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On 2 May 2001, at 15:05, Robin Faichney wrote:
> On Wed, May 02, 2001 at 09:08:58AM -0400, Wade T.Smith wrote:
> > On 05/02/01 04:49, Robin Faichney said this-
> > >between physical
> > >information, which exists for its own sake, and the more usual
> > >sort, information that's about something.
> > If I understand this (and I must rephrase to understand, it's a
> > peccadillo) - physical information is what is needed by an entity
> > for existence - that necessary sufficiency of its fullness - the
> > universals, if you will - the fact that hydrogen and oxygen can
> > combine to form water.
> Think of the form of any physical thing, say, the shape of a PC
> monitor. Now widen that concept to include not just external shape,
> but all the internals, with their mass, density, colour, electrical
> resistance, temperature at any given instant, etc, etc. That's
> physical information, and it's stored within the thing itself, ready
> to be read off whether by simple observation or by any kind of
> experiment. Of course there are differences between the necessarily
> complete and accurate information that's in there, and the incomplete
> and inaccurate versions we can extract. And it is our attempt to
> minimise these differences that generates the laws of physics,
> according to Roy Frieden. I'm not making this up, you know! :-)
> > The problem is, I don't see any _information_ as being there, but
> > formulation and organization, determined by physical constants and
> > properties.
> Of course you don't see information as being inherent in every
> physical thing until you realise this is an extension of the way the
> word has previously been used -- there are differences, but also
> similarities, and some of us consider the latter to be much more
> significant than the former, which is why we use the word this way.
> > It's not information, to me, until someone can use it.
> Isn't the information in every physical thing just waiting to be used?
> > And evolution is the information about the way things happened....
> Evolution *is* the way (some) things happened. Genetic information is
> part of that story. Or isn't that information either, because it's
> only used by biological processes?
> I have to say, Wade, I find it very funny that, in an argument with
> you, given the sort of things you tend to say about philosophy and
> about science, I have the hardest of hard sciences on my side.
Perhaps a distinction should be made between the class of
unapprehended configurations and conditions and the class of
apprehended configurations and conditions (which renders them
informational to us), kinda like the difference between potential and
kinetic energy, except that one can measure potential energy,
while the attempt to ascertain anything about members of the
class of unapprehended configurations and conditions quite
obviously removes them, heisenbergianly, from that class. It's
reasonable to suppose that it's a class with members, but by the
very nature of it's definition, we can never point to one.
> Robin Faichney
> Get your Meta-Information from http://www.ii01.org
> (CAUTION: contains philosophy, may cause heads to spin)
> This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
> Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
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