regular polygon is not an object locatable in space or available for public observation. It is generally accepted that concepts are not physical. Neither are they arbitrary or a mere linguistic convention. Recent neuroscientific evidence indicates that there are innate brain mechanisms that convert percepts into concepts.

E. Conclusions

E1. Innate sensations prove that the physical is inferred from the mental.

E2. Qualia, percepts and concepts exemplify the advantage of consciousness.

E3. The mind affects the brain and behavior.

E4. The mind and matter are different aspects of the same more basic reality.