Re: [Fis] (no subject)

2017-11-01 Thread Michel Godron

Prière de me désabonner

M. Godron
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Re: [Fis] Principles of Information

2017-10-07 Thread Michel Godron
The "citations from Aristotle, Plato, Ortega, Leibnitz," are a 
particular type of IF "hypothetic assumptions". They cannot be 
falsifiable as the hypothesis of gravitional waves, but they may be 
discussed rationnally as starting points for principles and definitions 
of information.

Cordialement. M. Godron

Le 06/10/2017 à 18:26, Emanuel Diamant a écrit :

Dear FISers,

I have heartily welcomed Pedro’s initiative to work out some 
principles of information definition quest. But the upsetting 
discussion unrolled around the issue pushes me to restrain my support 
for the Pedro’s proposal.  The problem (in my understanding) is that 
FIS discussants are violating the basic rule of any scientific 
discourse – the IF/THEN principle.

We usually start our discourse with a hypothetic assumption (the IF 
part of an argument) which is affirmed later by a supporting evidence 
or by a prediction that holds under the given assumptions (the THEN 
part of the statement).

The universality of this principle was vividly demonstrated by the 
recent Nobel Prize for Physics awarding –

A hundred years ago, Albert Einstein has predicted the existence of 
gravitational waves, but only the construction of the LIGO detector 
(implementing the if-then principles) made the observation of 
gravitational waves possible.

Information will become visible and palpable only when an if-then 
grounded probe (or an if-then grounded approach) will be devised and 
put in use.

Until then – long citations from Aristotle, Plato, Ortega, Leibnitz, 
alongside with extensive self-citations, will not help us to master 
the unavoidable if-then way of thinking.

Sincerely yours,


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Re: [Fis] If "data = information", why we need both concepts?

2017-10-07 Thread Michel Godron

Dear colleagues

Loet thinks that "Nobody of us provide an operative framework and a 
single (just one!) empirical  testable prevision able to assess 

In my ecological work, I try  to know the relations between living 
organisms and their environment, and I use Brillouin's formula (and 
non-inferential statistics) to compute the "mutual information" between 
each species of plant or animal and  and each constraint of the 
environment. The testable prevision is, for example, the potential area 
of a species.

The book where that method is explained is written in french, but I 
could translate this example in english if you think that it could be 

Cordialement. M. Godron

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Re: [Fis] Heretic

2017-10-06 Thread Michel Godron

Dear colleagues

In order to know the relations between living organisms and their 
environment, I use Brillouin's formula (and its fundamental 
thermodynamical signification) to compute the information contained in 
biological structures and the probability of events.

It is written in french, but I could prepare an english version if you 
help me.

Cordialement. M. Godron

Le 04/10/2017 à 09:16, Loet Leydesdorff a écrit :

Nobody of us is able to provide an operative framework and a single 
(just one!) empirical  testable prevision able to assess "information".

Dear colleague,

One should not confuse the confusion on the list with the clarity of 
the concept information in information theory. This definition is 
operational (e.g., in bits). Your computer would not work without this 
definition (1 byte = 8 bits). The problem is that this definition of 
information as uncertainty is counter-intuitive.

The search for an intuitive definition of information has led to 
unclear definitions. In a recent book, Hidalgo (2015, at p. 165), for 
example, has defined “information” with reference “to the order 
embodied in codified sequences, such as those found in music or DNA, 
while /knowledge and knowhow /refer to the ability of a system to 
process information.” However, codified knowledge can be abstract 
and—like music—does not have to be “embodied” (e.g., Cowan, David, & 
Foray, 2000).

Beyond Hidalgo’s position, Floridi (2010, p. 21) proposed “a general 
definition of information” according to which “the well-formed data 
are /meaningful/” (italics of the author). Luhmann (1995, p. 67) 
posits that “all information has meaning.” In his opinion, information 
should therefore be considered as a selection mechanism. Kauffman et 
al. (2008, at p. 28) added to the confusion by defining information as 
“natural selection.”

Against these attempt to bring information and meaning under a single 
denominator--and to identify variation with selection--I argue for a 
dualistic perspective (as did Prof. Zhong in a previous email). 
Information and meaning should not be confounded. Meaning is generated 
from redundancies (Bateson, 1972, p. 420; Weaver, 1949; see 
Leydesdorff /et al./, 2017).



Bateson, G. (1972). /Steps to an Ecology of Mind/. New York: Ballantine.

