Dear Soeren,
Looking for the ‘definition of a universal concept of information’ is indeed a 
key subject, but I’m not sure that focusing on the Peircean approach as you do 
is the best thread for that.
Positioning ‘life as meaning’ looks as a good starting point in an evolutionary 
perspective. But Peirce does not tell us much about the ‘why’ and ‘how’ of 
meaning in life.
Most of us would agree that meanings do not exist by themselves but have 
reasons of being that are closely related to the entity managing them. Life 
builds up meanings to maintain its living status, to stay alive (individual 
constraint) and to reproduce (species constraint). As far as I know, Peirce did 
not develop these perspectives that much.
The same can probably be said about the ‘how’ of meaning making.
On that last point FISers may remember a simple model introduced in FIS in 2002 
(and published in Entropy in 2003, the 
Meaning Generator System used to support an evolutionary approach


Entropy | Free Full-Text | Information and 
We propose here to clarify some of the relations existing between information 
and meaning by showing how meaningful information can be generated by a system 
submitted ...

( and to position some limits to AI 
( But as you know Peirce better than I do, 
perhaps you can recall some Peircean writings  close to modeling of meaning 
generation that I have missed. Pls let us know.
Whatever, we would probably agree that a modeling of meaning generation is at 
the core of an ‘evolutionary theory of the emergence of experiential 
consciousness’. And that such a theory applies differently to animals and to 
humans. Experiential consciousness in animals needs an understanding of life 
that we do not currently have. Human experiential consciousness calls in 
addition for self-consciousness which is also a mystery for today science and 
philosophy. But the Science of Consciousness is making some progresses in this 
area where meaningful representations can have a say 
I of course agree on the enormous added values brought by Pierce on logic, 
philosophy, mathematics and various sciences. But I’m not sure that he is the 
best choice for ‘the definition of a universal concept of information’ where we 
should rather focus, I feel, on the natures of life and of consciousness.
But I may be wrong...

De : Fis <> de la part de Pedro C. Marijuan 
Envoyé : vendredi 1 avril 2016 14:00
À :

Dear FIS Colleagues,

I am attaching herein Soeren's presentation. If you have any trouble with the 
attachment, the file is in fis web pages too:

By clicking on Soeren Brier's session (highlighted in red) you can immediately 
obtain it.

Nevertheless, below there is a selection of more general ideas from the paper. 
For those interested in FIS "archeology", Soeren presented in January 2004 a 
discussion session on Information, Autopoiesis, Life and Semiosis. It  can be 
found by scrolling in the same above link.

Best greetings--Pedro



Søren Brier, CBS

This discussion aims at contributing to the definition of a universal concept 
of information covering objective as well as subjective experiential and 
intersubjective meaningful cognition and communication argued in more length in 
Brier (2015a). My take on the problem is that information is not primarily a 
technological term but a phenomenon that emerges from intersubjective 
meaningful sign based cognition and communication in living systems. The 
purpose of this discussion is to discuss a possible philosophical framework for 
an integral and more adequate concept of information uniting all isolated 
disciplines (Brier, 2010, 2011, 2013a+b+c).

The attempts to create objective concepts of information were good for 
technology (Brilliouin 1962) and the development of AI, but not able to develop 
theories that could include the experiential (subjective) aspect of informing 
that leads to meaning in the social setting (Brier 2015b). The statistical 
concept of Shannon (Shannon and Weaver 1963/1948) is the most famous objective 
concept but it was only a technical invention based on a mathematical concept 
of entropy, but never intended to encompass meaning.  Norbert Wiener (1963) 
combined the mathematics statistical with Boltzmann’s thermodynamically entropy 
concept and defined information as neg-entropy. Wiener then saw the statistical 
information’s entropy as a representation for mind and the thermodynamically 
entropy as representing matter. So he thought he had solved the mind matter 
problem through his and Schrödinger’s (1944/2012) definition of information as 
neg-entropy. The idea was developed further into an evolutionary and ecological 
framework by Gregory Bateson (1972, 1979, 19827) resulting in an ecological 
cybernetic concept of mind as self-organized differences that made a difference 
for a cybernetically conceptualized mind (Brier 2008b). But this concepts that 
could not encompass meaning and experience of embodied living and social 
systems (Brier 2008a, 2010, 2011).

My main point is that from the present material, energetic or informational 
ontologies worldview we do not have any idea of how life, feeling, awareness 
and qualia could emerge from that foundation.

Ever since Russell and Whitehead’s attempt in Principia Mathematica to make a 
unified mathematical language for all sciences and logical positivism failed 
(Carnap, 1967 & Cartwright 1996), the strongest paradigm attempting in a 
new unification is now the info-computational formalism based on the mathematic 
calculus developed by Gregory Chaitin (2006 and 2007) ). The paradigm is only 
in its early beginning and is looking for a concept of natural computing 
(Dodig-Crnkovic, 2012) going beyond the Turing concept of computing. But even 
that still does not encompass the experiential feeling mind and the meaning 
orienting aspect of intersubjective communication wither be only sign or also 
language based.

So far there is no conclusive evidence to make us believe that the core of 
reality across nature, culture, life and mind is purely absolute mathematical 
law as Penrose (2004) seems to suggest or purely computational. Meaning is a 
way of making ‘sense’ of things for the individual in the world perceived. It 
is a non-mathematical existential feeling aspect of life related to reflection 
past, present and future of existence in the surrounding environment, in humans 
enhanced by language, writings, pictures, music through culture. In animals 
cognition and communication are connected to survival, procreation and 
pleasure. In humans beings cognition develops into consciousness through 
subjective experiential and meaning based (self-) reflection of the 
individual’s role in the external world and becomes an existential aspect.

My conclusion is therefore that a broader foundation is needed in order to 
understand the basis for information and communication in living systems. 
Therefore we need to include a phenomenological and hermeneutical ground in 
order to integrate a theory of interpretative/subjective and intersubjective 
meaning and signification with a theory of objective information, which has a 
physical grounding (see for instance Plamen, Rosen & Gare 2015). Thus the 
question is how can we establish an alternative transdisciplinary model of the 
sciences and the humanities to the logical positivist reductionism on one hand 
and to postmodernist relativist constructivism on the other in the form of a 
transdisciplinary concept of Wissenschaft (i.e. “knowledge creation”, implying 
both subjectivism and objectivism)? The body and its meaning-making processes 
is a complex multidimensional object of research that necessitates 
trans-disciplinary theoretical approaches including biological sciences, 
primarily biosemiotics and bio-cybernetics, cognition and communication 
sciences, phenomenology, hermeneutics, philosophy of science and philosophical 
theology (Harney 2015, Davies & Gregersen 2009).

Peirce develops his pragmaticism as a way to unite empirical research, meaning 
and experience. His ontology is not only materialistic science but does also 
include meaning through embodied interaction through experiential living bodies 
and thereby the social as well as the subjective forms of cognition, meaning 
and interpretation. Thereby he goes further than Popper’s (1978) view of the 
three worlds. Communication is not only a world of objective knowledge but is 
intersubjective meaningful information. Peirce’s idea of ‘the world’ is much 
bigger than what science considers being ‘the world’...


Attachment: FIS Soeren Infobiosemiotics abstract NEW.docx
Description: FIS Soeren Infobiosemiotics abstract NEW.docx

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