From: Dace (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Fri 16 Jun 2006 - 16:50:13 GMT
Apologies for the tardy response. The digest containing this post arrived
just after I left for a much needed vacation.
> Friday, May 19, 2006, 9:02:53 PM, Ted wrote:
>> It seems the information for the entire pulse is contained in its leading
>> edge. This leads me to wonder if information has primacy over tangible
>> things such as light and matter, which we might refer to as
> Physical information IS (the structure of) light and matter.
According to the article on backward traveling light, the information for
the entire pulse of light is contained in its leading edge. Thus we can't
simply equate the information for the pulse with its structure. As you
yourself pointed out, physics needs a concept of information as much as
> You appear to be seeking some form of dualism.
It doesn't matter what I'm seeking. The fact is that physics presents us
with two things-- information and structure (or exformation).
>>> > A structure
>>> > is simply a structure, no more and no less. Only in the mind of the
>>> > interpreter does it encode information.
>>> That's true of any en/decoding scenario. The encoded information only
>>> exists if the appropriate decoder is available
>> The difference is that in the case of physical information, the effect is
> Obviously. I'm not saying there's no difference. I'm not a
> materialist. My point is that your use of the encoding concept doesn't
> help your case.
You've conceded my point. So why are you still arguing?
>>> > "Meaning" is not a physically meaningful concept. At no point has
>>> > ever located meaning in a physical system, nestled among matter,
>>> > energy,
>>> > space, field, force, pressure, momentum, etc. No meaning or
>>> > Yet these concepts become attached to physics when we use the term
>>> > "information" in regard to physical processes. Because we
>>> > traditionally
>>> > associate information with representation, we assume that physical
>>> > information contains representation as well. The physical existence
>>> > of
>>> > representation never has to be demonstrated, instead being smuggled in
>>> > through the back door. This isn't so much science as a trick of the
>>> Absolutely not. That's all in your mind. You project your own
>>> confusion onto everyone else. No physicist, nor anyone with a serious
>>> interest in it, would see representation in physical information.
>> That's exactly my point. When you think about it, physical information
>> cannot include representation. The problem is that we don't always think
>> about it. Since we associate meaning with information, and we now have a
>> concept of physical information, we imagine that meaning exists
>> including in such objects as books, computers and brains.
> That's just your fantasy. I'm not sure exactly who it is that imagines
> meaning exists physically -- certainly not me, and I don't know that
> anyone on this list does
An odd statement. It's a core belief of memetics that cultural meaning is
contained in artifacts such as books, musical scores, game rules, etc. I
initiated the RS thread specifically to dispute this point. No one on the
list expressed agreement with my assertion that meaning is strictly mental.
Now you're saying everyone here agrees with my view.
> -- but I'm quite sure that, whoever they are,
> they didn't adopt that position as a result of encountering the
> concept of physical info.
You're awfully sure of yourself. Of course, nothing bad could result from
something so perfect as information theory.
>> Incidentally, confusion is a fine example of a mental phenomenon that
>> be transposed onto the physical. A thing cannot be "confused" any more
>> it can be "clear." You or I may be confused at times, but our brains are
>> just doing their thing, as always. Only when you step back from physical
>> reality can you experience confusion or bridge the gap with truth.
> It's true that your brain isn't confused, though you clearly are, for
> instance in your assumption that anyone who disagrees with anything
> you say is an ideological enemy.
Another odd statement, particularly since I just demonstrated in my last
post a willingness to accept your view of the necessity for the concept of
information in physics. I can only attribute this accusation to
psychological projection. At an unconscious level, you see this as a war of
egos rather than a discussion of ideas. Instead of consciously recognizing
this fact, you project your malady onto me.
> But your dualistic formulations don't
> help us resolve our confusion about exactly what it is that is confused.
You're not actually arguing the point, merely wielding the phrase,
"dualistic formulations," like a club.
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