Cowan, R., David, P., & Foray, D. (2000). The Explicit Economics of 
Knowledge Codification and Tacitness. /Industrial and Corporate 
Change, 9/(2), 211-253.

Floridi, L. (2010). /Information: A very short introduction/. Oxford, 
UK: Oxford University Press.

Hidalgo, C. (2015). /Why Information Grows: The Evolution of Order, 
from Atoms to Economies/. New York: Basic Books.

Kauffman, S., Logan, R. K., Este, R., Goebel, R., Hobill, D., & 
Shmulevich, I. (2008). Propagating organization: an enquiry. /Biology 
and Philosophy, 23/(1), 27-45.

Leydesdorff, L., Johnson, M., & Ivanova, I. (2017). Toward a Calculus 
of Redundancy: Signification, Codification, and Anticipation in 
Cultural Evolution. .

Luhmann, N. ([1984] 1995). /Social Systems/. Stanford, CA: Stanford 
University Press.

Weaver, W. (1949). Some Recent Contributions to the Mathematical 
Theory of Communication. In C. E. Shannon & W. Weaver (Eds.), /The 
Mathematical Theory of Communication/ (pp. 93-117.). Urbana: 
University of Illinois Press.

Loet Leydesdorff

Professor, University of Amsterdam
Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) ;
Associate Faculty, SPRU, University of 

Guest Professor Zhejiang Univ. , 
Hangzhou; Visiting Professor, ISTIC, 

Visiting Fellow, Birkbeck , University of London;

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Re: [Fis] TR: Principles of IS

2017-10-01 Thread Michel Godron

Le 30/09/2017 à 08:38, Christophe Menant a écrit :
1) The "increasing complexity from the Big Bang to us humans" and this 
increasing complexity is  local structuration founded on the 
functioning of non-isolated systems which use information as in Benard 
cells. Is it necessary to explain ?
2)  Yes, information is efficient only if it is more than a Shannon 
measure, but what word  other than "meaning" would you be correct for 
the information present in a book which enjoy your spirit ?

3) "energy=> matter => life => self-consciousness => are identical to 
the "increasing complexity from the Big Bang to us humans"

Cordialement. M. Godron
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Re: [Fis] Principles of IS

2017-09-29 Thread Michel Godron

Dear Pedro,

" Rafael and  Michel are talking more about principles as general 
concepts". It is not exactly  what I meant, because the general 
principles (for example the principle of identity or the principle of 
non-contradiction)  are not exactly  "concepts".

Yet I agree with "the connection between Euclidean geometry and 
politics, biology, etc. is factually impossible."

In " the panorama of biological information" we could include the 
thermodynamical information gained by photosynthsis, the structural and 
biochemical information used by macromolecules self-reproducting and by 
the division of cellules in epigenetics, the strucutural and bionomical 
information of vegetal and animal communities. and the formal 
information used by humans in economy.

M. Godron
Le 29/09/2017 à 12:55, Pedro C. Marijuan a écrit :

I also agree with Ji and John Torday about the tight relationship 
between information and communication. Actually Principle 5 was 
stating : "Communication/information exchanges among adaptive 
life-cycles underlie the complexity of biological organizations at all 
scales." However, let me suggest that we do not enter immediately in 
the discussion of cell-cell communication, because it is very 
important and perhaps demands some more exchanges on the preliminary 
info matters.

May I return to principles and Aristotle? I think that Rafael and 
Michel are talking more about principles as general concepts than 
about principles as those peculiar foundational items that allow the 
beginning of a new scientific discourse. Communication between 
principles of the different disciplines is factually impossible (or 
utterly irrelevant): think on the connection between Euclidean 
geometry and politics, biology, etc. I think Ortega makes right an 
interpretation about that. When Aristotle makes the first 
classification of the sciences, he is continuing with that very idea. 
Theoretical sciences, experimental or productive sciences, and applied 
or practical sciences--with an emphasis on the explanatory theoretical 
power of both physics and mathematics (ehm, Arturo will agree fully 
with him). I have revisited my old reading notes and I think that the 
Aristotelian confrontation with the Platonic approach to the unity of 
knowledge that Ortega comments is extremely interesting for our 
current debate on information principles.

