Re: [Fis] Is information physical?

2018-04-27 Thread
Dear Lou and All,
Mark Burgin deserves credit for having started a discussion in which 
contrasting points of view are clearly delineated, and where some new 
convergences can appear. Karl critiques my views as philosophy, but says that 
numbers support them. Arturo critiques Bruno's view of numbers, and I critique, 
in the same spirit, Arturo's unqualified reliance on the physical. "Otherwise 
we are doing philosophy and logic, not science".
But Lou says, "we must not sever philosophy and logic from science", where 
logic is independent of substrate.
I propose inverting this statement: "science must not be severed from 
philosophy and logic", but the logic cannot be what is usually understood by 
that term. The logic must NOT be topic-neutral and does not have to be 
dependent on precise and repeatable methods of measurement. In order to serve 
science, however, any such logic must be grounded in the underlying physical 
structure of the universe, about which we know much more today thanks to 
So Lou, pace Ludwig, with a logic of real process systems, one can say 
something more about significantly, that is for me dynamically, related pairs 
of opposites, namely, about the patterns of evolution or change.
The energetic and non-energetic aspects of information constitute such a pair 
of significantly related opposites.
Best regards,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 27/04/2018 - 12:35 (PDT)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Is information physical? OR Does the information exist
without the carrier?
Dear Folks,
I suspect I am past quota for the week. Apologies for that.
1. Work in logic and mathematics is scientific even if mathematicians and 
logicians sometimes deny being scientists.
2. Exact work is logical work coupled with precise and repeatable methods of 
3. The point about mathematics and logic is that it is independent of the 
substrate on which it is apparently performed. 
This is what I mean by statements such as “all computations exist independently 
of the existence of anything physical”.
You may say, yes, but computations or reasonings cannot occur without some 
I almost agree, but point out to you that since you use reasoning, concept and 
observation to conjecture and verify the properties of substrates 
(physical or even conceptual) there is a circularity here.
4. We come to know substrates such as physicality through reason and 
We come to know reason and measurement through the support of our physical and 
biological substrates.
We come to investigate both reason and physicality through each other and our 
ability to sense and feel.
Sensing and feeling and measurement are our terms for those places where 
concept and the physical arise together in our perception.
5. Beyond those places where significant related pairs of opposites that cannot 
be separated (complementarities) occur there is our (in at least my tradition)
personal reality of unity — whereof nothing can be said. 
6. We cannot sever philosophy and logic and reason from science, AND for 
science we must open to the largest possible access to precision and 
On Apr 27, 2018, at 4:38 AM, wrote:
Dear Bruno, 
You claim: "all computations exists independently of the existence of anything 
I never heard, apart probably from Berkeley and Tegmark, a more untestable, 
metaphyisical, a-scientific, unquantifiable claim.  
Dear FISers, we NEED to deal with c!  Even if information is (as many FISers 
suggest) at least in part not physical, we NEED to focus just on the testable 
part, i.e., the physical one.  And, even if physics does not exist, as Bruno 
states, at least it gives me something quantifiable and useful for my pragmatic 
Even if information is something subjective in my mind (totally untestable, but 
very popular claim) who cares, by a scientific standpoint?
If I say that Julius Caesar was killed by an alien, the theory is fashinating, 
but useless, unless I provide proofs or testable clues.  
Inviato da Libero Mail per Androidvenerdì, 27 aprile 2018, 10:10AM +02:00 da 
Bruno Marchal
Hi Lou, Colleagues,
On 25 Apr 2018, at 16:55, Louis H Kauffman  wrote:
Dear Krassimir and Mark,
Let us not forget the intermediate question:
How is information independent of the choice of carrier?
This is the fruitful question in my opinion, and it avoids the problem of 
assigning existence to that which is relational.
The same problem exists for numbers and other mathematical entities. Does the 
number 2 exist without any couples?
The mathematical answer is to construct a standard couple (e.g. { { }, {{}} } 
in set theory or two marks || in formalism) and say that 
a collection has cardinality two if it can be placed in 1-1 correspondence with 
the standard couple. In this way of speaking we do not have to 
assign an 

Re: [Fis] Is information physical? 'Signs rust.'

2018-04-26 Thread
Information refers to changes in patterns of energy flow, some slow (frozen), 
some fast, some quantitative and measurable, some qualitative and 
non-measurable, some meaningful and some meaningless, partly causally effective 
and partly inert, partly present and partly absent, all at the same time.

Best wishes,


>Message d'origine
>De :
>Date : 25/04/2018 - 08:14 (PDT)
>À :
>Cc :
>Objet : Re: [Fis] Is information physical?
>Dear Mark,
>I share your inclination, albeit from a different perspective.
>Consider the two statements:
>1. Information is impossible without a physical carrier.
>2. Information is impossible without the influence of that which does not 
>There is significant truth in both statements.
>I know that Claude Shannon is not a popular personality on FIS, but I
>admire how he first approached the subject. He began by quantifying,
>not information in the intuitive, positivist  sense, but rather the
>*lack* of information, or "uncertainty", as he put it. Positivist
>information thereby becomes a double negative -- any decrease in
>In short, the quantification of information begins by quantifying
>something that does not exist, but nonetheless is related to that
>which does. Terry calls this lack the "absential", I call it the
>"apophatic" and it is a major player in living systems!
>Karl Popper finished his last book with the exhortation that we need
>to develop a "calculus of conditional probabilities". Well, that
>effort was already underway in information theory. Using conditional
>probabilities allows one to parse Shannon's formula for diversity into
>two terms -- on being positivist information (average mutual
>information) and the other apophasis (conditional entropy).
>This duality in nature is evident but often unnoticed in the study of
>networks. Most look at networks and immediately see the constraints
>between nodes. And so it is. But there is also indeterminacy in almost
>all real networks, and this often is disregarded. The proportions
>between constraint and indeterminacy can readily be calculated.
>What is important in living systems (and I usually think of the more
>indeterminate ecosystems, rather than organisms [but the point applies
>there as well]) is that some degree of conditional entropy is
>absolutely necessary for systems sustainability, as it provides the
>flexibility required to construct new responses to novel challenges.
>While system constraint usually abets system performance, systems that
>become too efficient do so by decreasing their (mutually exclusive)
>flexibility and become progressively vulnerable to collapse.
>The lesson for evolutionary theory is clear. Survival is not always a
>min/max (fitt*est*) issue. It is about a balance between adaptation
>and adaptability. Ecosystems do not attain maximum efficiency. To do
>so would doom them.
> The balance also
>puts the lie to a major maxim of economics, which is that nothing
>should hinder the efficiency of the market. That's a recipe for "boom
>and bust". 
>Mark, I do disagree with your opinion that information cannot be
>measured. The wider application of information theory extends beyond
>communication and covers the information inherent in structure, or
>what John Collier calls "enformation". Measurement is extremely
>important there. Perhaps you are disquieted by the relative nature of
>information measurements. Such relativity is inevitable. Information
>can only be measured with respect to some (arbitrary) reference
>distribution (which is also known in the wider realm of thermodynamics
>as "the third law".)
>Remember how Bateson pointed to the overwhelmingly positivist nature
>of physics. Classical physics is deficient in its lack of recognition
>of the apophatic. Information theory cures that.
>Yes, information requires a material carrier. It also is intimately
>affected by and requires nonmaterial apophasis.
>Best wishes,
>On 4/24/18, Burgin, Mark  wrote:
>> Dear Colleagues,
>> I would like to suggest the new topic for discussion
>>Is information physical?
>> My opinion is presented below:
>> Why some people erroneously think that information is physical
>> The main reason to think that information is physical is the strong
>> belief of many people, especially, scientists that there is only
>> physical reality, which is studied by science. At the same time, people
>> encounter something that they call information.
>> When people receive a letter, they comprehend that it is information
>> because with the letter they receive information. The letter is
>> physical, i.e., a physical object. As a result, people start thinking
>> that 

Re: [Fis] I Dataism

2018-03-10 Thread
Dear Plamen,
I fully agree with your assessment of the downside of dataism. The necessary 
counterbalance, though, cannot in my opinion come through using binary 
operators (in the sense of Burgin/Brenner) such as capital and currency, where 
the movement of ideas is involved. There is an implied reduction of their 
properties which could vitiate your project. Transaction is in principle a good 
word, but it, also, must not be reduced to its lowest common economic 
The problem of the entire concept of "data-driven" research can be illustrated 
by referring to almost any recent copy of SCIENCE, which I am sure you all do 
from time to time. There are articles in my original field, chemistry, which 
describe incredibly complex multiply-sequenced reactions which were 
unimaginable when I was in university. They cannot be followed or their 
products exploited without the latest concepts in data handling. But there is a 
usually a little phrase "in fine print" to the effect that the system works 
"provided the reactions lend themselves to sequencing". As long as there is 
possibility of studying the chemistry of some molecular systems, literally, as 
individuals, it will be hypotheses about their reality that drive the research, 
not the data. 
Best wishes,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 10/03/2018 - 16:40 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Is Dataism the end of classical hypothesis-driven research 
and the beginning of data-correlation-driven research?
Dear Alberto, Pedro, and FIS Colleagues,
I think you got the message. All in all, an effort to organize 
scientific/intellectual potential in this forum and others of that kind into a 
kind of currency of a much higher value than money and other material and 
virtual resources on Earth deserves to be made. For me, the term "blockchain" 
is a bad word match for what this vision may really become in future.  [Maybe 
this is because of my past history from Eastern Europe, which made me feel 
"blocked" and "chained" for a long time of my life.] I would rather prefer a 
term that means unblocking and unchaining instead. But it should be certainly 
one thing: trusted information of a high value like patents, articles, 
discoveries, and discussions like those we have here can be ranked on, 
especially in the era of "fake news" and spam surrounding us. What we are 
talking about is not new. It only has a new "fashion" name. We can regard it as 
an extension of the internet, beyond the semantic one, an intelligent and 
active, but also trusted and self-organized network of humans, animals, plants, 
and technical devices, a welcome tool extending our senses to feel an entire 
ecosystem of evolving things. 
I have not read an article discussing "blockchain" in the above sense, maybe 
because like most phenomena in "dataism"  the term is currently only 
unilaterally exploited by the majority, held under the umbrella of finances, 
trade, insurances, contracts, encryption, etc. trivial "high-impact" fields, 
similarly to the unilateral understanding of AI, machine learning, and even 
quantum computing. They all are still understood (by the majority of our 
contemporaries) as means to maintain the status quo of science, economy, and 
society. But they can be also used to change the paradigm. If we stay in the 
loop accepting data-driven hypothesis and machine-generated theory only because 
we have sunk in the self-created ocean of data, this would mean to betray human 
mind at the end. On the other hand, we could use all these tools to empower and 
perpetuate human mind activities like those in this forum. Therefore, I wish to 
ask you if you would eventually support a future experiment for creating a 
"human mind capital" currency based on the trustfulness of the idea 
transactions in this forum. I think we can get even funding for this 
All the best.
___ ___ ___
Dr. Plamen L. Simeonov | |
2017 Towards a First Implementation of the WLIMES Approach in Living System 
Studies Advancing the Diagnostics and Therapy in Personalized Medicine
2017 JPBMB Focused Issue on Integral Biomathics: The Necessary Conjunction of 
Western and Eastern Thought Traditions for Exploring the Nature of Mind and 
Life  *
* free promotional access to all focused issue articles until June 20th 2018 

On Sat, Mar 10, 2018 at 11:46 PM, Alberto J. Schuhmacher 
Dear Plamen, Pedro and Collegues,
I am enjoying a lot this forum. 
I absolutely foresee Scientific Blockchain as a continuously growing list of 
scientific records and contributions (blocks) linked and secured using 
cryptography, somehow a kind of peer reviewed process. Would you be able to 
publish it in a journal based on their scientific value?

