User illusion


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User illusion

  1. 1. The User Illusion
  2. 2. Are you conscious right now?
  3. 3. Are you sure about that?
  4. 4. How much of what we see are we actually conscious of?
  5. 5. The human brain takes in more information than we are conscious of.
  6. 6. That is:When we see letters on a screen, we are conscious of meaning.
  7. 7. Consciousness is very low bandwidth.
  8. 8. Some numbers:Silent Reading: 45 bits/secReading Aloud: 30 bits/sec Proofreading: 18 bits/secPiano Playing: 23 bits/sec
  9. 9. No, really. One page in 2.5 minutes 1 page = 40 lines 1 line = 60 characters2400 characters in 150 seconds 16 bits raw, 32 bits per char ~40 bits/sec just by the letters.
  10. 10. The upper limit seems to be 50 bits/sec for words.
  11. 11. Same with sound and light.
  12. 12. Make sounds at 16 pulses a second. You hear pulses.Make sounds at over 16 pulses a second. You hear a tone.
  13. 13. Show images at 16 slides a second. You see slides.Show images over 16 slides a second. You see moving images.
  14. 14. And you dont need consciousness.
  15. 15. BlindsightPeople with brain damage that cant see in parts of their field of vision. But then they “guess” absolutely correctly.
  16. 16. They are not conscious of what they are seeing. But they still duck if theyre about walk into something.
  17. 17. We do not see what we sense. We see what we think we sense.Our vision is interpreted long before we are conscious of it.
  18. 18. Also, your conscious lags behind.
  19. 19. Not just what you perceive, but how you act.
  20. 20. Kornhuber and Deecke hook people to an EEG.They ask people to move their fingers at intervals.They see the readiness potential when a finger is about to be moved. The signal happens a second the finger actually moves.
  21. 21. The act of moving a finger happens a second before we actually move it.When do we actually decide to move the finger?
  22. 22. Around 0.35 seconds AFTER the potential starts.
  23. 23. By the time we decide to do something, were already moving.
  24. 24. So what good is consciousness?
  25. 25. David Rosenthal:“[...] the consciousness of these states itself adds no significant function to that of those other developments.” Which means:Consciousness is just a side-effect, with no real adaptive value.
  26. 26. Well, maybe not quite a side-effect.
  27. 27. Ezequiel Morsella:“a senate, in which representatives from differentprovinces are always in attendance, regardless of whether they should sit quietly or debate.” Consciousness resolves conflicts between different systems.
  28. 28. Peter Watts: “The more cognitively sophisticated you become, the more able you are to suppress hardwiredaversion responses in favor of long-term agendas.The more sublime your awareness, the more pain you can withstand.”
  29. 29. Consciousness: you usually dont need it, andwhen you do, youll probably wish you didnt.