There is another important aspect related to the first three 
principles in my original message (see at the bottom). It would be 
rather strategic to achieve a consensus on the futility of struggling 
for a universal information definition. Then, the tautology of the 
first principle ("info is info") is a way to sidestep that 
definitional aspect. Nevertheless, it is clear that interesting 
notions of information may be provided relative to some particular 
domains or endeavors. For instance, "propagating influence" by our 
colleague Bob Logan, Stuart Kauffman and others, and many other 
notions or partial definitions as well--I include my own "distinction 
on the adjacent" as valuable for the informational approach in 
biology. Is this "indefinability" an undesirable aspect? To put an 
example from physics, time appears as the most undefinable of the 
terms, but it shows up in almost all equations and theories of 
physics... Principle three means that one can do a lot of things with 
info without the need of defining it.

As for the subject that is usually coupled to the info term, as our 
discussion advances further, entering the "information flows" will 
tend to clarify things. The open-ended relationship with the 
environment that the "informational entities" maintain via the 
channeling of those info flows--it is a very special coupling 
indeed--allows these entities the further channeling of the "energy 
flows" for self-maintenance. Think on the living cells and their 
signaling systems, or think on our "info" societies. Harold Morowitz's 
"energy flow in biology" has not been paralleled yet by a similar 
"information flow in biology". One is optimistic that the recent 
incorporation of John Torday, plus Shungchul Ji and others, may lead 
to a thought-collective capable of illuminating the panorama of 
biological information.

(shouldn't we make an effort to incorporate other relevant parties, 
also interested in biological information, to this discussion?)

Best wishes--Pedro

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2017-09-23 Thread Michel Godron
I quite agree with Rafael's   "Ortega's view of Aristotle conceiving 
sciences (epistemai) as "uncommunicated" because based on different 
"principles" (archai) is, in my view, a misunderstanding. Aristotle is 
very careful in his starting (!) analysis of concepts (before 
delimitating / terminus their fields) having different meanings also in 
everyday language."

 Cordialement. M. Godron

Le 23/09/2017 à 09:23, Rafael Capurro a écrit :
Ortega's view of Aristotle conceiving sciences (epistemai) as 
"uncommunicated" because based on different "principles" (archai) is, 
in my view, a misunderstanding. Aristotle is very careful in his 
starting (!) analysis of concepts (before delimitating / terminus 
their fields) having different meanings also in everyday language.

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2017-09-23 Thread Michel Godron
actor of contemporary societies. And more 
"psychologically" this discipline has to put LIFE, both individual 
life and social life, at the very center of the sharing of meaning. A 
new way of thinking starting from specific information principles will 
liberate our limited intellects to more creative endeavors. It is time 
to quote Whitehead: "Civilization advances by extending the number of 
important operations which we can perform without thinking about them. 
Operations of thought are like cavalry charges in a battle —they are 
strictly limited in number, they require fresh horses, and must only 
be made at decisive moments."

Best wishes--Pedro

El 20/09/2017 a las 17:46, Michel Godron escribió:

My remarks are written in red

Bien reçu votre message. MERCI. Cordialement. M. Godron
Le 20/09/2017 à 13:54, Pedro C. Marijuan a écrit :

Dear FISers,

Many thanks for all the comments and criticisms. Beyond concrete 
agreements/disagreements the discussion is lively, and that is the 
main point. It is complicate pointing at some fundamental, ultimate 
reality based on disciplinary claims. Putting it differently, the 
hierarchies between scientific disciplines were fashionable 
particularly in the reductionism times; but now fortunately those 
decades (70s, 80s) are far away. Actually, the new views taking 
shape are not far from the term "knowledge recombination" that 
appears in some of the principles discussed. Modern research could 
be typified by being: curiosity-led, technologically driven, 
multi-scaled, interdisciplinary, and integrative (paraphrasing 
Cuthill et al., 2017). Contemporary philosophers like John Dupré 
have dealt with some soft "perspectivism" but they do not deal with 
the disciplinary recombination rigorously. I think this is one of 
the main concerns of our nascent info-science.
Rafael in his message enters into some undergrounds of the idea of 
Principles/Methods/Explanations in the way Ortega discusses it for 
Leibnitz. That book is particularly dense, and I am not aware of 
interesting synthesis about it. One of its early claims is that 
Principles have to be evident (intuitive for Husserl), useful for 
verification and for the construction of logical proofs, and further 
they  have to open "new ways of thinking" ("modos de pensar" for 
Ortega).I fully agree.  For Leibnitz, according to Ortega, "thinking 
is proving" so the classical emphasis was on the logical power of 
principles. Leibniz has built une "combinatoire" calculable .But 
their capability to support an inspiring new way of thinking was 
ignored or just left implicit. Leibniz has largely developed new 
ways of thinking, mainly in his /Théodicée//./ ! And this is a big 
problem not only in our field but in many multidisciplinary 
endeavors: excellent research ideas are accompanied by really vulgar 
"metaphysics" (or better, metadisciplinary views). See for instance 
the Big Data research on so-called "social physics". Or the 
excellent book on "Scale" recently published (great at climbing from 
atoms to cells, organisms, enterprises, and cities; but really poor 
in the multifarious information/communication underlying worlds). 
The book /Ecologie et évolution du monde vivant /showed how 
Brillouin's  information helps to understand  Life at all scales by 
self-organization. Would you like that I send two or three pages 
explaining that in my poor english ?
Anyhow, these are superficial comments inspired by the many 
excellent messages exchanged. There is a self-organization of the 
discussion taking place, and it is nice that we are concentrating 
discussion on the 3 first principles, somehow devoted to information 
per se. Once we smash these topics, we may go for the biologically 
related (principles 4-6), later on for the recombination and ecology 
of knowledge (principles 7-9), and finally for the ethical goals of 
our new science efforts, as Joseph has commented (principle 10).