Re: [Fis] Meta-observer?

2018-03-03 Thread
Dear Pedro and All,
If I go back to Pedro's original note, I see a further aspect which might be 
worked into its discussion. There are no ideal meta-observers; we are all, to a 
certain extent, both meta-observers of the discussion and participants in it. 
This is not a simple vertical hierarchy. We move between these two roles, 
switching from actualizing one to the other. Recognition of both should help 
accomplish what I have tried to propose, namely, that we force ourselves to 
emphasize someone else's work in our proposals, rather than our own.
Best regards,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 28/02/2018 - 05:34 (PST)
À :
Objet : [Fis] Meta-observer?
Dear FISers,
Although I share Terry's concern, I do not think that
expostulating one's general framework is going to facilitate the
discussions. Perhaps opposite, as it will introduce a trend towards
generalization that fortifies the perspectival differences and makes
the rhetorics less adjusted to the concrete. The problem basically
resides in the persistent immaturity of the "information synthesis" so
to speak. Defenders of each approach advocate a different "observer",
charged in each case with their favorite conceptualizations. Taking
into account the apparent multitude of dimensions of information, and
its almost unfathomable reach, a "battery" of those observers has to
be in place. And an agile switching among the observers has to be
established. A sort of "attention" capable of fast and furious
displacements of the focus...  helas, this means a meta-observer
or an observer-in-command.
But what sort of reference may such a
metaobserver arbitrate? There is no conceivable book of rules about
the switching between heterogeneous disciplinary bodies.
I see
only one way, imitating the central goal of nervous systems: the
metaobserver should finally care about our collective social life. It
was Whitehead, as far as I remember, who put it: "to live, to live
better." In each level of organization it is the life cycle of the
concerned entities and the aggregates built upon them what
Information is not only about logic-formal
aspects. It is the bread and butter of complexity, that which allows
contemporary social life. 
So, in the coming session about
"dataism" we can also explore these themes.
Fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] The shadows are real !!!

2018-02-25 Thread
Dear FISers,
With all due respect to Krassimir, Sung, and his son, it is becoming a matter 
of scientific interest that statements by them and others to the effect that 
"systematic research of what the 'shadows' are a part" has not been done are 
made routinely. First of all, the logic in reality  of Lupasco about which I 
have been talking here for 10 years, includes a new mereology in which the 
dynamic relations between part and whole are set out for discussion. Second, 
while the 'diagram' of Merleau-Ponty may be considered interesting as 
philosophy and as a foundation of religious belief, I see no reason to include 
it, without heavy qualification, in a discussion of the foundations of 
information science.
Thank you,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 25/02/2018 - 15:04 (PST)
À :,
Objet : Re: [Fis] The shadows are real !!!
Hi Krassimir,
I agree with you that  "The shadows are real but only a part of the whole. What 
is needed
 is a systematic research from what they are part."
In my previous post,  I was suggesting that Shadows are a part of the 
irreudicible triad consisting of
Form (A), Shadow (B) and Thought (C).  The essential notion of the ITR 
(Irreducible Triadic realrtion) is that A, B, and C cannot be reduced to any 
one or a pair of the triad.  This automatically means that 'Shadow' is a part 
of the whole triad
 (which is, to me, another name for the Ultimate Reality), as Form and Thought 
are.  In other words, the Ultimate Reality is not Form nor Shadow nor Thought 
individually but all of them together, since they constitute an irreducible 
triad.This idea is expressed
 in 1995  in another way: The Ultimate Reality is the complementary union of the
Visble and the Invisible World (see Table 1 attached).  Apparently a similar 
idea underlies the philosophy of Maurice Merleau-Ponty (1908-1961), according 
to my son, Douglas Sayer Ji (see his semior research thesis submitted in 1996 to
 the Department of Philosophy at Rutgers University under the guidance of B. 
Wilshire, attached). 
All the best.

From: Fis  on behalf of John Collier 

Sent: Sunday, February 25, 2018 2:51 PM
Subject: Re: [Fis] The shadows are real !!!
Daer Krassimir, List
I basically support what you are saying. I understand the mathematics you 
presented, I am good at mathematics and studied logic with some of the best. 
However, and this is a big however, giving a mathematical or logical proof by 
itself, in its formalism, does
 not show anything at all. One has to be able to connect teh mathematics to 
experience in a comprehensible way. This was partly the topic of my 
dissertation, and I take a basically Peircean approach, though there are others 
that are pretty strong as well.
I fgenerally skip over the mathematics and look for the empirical connections. 
If I find them, then generally all becomes clear. Without this, the formalism 
is nothing more than formalism. It does not help to give formal names to things 
and assume that this
 identifies things, Often trying to follow up approaches kine this is a 
profound waste of time. I try to, and often am able to, express my ideas in a 
nonformal way. Some mathematically oriented colleagues see this as 
automatically defective, since they think
 that formal representation is all that really rigorously explains things. This 
sort of thinking (in Logical Positivism) eventually led to its own destruction 
as people started to ask the meaning of theoretical terms and their relation to 
observations. It is
 a defunct and self destructive metaphysics. Irt leads nowhere -- my PhD thesis 
was about this problem. It hurts me to see people making the same mistake, 
especially when it leads them to bizarre conclusions that are compatible with 
the formalism (actually,
 it is provable that almost anything is compatible with a specific formalism, 
up to numerosity).
I don't like to waste my time with such emptiness,
On 2018/02/25 6:22 PM, Krassimir Markov wrote:
Dear Sung,
I like your approach but I think it is only a part of the whole.
1. The shadows are real but only a part of the whole. What is needed is a 
systematic research from what they are part.
2. About the whole now I will use the category theory I have seen you like:
CATA => F => CATB => G => CATC
F ○ G = H
F, G, and H are functors;
Î CAT is the category of information interaction categories;
CATC Î CATII  are the categories of
mental models’ categories;
CATB Î CATII  is the category of
models’ categories.
Of course, I will explain this in natural language (English) in further posts.
Dear  Karl,
Thank you for your post – it is very useful and I will discus it in further 
Dear Pedro,
Thank you for your nice words. 
Mathematics is very good to be used when all know the mathematical languages.

Re: [Fis] New Year Lecture: Aftermath

2015-04-24 Thread
Dear Pedro, Dear Terry,
Always an optimist, I was convinced that there could be a convergence of your 
approaches and my Logic in Reality starting from the domain of absence. What 
Pedro refers to as functional voids, needs, gaps,
deficiencies (absences) are all predominantly negative aspects of systems that 
operate especially in living systems 'together' with their positive 
counterparts (presences). The evolution of these elements in the 
physico-chemical domain follows this logic, in which negative elements always 
are given the necessary ontological 'status'. They are the basis for the 
emergence of higher level entities, following Terry's hierarchies of dynamics.
Thus we may have, to further support a scientific biosemiotics, a dynamic logic 
to replace the analogies to human-level semiotic categories many of which 
(read: Peirce) do not instantiate the necessary ontological complexity and 
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 24/04/2015 - 10:22 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] New Year Lecture: Aftermath
Hi Pedro,
Indeed, you capture a fundamental point of my work. I entirely agree with your 
comment about living processes and their internal informative organization. 
The three exceedingly simple molecular model systems (forms of autogenesis) 
that I discuss toward the end of the paper were intended to exemplify a minimal 
life-like unit that—because of its self-reconstituting and self-repairing 
features—could both exemplify an origin of life transition and a first simplest 
system exhibiting interpretive competence. It is only because these autogenic 
systems respond to disruption of their internal organizational coherence that 
they can be said to also interpret aspects of their environment with respect to 
this. My goal in this work is to ultimately provide a physico-chemical 
foundation for a scientific biosemiotics, which is currently mostly exemplified 
by analogies to human-level semiotic categories.
Thank you for your thoughtful comments and your mediation of these discussions.
Sincerely, Terry
On Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 5:34 AM, Pedro C. Marijuan 
Dear Terry and colleagues, 
I hope you don't mind if I send some suggestions publicly. First, thank
you for the aftermath, it provides appropriate closure to a very
intense discussion session. Second, I think you have encapsulated very
clearly an essential point (at least in my opinion): 
Among these givens is the question of what is minimally necessary
 a system or process to be interpretive, in the sense of being able to
utilize present
intrinsic physical properties of things to refer to absent or
displaced properties or phenomena. This research question is ignorable
when it is possible to assume human or even animal interpreters as
part of the system one is analyzing. At some point, however, it
becomes relevant to not only be more explicit about what is being
assumed, but also to explain how this interpretive capacity could
possibly originate in a universe where direct contiguity of causal
influence is the rule.
My suggestion concerns the absence phenomenon (it also has appeared
in some previous discussion in this list --notably from Bob's). You
imply that there is an entity capable  of dynamically building upon  an
external absences, OK quite clear,  but what about internal absences?
I mean at the origins of communication there could be the sensing of
the internal-- lets call it functional voids, needs, gaps,
deficiencies, etc. Cellularly there are some good arguments about that,
even in the 70's there was a metabolic code hypothesis crafted on the
origins of cellular signaling. For instance, one of the most important
environmental  internal detections concerns cAMP, which means
you/me are in an energy trouble... some more evolutionary arguments
can be thrown.  Above all, this idea puts the life cycle and its
self-production needs in the center of communication, and in the very
origins of the interpretive capabilities. Until now I have not seen
much reflections around the life cycle as the true provider of both
communications and meanings, maybe it conduces to new avenues of
thought interesting to explore...
All the best!
Pedro C. Marijuan wrote:
Dear FIS colleagues,
Herewith the comments received from Terry several weeks ago. As I said
yesterday, the idea is to properly conclude that session, not to restart
the discussion. Of course, scholarly comments are always welcome, but
conclusively and not looking for argumentative rounds. Remember that in
less than ten days we will have a new session on info science and library
science. best --Pedro
Retrospective comments on the January 2015 FIS discussion
Terrence Deacon (
During the bulk of my career since the early 1980s I studied brain
organization with a 

[Fis] Fwd: Chuan's reply11 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE: Information Implementation Operator

