Nice. I much much prefer degrees of freedom as a term as well. Less politically charged and far more accurate.
You’ve been researching this heavily for a long time and I appreciate the clarity of your position.
I like degrees of freedom, which I also like to articulate as affordances (as that brings it into manner of usage and not just joint articulation and mobility) – essentially, whatever our free will is, is what it is or isn’t because of what we can or can’t. The ability and room allowed by the spaces in which we operate with the possibilities we have built-into the systems we work with.
That sort of thing. Annoying that the language has to sound so weird to describe it.
Why do we use a free-will-ish thing in a free-will-ish way? Because it seems to fit a free-will-ish usage. That kind of thing. Yeah, I hate having to talk about affordances like this.
Well, “because it can” is the shortest way to put affordances.
Why did the slug go under the doorway into your kitchen? Was it hungry? Thirsty? Wanting a mate?
No. It fit under the door so it went under the door.
So, decisions are made based upon what’s possible not only given abilities but given what choices allotted by the available resources and what uses they encourage.
SO if you’re thirsty, you choose to use a accoustic guitar as a water carrier because the guitar’s shape afforded usage as a bowl for carrying water.
I don’t know if humans are unique in self-hood. I don’t think they are.
There’s certainly things that make humans unique. Finding out what those things are might get a little tricky.
I do know that our connection to animals is a terrible excuse for human behavior though for socially we’re humans among humans generally.
Some things are oddly human. Two questions I asked myself this morning: Would animals ask that of themselves?
how to follow an idea to completion?
Is this level of abstraction available? Much abstraction is available to non-humans — that’s learning. Generalizing. But how general?
My go-to for Intelligence defining is hands-down Practopoiesis as it can cover intelligence from thermostats and AI to plant, animal and human intelligence as well as “crystalized intelligence” as found in historical transmission: books, videos, dog pee on a tree, etc.