Best whishes to all

The El 19/09/2017 a las 11:30, Pedro C. Marijuan escribió:

 Mensaje reenviado 

Asunto: Re: [Fis] PRINCIPLES OF IS
Fecha:  Tue, 19 Sep 2017 09:21:51 +0200
De: Rafael Capurro <>
Para:   Pedro C. Marijuan <>

Dear Pedro,

a short comment to your intro to the 10 principles: I very much 
agree with your views (following Ortega) that information science 
can be conceived as a multifaceted or "multifarious" network of 
concepts and theories dealing phenomena partly related partly not 
(yet) related with each other for which we need different 
languages/concepts and 'translations' and kinds of calculations 
also with regard to their goals and 'utility'.

If this makes sense, then we should try to develop some kind of 
'principles' or 'archai' in the Greek sense, i.e., of 'initi

Re: [Fis] Is quantum information the basis of spacetime?

2016-11-04 Thread Michel Godron
I may understand why in "quantum foundations" nobody can define 
rigorously the basic term "information".

But, in agreement with Progogine, Brillouin, etc. information mays be 
defined rigorously in macro -systems.

I could explain more in french.

Cordialement. M. Godron

Le 04/11/2016 à 09:17, Andrei Khrennikov a écrit :

   Dear all,
I want to comment so called information approach to physics, by speaking with 
hundreds of leading experts
in quantum foundations, I found that nobody can define rigorously the basic term 
"information" which is so widely
used in their theories and discussions, the answers are as "information is the basic 
entity" which cannot be defined
in other terms. Well, my impression is that without novel understanding and definition of 
information all these "theories"
are practically empty, well very good mathematical exercises. May be I am too 
critical... But I spent so much time by trying
to understand what people are talking about. The output is ZERO.

all the best, andrei

Andrei Khrennikov, Professor of Applied Mathematics,
Int. Center Math Modeling: Physics, Engineering, Economics, and Cognitive Sc.
Linnaeus University, Växjö, Sweden

From: Fis [] on behalf of Gyorgy Darvas 
Sent: Thursday, November 03, 2016 10:23 PM
To: John Collier; fis
Subject: Re: [Fis] Is quantum information the basis of spacetime?

The article describes very really the conflicting attitudes. Interesting to see 
the diverse arguments together.
I agree, some think so, some do not. I do the latter, but this does not make 
any matter.

On 2016.11.03. 19:52, John Collier wrote:
Apparently some physicists think so.

John Collier
Emeritus Professor and Senior Research Associate
Philosophy, University of KwaZulu-Natal

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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication

2016-10-28 Thread Michel Godron

Merci pour cette vision très large de ce qu'est l'économie.

Au delà de la musique suggérée par Ilya Prigogine, il a maintenat été 
montré que l'économie, comme l'écologie, est un système de gestion de 
l'information qui donne des réactions pour maintenir le sytème en 
équilibre. Malheureusement, cette démonstration est esquissée en anglais 
seulement dans /Landscape Ecology/.