2015-04-01 Thread
Dear All,
As tragic events repeatedly show, their origin is often not the lack of 
information in the simple sense, but the lack of structures (or structurations) 
in people capable of implementing it. These structures or capacities are also 
information in the complex sense, of course, but they also can be considered as 
a form of intelligence. I believe more attention should be paid explicitly to 
such structures to enable people to recognize and use them against the 
inevitable forces opposing that (keeping to a schedule, not 'frightening' 
people, etc.) Calling responsible behavior intelligent might facilitate the 
exercise of it.
Best regards,
Fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Chuan's reply11 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE - unless reaches

2015-03-28 Thread
Dear Josh, Pedro, Chuan and All,
In Josh's original note and the subsequent comments on it, I see a 
sensibility with which I fully empathize. I return, however, to four of 
expressions for I think require further discussion would be useful to 
explicate the complex relations involved. In reverse order, they are
as follows, with my comments interpolated:
the self-efficacious relationship between agents
and surroundings
JEB: a good expression of the need
for looking at content and context together;
the simultaneous dynamic between so-called parts
and wholes
JEB: ‘so-called parts’ suggests a
non-separability or overlap between parts and wholes, leading toward a
necessary new mereology, but see point 4; 
a both/and outcome
JEB: a necessary processual
antidote to an either/or ontology;
a paradox of simultaneity
JEB: here, the concept of
simultaneity has been ‘imported’ from classical logic and physics and I think
there is a better alternative. If classical simultaneity does not exist, as in
General Relativity and other absolutes also do not exist, there is no paradox
to be explained. In the case of time, the non-separability of time and space
has as a consequence that neither simultaneity nor succession is ‘pure’ but each
is partly the other, like parts and wholes. Thus the word ‘simultaneous’ in
point 2 is not required.
To repeat, these somewhat more formal statements are not
intended to denature the original insights but show that they can be related to
a  non-standard, non-binary logic that
better reflects, among other things, the dynamics of intelligent processes. 
you. Joseph
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 28/03/2015 - 11:59 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Chuan's reply11 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE - 
unless reaches
 /* Style Definitions */
{mso-style-name:Table Normal;
mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt;
Dear FISers,
Herewith I respond to late messages from several colleagues. I think they are 
pretty much interrelated.
First, from Chuan and Yixin, about the scope of intelligence science. In my 
view, the evolutionary dimension has been missing. No other kind of 
intelligence has existed until recent decades in this planet
 except that one existing in living beings--humans and many other animals. 
Cells themselves manifest intelligence, as I have argued several times in this 
list. All kinds of natural intelligence are finally due to the coupling between 
nucleic acids and their
 protein transcripts.  Then the essential “goal” becomes evident, as the 
maintenance and reproduction of the living organism. Failure to achieve that, 
particularly in front of another intelligence striving for its own goal 
–against the former subject- means
 but natural selection in action: disappearance of the subject. Intelligence 
derives from life and has to be checked by how it subserves life’s goals. 
Otherwise we leave “empty”, baseless, that very important goal aspect.
Our own intelligence, answering Joseph, often evaluates situations, problems, 
relationships, etc. by the concurrent action of two systems (echoing Daniel 
Kahneman): system 1, fast and dirty, highly emotionally
 laden, and system 2, slow and reflective, implying the most rational 
capabilities. The former is closer to our deeper personal goals as living 
entities, a faithful transmitter of what we need inside, and the second acts as 
a sort of high-level, discursive,
 logic intelligence. It is not easy integrating them plainly, but Poetry, I 
think, uses both in the most cohesive way, taking the best of both worlds –see 
the poems we have posted these days, and personally I find Machado’s poem 
rather astonishing vitally and
Then, Josh's views about the information paradox, are not easy to 

Re: [Fis] Chuan's reply10 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- poetry/mathematics/new science

2015-03-24 Thread
Dear Chuan and All,
I reproduce Lewis Carroll's parody mentioned in Chuan's note for people who are 
not very familiar with 'Alice': the parts of mathematics are
Ambition (Addition)
Distraction  (Subtraction)
Uglification (Multiplication)
Derision  (Division)
The humorous but also serious point is to see how the apparently abstract and 
inert operators also apply to complex cognitive individual and social  
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 24/03/2015 - 07:49 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : [Fis] Chuan's reply10 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- 
poetry/mathematics/new science
in the attachment, thanks!
Fis mailing list

[Fis] Fwd: Re: Chuan's reply8 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- Poetic Intelligence amp; its Tangent

2015-03-21 Thread
Dear Rafael, Dear Chuan, Dear Pedro and All,
I recall Pedro's comment in his note of 20.3 about the poem of Machado: he said 
it was 'neurophilosophical' as well as impressive as art. Here, Rafael suggests 
two necessarily related domains of the intelligence of poetry and intelligence 
as poetry. 
The principle I see here which justifies further (if need be) our discussion of 
these ideas as part of the Foundations of Information Science is that our 
thinking about them (the domains) involves our moving back and forth between 
them. I suggest that this movement is characteristic of informational processes 
in general and, accordingly, also part of their science. There is a 'logic' 
operative here that should be obvious.
The result is that my only criticism of Pedro :-) is his use of the word 
'tangent' in the title of this sub-track. I think we are at the heart of the 
discussion. We only now perhaps should move back (see preceding paragraph) 
toward a somewhat more formal expression of this form of 
intelligence-information science without denaturing it.  
Thank you and best wishes,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 21/03/2015 - 00:32 (PST)
À :,,,,
Cc :
Objet : Re: Chuan's reply8 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- Poetic 
Intelligence  its Tangent


Dear Chuan,
  thanks you for your delightful message.
  Maybe we should think about the difference between intelligence of
  poetry and intelligence as poetry.
  best regards

Dear Pedro, you are right, the IFS dose not
like attachment. The mail of 3-20 is returned. Let me use a
smaller jpg file and try again.  

Prof.em. Dr. Rafael Capurro 
Hochschule der Medien (HdM), Stuttgart, Germany
Capurro Fiek Foundation for Information Ethics 
Distinguished Researcher at the African Centre of Excellence for Information 
Ethics (ACEIE), Department of Information Science, University of Pretoria, 
South Africa.
Chair, International Center for Information Ethics (ICIE) (
Editor in Chief, International Review of Information Ethics (IRIE) 
Postal Address: Redtenbacherstr. 9, 76133 Karlsruhe, Germany
Voice: + 49 - 721 - 98 22 9 - 22 (Fax: -21)
Fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Chuan's reply8 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- an old poem as an echo

2015-03-19 Thread
Dear Chuan, Rafael and All,
There is a point in this exchange which perhaps should be addressed explicitly: 
everybody knows that people differ in their capacity to appreciate poetry 
emotionally. But we also differ in the capacity to appreciate the importance of 
poetry and art for science; this might be said to require an
'intelligence' of poetry. Perhaps someone else can express better what I am 
trying to say here.
Best wishes,
P.S. Admirers of Basho's haiku are directed to his far superior one to which 
this is a Californian response:
Warm cloudy day in Spring
Perched on a fresh leafy branch
A young tow-hee 
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 19/03/2015 - 08:35 (PST)
À :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Chuan's reply8 - THE FRONTIERS OF INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- an 
old poem as an echo


Dear Chuan,
  thanks for sharing this poem.
  Allow me to thank you also with these texts where I try to reflect
  on Dao and Information Society
  This is a Chinese translation:
  See also:
  See also my activities and presentations in China:
  best regards
  Rafael Capurro

Dear Stanley N Salthe and All,
 I am back to
  my duty from ten days hard work. Reliving from tired let
  me come back to the breakpoint – Stanley’s poem echo to
  Emily – and my draft reply as a new poem the same. I will
  finish and put out next mail – reply as another poem is
  “The Song of the Computer” and another poem on Internet.
  These two have send in our FIS years ago. And now “here a
  stay, and there a star”, now “ struggling to affect each
  other from our slowly burning bodies”, let us put these
  stars here again as a bunch of flower first.
 Let this as my
  echo. We can image a Science fiction: long long after,
  there is a country, there  set
  such an law : if you have not replied an poet’s poem at
  once, if delay five days, you are evil. So let me use an
  old poem echo your poem as soon as I finished my heavy
 Thanks for you
  poem. That is nice!
 More reply and
  the new later.  
 Best wishes,

发件人: Stanley N Salthe
发送时间: 2015-03-14 03:41:00
收件人: 赵川
主题: Re: [Fis] Chuan's reply7 - THE FRONTIERS OF
INTELLIGENCE SCIENCE-- a poem  the π-festival

Chuan, fis'rs
Here is a poem I wrote a couple of years ago:

internet fellowship 

is like --

being in heaven?


 disembodied spirits

  struggling to

 each other.

patterns of ‘on and off’ in
the waves and wires

like cells in an organism

 we’re disembodied spirits
launched from our slowly burning bodies,

   the fuel for our

like charcoal
for a flame

maybe this is (what) heaven
(is like)

   launched upon the
embers of hell.


On Fri, Mar 13, 2015 at 11:18 AM, 赵川

Dear FISers, 
 These days I
  am doing a heavy and important work that I can not
  finish my respond mail. Though there are many
  ideas emerge in my mind. 
 Let me put a
  poem of Emily DIKINSON in our dear discussion.   
Our share of nights to hear –
Our share of morning –
Our blank in bliss to fill 
Our blank in scorning – 
Here a star, and there a star,
Some lose their way!
Here a mist, and there a mist,
Afterwards – Day!


2015-03-10 Thread
Dear All,
I think that the approach of Chuan -  and that of Professor Zhong - to 
intelligence is characterized by its TIMELESSNESS. On the one hand, it is the 
newest, most forward-looking, taking into account the existence of the latest 
technology. On the other, it ties back, through Chinese culture, to 2015 BCE, 
when human intelligence was no different than it is today. Full value can then 
be given to the term 'Frontiers'.
The result of this scope is that, sometimes, the answers to the questions that 
are asked receive responses that are less precise than some might like. But 
this is a small price to pay for gaining a better overall grip on the critical 
concepts, in their historical and philosophical depth, to which Professor Zhong 
Best regards,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 10/03/2015 - 17:38 (PST)
À :,
Dear Dai,
Many thanks for your comments on the topics that I raised March 7 for FIS 
What I wanted to stress in my writing of March 7 is that the intelligence 
science and the related concepts like intelligence and wisdom are complex ones 
and therefore the traditional methodology featured with divide and conquer 
should be no longer suitable for intelligence science studies. At the same 
time, I also recommended to the intelligence science studies the new 
methodology, or equivalently the complex science methodology, that may be 
featured with the view of information, the view of system, the view of ecology, 
and the view of interaction between subject and object. In other words, what I 
would like to emphasized is the methodology shift from reductionism to complex 
science methodology for the intelligence science studies.
If we have the common understanding on the above points, I will feel satisfied 
very much.
As for the intelligence science itself and its related concepts like 
intelligence , artificial intelligence, advanced artificial intelligence, and 
wisdom, etc., they are too complicated for people to reach the agreement for 
the time being. We should make much more efforts for achieving better 
understandings on those complicated subjects.
Best regards,
Yixin ZHONG, 2015-03-11
- 回复邮件 -
发信人:Dai Griffiths
时间:2015年03月07日 21时53分22秒
Thanks for sharing these ideas, which, for me, raise a long standing

The concept of 'intelligence' emerged as an ascription of a qualityto 
humans and other animals who are capable of certain capabilities.That is to 
say, the starting point was the behaviours, and this ledto the definition 
of the concept which charactarised thosebehaviours. This seems to be what 
you are describing in your section1. The Concept of Intelligence, with the 
list (a) to (m).

