Dear Soren, Thanks for these details on the Peircean approach. You write that ‘the concept of experience and meaning does not exist in the vocabulary of the theoretical framework of natural sciences'. Would you consider the modeling of meaning generation (MGS in previous post) and the linking of intentionality to meaning generation (2015 Gatherings presentation http://philpapers.org/rec/MENBAM-2) as introducing such a framework ?
[http://philpapers.org/assets/raw/philpapers-plus250.jpg]<http://philpapers.org/rec/MENBAM-2> Christophe Menant, Biosemiotics, Aboutness, Meaning and ...<http://philpapers.org/rec/MENBAM-2> philpapers.org The management of meaningful information by biological entities is at the core of biosemiotics [Hoffmeyer 2010]. Intentionality, the ‘aboutness’ of mental states ... Looking at another part of your presentation, you write. 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). I’m not sure that introducing ‘the basis for information and communication in living systems’ should be done by referring to complex notions like phenomenology, hermeneutics, inter-subjectivity or philosophical theology. The relations of most animals with their environment can be addressed in quite simple terms. A paramecium avoiding a drop of acid or a mouse escaping a cat can be modeled quite simply (see previous post). Of course it is pretty obvious that an elaborated philosophical vocabulary comes as a needed tool for the human living system where complex characteristics like self-consciousness and free will are to be considered. But using such a vocabulary for basic life may run against an evolutionary framework which looks to me as mandatory when addressing information and communication in living systems. Animals and humans are at different levels of living complexity. They should be differentiated in terms of meaning generation as they are not submitted to the same constraints. And an evolutionary thread looks as naturally introducing such a differentiation in terms of increasing complexity. But perhaps you want to include such a differentiation in your approach. Pls let us know Best Christophe ________________________________ De : Søren Brier <sb....@cbs.dk> Envoyé : samedi 2 avril 2016 00:43 À : 'Christophe' Cc : firstname.lastname@example.org Objet : SV: [Fis] _ DISCUSSION SESSION: INFOBIOSEMIOTICS Dear Christophe I agree in your argument that where we should rather focus on the natures of life and of consciousness. This is also where I have been going with my research on Peircean biosemiotics and the development of Cybersemiotics. Let me make a first introduction to how Peirce formulate a different approach. If you then want I can go into further detail. References can be found in the long version of my target article. Many analytical philosophers of science might argue that meaning and experience are not central notions while truth, objectivity, scientific method, observation, theory, etc are (Carnap 1967, Bar-Hillel and Carnap’ s (1953) and Bar-Hillel (1964)). In the view of many researchers this is seen as due to a lack of accept of phenomenology and hermeneutics (for instance Plamen, Rosen & Gare 2015 and Brier 2010). Husserl’s early phenomenology had a problem with getting out to the outer world (Harney 2015), where Peirce develops his pragmaticism as a way to unite empirical research, meaning and experience (Ransdell,1989). His phaneroscopy makes it clear that his ontology is not only materialistic science using only mechanistic explanatory models 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 (Brier 2015 a+b). Thereby Peirce 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. Here Peirce coincides with Luhmann’s autopoietic system theory (Luhmann 1995) that sees the social as communication and these communications as symbolic generalized systems of autopoietic nature each with its own code. Peirce’s idea of ‘the world’ is much bigger than what natural science considers being ‘the world’ (Brier 2014 a+b). He does not make the quantitative scientific model of the world to be all of reality in that the real also includes Firstness and Thirdness exemplified by the combination of true probabilities in the form of would-bes and habits or regularities. This he produces a realist process ontology integrated by the dynamic triadic sign (Deely 1990 & 2001). Peirce showed that the starting point for the concept of information must be not only mathematical and logical but also phenomenological. Still it should stay within a realistic – but not mechanistic – worldview connected to an empiricist and fallibilist view of knowledge if it has to connect to the results of the natural and technical sciences within the information area. In a philosophy of science we have great problems in inserting the subjective first person experiential aspect of reality in our view of information. But philosophy – and that goes for information philosophy too – aims primarily at developing the kind of knowledge that gives unity and system to the whole body of human, social and natural sciences. This is done through a critical examination of the grounds of our convictions, prejudices, and beliefs and the methods we use in the sciences, which we think could benefit by being further developed on a Peircean pragmaticist framework (Brier 