Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id CAA17811 (8.6.9/5.3[ref firstname.lastname@example.org] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from email@example.com); Wed, 2 May 2001 02:32:17 +0100 Date: Tue, 1 May 2001 18:27:19 -0700 (Pacific Daylight Time) From: TJ Olney <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Re: Information In-Reply-To: <003601c0cdfc$a106bd40$f5e3adcb@oemcomputer> Message-ID: <Pine.WNT.4.21.0104281650090.274-100000@C157775-A.frndl1.wa.home.com> X-X-Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII Sender: email@example.com Precedence: bulk Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
What makes information informatiion.
>If you want to be "precise", then offer a better word that can describe
>that *something* which makes information distinguishable from data, and
>data distinguishable from random fields..
Take the light switch.
If the difference between on and off makes a difference to anything in
that switch's environment, it is information-- to that anything.
So, for instance, there is no information _for me_ in the orientation of
the uninstalled light switches in a box in my house. There is no
information _for me_ in the orientation of a light switch in your current
environment as you read this. There is information _for me_ if the
orientation of a light switch in my presence changes and I am aware of the
change. What else happens at the same time will determine the nature of
that information -- light goes on, off, blows out, causes short-circuit
for whole house, etc.
Finally, if the position of the light switch lying on the ground with no
people around makes it easier for a slug to lay its eggs in a protected
environment, then the switch position provides information to the slug.
Information is a system phenomenon dealing with difference. Shannon-Weaver
type "information" is sometimes information, sometimes not. It is
unfortunately another "logical type" problem to consider states as
information without reference to something for which the state makes a
See Bateson for an excellent treatment of this.
On Thu, 26 Apr 2001, Brent Silby wrote:
> Hi Robin,
> I've just checked out your website and enjoyed my visit. You are putting together a very interesting research project, which has an obvious connection to memetics.
> With your indulgence, I have a couple of questions... just interested in your thoughts...
> Question 1: Would you consider the state of a light switch to be an item of information if there were no intelligent observers (or understanders) of the information -- perhaps, say, if life on Earth became extinct? Or do you think information requires understanding in order to be considered information?
> Question 2: Do you think that high quality information can be reduced to large quantities of primitive information? Or is there something about some information quality that cannot be reduced?
> Interesting topic, keep up the good work.
> Brent Silby 2001
> Memetics Research
> and Engineering Project
> BasePage: http://www.geocities.com/brent_silby/
> Check Out: Earth Survival,
> Try this one: Correcting the Creationist,
> Room 601a
> Department of Philosophy
> University of Canterbury
> Email: email@example.com
-- -- TJ Olney firstname.lastname@example.org Not all those who wander are lost. -- http://mp3.musicmatch.com/artists/artists.cgi?id=113&display=1
=============================================================== 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
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Wed May 02 2001 - 02:37:16 BST