In section 2, on the other hand, you speak of 'problem solving' as'the 
major embodiment of intelligence'. In this case, 'intelligence'is no longer 
a description of behaviours, but rather the entitywhich makes those 
behaviours possible. 

There is nothing wrong with hypothesising that an ascribed qualityis in 
fact a verifiable entity. We can go and look for evidence thatthe entity 
exists, and that is often how science moves forward. Butin the present case 
the concept of general intelligence (G), as acausal force rather than a 
statistical tool, is open to doubt. Ifthere is a general intelligence (as 
opposed to a collection ofcapabilities) which can be 'embodied' in problem 
solving, then anumber of difficult problems are raised. Where does this 
generalintelligence reside? What is it composed of? How is it deployed in   
 our problem solving and other aspects of our living?

Our understanding of this is complicated by our experience of day today 
interactions, in which we interact with people as wholes ratherthan a 
collection of individual capabilities. This gives us theintuition that some 
people have more of the quality of generalintelligence about them than do 
others. And in our language it isreasonable to have a word which refers to 
that impression which wehave, and that is how we use the word 
'intelligence'. But in ourscientific endeavours we need to be more cautious 
and critical, andaspire to making a distinction between observable 
mechanisms andascribed qualities (not that this is necessarily easy to 
achieve inmethodological terms). Because of this I am sympathetic to 
Steven'srequest for differentiation of the topics and types of inquiry. If  
  we do not go down this road then we should recognise the possibilitythat 
we will end up with a theory which is the equivalent of thephlogiston 
explanation for combustion.


2015-03-06 Thread
Dear All,
I do not agree with this characterization, not to say caricature of my position 
by Steven. To say that a problem is a language or cultural 'issue' is to fail 
to give value to what Chuan's position offers that is unique. If Steven wants 
precise differentiation, certainty, exact relations and exact this or that, 
then he has already missed the point and he can go elsewhere to find them.
Professor Zhong says, in relation to Chuan's work:
both intelligence science and information science need new methodology featured
by the view of information, the view of system, the view of ecology, and the
view of interaction between subject and object. This is also the methodology
that fits the needs for the multidisciplinary science, or complex science. It 
may be worth of stressing on that methodology
shift is critically important for both intelligence and information science
This approach, for me, means starting by making some very big allowances for 
what some of Chuan's offerings are, which at first sight appear as 
'unscientific'. It would be a big mistake, as she would be the first to admit, 
to say that they are the whole story, but we may learn from the way in which 
they are a part of it.
Best regards,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 06/03/2015 - 19:36 (PST)
À :
Cc :
I agree with Jerry and Joe - and I agree that, in part, this may be a language 
or cultural issue/challenge. 
I would like to see a few basic statements about the scientific epistemology 
involved in the approach. I want to see a separation of concerns. Right now I 
see a not entirely exhaustive bunch of topics (how would I or they know?) 
simply thrown into a bag labeled Intelligence Science.  While these topics 
may have a common basis (although this is not stated) together their 
relationships are uncertain. 
I am also concerned with the use of adjectives. For example, what, exactly, is 
the distinction between AI and Advanced AI? I do not understand this 
I encourage our Chinese friends to precisely differentiate their various topics 
and illustrate how they are related, stating the type of inquiry they propose 
and the nature of it (formal or experimental, for example). If there is a 
difference between Intelligence and Wisdom, exactly what is it and how are the 
two related? If emotion plays a role, is it critical, where does it fit, what 
difference does it make and how, exactly, does it occur? 
In short I feel that we need to agree on practices, exchange scientific 
glossaries and agree on terms.
On Fri, Mar 6, 2015 at 6:53 PM, 钟义信 wrote:
Dear Pedro,
Thank you very much for recommending Ms. ZHAO's good topic, intelligence 
science, for discussion at FIS platform. I think it very much valuable that Ms. 
ZHAO put forward to us the great challenge of methodology shift. The attached 
file expressed some of my understanding on this iuuse that I would like to 
share with FIS friends. 
Best regards,
Yixin ZHONG 
- 回复邮件 -
发信人:Pedro C. Marijuan
时间:2015年03月04日 19时58分15秒
Dear Chuan and FIS colleagues,
The scientific study of intelligence is quite paradoxical. One is 
reminded about the problems of psychology and ethology to create 
adequate categories and frameworks about animal and human intelligence. 
The approaches started in Artificial Intelligence were quite glamorous 
three or four decades ago, but the limitations were crystal clear at the 
end of the 80's. It marked the beginning of Artificial Life and quite 
many other views at the different frontiers of the theme (complexity 
theory, biocybernetics, biocomputing, etc.)  Also an enlarged 
Information Science was vindicated as the best option to clear the air 
(Stonier, Scarrott... and FIS itself too). In that line, Advanced 
Artificial Intelligence, as proposed by Yixin Zhong and others, has 
represented in my view a bridge to connect with our own works in 
information science. That connection between information processing 
and intelligence is essential. But in our occasional discussions on the 
theme we have always been centered in, say, the scientific 
quasi-mechanistic perspectives. It was time to enter the humanistic 
dimensions and the connection with the arts. Then, this discussion 
revolves around the central pillar to fill in the gap between sciences 
and humanities, the two cultures of CP Snow. 
The global human intelligence, when projected to the world, creates 
different disciplinary realms that are more an historical result that 
a true, genuine necessity. We are caught, necessarily given our 
limitations, in a perspectivistic game, but we have the 


2015-03-04 Thread
Dear Krassimir and All,
I think what Zhao Chuan is trying to do is essential for progress in 
Intelligence Science. We are all familiar with concrete scientific approaches, 
and no-one is challenging their on-going necessity. However, their limitations 
are also a scientific fact, and new qualitative perspectives, especially if 
they are rigorous as well as broad, are to be welcomed. I was aware of the new 
publication of Shi and I am sure Chuan has factored it into her approach. Thank 
you for the link, Krassimir, which is a useful one.
It is also a scientific fact that, roughly corresponding to the geographical 
limits of their territory, people have other forms of thought which co-exist 
with 'ours', in reply to the comment about geography. The Hopi Native 
Americans, living in a tiny area on three small mountains in the U.S. state of 
New Mexico, have an extraordinarily complex system of thought and concept of 
knowledge that we have much to learn from. It fits, among other things, the 
scientific criterion of reproducibility.
Having said that, I agree with Jerry and would urge Chuan to tell us more about 
the specific projects in which she and her students are engaged. 
Best wishes,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 04/03/2015 - 05:39 (PST)
À :,
Dear Chuan, Pedro, and FIS colleagues,
We need more concrete point of view to provide discussion.
Maybe it will be good to take in account the paper: 
Zhongzhi Shi. On Intelligence Science // International Journal of Advanced 
Volume 1, Number 1, pp.39-57, November, 2009.  
Intelligence Science is an interdisciplinary subject which dedicates to 
joint research on
basic theory and technology of intelligence by brain science, cognitive 
science, artificial
intelligence and others. Brain science explores the essence of brain, 
research on the principle
and model of natural intelligence in molecular, cell and behavior level. 
Cognitive science
studies human mental activity, such as perception, learning, memory, 
thinking, consciousness
etc. In order to implement machine intelligence, artificial intelligence 
simulation, extension and expansion of human intelligence using artificial 
and technology. Research scientists coming from above three disciplines 
work together
to explore new concept, new theory, new methodology. It will be successful 
and create a
brilliant future in 21 century.
The paper will outline the framework of intelligence science and present 
the ten big
issues. Research approaches will be pointed out. Finally the paper gives 
perspective for
the future.
Friendly regards
PS: Dear Pedro, please forward to FIS this message if it is 
stopped by spam filter.
-Original Message- 
From: Pedro C. Marijuan 
Sent: Wednesday, March 04, 2015 2:00 PM 
To: 'fis' 
Dear Chuan and FIS colleagues,
The scientific study of intelligence is quite paradoxical. One is 
reminded about the problems of psychology and ethology to create 
adequate categories and frameworks about animal and human intelligence. 
The approaches started in Artificial Intelligence were quite glamorous 
three or four decades ago, but the limitations were crystal clear at the 
end of the 80's. It marked the beginning of Artificial Life and quite 
many other views at the different frontiers of the theme (complexity 
theory, biocybernetics, biocomputing, etc.)  Also an enlarged 
Information Science was vindicated as the best option to clear the air 
(Stonier, Scarrott... and FIS itself too). In that line, Advanced 
Artificial Intelligence, as proposed by Yixin Zhong and others, has 
represented in my view a bridge to connect with our own works in 
information science. That connection between information processing 
and intelligence is essential. But in our occasional discussions on the 
theme we have always been centered in, say, the scientific 
quasi-mechanistic perspectives. It was time to enter the humanistic 
dimensions and the connection with the arts. Then, this discussion 
revolves around the central pillar to fill in the gap between sciences 
and humanities, the two cultures of CP Snow. 
The global human intelligence, when projected to the world, creates 
different disciplinary realms that are more an historical result that 
a true, genuine necessity. We are caught, necessarily given our 
limitations, in a perspectivistic game, but we have the capacity to play 
and mix the perspectives... multidisciplinarity is today the buzzword, 
though perhaps not well addressed and explained yet. So, your 
reflections Chao are quite welcome. 
Pedro C. Marijuán
Grupo de Bioinformación / Bioinformation 

[Fis] Fwd: Re: Fwd: Re: Concluding the Lecture?

2015-02-02 Thread
Dear All,

I would like to thank Terry for his detailed analysis of my comments on his 
work.  I should repeat that I consider his theory as a necessary part of any 
emerging theory of information and going beyond Shannon. I also commend him for 
indicating where it is 'incomplete' (sic), subject to differences of opinion as 
to what may be relevant from other approaches which have not been explicitly 
discussed in his paper.

One interesting place to start might be the following statement by Terry: Only 
the linkage between them (JEB: the molecular phenomena of the model) that 
constitutes autogenesis lacks a known empirical exemplar. It is an empirical 
question whether this can occur, and what conditions and types of molecules 
this would require. I see no physico-chemical reason to doubt this 

According to my view of real molecules as instantiating both actual and 
potential properties, the linkage between them does also. If this picture is 
correct, we have a correct way of looking at the phenomena themselves. We can 
then accept the value of the model, which does not violate the principle but 
ignores it, but not forget this additional principle when returning to reality. 

