Re: [Fis] What is “Agent”?

2017-10-15 Thread Alex Hankey
Dear All,

I particularly approve of theJose's comment that:

" following D. Hofstadter, H. von Foerster, N. Luhmann and others we
could think of a agent/observer as a self-referential loop."

That is because I show that such loops occur at the locus of control of
biological systems where the mind is situated. In complexity biology, the
condition is known as 'criticality'.

Maybe the idea of a 'perfectly self-observing loop', as a suitable
self-referential structure could be inserted in the paper. I will suggest a
suitable place,

May I also draw your attention to the fact that Karen Barad has written
extensively on the reality of the Agent. Her book, Agential Realism .
is published by Routledge.  No less a scientist than Brian Josephson at the
Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge is deeply interested in her work and
regards it as of fundamental importance.

All best wishes to you all,

Alex Hankey


On 16 October 2017 at 05:04, Jose Javier Blanco Rivero <
javierwe...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Dear Krassimir, dear all,
>
> I have noticed that some descriptions of information make use of
> anthropocentric metaphors and that might be misguiding (for instance,
> subjective and objective information (Sung)). Agent is a concept that
> retains some sort of action-theoretic background but at the same time
> assumes the existence of nonhuman agents. Agency would be then a causal
> relation wherein the agent "causes" some sort of effects.
>
> I don`t feel confortable with this concept. I prefer the the concept of
> observer. But this one is problematic too, for the same reason: it is
> supposed that a human is there watching, feeling, measuring, etc.
>
> I think we have to get rid of these humanistic assumptions in order to
> gain insight into the issues we want to explore.
>
> Definitely I don`t think I have the answer, but following D. Hofstadter,
> H. von Foerster, N. Luhmann and others we could think of a agent/observer
> as a self-referential loop. Most of information processing devices consist
> of a design of some sort of feedback loop.  I don`t know if we could
> translate this idea to all the kinds of systems we all deal with. But it
> would be worth finding out.
>
> An operative loop enables the differentiation of system and environment.
> The system acquires the capacity to control its own behavior. At some point
> its internal states are so many that it biffucartes and grow complex.
> Subsystems can differentiate by the same mechanism. So, that`s my point:
> one have to look for self-referential loops in order to find the
> observer/agent.
>
> An intelligent agent would be some kind of loop (strange loop, maybe).
> It`s just a hypothesis anyway...
>
> Best regards,
> El oct 15, 2017 6:29 PM, "Krassimir Markov"  escribió:
>
>> Dear FIS Colleagues,
>>
>> After nice collaboration last weeks, a paper Called “Data versus
>> Information” is prepared in very beginning draft variant and already is
>> sent to authors for refining.
>> Many thanks for fruitful work!
>>
>> What we have till now is the understanding that the information is some
>> more than data.
>> In other words:
>>  d = r
>>  i = r + e
>> where:
>>  d => data;
>>  i => information;
>>  r => reflection;
>>  e => something Else, internal for the Agent (subject, interpreter,
>> etc.).
>>
>> Simple question: What is “Agent”?
>>
>> When an entity became an Agent? What is important to qualify the entity as
>> Agent or as an Intelligent Agent? What kind of agent is the cell? At the
>> end - does information exist for Agents or only for Intelligent Agents?
>>
>> Thesis: Information exists only for the Intelligent Agents.
>>
>> Antithesis: Information exists at all levels of Agents.
>>
>> Friendly greetings
>> Krassimir
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> ___
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>> http://listas.unizar.es/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/fis
>>
>
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>
>


-- 
Alex Hankey M.A. (Cantab.) PhD (M.I.T.)
Distinguished Professor of Yoga and Physical Science,
SVYASA, Eknath Bhavan, 19 Gavipuram Circle
Bangalore 560019, Karnataka, India
Mobile (Intn'l): +44 7710 534195
Mobile (India) +91 900 800 8789


2015 JPBMB Special Issue on Integral Biomathics: Life Sciences, Mathematics
and Phenomenological Philosophy

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Re: [Fis] Data - Reflection - Information

2017-10-15 Thread Mark Johnson
Dear Loet,

I mean to be analytical too. The Pythonesque nature of my questioning leads 
naturally to recursion: What is the meaning of meaning? There's a logic in the 
recursion - Peirce, Spencer-Brown, Leibnitz, Lou Kauffman... and you have 
probed this. 

Were you or I to be part of a recursive symmetry, how would we know? Where 
would the scientia be? How would we express our knowledge? In a journal? Why 
not in a symphony? (the musicologists miss the point about music: Schoenberg 
commented once on the musical graphs of Heinrich Schenker: "where are my 
favourite tunes? Ah! There.. In those tiny notes!")

I agree that operationalisation is important. But it can (and does) happen in 
ways other than those expressed in the content of discourse.  If this topic of 
"information" is of any value, it is because it should open our senses to that. 

Best wishes,

Mark

-Original Message-
From: "Loet Leydesdorff" 
Sent: ‎15/‎10/‎2017 07:17
To: "Mark Johnson" ; "Terrence W. DEACON" 
; "Sungchul Ji" 
Cc: "foundationofinformationscience" 
Subject: Re[2]: [Fis] Data - Reflection - Information

Dear Mark:


Do we want to defend a definition of meaning which is tied to scientific 
practice as we know it? Would that be too narrow? Ours may not be the only way 
of doing science... 
I meant my remarks analytically. You provide them with a normative turn as 
defensive against alternative ways of doing science.


