What Does it Feel Like to be a Bat?

It is a sensible question: What does it feel like to be a bat? Although we can never really know the answer (because we can never be bats), we know that there is an answer. It feels like something to be a bat. Well, at least we think it does. We think bats have consciousness and conscious feelings. On the other hand, it is not a sensible question to ask what it feels like to be brick or a table. It doesn’t feel like anything to be an inanimate object.

The bat question, in fact, is the title of a seminal paper in philosophy by Nigel Thomas, arguing and establishing that consciousness cannot be reduced to material explanations. After going through all the explanations based on physical and material processes, one can still ask the question, “Yeah, why does it feel that way, 而不是其他方式,,en,在任何人指责我是,,en,自命不凡,,en,我应该承认我还没有阅读实际的论文,,en,正是基于该论文而写的,,en,蝙蝠论文提出了许多有趣的哲学问题,,en,太多了,我实际上可能会在上面写另一篇文章,,en,哲学不是我的强项,,en,物理是,,en,让我们看一下存在和感觉像蝙蝠的一些物理原理,,en,蝙蝠不是瞎子,,en,与您可能听到的相反,,en,但是,假设它们是,,en,他们只通过回声定位来感知周围的空间,,en,想要像蝙蝠一样,,en,并使用echolocation在我们的空间中导航,,en,如果你是蝙蝠,,en,那个空间会是什么样,,en,它会有什么特性,,en?”

Before anyone accuses me of being pretentious, I should confess that I haven’t read the actual paper — just what was written about and based on the paper. The bat paper raises many interesting philosophical questions. So many that I may actually write another post on it. However, Philosophy is not my strong suit. Physics is. Let’s look at some of the physics behind being and feeling like a bat.

Bats are not blind, contrary to what you may have heard. But let’s say they are, and that they sense the space around them solely through echolocation. To feel like a bat then would be to “see” and navigate in our space using echolocation. If you were a bat, what would that space feel like? What properties would it have? For one thing, 您会立即看到,没有什么比音速快,,en,如果超音速物体要飞离您,,en,您将永远不会收到回音,因为您的ping永远不会到达它,,en,如果它向你走来,,en,它会在回声到达您之前就通过您,,en,回声会到达你,,en,相反的顺序,,en,而且物体似乎以超音速离开你,,en,声音的速度感觉就像是绝对的,,en,您所在空间不可侵犯的速度限制,,en,听起来有点熟,,en,因此,如果您有一只非常聪明的蝙蝠,,en,像蝙蝠爱因斯坦,,en,它会提出的时空几何学的物理描述看起来非常类似于,,en,狭义相对论,,en,完成空间收缩和时间扩张,,en,但正如我们所见,,en. If a supersonic object were to be flying away from you, you would never get any echo from it because your pings will never reach it. And if it were coming toward you, it would pass you before the echoes from it would reach you. In fact, the echoes would reach you in reverse order, and the object would seem to be going at a subsonic speed away from you. In other words, the speed of sound would feel like an absolute, inviolable speed limit in your space. Sound familiar?

So if you had a really intelligent bat (like a bat Einstein), the physical description of the space-time geometry it would have come up with would have looked very similar to Special Relativity, complete with space contraction and time dilation. But as we can see, 它只是感觉模态的产物,,en,信息载体,,en,SR是否可能甚至仅仅是一个,,en,我们感知的人工产物,,en,蝙蝠,,en,奈杰尔·托马斯(Nigel Thomas),,en,空间感知,,en,你的神圣人生,,en,太真实了,,en,最近的帖子,,en,分类目录,,en,反相对论论坛中的讨论,,en,书评虚幻,,en,我讨论我读过的书,,en,并与读者分享我的印象,,en,我主要读非小说或经典小说,,en,当我说读书时,,en,我的意思是在有声读物中听他们,,en,始终没有删节,,en,形成,,en,有声读物可以使您的通勤或健身房锻炼变得令人期待,,en,而不是恐惧,,en,审核时,,en,他们虽然不利,,en,他们不能被提及,,en,因此,他们的名言就成了释义,,en,名称拼写错误等等,,en,请原谅这样的缺点。,,en, the information carrier, sound. Is it possible or even likely that SR also is only a mere artifact of our perception?

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