My view is, admittedly, dependent on acceptance of the reality of quantum 
entities and their most complex (non-Boolean) properties as the foundation of 
the dualisms at higher levels of reality. However, I believe I am not alone 
here. I therefore look forward to further discussions of Terry's approach to 
information in which the additional physics and its dynamic logic might be 
explicitly taken into account.

Many thanks again,


Message d'origine
De :
Date : 31/01/2015 - 00:10 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Fwd: Re: Concluding the Lecture?

Hi Joseph,

Indeed there is much more to discuss than I could include in this
already too long discussion paper. The related absence issues are of
course critical to my thinking. I value your continued feedback on
these issues as well.

I think you do a quite adequate job of restating the autogenesis
hypothesis in your first paragraph. I also agree with your comment
about the model of autogenesis being incomplete because it does not
specify the necessary stereochemical properties of the interacting
molecules, or for that matter the energy flux that is required to
drive reciprocal catalysis, the shapes and charges of molecules that
tend to self assemble into containers (like viral capsids), the
rate-coupling required for reciprocal catalysis and self-assembly to
be reciprocally supportive, and the entropy production of the whole
process, etc., etc. Yes, much simulation and lab work lies ahead.

I actually don't see a problem there, however, nor do I think this
results in circularity. Nothing at the molecular level smuggles in
properties that define information in the model. All that matters for
my purpose is that I am not postulating any unrealistic atomic and
molecular properties.

When Ludwig Boltzmann used an idealized thought experiment for
formulate his atomistic account of the 2nd law of thermodynamics with
particles that didn't even interact, it was sufficient to model the
general logic of entropy increase. No real atoms, no real physics,
just the logic of time and random change in position. The model
captured what was minimally necessary and no more. Yes, Gibbs and
others fine-tuned the account, adding the role of free-energy and many
dimensions of interactions, but Boltzmann's thought experiment laid
the foundation. So I don't consider the abstraction involved in the
autogenesis model to be an intrinsic fatal flaw. The question is
whether or not it is too simple, or whether it violates some basic
physico-chemical principles. I can't see how you can doubt that it is
a realistic model, since both component processes are well-studied
molecular phenomena with innumerable exemplars available. Only the
linkage between them that constitutes autogenesis lacks a known
empirical exemplar. It is an empirical question whether this can
occur, and what conditions and types of molecules this would require.
I see no physico-chemical reason to doubt this possibility.

Your question about qualitative signification and my concept of
work saving seemed to lead inexplicably into a comment about human
and social history. Lost me there. But you also seemed to suggest
that the autogenic model provided no fixed ground for making a
qualitative assessment (significance). I believe that it does.

In the autogenic model this depends on there being a fixed amount of
chemical work required to reconstitute an autogenic complex from a
specific state of disaggregation. This differential can be assigned a
finite repeatable value (again not specifying specific molecules).
This functionally defined threshold provides the reference value that
I argue is required for assessing the significance of information

[Fis] Fwd: Re: Concluding the Lecture?

2015-01-30 Thread
Dear Pedro, Dear FISers,

Terrence Deacon has made a passionate plea for the proper consideration 
of his approach to information science that his contribution merits. But this 
consideration is only possible if he is willing to accept that some of his 
positions may be contaminated with assumptions in a way that he correctly 
criticizes in others. As a specific example, we can all easily understand and 
agree that the incorporation of ‘homunculi’, that is, unproven mechanisms, as 
explanatory, should be avoided. In my view, however, Terry has a small army of 
homunculi at work (sic!) who insure that his processes of self-organization, 
self-reconstitution and ‘spontaneous’ self-assembly can take place! The 
finality of using his simulated autogenic systems is “a rigorous physical 
foundation upon which” future complex theories of information may be based. If, 
as I contend, Terry’s approach has failed to take into account the 
fundamentally dualistic physical properties of real systems, it is hard to see 
how it could do so.   

In his reply to Loet, regarding cognitive processes, Terry writes: “As I have 
said a number of times, my goal is not to deal with all aspects of the 
information concept, and certainly not at the level of human thought. I merely 
propose to dissolve the implicit dualism in our current concepts at the most 
basic level, so that for example it will be possible to develop a 
scientifically grounded theory of molecular biosemiotics.” No-one can argue 
with his first sentence, but the second has the implication that dualism at the 
most basic level in concepts should be absent when it is present in reality. 
Again, we can all reject the straw-man of mind-body dualism. But the dualisms 
that do exist in nature must be reflected in concepts or the latter are outside 
nature and outside science. The pair presence-absence is one of these that I 
have offered, so far without comment, as one of these. 

As a substitute for what is referred to as ‘the implicit dualism in our current 
concepts’, Terry seems to offer a repeated reliance on the Peircean categories 
as having explanatory power. I have discussed, accessibly, why these categories 
amount to epistemic classifications, a position that is in fact confirmed by a 
member of Terry’s group. Ontological approaches, which if looked at closely 
differ from the ones Terry correctly criticizes, are given a back of the hand 
dismissal that suggests that the writers may not be familiar enough with them 
to make the distinction.

A point of agreement between Terry and me is that a concept of quantum 
information should not be mixed with one of thermodynamic information. This 
does not mean, however, that the some of the dual aspects of quantum entities 
are not relevant for thermodynamic processes, including the properties, 
production and transfer of information. Terry is absolutely correct to question 
the so-called ‘it-from-bit’ theory of information in its simplest form. Again, 
however, alternatives are available at the heart of which is exactly the 
‘overlap’ between physics and information that Pedro calls for, e.g., those of 
Luhn and myself.

I think Krassimir has a good point in concluding that we have a problem of 
civilization and that all our efforts, scientific and philosophical, should be 
made with the common good at the center of our preoccupations. This is the 
theme of the Vienna Summit 2015. Information offers the ground on which 
standard physical and biological as well as social and psychological reality 
can meet. It is from the most complex, interactive, recursive aspects of these 
realities as well as from the simplest that we must learn. Thank you.

Best wishes,


Message d'origine
De :
Date : 30/01/2015 - 09:31 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Concluding the Lecture?

Thanks to Pedro and Bob for these last few comments. Indeed, like
Darwin in 1859 we are still just beginning to formulate one long
argument that will need to be progressively refined in the decades to
come. The question is where best to begin the task of synthesizing. I
too find the metaphor of searching for lost keys quite apropos, but I
would beg your indulgence while I add an elaboration to this metaphor
that sheds light on the perspective I have offered.

Yes, we must at first search close to the light, even though there we
will only find vague hints. But, importantly, as we cover more and
more territory we will discover that the light progressively
brightens. So long as we keep searching and don't walk out into the
dark too quickly, skipping over important territory in between, the
entire territory will become more and more thoroughly illuminated,
searchable, and familiar to us.

I believe that the light is brightest in the domain where we can see a
clear relation between the two quite different concepts of entropy and
the relationship of both to the concept 

Re: [Fis] Fwd: Re: Concluding the Lecture?

2015-01-30 Thread

In your discussion paper, you state that an interpretive process can only be 
adequately defined with respect to a process that is organized to maintain 
itself by repairing and reconstituting its essential form and dispositions - a 
teleodynamic process. I agree with this definition. Your model, further, is 
that of a theoretical two-component molecular system called an autogen that is 
capable of instantiating such, autogenic processes. The properties of the model 
molecules are stated to be those of real molecules – reciprocal autocatalysis 
and self-assembly and these processes are further stated to be self-organizing. 
The model, it is claimed, can analyze the relationships between the information 
medium properties, the work involved and the properties of the context, the 
environment or as you put it the system-extrinsic physical conditions.   

What I see as having been elided here is that in the real systems, but not in 
the model as described, one has the properties of the molecules that enable 
them to ‘self’-assemble in the first place. Unless these are taken into 
account, I claim that the models are incomplete. They require inclusion of the 
residual constraints (potentialities) at lower levels of molecular structure to 
avoid the danger of circularity. Further, there seems to be no place in this 
description of relationships for the non-algorithmic processes, for example 
qualitative signification (vs. the ‘amount’ of work saved), that are 
necessarily involved as soon as one leaves the level of abstraction of the 
model. These are well described on p. 10 as “the complex system of 
relationships” involving both human and social history. Wu Kun adds their 
potential states and calls the whole entity the informosome. This was the basis 
for the comment in my first note that I agreed with the mechanism but not the 

My comment about presence being a source of information as well as absence 
refers to your more complete treatment of information as an absential 
phenomenon in Incomplete Nature rather than to that in your discussion paper. 
In the latter, the concepts on p. 3 (inexistent properties) and on p. 10 
(information as being about an absent referent) should therefore be discussed 
in another thread.I therefore look forward very much to a further round 
of discussion of real systems using the tools you have provided. 

In this, however, I think there will be agreement between our approaches to the 
necessary dualism of information, despite the differences in language. My line 
is to search for the overlap/dynamic interaction between the two sides of the 
relationship and the chains of intermediating processes (Wu again) involved.

Best wishes,


Message d'origine
De :
Date : 30/01/2015 - 12:43 (PST)
À :
Cc :
Objet : Re: [Fis] Fwd: Re: Concluding the Lecture?

Thanks to Joseph for this spirited rejoinder, and to Krassimir for
reminding us that convergence is perhaps more likely to succeed than
any single-minded approach.

With Krassimir, I am in agreement. I have probably overstated the
priority of my own approach, even if I do believe it to be a best
middle ground from which to begin formalization. This is a big
challenge and I should celebrate the diversity of approaches more than
I have. This is my path, and I have taken this opportunity to make my
reasons for pursuing it clear. Like most of us, it is sent as a sort
of mating call, in case others might find interesting insights there

In response to Joseph, I would challenge you to specifically identify
my homuncular assumptions, demonstrate where the autogenic model makes
them, and deacribe in what ways you think that autogenesis is somehow
not physically realizable. I admit to being blind to any of these, but
I don't want to just convince you, I want to get it right. However, I
am not willing to live with unresolved dualisms. And I don't quite get
your comment about dualisms that do exist in nature and how you
connect this with my presence/absence perspective. Perhaps this has to
do with the fact that I am not satisfied that certain dualisms arising
from quantum theories are fundamental, rather than the result of
incomplete theory, and your own view which seems to embrace them. In
which case we may need to agree to disagree.