M. Godron

Le 26/10/2016 à 16:07, Francesco Rizzo a écrit :

Caro Mark,
non conosco il pensiero dell'economista che Tu mi indichi. cercherò di 
superare questa lacuna. Tuttavia, tra l'economia e la storia vi è una 
differenza di fondo: l'economia è una scienza mediatrice, la storia è 
una scienza federatrice. Alla domanda "Che cos'è l'economia?" si può 
rispondere in tanti modi. Per me l'economia è un pensiero che tende a 
realizzare il massimo risultano col minimo costo. Anch'io adotto la 
teoria della probabilità soggettiva di J. M. Keynes e ritengo che i 
sistemi economici siano fondati sui valori normali dal punto di vista 
soggettivo. Suggerisco inoltre, come ha fatto Ilya Prigogine, di 
assumere il paradigma della musica come base dell'intera scienza. 
Compresa quella economica. Tutta la mia vita è stata dedicata alla 
ricerca della "Nuova economia". Quindi è giusto comunicarlo, senza 
alcuna presunzione o superbia. Ho inventato davvero una una nuova 
concezione economica. Complimenti per la tua capacità comunicativa e 

Un abbraccio.

2016-10-26 13:21 GMT+02:00 Mark Johnson >:

Dear Jose, Francisco and Pedro, (Pedro - please could you forward if
the server won't do it?)

First of all, thank you Jose for pointing out this news story. It's
interesting to reflect that Alan Sokal's hoax of 1996 (which is
similar) was specifically directed at a discourse which he deemed to
be unscientific (postmodernism). This one is a nuclear physics
conference and clearly, nobody cares about the science - this is
about money, status and ego: I'm not sure Sokal could see the full
extent of this in the 1990s.

Francisco, I agree with you about not tarring everything with the same
brush. On the other hand, I think it is important not to stop asking
fundamental questions, not least "What is economics?". Even great
economists like Hayek and Von Mises were not convinced about its
subject matter (they thought it should be "Catallactics" - the science
of exchange) - and they were even less convinced by the maths! I do
recommend Tony Lawson's work for a broader perspective on economic

Pedro, thank you for a very elegant summary of the complexities of the
"science system". I like the study of the nature of information
because, rather like cybernetics, it digs away at the foundations of
things. There is of course a practical level where we publish papers
(which few read) and fall asleep (or get drunk) at conferences (!).
But I am arguing that what we think happens in the "brownian motion
chamber" of face-to-face communication isn't as impenetrable as we
might have thought (Bateson got this) , and that it is profoundly
connected not only to what we do with technology, but to the
pathologies of communication, marketisation and inauthenticity that
Sokal and others point to. This partly falls into the domain of the
phenomenologists (Alfred Schutz is important in covering this
territory), but also into the domain of artists who communicate in
powerfully in different kinds of ways. There's more work to do here.

As a very speculative contribution to this, I've done one more video
which is an attempt to summarise my argument and tie it to an example
of musical communication (a Bach fugue). Alfred Schutz wrote a
wonderful paper on music called "Making Music Together"
 - Loet told me about this
ago, and it's one of the few really great academic papers I know). I
don't mention Schutz in the video, but I do use John Maynard Keynes's
remarkable treatise on probability from 1921.

I argue that at the root of our communication practices lie
assumptions about 'counting' and 'similarity': we make assumptions
about things being the same, we count references (but one reference is
not the same as another!), etc; in scientific practice, we make
connections between like-observations and causal explanations - all
the while losing sight of the possibility that it is us who impose the
order of similarity on things. I've found Keynes's idea of 'negative
analogy' (see video) useful for looking at this differently, and to
explain the patterns perceived in music. I've found understanding this
helpful to understand that the "Brownian motion" may also be like
this. The process depends on multiple 

Re: [Fis] Scientific communication

2016-10-26 Thread Michel Godron

Dear friends,

Could you precise the  "deep questions about Shannon and probability" 
which remain ?
Are they so deep with Brillouin's information which is very useful for 
my ecology problems ?

M. Godron
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Re: [Fis] An Agenda of Control

2016-07-28 Thread Michel Godron

my replies are in red

Bien reçu votre message. MERCI. Cordialement. M. Godron
Le 27/07/2016 à 13:23, Pedro C. Marijuan a écrit :

