On 3/1/2013 5:27 PM, William R. Buckley wrote:
Thinking about how information content of a message
Big mistake. Information is never contained with but
exactly one exception, an envelope.
I made this point with Jesper Hoffmeyer regarding a
statement in his book Biosemiotics, that information
is represented but not contained in that representation.
That marks of chalk upon slate may be taken to represent
information at a meta level above the reality of streaks
of a deformed amorphous solid has nothing to do with
the information represented by that deformation, nor the
increase of entropy associated with the greater disorder
obtained from that deformation; these are but three of
the *informations* to be found upon review of those
streaks. Entropy is how nature sees information (not
yet an established fact but I think the tea leaves read
clear enough) but that has (presumably) nothing to do
with how intelligent individuals see information, or
as von Uexküll called such phenomena, signs.
Most definitely the information is not to be found
within the material of its expression, its representation.
Rather, the information is already to be found within the
But where is it found within the interpreter? When the Mars Rover receives photons in
it's camera which it interprets as an obstructing rock that interpretation is "just"
physical tokens too. So isn't it a matter viewpoint whether to look at the causal chain of
tokens or look at the behavior and call it interpreting information?
That which is information is so by virtue of the acceptor
of that information; else, it is noise.
And, write the information on a piece of paper and seal
the paper within an envelope and you may justifiably
claim that the information is contained; else, you are
has an inversely proportionate relationship with the
capacity of sender and receiver to synchronize with
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