I am slightly perplexed and don't quite follow your implications
regarding the specific proposal made in this piece. The dualisms I am
hoping to resolve in this essay orbit around the difference between
physicalistic and semiotic uses of the information concept, and about
how this implicitly reifies Descartes' res cogitans / res extensa
dualism, with reference and significance on the former side of this
divide and Shannon information (and related uses in physics) on the
latter. You can read my view as arguing that this dualism cannot
merely be left as an unanalyzed assumption if we

Re: [Fis] fis Digest, Vol 581, Issue 8

2014-03-14 Thread
Dear Colleagues,
John Collier is sufficiently well-known and respected in his fields not to mind 
that one less good comment is attributed to him and allow its author, namely 
me, to take the credit for it ;-).
John P.'s response, to MY question, then, was as broad as it was useful, 
bringing out a clear tension between IT and non-IT perspectives. The situation, 
the need for work on the 'nebulous concept' of intelligence is similar to that 
in the effort of some people, in China and elsewhere, to define an Intelligence 
Science as opposed to Artificial Intelligence. And was not the start of 
Information Science by Pedro and Michael Conrad in part as opposition to 
information as (just) technology?
As those familiar with my positions will know, I am much more interested in 
non-IT-mediated Collective Intelligence (NITCI), which I agree exists provided 
one takes a process standpoint which is focused not only on outcomes but 
'upstream'. Here is where John P.'s reference to 'ability to perform' comes in 
for further analysis. In my conception, the existence of, and interaction 
between, collective and individual processes is not only possible but a basic 
logical and ontological feature of intelligence in general. Finally, although 
(showing my age), I would not have expected that it would be necessary to 
repeat that culture can exist independently of software, I was glad to see that 
a difference between them is acceptable.
One possible next step would be to define both Individual and Collective 
Intelligence in terms of the cognitive process of CREATIVITY. Absent this, the 
most powerful capability for Promethean outcomes will not be intelligence in my 
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 14/03/2014 - 15:34 (PST)
A :
Objet : Re: [Fis] fis Digest, Vol 581, Issue 8
Dear FIS'ers,
Thanks so much to all of you for your wonderfully thought provoking comments, 
questions, and feedback!
In this note, I'll attempt to address some of the queries/comments that have 
been shared.  
John Collier says:
[As I understand it, John?s approach is specifically based on using 
Information Technology mediated groups of agents to derive the existence of a 
collective intelligence, but I would like it to be explained in what this 
intelligence consists. In other words, are we dealing with knowledge-as-such 
(stored and shared data) or capability for effecting change. John P. does say 
that crowd capability is directed at processing knowledge, but does this 
exhaust the content of the concept of intelligence as capability?]
This is a great question John, and one that has largely been ignored in the 
field, or is at least still contentious in my mind. 
In a sense, the avoidance of this issue signals that this domain is still 
immature, and further that there is opportunity to shape the domain in this 
respect, if one were so inclined. 
The Woolley  Malone et al. crew (in the Science 2010 paper) focus on the small 
group level (very small!), and define CI as a group ability to perform. This 
intimates a process model of CI. Much like Steven I'm not a big fan of this 
work, principally because there is no place for IT in this notion of CI, and it 
seems to me that communication is driving all outcomes (which I think is 
essentially Loet's point too). It does reveal, or rather reminds us, how very 
nebulous the cognitive concept of general intelligence is in it's own right, 
and so in this respect the work is useful. 
The other popular work attempting to define CI, is from Pierre Levy (1999), who 
defines it as [...a form of universally distributed intelligence, 
constantly enhanced, coordinated in real time, and resulting in the effective 
mobilization of skills...]. As opposed to the group-level, Levy is here 
focused on society as a level of analysis. Thus far, I've yet to see any work 
that attempts to reconcile these different levels of analysis, though off the 
cuff these two definitions of CI seem to share a process-orientation, with a 
focus on performance/mobilization outcomes.
From my view, broadly speaking, I think that we can certainly say with some 
confidence that there should be a difference between IT-mediated CI and 
non-IT-mediated CI (or at least this is my hypothesis). In the former, frozen, 
yet adaptable artifacts (ie software/algorithms/AI) are involved, while in the 
latter they are not. You could of course argue that 
language/society/culture/communication is a technology/artifact in it's own 
right, and philosophically I wouldn't necessarily disagree, but we can also 
agree that software is demonstrably different than culture for example. 
It would appear that the explicit codification of knowledge is a bridge between 
the two categories that I draw. 
Further, both forms of CI would most certainly have some level of individual 
human intelligence in common too. 
For me the key difference is that in the IT-mediated case of CI, the 


2014-03-08 Thread
Dear Colleagues,
 area of debate as proposed by John P., although broad, seems to involve
 a number of self-imposed restrictions that perhaps should be explicitly
 referred to. Thus, neither John?s papers (please excuse me if I have 
missed it), nor the postings so far, have addressed the issue of 
knowledge vs. intelligence. As I understand it, John?s approach is 
specifically based on using Information Technology mediated groups of 
agents to derive the existence of a collective intelligence, but I would
 like it to be explained in what this intelligence consists. In other 
words, are we dealing with knowledge-as-such (stored and shared data) or
 capability for effecting change. John P. does say that crowd capability is 
directed at
processing knowledge, but does this exhaust the content of the concept of 
as capability?
 next point is the following: it is easy to see how the interaction of 
two individuals can lead to the emergence of new behavior and capability
 of behavior. An example of the former is interactional convergence. The
 second is a learning process. I tend to associate capability for 
behavior with intelligence. The subsequent interaction of a third 
individual with the result of the initial interaction, or one of the 
individuals involved in it leads to further emergence of the same kind. 
Iteration of this process, in my conception, focuses on the 
individual-group interaction as its locus. On this basis, collective 
intelligence appears with two or three people. 
 first question, therefore, is whether one can in fact consider that 
multiple interactions at the same time constitute collective 
intelligence in themselves, or whether there is always the need to take 
into account the one-many relation, as well as, joining Loet, the 
qualitative aspects of the communications involved in the interactions.
Best wishes,
Message d'origine
De :
Date : 08/03/2014 - 03:49 (PST)
A :,
Dear John, 
 the case of pyramids, one can think of more abstract forms of social 
organization such as the rule of law as a supra-individual coordination 
 doubt that ?collective intelligence? is the fruitful category. As in 
the rule of law, it seems to me that codification of the communication 
(e.g., legislation and jurisprudence) are the vehicles. In other words, 
the quality of the communication is more important than the individual 
or sum total of reflections.
Loet Leydesdorff 
Professor Emeritus, University of Amsterdam
Amsterdam School of Communications Research (ASCoR) ; 
Honorary Professor, SPRU, University of Sussex; Visiting Professor, ISTIC, 
Visiting Professor, Birkbeck, University of London.  
From: [] On 
Behalf Of John Collier
Sent: Saturday, March 08, 2014 11:26 AM
To: Foundations of Information Science Information Science
 looks fruitful, but it might be argued that the exchanges of 
information in a colony can be reduced to individual exchanges and 
interactions, and thus there is not really any activity that is 
holistic. This is what Steven is doing with his example of pyramid 
On the other hand, with ants, for example, it has been 
shown by de Neuberg and others that in ant colonies the interactions 
cannot be reduced, but produce complex organization that only makes 
sense at a higher level of b_ehaviour. Examples are nest building and 
bridge building, among others. I assume the same is true for humans.
 example, in the pyramid case, why is it being built, why are people so 
motivated to cooperate on such a ridiculous project? Contrary to 
widespread opinion the workers were not slaves, but they were individual
 people. I doubt this can be explained at the individual level. If ants 
have complexly organized b_ehaviour, then surely humans do as well -- we
 are far more complex, and our social interactions are far more complex.
At 10:33 PM 2014-03-07, Guy A Hoelzer wrote:
 think of ?collective intelligence? as synonymous with collective 
?information processing?.  I would not test for its existence by asking 
if group-level action is smart or adaptive, nor do I think it is 
relevant to ask whether ?collective intelligence? informed or 
misinformed individuals.  I would say that in the classic example of 
eusocial insect colonies (like honey bees, for example) there is no 
reasonable doubt that information is processed at the level of the full 
colony, which can be detected by the coordination of individual 
activities into coherent colony-level behavior.  Synchronization and 
complementarity of individual actions reflect the top-down influences of

Re: [Fis] FIS News (Moscow 2013)

2013-04-12 Thread

Dear Pedro,

Glad to hear from you. Your silence was, of course, expressive, containing much 
information . . .

Now all of us will be waiting impatiently to learn about the the new, exciting 
themes that were discussed at the Milton Keynes Conference.

Best wishes,


Message d'origine
Date: 12.04.2013 11:02
Objet: [Fis] FIS News (Moscow 2013)

Dear FIS Friends,

Apologies for my long silence. As I have already said several times, my 
science management duties are killing not only my time but also my nerve 
(well, not completely!). Imagine what is happening with the financing 
and organization of Spanish science these years...

Anyhow, a couple of good news about our common Information Science 
endeavor. First, there has been an excellent conference in Milton 
Keynes, organized by the Open University, about Information (the 
difference that makes a difference). Quite exciting discussions on our 
most dear themes, and some new ones that we have rarely addressed here. 
The organizers, a very active team indeed, are cordially invited to lead 
a discussion session in our FIS list to continue with the conceptual 
explorations addressed in their conference.

And the second news is about an imminent FIS CONFERENCE, MOSCOW 2013, 
the Sixth FIS, and the 1st of the ISIS organization. It will be held 
this May, from 21 to 24 in Moscow. This time the Russian organizers have 
followed a singular procedure, a relatively closed conference centered 
in the diffusion of information science in the Russian scientific 
community.  At the time being, to my knowledge (I could not follow very 
well the process), only the members of the ISIS board have been enlisted 
as foreign participants. But given that there will be several absences, 
interested FIS parties might ask about their possible participation.  
The schedule is too tight for travels, visas etc, and again I have to 
apologize for not having posted this info before (info glut!). In any 
case, am sure that our colleague Konstantin  Kolin ( ), 
leading organizer, and member of the Russian Academy of Science, will be 
happy to respond to interested parties and help them to accelerate the 

Best wishes to all


Pedro C. Marijuán
Grupo de Bioinformación / Bioinformation Group
Instituto Aragonés de Ciencias de la Salud
Centro de Investigación Biomédica de Aragón (CIBA)
Avda. San Juan Bosco, 13, planta X
50009 Zaragoza, Spain
Tfno. +34 976 71 3526 (amp; 6818)

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[Fis] Information and Conformal Cyclic Cosmology

2013-03-16 Thread

Dear Pedro, Dear FISers,

In our search for the foundations of information two years ago, we looked at 
Michael Conrad's fluctuon model of the universe. We came to the conclusion, I 
think, that 1) any coupling of fluctuations in the quantum vacuum to 
thermodynamic entities (biological macromolecules) has not been confirmed and 
2) the concept of information as energy does not apply to the  timeless 
vacuum background.

Roger Penrose's 2011 book, Cycles of Time, which I have just read, presents a 
new view of the universe as described by a conformal cyclic cosmology (CCC). It 
makes some remarkable statements about information which I believe are worth 
discussion. His key point is to make information loss in black holes the 
condition for the reduction in  the phase-space volume of the universe to 
permit geometrical matching between a De Sitter end of one universe or aeon 
and the smooth transition to an Einsteinian Big Bang in a new aeon, both 
involving massless particles. Penrose thus goes back to Hawking's original 
theory, as he finds it difficult to see how any real structural information can 
be maintained outside the black hole by the photons leaking through. 
Deterministic unitary Schroedinger evolution must be accompanied by 
probabilistic processes, as is also clear from Lupasco. Also clear is that as 
matter evaporates, the associated space (and time) collapses to the necessary 
conformity for which Penrose gives good mathematics, without violation of the 
2nd Law as in other cyclic models. Mass reappears in the new aeon under the 
influence of something like a Higgs field.