Dear Joseph,

I finally went through that video, in part stimulated by your critical 
comments. My impression, particularly at the beginning of the talk, 
was positive: that the fundamental physical reality might partake of a 
similar organization to life is quite congruent with the 
"informational" point of view.
I quite agree, and the first  chapter of /Ec//ologie et Evolution du 
monde vivant /explains why "Life is a transmission of information" 
including thermodynamical entropy.
I was strongly reminded of Michael Conrad's: "When we look at a 
biological system we are looking at the face of the underlying physics 
of the universe." This was in Madrid 1994, at the foundational 
conference of FIS. Well, perhaps some aspects of the last part of that 
talk were not so well focused in my view, but at least always appeared 
open to argumentation if I properly interpret the style and the 
context. Does a not so well-solved part destroy a whole direction of 
thought? I think we must be open to the give and take, and contribute 
to salvage the best parts of interesting speculations (if that's the 
case here), even for our own intellectual interest. Couldn't our own 
common fis enterprise be toughly criticized in similar grounds? Just 
to conclude, I am reminded of one of the most famous short essays by 
philosopher Ortega y Gasset, it was about the "frame", just the frame 
of any painting ("Meditación del Marco" was the title in Spanish). 
Sholarship is able to create exciting reflections/discussions... on 
So, addressed to all FIS colleagues, why we don't accept this new 
discussion challenge?

I should be glad to participate !
Could you tell me if another french scientist partipates to FIS ?
M. Godron

Friendly regards

El 13/07/2016 a las 19:15, Joseph Brenner escribió:

Dear Pedro,

Most of us would agree that standard Western science does not give a 
complete answer to questions about life and mind. As we try to seek 
better foundations in general and for information science in 
particular, we may be able to benefit from knowledge resources which 
have not been fully exploited, those of the 'Past' and those of the 
‘East’. I myself have written a paper suggesting that a metalogical 
rejunction is possible in which logic recovers its original status as 
inclusive of all other disciplines. As Brian Josephson writes in the 
Abstract of one of his lectures, “Eastern mystics may have relevance 
to scientific understanding.” Fritjof Capra explored such parallels 
in his important 1967 book /The Tao of Physics./However, many 
interpretations of what mysticism is are possible.

There is a further major /caveat /to keep in mind: there are 
different ways of understanding “what is missing” in science (see 
Terence Deacon’s discussion of information) and what kind of 
additions could be made. On the one hand, we may legitimately 
associate quantum fluctuations with Indian (not Eastern) ideas of 
things continuously moving in and out of existence. On the other, as 
we have discussed in connection with Conrad’s ‘fluctuons’ at least 
once in the FIS Group, it may NOT be correct to say that such 
fluctuations are or can carry meaningful information.

Recent postings to the FIS list have been made by people associated 
with a project embedded in a major university (Cambridge, UK), the 
“Matter-Mind Unification Project”, now the “Theory of Condensed 
Matter Group” which Josephson has directed. This effort has sought 
and still seeks to incorporate doubtful, self-confirming forms of 
Western thought and activity. Personally, I do not wish to be 
associated with the Circular Theory of Ilexa Yardley, in which “the 
core dynamic is the conservation of a circle”, which is a 
misunderstanding of dynamics. I do not wish to accept nature as 
controlled by some “Master Algorithm”, any more than I do Peircean 
Thirdness. I do not wish to be associated with paranormal phenomena, 
cold fusion and observer created reality, all of which are part of 
Josephson’s project.

A characteristic of this thought is its dogmatism of completeness, a 
theory of everything, in which things are linked by a “subtler 
dimension which we have identified with the Platonic realm” 
(Yardley). One might argue that the Tao is also a theory of 
everything that also sees things linked in a way different from that 
of, say, chemical bonds. The major difference is that understanding 
the Tao does not require abrogating science in order to replace it by 
a self-serving ideology. Deacon has characterized the ‘homunculi’ and 
‘golems’, disguised as physical principles, that interfere with 
thought; ‘wishful thinking’ is the most charitable term that can be 

Other FIS members may find these ideas harmless, perhaps even 
amusing. I consider them perversions of thought by people with an 
agenda of 

Re: [Fis] Cultural Legacy Redux (Freewheeling Speculation)

2016-07-18 Thread Michel Godron

Bien reçu votre message. MERCI. Cordialement. M. Godron
Le 17/07/2016 à 20:21, Loet Leydesdorff a écrit :

Dear Michel and colleagues,

I agree that adaptation is not specifically human and that "humanity's 
main adaptive role" is not to be defined as "information".

I agree also !
The best candidate for a spefically human is probably, in my opinion, 
"double contingency": Ego expects Alter to entertain expectations as 
s/he does herself.
Very interesting. I agree, but two birds who sing to find a candidate to 
copulation has also expectations.
expectations can be exchanged (for example, in language), and also be 
codified at the interpersonal level (for example, in legislation or in 
scholarly discourse).

