From: Robin Faichney (email@example.com)
Date: Fri 16 Jun 2006 - 15:25:42 GMT
Thursday, June 15, 2006, 10:11:04 PM, Tim wrote:
> p.p.s I suspect Robin may be able to rephrase much of my above
> jibberish more clearly in terms of the transformations information
> is subjected to when moving between representational systems (with
> the caveat that internal dialogue within the mind itself should also
> to be seen as its own unique RS) and that human culture is shaped by
> the nature & interaction of these transformations.
At the highest level of generalisation it's all information processing
-- notwithstanding the fact that minds are involved. For many years most of my online arguments -- and there were many -- were against the elimination of subjectivity from philosophy of mind. HOWEVER, I see memetics as essentially objective, if it is to be of any significance, and so, as a generalisation, it needs to ignore subjective aspects of behaviour and culture. (It might be the case, though, that it's only at the highest levels of generalisation that subjective aspects need to be entirely ignored. I must admit I'm unclear about how applied memetics will actually work.)
Even transmission of information is information processing, where
spacial aspects are relatively incidental, as I think they often but
not always are in memetics.
Any and every transformation of information can be viewed as an en- or
decoding operation, where the difference between en- and de- is
entirely relative, depending on your starting point, so we can use
either term as convenient. Of course, some transformations are more
USEFULLY viewed as en/decoding than are others. I believe that the
transformations between brain-stored memes, memes-as-behaviour and
memes-in-artifacts (whether formally symbolic or not -- it can be
argued that any artifactual encoding is symbolic in some sense) are
prime examples for the application of the en/decoding terminology. The
key that decodes the brain-meme into the behavioural form is simply
whatever elicits that behaviour. The key that re-encodes the
behavioural form to the brain form in an observer is whatever
stimulates that observer to pay attention and remember.
BUT -- and I might be wrong here -- I believe that's probably about as
much as we can say at this level of generalisation, and that as we
descend to successively lower levels, with more and more detail, the
less useful this information processing talk becomes. We shouldn't
lose sight of this level altogether, because it's quite fundamental.
In theory, MEME(me)->MEME(text)->MEME(you)* can certainly be considered
as a classic information channel in communications theory, with the
calculation of error rates, signal/noise ratios and so on, but I'm
dubious about the utility of actually applying math here. I'd be
fascinated by any argument -- or evidence? -- to the contrary, though.
*Tim's nice arrows were ironically lost in the copy/paste
-- Best regards, Robin mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org =============================================================== This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing) see: http://www.cpm.mmu.ac.uk/jom-emit
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