The other remarkable statement is in the text of Fig. 3.1, page 142, which 
reads as follows: Photons and other (effectively) massless particles/fields 
can propagate smoothly from an earlier pre-Big Bang phase into the current 
post-Big Bang phase or, conversely, we can propagate the particle/field 
information backwards from post- to pre-Big Bang phase (italics mine). Taken 
at face value, this might tend to confirm that particles/fields, that is, 
energy, are different from the information about them but inseparable from it, 
as some of us have argued. I would be very interested to know how some of you 
interpret these concepts. There is a formal resemblance to Feynmann's concept 
of anti-particles being normal particles moving backward in time. However, I am 
not at all sure that the analogy helps because it refers to thermodynamic time 
and this is exactly what disappears in the cosmological framework.

Thank you and best wishes,

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[Fis] Science, Philosophy and Information. An Alternative Relation

2013-02-07 Thread

Dear FIS Colleagues,

The formation of the the Society for the Philosophy of Information at the 
University of Hertfordshire is announced in the link in John's note. It 
includes the announcement and Call for Papers of the International Conference 
on the Philosophy of Information to be held in Xi'An, China in October, 2013, 
sponsored by both the above Society, led by Professor Luciano Floridi and the 
Institute for the Philosophy of Information in Xi'An under the direction of 
Professor Wu Kun.

This increased activity in the area of the philosophy of information (another 
major Workshop is planned this Spring) raises the issue of the relation between 
the science and philosophy of information as well as of the philosophy of 
science. I am aware of and agree with the position expressed by Pedro that 
information science in the FIS framework should emphasize scientific research 
in the sense of knowledge that is quantifiable and/or provable. However, I do 
not believe that either he or others of you intend to exclude rigorous 
qualitative knowledge, especially as it concerns the dual nature of 

The ubiquitous presence of information in all disciplines, as emphasized by Wu, 
suggests an alternative relation linking philosophy, science and information 
that is NOT one of simple hierarchical inclusion or possession (of). One 
possibility is to say that it is information that links philosophy and science, 
but this formulation perhaps fails to recognize the general properties of the 
latter two.

Another possibility is to say that each of the three nominally independent 
disciplines are not independent, but that each provides a dynamic ontological 
and epistemological link to the other two, more or less strong or actual 
depending on the extent to which one wishes to emphasize certain aspects of 

I look forward to your comments regarding the pros and cons of such a 
conception. Thank you.

Best wishes,


Ursprüngliche Nachricht
Datum: 04.02.2013 18:57
Betreff: [Fis] Society for the Philosophy of Information

Professor John Collier
Philosophy and Ethics, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 4041 South Africa
T: +27 (31) 260 3248 / 260 2292   F: +27 (31) 260 3031

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Re: [Fis] FW: [Fwd: Re: Physics of computing]--Plamen S.

2012-03-19 Thread

Dear Koichiro,

With due respect for you and for the people you mention, there may be a fatal 
error in the initial description of the key relationships you mention as 
dichotomies. Unless, in all but the most trivial cases, you allow for 
interaction and sharing of the effective dynamic properties of the phenomena 
you are looking at, getting new insights into the way they evolve will continue 
to be difficult. In particular, neither actuality nor potentiality go to 0 or 1.

The major contribution of Lupasco was to break through the strait-jacket of the 
concept of totally independent classes that follow standard bivalent logic. You 
seem to hint at this in your last point which talks in terms of probabilistic 
events. However, having explicit and definite distributions is hardly 
possible in the real world, except as idealized, unrealizable abstractions.

I am hoping that some readers of this note may be moved to consider what, in 
principle, might be achieved by opening up our language in the direction I 
suggest. We might lose some rigor in the narrow sense, but this is proving a 
dead end in any case. Its loss would be compensated by having a greater array 
of logical conceptual tools to work with. 

Thank you and best wishes,


Ursprüngliche Nachricht
Datum: 19.03.2012 23:24
Betreff: Re: [Fis] FW:  [Fwd: Re:  Physics of computing]--Plamen S.


   A nice thing about the dichotomies such as the actual-potential (Peirce),
einselection-superposition (Schroedinger), figure-background (Merleau-Ponty), 
filling-up - void
(Marijuan), presence-absence (Deacon) and the like is the appraisal of the 
dichotomy even if an exhaustive list of the individuals constituting the class 
is not available. The
price we have to pay for this, however, is that first person descriptions would 
have to be employed
for appreciating the presence of some individuals that are currently absent on 
the spot for whatever
reasons. In contrast, the individual-class dichotomy accessible to third person 
descriptions such as
the dichotomy of each probabilistic event and its distribution would have to be 
explicit and
definite with regard to both the individuals and the class from the outset.

   Koichiro Matsuno

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Re: [Fis] Physics of Computing

2012-03-16 Thread

Dear Gordana,

There are for me many question marks in ascriptions of quantum properties to 
complex cognitive phenomena. The inversion of perspective I propose. using 
Deacon's term, is to see processes of superposition as common both to quantum 
phenomena as simplified projections of mental processes and to the mental 
processes themselves. This does not require, as many people seem rather 
desperately to want, that any given figure -ground event involve quanta at that 
higher level. In this case, your useful term likened with a quantum mechanical 
superposition can be replaced, usefully I suggest, by a weighting of the 
degrees of actuality and potentiality of the components of a evolving complex 
process. This is both where information is and what it is.

In this connection, I call all FIS'ers attention to the very pertinent concept 
of another Andrei, Andrei Igamberdiev, described in his book, of Internal 
Quantum States. The difference is, if I understand both sets of ideas 
correctly, is that Igamberdiev is talking about the foundations of theoretical 
biology. He does not require that Nature at higher levels actually instantiate 
quantum structures in any sense other than that, as Gordana says, there is 
nothing non-physical and quanta are involved a priori.



Ursprüngliche Nachricht


Datum: 16.03.2012 23:11

An: Kevin,


Betreff: Re: [Fis] Physics of Computing

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Dear Kevin and FIS,
Searching for Andrei’s articles, I found

and in the abstract there is a claim:
mental states, during perception cognition of ambiguous figures, follow quantum
I am
not an expert by any means but I find this claim very plausible from my
personal experience as a cognitive agent in case of ambiguous figures.
When I
cannot decide what an ambiguous figure actually is I keep number of plausible
hypotheses actual in mind waiting for contextual clues to help me make
state of mind about an ambiguous figure can be written as a superposition of 
states with corresponding weights and that superposition 

can be likened with a quantum mechanical superposition of states.
seems to me that there could be very natural mechanisms for this phenomenon, and
really nothing non-physical.
Andrei can help elucidate the exact meaning of similar statistical forms found
in several different fields, as the title of his book says:
quantum structure: from psychology to finance”.
Back to Pedro’s original reference to physical levels of
information, Deacon made a useful distinction between three different levels of
Deacon’s three types of information parallel his three
levels of emergent dynamics which in Salthe’s notation looks like: 
[1. thermo- [2. morpho- [3. teleo-dynamics]]] with corresponding
 [1. mass-energetic [2. self-organization [3.
self-preservation (semiotic)]]] and corresponding Aristotle’s causes
 [1. efficient cause [ 2. formal cause [ 3. final cause]]]
In the above, thermodynamics and semiotic layers of organization
are linked via intermediary layer of morphodynamics (spontaneous
form-generating processes), and thus do not communicate directly (so it looks
like mind communicating with matter via form).
Of course there is physics at the bottom. 


[] On Behalf Of Kevin Clark

Sent: den 16 mars 2012 21:56


Subject: [Fis] Physics of Computing


Dear FISers:


Pedro and Plamen raise good and
welcomed points regarding the nature of physics, information, and biology.
Although I believe in a strong relationship between information and physics in
biology, there are 

Re: [Fis] Chemical information: a field of fuzzy contours ?

2011-09-17 Thread

Dear Michel and FIS Colleagues,

This will be an interesting discussion, since the core nature and role of 
information will be involved. Here is just one first point: to me, as a
chemist, chemical information is only secondarily an object capable of being 
formalized, archived, etc. A formula has meaning for me in terms

of the potential reactions the molecule to which it refers can undergo, what it 
looked like when crystallized for the first time and so on.

Cheminformatics seems not to deal with such aspects of chemical information as 
part of a process of doing chemistry. Can this be captured by 
another system?

Best wishes,


Ursprüngliche Nachricht
Datum: 16.09.2011 09:44
Betreff: [Fis] Chemical information: a field of fuzzy contours ?

Chemical information: a field of fuzzy contours ?

Before turning to chemistry, I would recall some facts that I noticed
on the FIS forum:
although many people consider that a unifying definition of
information science is possible (to be constructed),
a number of other people consider that there are many concepts of
information which are not necessarily
the facets of an unique concept, so that it could be better to speak
about information scienceS,
and not about information science.
I can read on
 Information science is an interdisciplinary science primarily
concerned with the
analysis, collection, classification, manipulation, storage, retrieval
and dissemination of information. 
and some fewer lines above:
 Information Science consists of having the knowledge and
understanding on how to collect, classify, manipulate, store, retrieve
and disseminate any type of information. 
Clearly, collecting, storing, and retrieving information let us think
that we must deal with databases.
The question where is information is neglected, although answering
it is enlighting:
no doubt that much information is stored in data banks.
There are strong connections of Information Science(s) with Data
Mining (DM) and Knowledge Discovery in Databases (KDD).

Is the situation clearer in chemistry ?

Undoubtly there is a field of chemical information.

The ACS (American Chemical Society) has a Division of Chemical
Information (CINF),
named as such in 1975, but which in fact goes back to 1943
CINF is active and organizes various meetings which can be retrieved on the web.
Visit also, an
informative website.

The ACS publishes the Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling
renamed so in 2005
after having been named Journal of Chemical Information and Computer
Sciences from 1975 to 2004,
itself being the continuation of the Journal of Chemical
Documentation from 1961 to 1974.
In fact, it is the same journal (one volume per year), which turned to
chemical information the same year that CINF received his actual name.

Interestingly, still in 1975, the main cheminformatics lab in France
(in fact the only one in France at this time) was renamed.
The old name was LCOP (Laboratoire de Chimie Organique Physique),
and the new name was ITODYS, still in vigor,
meaning until 2001: Institut de TOpologie et de DYnamique des
Systemes. This name, which can be understood in English due
to the close similarity between the French and the English words, was
partly due to the existence of a distance in the molecular graphs
(this distance is the smaller number of chemical bonds separating two
atoms), and as known, a distance induces a topology:
it clearly acknowledged the cheminformatics aspects of the research
performed in the lab.