How does this relate to information? In my opinion, the dynamics of 
meaning are driving cultural evolution.

I agree also !
Information is needed at the bottom providing the variation. The codes 
of communication -- for example, in discourse among biologists 
(Pedro!) -- operate as next-order selection mechanisms.

What is exactly the role of selection in this process ?
These selection mechanisms are not "objective" or observable, but can 
be expected to operate and be hypotesized; for example, in a sociology 
of communication. We have access to these discourses infra-reflexively.


On Sat, Jul 16, 2016 at 4:42 PM, Michel Godron < 
<>> wrote:

You wrote :
"First, humanity’s MAIN ADAPTIVE ROLE is “information,” if someone
questions that fact _I invite you to post your view _and I will
happily “reply.

My reply is  (in red) :
O K but I am not sure that the profound reason why it is true is
clear for every one : this constatation "humanity’s MAIN ADAPTIVE
ROLE is information,”  (or "information is the main way to adapt")
is true also for _any living being_, because the basic functioning
of Life is a tranmission of information. That information is
necessary for any living being to adapt to its environment in a
cybernetic system (which was not well understood by von
Bertalanffy cf. Fritjof Capra p. 48).

 I could explain this with more details, if you want, for each of
the six main scales (molecules in a cell, genetics with DNA,
epigenetics, vegetal and animal communities, landscapes, humanity).

M. Godron

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Loet Leydesdorff
Professor Emeritus, University of Amsterdam
Amsterdam School of Communications Research (ASCoR) <>;

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Re: [Fis] Cultural Legacy Redux (Freewheeling Speculation)

2016-07-16 Thread Michel Godron

You wrote :
"First, humanity’s MAIN ADAPTIVE ROLE is “information,” if someone 
questions that fact _I invite you to post your view _and I will happily 

My reply is  (in red) :
O K but I am not sure that the profound reason why it is true is clear 
for every one : this constatation "humanity’s MAIN ADAPTIVE ROLE is 
information,”  (or "information is the main way to adapt") is true also 
for _any living being_, because the basic functioning of Life is a 
tranmission of information. That information is necessary for any living 
being to adapt to its environment in a cybernetic system (which was not 
well understood by von Bertalanffy cf. Fritjof Capra p. 48).

 I could explain this with more details, if you want, for each of the 
six main scales (molecules in a cell, genetics with DNA, epigenetics, 
vegetal and animal communities, landscapes, humanity).

M. Godron
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Re: [Fis] Essential Core?

2016-07-09 Thread Michel Godron

in red

Cordialement. M. Godron
Le 08/07/2016 à 21:24, Alex Hankey a écrit :
Shannon was dealing with the problem of mutually compatible encodings 
such as comes up in the theory of cyphers etc, and arises in the 
control of machines a la Wiener. He adopted the term 'Information 
Theory' at the suggestion of Jon Von Neumann, and everyone accepted 
the appellation.

What an encoding means, and how you interpret it, is, from this 
perspective, a largely secondary question. What decision(s) do you make?

Wellington referred to the key message that enabled him to win one of 
his battles in the Peninsular War (Salamanca if i remember rightly) as 
'an intelligence'.

I would suggest (albeit as an outsider) that these terms should be 
allowed to stick. The quantified mathematical physical vehicle is 

I quite agree

while the interpreted message on the basis of which decisions are 
taken - 'Fight' (as in Wellington (then Sir John Wellesley)'s case), 
or 'Flight' (as in the case of the French Marshal opposing him) is 

Then 'intelligence' equals 'information' PLUS the semiotic / semantic 
I quite agree, and the most useful french name for the semiotic 
component is "sens"

BUT the quantified 'information' concept tells you precisely the 
number of _independent_ decisions a given amount of _information_ can 
give rise to.

In light of these thoughts, please can anyone tell me the following. 
The above discussion has slithered into a discussion that implicitly 
includes 'purpose' - teleology is implied in this transition from 
information to intelligence.
This point is very important : it is in our mind that the semiotic 
component may have a finality, and "sens" which is linked with 
orientation-direction gives à place to finality..

Yet teleology is always said to be inconceivable from the perspective of 
causality in physics. And even in quantum theory, no one has resolved 
this issue as far as I know.
The difference between teleology and teleonomy have then to be 
discussed, if you like.

On the other hand, the discussions of semiotics, particularly 
'Cyber-semiotics', aired in this group earlier by Soren Brier, are 
redolent with teleological implications. So WHAT IS GOING ON?