2012). Thus I find Peirce’s attempts to broadening the view by working towards showing that logic is semiotic – meaning that formal logic is only one aspect of logic - very promising. Peirce (Peirce, 1931-58, 1992, Peirce Edition Project, 1998 and 1982- 2009) as well as Smolin (2014) argues against the idea of transcendental universal law as the eternal foundation for the emergence of the universe. Instead they believe in a process view encompassing the idea that laws develop with the unfoldment of the universe and manifest on different levels, which is pretty close to Prigogine’s (1980 &1996 and Prigogine and Stengers (1984) view. The tendency to take habit is what Peirce calls these regularities behind a process universe developing through evolution from a potential state of Firstness or even emptiness before that (Brier 2014). This change is in my view an important opening towards the value of the more narrative approaches in the human sciences which are based on experience and meaning. It also means that we do not start with matter, energy or information, but with possibilities and the tendency to take habits. This idea of emptiness as a lack that draws a process is also important in Terrence Deacon’s main argument for a new view of morphodynamics in his latest book Incomplete Nature (Deacon 2011). Living organisms can be described from a natural scientific as well as a phenomenological-hermeneutical humanistic type of knowledge system. Organisms’ genes and physiology, as well as their experiences, learning capability and social role, have causal influence on their behavior. Thus, the general study of embodied life falls between the traditional organizations of subject areas grouped in Snow’s two cultures of quantitative science and qualitative humanities (Snow 1959). A central problem is that this ‘two cultures’ view lacks a common epistemological and ontological framework, unless you are into hard dualism. The two cultures view was based on a knowledge organization founded before evolutionary theory was trans-disciplinarily, accepted. But we expect to explain life from physic and chemistry and consciousness from life (Brier 2015b). But how can biology be an experiential as well as an empirical Wissenschaft when animals have no human language games to convey their first person experience, but only instinctual sign games? Actually in the light of behaviourism and ethology, and even in much cognitive science today, it has been fashionable to deny animals any experiential capability that can have any causal effect on their behavior for many years. One reason for that is that the concept of experience and meaning does not exist in the vocabulary of the theoretical framework of natural sciences. This is a fact which Konrad Lorenz (1970-71) had to recognize when he worked hard over a period of 30 years to establish a theoretical framework for ethology (Brier 2011b). The development of biosemiotics over the last 50 years (Favareau 2010 and the selection of Hoffmeyer’s works) is an attempt productively to solve this transdisciplinary problem. Best wishes Søren Brier Se also my two papers here: 2015 JPBMB Special Issue on Integral Biomathics: Life Sciences, Mathematics and Phenomenological Philosophy<http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/00796107/119/3> (note: free access to all articles until July 19th, 2016) Fra: Christophe [mailto:christophe.men...@hotmail.fr] Sendt: 1. april 2016 19:39 Til: Søren Brier Cc: email@example.com Emne: TR: [Fis] _ DISCUSSION SESSION: INFOBIOSEMIOTICS 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 2003http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/5/2/193), the Meaning Generator System used to support an evolutionary approach [http://img.mdpi.org/img/journals/entropy-logo-sq.png?c749711c57fbc121]<http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/5/2/193> Entropy | Free Full-Text | Information and Meaning<http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/5/2/193> www.mdpi.com<http://www.mdpi.com> 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 ... (http://philpapers.org/rec/MENCOI) and to position some limits to AI (http://philpapers.org/rec/MENTTC-2). 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 (http://philpapers.org/rec/MENCOO). 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... Christophe ________________________________ De : Fis <fis-boun...@listas.unizar.es<mailto:fis-boun...@listas.unizar.es>> de la part de Pedro C. Marijuan <pcmarijuan.i...@aragon.es<mailto:pcmarijuan.i...@aragon.es>> Envoyé : vendredi 1 avril 2016 14:00 À : firstname.lastname@example.org<mailto:email@example.com> Objet : [Fis] _ DISCUSSION SESSION: INFOBIOSEMIOTICS 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: http://fis.sciforum.net/fis-discussion-sessions/ 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 ------------------------------------------------------------- Infobiosemiotics 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 et.al. 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’... ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ________________________________  Wissenschaft is a more interdisciplinary concept than science if we do not want to call phenomenology a science.
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