You are right, the "theory of nothing" is an old hat, published in the 1990s. 
Hutter's new contribution is the observer localization: how many bits are 
necessary to identify the observer's location in the multiverse? Random 
locations cost many bits. Non-random ones are much more likely and therefore 
more predictive in the Bayesian framework. This "allows to distinguish 
meaningful from 
predictively meaningless theories".

Date: Fri, 11 Mar 2011 21:26:59 +0000
From: andrewsol...@gmail.com
To: everything-list@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: Hutter's article on a complete theory of everything



  


    
  
  
    On 11/03/11 09:39, Digital Physics wrote:
    Send
      
      Rummaging through the archives, I realized that a highly relevant
      article by Marcus Hutter 

      apparently has not yet been discussed on this list, although many
      have downloaded it:

    
    Highly relevant indeed. He states in his summary "I have
    demonstrated that a theory that perfectly describes our universe or
    multiverse,

    rather than being a Theory of Everything (ToE), might also be a
    theory of nothing." just as Russell maintains. "
    The
          collection of all possible descriptions has zero complexity,
          or
          information content. ... There is a mathematical equivalence
          between
          the Everything, as represented by this collection of all
          possible
          descriptions and Nothing, a state of no information." (2006, p.
            5)

    

      A Complete Theory of Everything (Will Be Subjective) 

      Algorithms 2010, 3(4), 329-350; doi:10.3390/a3040329

      Part of the Special Issue 

      "Algorithmic Complexity in Physics & Embedded Artificial
      Intelligences"

      In Memoriam Ray Solomonoff (1926-2009)

      

      http://www.mdpi.com/1999-4893/3/4/329/

      

      Abstract: Increasingly encompassing models have been suggested for
      our world. Theories

      range from generally accepted to increasingly speculative to
      apparently bogus. The

      progression of theories from ego- to geo- to helio-centric models
      to universe and multiverse

      theories and beyond was accompanied by a dramatic increase in the
      sizes of the postulated

      worlds, with humans being expelled from their center to ever more
      remote and random

      locations. Rather than leading to a true theory of everything,
      this trend faces a turning point

      after which the predictive power of such theories decreases
      (actually to zero). Incorporating

      the location and other capacities of the observer into such
      theories avoids this problem

      and allows to distinguish meaningful from predictively meaningless
      theories. This also

      leads to a truly complete theory of everything consisting of a
      (conventional objective)

      theory of everything plus a (novel subjective) observer process.
      The observer localization

      is neither based on the controversial anthropic principle, nor has
      it anything to do with

      the quantum-mechanical observation process. The suggested
      principle is extended to more

      practical (partial, approximate, probabilistic, parametric) world
      models (rather than theories

      of everything). Finally, I provide a justification of Ockham’s
      razor, and criticize the anthropic

      principle, the doomsday argument, the no free lunch theorem, and
      the falsifiability dogma.

      

      Keywords: world models; observer localization; predictive power;
      Ockham’s razor;

      universal theories; inductive reasoning; simplicity and
      complexity; universal self-sampling;

      no-free-lunch; computability

      

      Remarkably, Prof. Hutter holds doctoral degrees in both physics
      and computer science, 

      where he made fundamental contributions.

      

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