Do these thought lead anyone to any constructive comments?

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Re: [Fis] Essential Core?

2016-07-08 Thread Michel Godron

My responses are in red

Bien reçu votre message. MERCI. Cordialement. M. Godron
Le 08/07/2016 à 14:42, Pedro C. Marijuan a écrit :

Dear FIS Colleagues,

Some brief responses to the different parties:

Marcus: there were several sessions dealing with info physics, where I 
remember some historical connotations with mechanics emerged. Mostly 
1998 and 2002 chaired by Koichiro Matsuno and 2004 by Michel 
Petitjean. Afterwards the theme has surfaced relatively often. About 
the present possibilities for a UTI, my opinion is that strictly 
remaining within Shannon's and anthropocentric discourse boundaries 
there is no way out.
Yes, but it is not the same  with  Brillouin's information : I could 
send to you a text in French which gives a demonstration of the 
convergence between  that information and thermodynamical neguentropy. 
Since twenty years, I did not find an english review which was 
interested by this problem, because I am biologist and the biological 
reviews were not interested.
I do not think that machine communication is going to advance the 
generalization either (but who knows? In conjunction with 
computational neuroscience and the "Bayesian" brain we may have 
surprises). Actually, my personal bet is for reconsidering the 
evolutionary origins, attending to the infrastructure of our cellular 
communication and to the bacterial origins of everything. I think we 
share some parts along this exploratory way, at least the curiosity.
Yes, the bacterial origins of everything is clear, but it is possible to 
work with the Brillouin's information present at others scales, It was 
used in an imperfect way in Forman & Godron /Landsca//pe //ecology/ 
(1986, Wiley).

To Loet, bacteria never apologize (not much different from some 
humans, eg politicians) but chimps often do ("grooming" after 
conflicts, with the winner offering peace to the defeated). The 
restrictive use of the term communication as proposed is contrary to 
the existing body of research, not only in biology. That "biology as a 
science itself is communication" is a strange argument.
Perhaps, but "Life is a transmission of information" is not strange and 
may be explained.
For the same token it is also observation, reflection, action, 
learning, experiment, tradition... and biology, and whatever science, 
is also a form of knowledge necessarily performed by a living 
subject--so all science is "biology" following with that strange 
argument. Finally, talking about "priorities" or hierarchies in mutual 
relationships between bodies of knowledge is out of our times; 
priorities have to be won by cooperation/competence within the global 
knowledge-recombination markets of science. Rather than closing doors, 
establishing multidisciplinary teams and directions is the new mantra.

I fully agree !
To Jerry, given that explicitly my approach to biological information 
/communication is based on molecular recognition, your generative 
approach to the nature of molecular information under the banner of 
electrical fields and atomic numbers looks congruent. It is a pity 
that so few biophysical approaches have been devoted to the general 
problematic of molecular recognition and molecular complexity.

I fully agree !

The way living cells rely on different informational architectures is 
a showcase of amazing multiplicity achieved from a few model-patterns. 
But it is very difficult establishing appropriate ontologies on the 
enormous functional complexity that emerges.  It relates to the last 
question of your message, I think.

To Francesco, thanks, I also believe that the relationship between 
economic and biomolecular "currencies" share a similar inner logic. 
Information has "value", indeed... And finally I should clarify that 
the universals scheme proposed around bacterial communication is a 
mere initial draft --it will get worst! Actually it crystallized 
during the first days of these discussions, thinking about the limits 
of the present mechanical-Shannonian communication paradigm.

Again, thanking the patience

El 07/07/2016 a las 18:44, Francesco Rizzo escribió:

Caro Pedro,
ho apprezzato moltissimo quella magnifica sintesi tra vita, 
auto-riproduzione e comunicazione con l'ambiente nella prospettiva o 
logica della moneta biologica. Problematica che ho affrontato più 
volte anch'io dal punto di vista della "Nuova economia". Le pagine 
120-130 di "Valore e valutazioni" (FrancoAngeli, Milano, 1999) ne 
sono una testimonianza.

Grazie e buone vacanze a Te e a Tutti.

2016-07-07 13:53 GMT+02:00 Pedro C. Marijuan 

Dear FISers,

[NOTE: I have just seen the new post from Marcus right now: I
should modify parts of the discussion below, but it is too much
work! Better left for a future exchange...]

About the a priori modeling of information --and meaning-- which
was the focus of Marcus' presentation, putting together