Human Brain vs. Quantum Computer

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  • Thread starter Hyperreality
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  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Do you think the human brain is best described

a) Quantum computer

b) Classical computer

c) Semi-classical computer

d) None of the above

Cheers
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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Quantum computers, because the protein folding is at a photon level, right? As well as the synapse connections in the brain which are subatomic. Would an animal brain be like this as well?

The brain is as fast as you can go I think, so an artificial brain couldn't go any faster and it might or might not be more efficient to have parallel processing in either or comparatively.

Side Note:
Theories suggesting that robots will somehow become smarter then man probably wont be true unless man decides not to live longer then robots though. Because we are less sturdy.
 
  • #3
Mk
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But to be a quantum computer, doesn't by definition the computer use superposition in calculations as another possible "state?"
 
  • #4
chroot
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There's no evidence that the brain uses quantum superposition to perform calculations. There's also no evidence that the brain is anything more than a chemical computer with incredible optimizations discovered by billions of years of evolution.

Even mechanical computers can perform certain kinds of operations ten of thousands of times faster than human brains, so I certainly don't think it's accurate to say that the human brain is, in any sense, "faster" than any possible artitifical brain.

- Warren
 
  • #5
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I got that wrong. I have read that the brain can operate at a sub-atomic level at the Axon, but not Quantum (Quark, Lepton etc.).

Where do our thoughts come from? Maybe a Quantum computer can better help identify that.
I agree the artificial computer is probably always faster.

This topic is discussed allot with programming languages too. It's not speed that's most important but an overall efficiency. First it has to be efficient to the task and then speed is secondary.

The Classical computer is probably like the brain
 
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  • #6
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Do you think the human brain is best described

a) Quantum computer

b) Classical computer

c) Semi-classical computer

d) None of the above

Cheers
d)Fuzzy logic computer ?:tongue2: :smile:
 
  • #7
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The brain simply just looks like a Labyrinth maze. I think that's pretty cool.
 
  • #8
berkeman
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I have read that the brain can operate at a sub-atomic level at the Axon, but not Quantum (Quark, Lepton etc.).
Axons are not sub-atomic. Axons operate at the cellular level with electrochemical reactions.
 
  • #9
None of the above from what little I know of the human brain or anyone does for that matter, I'd say it is a biological "entity" with a great deal more potential than any computer, at least for now.

Quantum conciousness is a very: shall we say contentious subject although I've seen a bit of research I'm not sure I'm convinced, and anyway it only deals with quantum tunneling and is nothing similar to quantum computing.

IIRC correctly Arizonas University's web site has some interesting research into brain function, and a little bit about Quantum conciousness?

http://www.consciousness.arizona.edu/" [Broken]

Paul Davies’ lecture was on ‘life and consciousness as emergent
phenomena’. He laid out many basic quantum terms and phenomena
in a clear way: quantum indecision, superposition, entanglement,
quantum clock, coherence, decoherence, and gravity. Then, in an
admittedly wildly speculative tone he suggested that the conditions
for life and consciousness might be limited by quantum effects, and
that the former might have harnessed quantum effects to improve performance,
so that quantum mechanics might be their midwife or at
least helper. Time keepers in cells might be quantum clocks; proteins
might fold at a quantum edge; decoherence may be the killer; and
thoughts move muscles through downward causation. He closed with
the challenge to find the physics of consciousness...

Axons are not sub-atomic. Axons operate at the cellular level with electrochemical reactions.
Wll I'm reaching here but there was some research into tubuoles between axons and QET effects, but it's not as if it's accepted even if it is published.
 
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  • #10
DocN
If I were a "quantum computer" is there some line of question(s) that you can ask me to determine if I were either a human or computer?
 
  • #11
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Well my pocket calculator is faster and better at maths than me, it has a better memory and it will most likely last longer than me. Im not so sure of the "Quantum SuperBrain" thing. There are alot of stupid people about.

I would lean more towards a classical computer, but i don't know much about either. I think the genius is in the programming, not the method of computing, complex heuristics.

