Bruce Buchanan wrote:
> Robinson states the Hard Problem in this form: *Why should a subject S
> have a conscious experience of type F whenever S has a neural event of
> type G?*
This problem has been solved as a physics problem. More complete
details are in Abstract 279 of Tucson II availble as a link from
In short, the mind is a protected quantum "Bohm pilot-wave" that
is literally attached to the Frohlich collective vibrations of
electric dipoles in the microtubules. Qualia are changes in the
pilot-wave pattern induced by "back-action" from the changing
electric-dipole microtubule configurations. The latter are in
close interaction with nerve impulses, chemical messengers, vesicle
release at clefts etc.
The mind moves matter by the well-known (to physicists) Hamilton-Jacobi
force from the "quantum potential". The mind (pilot-wave) experiences
qualia from the back-action of the material brain-substrate (the
microtubules) on it.
It is actually a simple physics problem at the qualitative level.
Simulations are possible using nanotechnologically engineered
artificial microtubule quantum computing switching networks made
out of quantum wells, wires and dots. These solid-state devices
will be as capable of qualia as we are.
The essential idea is that sentience is a fundamental property of
physical reality in the sense of David Chalmer's article in December
1995, Scientific American. It only remains to recognize this universal
potential for sentience as intrinsic in the quantum wave properties of
matter. It further requires the very special conditions of protection
from "interactive decoherence" to allow "back-action" to trigger
the potential sentience into actuality. There is a clear distinction
here between dead and living matter.