A non-discursive science might be possible - a science based around shared 
musical experience, or meditation, for example. Or even Hesse's 
"Glasperlenspiel"... Higher level coordination need not necessarily occur in 
language. Our communication technologies may one day give us new 
post-linguistic ways of coordinating ourselves. 
Why should one wish to consider this as science? One can make music together 
without doing science. Musicology, however, is discursive reasoning about these 
practices.


Codification is important in our science as we know it. But it should also be 
said that our science is blind to many things. Its reductionism prevents 
effective interdisciplinary inquiry, it struggles to reconcile practices, 
bodies, and egos, and its recent obsession with journal publication has 
produced the conditions of Babel which has fed the pathology in our 
institutions. There's less meaning in the academy than there was 50 years ago.
This is a question with a Monty Python flavor: what is the meaning of science? 
what is the meaning of life?


The implication is that our distinguishing between information and meaning in 
science may be an epiphenomenon of something deeper.
One can always ask for "something deeper". The answers, however, tend to become 
religious. I am interested in operationalization and design.


Best,
Loet




Best wishes,

Mark




From: Loet Leydesdorff
Sent: ‎14/‎10/‎2017 16:06
To: Terrence W. DEACON; Sungchul Ji
Cc: foundationofinformationscience
Subject: Re: [Fis] Data - Reflection - Information


Dear Terry and colleagues, 


"Language is rather the special case, the most unusual communicative adaptation 
to ever have evolved, and one that grows out of and depends on 
informationa/semiotic capacities shared with other species and with biology in 
general."
Let me try to argue in favor of "meaning", "language", and "discursive 
knowledge", precisely because they provide the "differentia specifica" of 
mankind. "Meaning" can be provided by non-humans such as animals or networks, 
but distinguishing between the information content and the meaning of a message 
requires a discourse. The discourse enables us to codify the meaning of the 
information at the supra-individual level. Discursive knowledge is based on 
further codification of this intersubjective meaning. All categories used, for 
example, in this discussion are codified in scholarly discourses. The 
discourse(s) provide(s) the top of the hierarchy that controls given the 
cybernetic principle that construction is bottom up and control top-down.


Husserl uses "intentionality" and "intersubjective intentionality" instead of 
"meaning". Perhaps, this has advantages; but I am not so sure that the 
difference is more than semantic. In Cartesian Meditations (1929) he argues 
that this intersubjective intentionality provides us with the basis of an 
empirical philosophy of science. The sciences do not begin with observations, 
but with the specification of expectations in discourses. A predator also 
observes his prey, but in scholarly discourses, systematic observations serve 
the update of codified (that is, theoretical) expectations.


Best,
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Re: [Fis] Data - Reflection - Information

2017-10-15 Thread Loet Leydesdorff

Dear Mark:

Do we want to defend a definition of meaning which is tied to 
scientific practice as we know it? Would that be too narrow? Ours may 
not be the only way of doing science...
I meant my remarks analytically. You provide them with a normative turn 
as defensive against alternative ways of doing science.


A non-discursive science might be possible - a science based around 
shared musical experience, or meditation, for example. Or even Hesse's 
"Glasperlenspiel"... Higher level coordination need not necessarily 
occur in language. Our communication technologies may one day give us 
new post-linguistic ways of coordinating ourselves.
Why should one wish to consider this as science? One can make music 
together without doing science. Musicology, however, is discursive 
reasoning about these practices.


Codification is important in our science as we know it. But it should 
also be said that our science is blind to many things. Its reductionism 
prevents effective interdisciplinary inquiry, it struggles to reconcile 
practices, bodies, and egos, and its recent obsession with journal 
publication has produced the conditions of Babel which has fed the 
pathology in our institutions. There's less meaning in the academy than 
there was 50 years ago.
This is a question with a Monty Python flavor: what is the meaning of 
science? what is the meaning of life?


The implication is that our distinguishing between information and 
meaning in science may be an epiphenomenon of something deeper.
One can always ask for "something deeper". The answers, however, tend to 
become religious. I am interested in operationalization and design.


Best,
Loet




Best wishes,

Mark


From: Loet Leydesdorff 
Sent: ‎14/‎10/‎2017 16:06
To: Terrence W. DEACON ; Sungchul Ji 


Cc: foundationofinformationscience 
Subject: Re: [Fis] Data - Reflection - Information

Dear Terry and colleagues,

"Language is rather the special case, the most unusual communicative 
adaptation to ever have evolved, and one that grows out of and depends 
on informationa/semiotic capacities shared with other species and with 
biology in general."
Let me try to argue in favor of "meaning", "language", and "discursive 
knowledge", precisely because they provide the "differentia specifica" 
of mankind. "Meaning" can be provided by non-humans such as animals or 
networks, but distinguishing between the information content and the 
meaning of a message requires a discourse. The discourse enables us to 
codify the meaning of the information at the supra-individual level. 
Discursive knowledge is based on further codification of this 
intersubjective meaning. All categories used, for example, in this 
discussion are codified in scholarly discourses. The discourse(s) 
provide(s) the top of the hierarchy that controls given the cybernetic 
principle that construction is bottom up and control top-down.


Husserl uses "intentionality" and "intersubjective intentionality" 
instead of "meaning". Perhaps, this has advantages; but I am not so 
sure that the difference is more than semantic. In Cartesian 
Meditations (1929) he argues that this intersubjective intentionality 
provides us with the basis of an empirical philosophy of science. The 
sciences do not begin with observations, but with the specification of 
expectations in discourses. A predator also observes his prey, but in 
scholarly discourses, systematic observations serve the update of 
codified (that is, theoretical) expectations.


Best,
Loet

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