If I were a "quantum computer" is there some line of question(s) that you can ask me to determine if I were either a human or computer?
How about: Are you a quantum computer? *chuckle*
 
  • #12
DocN
I could be programmed to conceal my true identity, therefore, "No! I can not divulge that answer.".
 
  • #13
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the human brain is an electro-chemically based classical computer which contains ~10^15 bits of information and processes it at ~10^16 operations per second- now while all matter performs quantum computation by it's very nature there does not appear to be any processes in the brain which harness any natural forms of quantum computation of it's constituent proteins or chemistry- at least not in any general or direct fashion in terms of basic brain functions- edit:[the subtle fringes of emergent perception and awareness might be another matter however]
 
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  • #14
DocN
Yes, I agree.
 
  • #15
chroot
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the human brain is an electro-chemically based classical computer which contains ~10^15 bits of information and processes it at ~10^16 operations per second
Do you have any reputable references for these figures, or did you simply make them up? It doesn't make any sense to apply the concept of "operations per second" to the brain.

- Warren
 
  • #16
I don't think you can chalk it all up to electro-chemical interactions.

How do you see?

How do you smell?

How do you taste?

How do you feel?

How do you hear?

Basically, how do you sense?

Even if the brain was a chemical computer, a number of these effects rely on quantum interactions to take part in the 'total picture'.

I like the superposition analogy where consciousness is a quantum singularity arising from these chemical interactions that can interact with the various 'evolved' structures of the brain to interpret information.

However, this is just my opinion.
 
  • #17
chroot
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Basically, how do you sense?

Even if the brain was a chemical computer, a number of these effects rely on quantum interactions to take part in the 'total picture'.
I have no idea why you think sensation is in any way related to quantum mechanics.

I like the superposition analogy where consciousness is a quantum singularity arising from these chemical interactions that can interact with the various 'evolved' structures of the brain to interpret information.
This is nothing more than word salad, as the phrase "quantum singularity" is meaningless. Please note that personal theories are not welcome here.

- Warren
 
  • #18
http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/12/11/1952201" [Broken]

Eyesight has a good analogy too with CCD sensors.

Taste would fall under the same realm as smell.

As for a personal opinion, isn't that's what was being asked for by the original question?

I'm just interpretting quantum singularity to mean 'point of view'. That's something we all have, correct?
 
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  • #19
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If anyone would like to explore the idea of "superposition" or "non-locality" of neuronal impulses please feel free to comment in this thread

https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=147833

on the PhysicsForum

Its in the Metaphysics & Epistemology section of philosophy.
 
  • #20
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Do you have any reputable references for these figures, or did you simply make them up? It doesn't make any sense to apply the concept of "operations per second" to the brain.

- Warren
it's on the high end of the average values given by Moravec/ Merkle http://www.merkle.com/brainLimits.html and Schmidhuber http://www.idsia.ch/~juergen/raw.html

10^15 bits is quite basic: the average adult human brain contains a few hundred billion neurons each with a few thousand connections on average- and individual synapses are Boolean operators: either active or not- contrary to what many believe- the complex electrochemistry of the brain does NOT affect the quality of neural signals- there is no 'gradient' of neural activity- a synapse is either active or not active- 1 or 0- the complex neurochemistry affects brain-states through modulating the NUMBER of active signals in bundles and groups of neural signals- therefore all aspects of the deepest most complex brain activity are entirely based on Boolean operations in those 10^15 connections- this is discrete foundation of the brain's function [I was once one of the skeptics myself of interpreting the brain's function as a linear computation before this discovery- I always thought that a true algorithmic expression of the brain would require detail to the very quantum state of every atom in the brain and it's local environment- but it isn't so! all that complex biochemistry and physics only serves as a sysem that influences which synaptic bits get flipped]- at least this is what the evidence supports at this time
 
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  • #21
SF
Well, you'd first have to show that the brain actually works in "binary" (01010). Neural nets are a much viable alternative.
 
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  • #22
Moonbear
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I wish I had noticed this thread a lot sooner. :bugeye: As chroot and berkeman have explained, neurons function through chemical signaling and ion gradients. The rest of the posts are completely off-base speculation, and for that reason, I'm going to lock this thread.
 

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