David Chalmers 10-11 Feb 2020

Monday, February 10, 2020
4:00-5:30pm - followed by a reception

The Meta-Problem of Consciousness

IU BicentenialThe meta-problem of consciousness is the problem of explaining why we think and say that there is a hard problem of consciousness. The hard problem of consciousness is the problem of explaining how physical systems give rise to subjective experience. The hard problem typically contrasts with the easy problems of explaining behavior. There is one behavior with an especially close tie to the hard problem: we make verbal reports such as "consciousness is puzzling" and "there is a hard problem of consciousness". Explaining these reports is a tractable empirical project for cognitive scientists, and will almost certainly have consequences for the hard problem of consciousness. In this talk I lay out the meta-problem research program, I examine potential solutions, and I investigate the philosophical consequences.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020
4:00-5:30pm

The Virtual and the Real

Is virtual reality truly real? The most common view is that virtual reality is a sort of fictional or illusory reality, and that what goes in in virtual reality is not truly real. I will defend the opposite view: virtual reality is a sort of genuine reality, and what goes on in virtual reality is truly real. Virtual objects are real objects, and virtual events really happen. In principle, one could live a fully meaningful life in virtual reality.