Scott Aaronson has published a preliminary version of his long essay titled 'Why Philosophers Should Care About Computational Complexity'. His announcement blog post has some interesting comments, and he welcomes suggestions there. I am not sure I like the organization of the paper. (I know most of the CS stuff discussed, so it is hard for me to decide how readable it is for people who don't.) But it is full of interesting ideas, and some of these are new even for those of us who follow Scott's writings.

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This is really, really awesome and I hope it gets traction in the philosophy community. Aaronson does a great job closing the inferential distance gap where necessary, gives his clearest yet exposition of topics related to computational complexity, a provides a truly enlightening, consistent way to view various topics.

In particular I liked his discussion of the "waterfall" argument (whether a waterfall can be said to be playing chess because you can find an I/O mapping to a chess program); it really outdoes the discussion of the same topic in Good and Real, where Drescher describes it as the "joke interpretation" of a rock in the context of consciousness.

[-][anonymous]11y 2

That was excellent, thanks for the link. Despite the fact that I've read all of Aaronson's blog posts (and that I got a CS degree before becoming a code monkey), I learned several interesting tidbits. One example: MoR!Harry's trick is capable of solving all problems in PSPACE. (This was proven in 2009.)

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