Chemical Information Science, which is sometimes named Chemical Informatics
can be reasonably considered to be a part of the Cheminformatics field.
This latter is defined on Wikipedia
Chemoinformatics is the mixing of those information resources to
transform data into information and
information into knowledge for the intended purpose of making better
decisions faster in the area of
drug lead identification and optimization.
This definition, dated from 1998, clearly acknowledges the extraction
of information from data,
but it is restrictive since it discards all pioneering works about
computerization of chemical databases,
including structural formulas coding and structural motifs retrieval,
which historically cannot be denied
to be the core of the cheminformatics field.

Now let me write more lines about the story of cheminformatics in France,
which is a bit funny but enlights the debate on the definition on the
field of chemical information.
The French pioneer was Jacques-Emile Dubois (1920-2005), founder of
the LCOP and of the ITODYS,
who published his first cheminformatics paper in 1966. One of his main
ideas was to use 

Re: [Fis] The world of singularities, beyond language - John Collier

2011-05-05 Thread

Dear John, 
The reference you cited looks like essential reading and I have ordered it. 
Thank you for calling it to our attention.
I believe, also, that the conventional view of meaning leads to its erasure, 
and this exactly why a Derridean view of writing (and speech) is required in 
which erasure does not mean the total loss of meaning.
As far as signs go, the area of debate is clear. A theory of signs (or 
sign-relations) is essential to the understanding of information and questions 
of reality and illusion. You believe that Peirce delivers this and I do not. 
The reason is that the critical fallibility, I think, is not in our 
representations, about which there should be no debate, but in taking signs 
(Peirce's icon and index) as representations in the first place. Doing this 
leads straight to the illusions we as realists wanted to avoid.

Thus when you write: A proper understanding of how signs, and thus logic, 
works can avoid these problems, I agree, but wish to suggest that neither 
standard logics, nor Peirce's logic, also truth-functional, grounded in 
language, can do the job. Something like Lupasco's extension of logic to real 
processes, his Logic of Energy (1951), may be required. I am looking forward 
to the Taborsky opus to help develop this approach.
Best regards,

Ursprüngliche Nachricht


Datum: 05.05.2011 14:36


Betreff: [Fis]  The world of singularities, beyond language - John Collier

Message from John Colier


Hi all,

This is interesting, as it brings up some ancient issues that continue
roil philosophy. I think that C.S. Peirce has the best answer to these
puzzles (and does not eliminate the wonder). For his (realist)
pragmatacism Peirce adopts the pragmatic principle that all of the
meaning of a sign is contained in our the totality of our expectations
for possible experience. He realized that this can be vague, and
to change based on further experience. In particular, he thought that
is the possibility that our expectations can be contradicted by
experience that commits us to a real external world, beyond our ideas,
and requires that we should regard our representations as fallible.
allows for the sort of leaps Rafael mentions (and which are the subject
of my doctoral dissertation).  I also agree that the usual notion of
the observer is flawed, as it does not typically recognize our
involvement in the world. It is a philosophical illusion that we alone
determine meaning, and that our meanings are determinate. In THE
Taborsky (ed) Semiosis. Evolution. Energy Towards a Reconceptualization
of the Sign. Aachen Shaker Verlag 1999 Bochum Publications in Semiotics
New Series. Vol. 3 (1999): 111-136, I argue that the conventional view
meaning ironically leads to the erasure of meaning.

In Every Thing Must Go: Metaphysics Naturalized, Clarendon
(2007), we argue (and this is grounded in Peircean principles) that the
thing in itself is a metaphysical illusion, and does not fit modern
science. Peirce also argued against such metaphysical illusions. If you
maintain the illusion, then you get caught in nominalism and
A proper understanding of how signs, and thus logic, works can avoid
these problems.

My best,



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2011-04-14 Thread

I like your summary. I see throughout it reference to the space of mystery as 
something not actual, but that needs to be filled. You also refer to the 
virtual and virtual entities and non-represented phenomenological elements. 
My suggestion is to that the essential, causally necessary virtual entities are 
the potentialities that accompany the actual structures that become 
actualized in the narrative or other informational process. Alone, this 
formulation simply restates what you said. Seen, as I would like it to be, as 
another example of the underlying dynamic antagonism in natural, physical 
processes, I suggest that it is on firmer ontological foundations.  
Thus, that collective, projected information structures of the emerging tale 
CAN exert a pull over its explicit elements, as they are forming, and also 
causing them to form, is not to be taken as a metaphor, but as a real pull.
Maybe it's not so mysterious, after all?


Ursprüngliche Nachricht


Datum: 11.04.2011 03:22


Betreff: Re: [Fis] ON INFORMATION THEORY--Mark Burgin

Mark, thanks for starting an interesting topic.I'd like to highlight a 
connection between question 2, and the title of this session, and some dynamics 
of story formation. 2. Are there types or kinds of information that are not 
encompassed by the general theory of information (GTI)?If you're referring to 
your specific theory, its ontology seems promising, from the perspective of 
narrative mechanisms. In a story, similar to your GTI model, the representable 
elements are only a portion of the whole phenomenological system (your 
principle 4, I think). Also important to narrative is the impetus and ability 
to transform, in the manner you describe (principle 2). For a story, this 
transformation is a central feature, the residue of which can be found in its 
actual structure. Your distinction between explicitly representable elements, 
and the overall phenomenon, strikes me as important.This is why: in stories, 
there are also non-explicit, non-represented phenomenological elements that 
affect the process of narrative formation, and therefore its information 
structures. In fact, I would go further to say that such transformations would 
not be possible without these virtual entities. Ted touched upon this aspect 
below, and I would like to extend his observation to example that you (Mark) 
unconsciously provided, at the start of the session: But just as particle 
physics finds it handy to have virtual particles and transcendent symmetries 
over them, so will we have information types that do not touch the world in an 
observable way; these will  be required to support clean laws of behavior, yet 
to be convincingly proposed.Let me focus on the influence of virtual entities, 
for a moment. I could write a long the explanation about the role of 
anticipative inference in stories, but here's a more enjoyable example of the 
same behavior: *INFORMATION: MYSTERY SOLVING*  *Mark Burgin* Professor 
amp; Visiting Scholar Department of Mathematics University of California at 
Los AngelesEveryone that has posted towards this topic so far has been 
compelled, in some way, to generate information structures. This is explicitly 
expressed as emails in a browser window. But much of the impetus for creating 
that residue is non-explicit. Aside from everyone's personal urges, an 
important driver has been the prospect of a mysterious space, one that needs to 
be filled. Mark launched this session by proposing that an artifact is wanted, 
and seven of us have already been stirred to assemble ideas that climb towards 
that unwritten space. Some already-established, explicit structures have been 
used in the process, such as past theories, and the use of English words on 
this page. But if those safe forms could satisfy Mark's space of mystery, 
without any formulative effort from us, I don't think we would have bothered to 
compose our messages.In the story ecosystem, the drive to assemble a structure 
(if a writer) or consume it until the final sentence (if a reader), is key. In 
both cases, the impetus strives towards a shape that has not yet been formed, 
but aspects hinted at. This seductive pull seems to be stimulated by the 
interaction between multiple ontological contexts, and structural tensions 
between them, as well as inferences that there are some central, cohering 
artifacts that do not yet exist, but should. For this reason, Ted's quantum 
analogy is apt, as is Mark's reference to the way an information system 
leverages its own parameters. In stories, the collective, projected information 
structures of the emerging tale exert a pull over its explicit elements, as 
they are forming, and also causing them to form.So in response to question 2, I 
suggest the inclusion of the virtual and tentative factors that stimulate the 
assembly of information structures - some of which 

[Fis] Physiosemiosis - and Biotic Information

2011-04-02 Thread

Dear Stan,
This looks like a very useful tack and I am looking forward to reading about 
it. My language for situations where context does not affect the 
object-system interaction is that there is no adequate contradictorial relation 
in the interaction, and classical logic applies.
We may still ask the question, however, about what to do where the property 
CANNOT be modeled in the way proposed. Is this a situation where the biotic 
informational approach of Kauffmann, Logan et al. (which everyone recalls, of 
course) is appropriate? How would you, Stan, describe the relation between 
physiosemiosis and biotic information? Logan (please correct me if I am mixing 
things up here) in fact talked about topological semiosis? Are similar 
readings of Peirce involved?
Thank you and best wishes,

Ursprüngliche Nachricht


Datum: 01.04.2011 21:38


Betreff: Re: [Fis] Discussion colophon--James Hannam. Orders and Ordering   

It seems obvious to me that any property held by a very complex entity (e.g., 
human being), IF it can be modeled, then that model can be used to generalize 
that property ANYWHERE we wish to.  On these grounds I have been busy working 
on 'physiosemiosis' using the triadic formulation of semiosis of Charles 
Peirce.  I have proposed that the 'sign' emerges from the context of an 
interaction between object and system.  If context has no effect on the 
interaction, there is no semiosis.  If, on the contrary, context affects the 
interaction, then we have semiosis, even in a pond.  

The key is whether the trait involved can be modeled; on these grounds it has 
not yet been shown that 'qualia' can be generalized beyond the human 
experience, yet even a child can see, for example, that a mother hen is very 
unhappy when her chicks are threatened.


fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Discussion colophon--James Hannam. Orders and Ordering Principles

2011-04-01 Thread

Dear Pedro,
I do not quite recognize myself in the statement:
Basically, their informational subject looks like the abstract, disembodied, 
non-situated, classical observer, equipped in a
Cartesian austerity --and outside, just the Order or maybe the Disorder.
I thought my implicit observer was very much real, embodied and non-classical, 
fully participating (and in part constituting) the order and disorder. 
However, I rather tend to agree with you that Loet's, Rosen's and Dubois' 
models of communication, anticipation, etc. are somewhat too abstract. The 
models, as I think Loet may agree, are created for analysis, and do not define 
the physical, dynamic relation between the models, the creation of models and 
what is being modeled as processes.
I have never understood why Maturana had to say that observers are 
operationally generated when it seems obvious that they exist, albeit at 
different levels of complexity and (and here we agree) capability of 
recursiveness. As I have said previously, autopoiesis, like spontaneity and 
self-organization are concepts that are very useful, but cannot be taken to 
describe, as fully as I anyway would like, the dynamics of the cognitive 
processes necessary for an understanding of information and meaning. 
The above notwithstanding, I then have a problem with your, Pedro, formulation 
of the capabilities of non-human observers. Here, I agree with the principle 
expressed by Loet that the examples of the entities you mentioned lack the 
necessary cognitive abilities, although I focus on aspects of them other than 
A theory in which NOTHING previous is taken as entirely satisfactory seems more 
and more necessary . . .
Best wishes,
Joseph Ursprüngliche Nachricht
Datum: 01.04.2011 12:14
An: 'Pedro C. Marijuan',
Betreff: Re: [Fis] Discussion colophon--James Hannam. Orders and Ordering   

Dear Pedro, 

I understand that you have some problems with my epistemic stance. Let me
try to clarify.

Let me go back to Maturana (1978) The Biology of Language ...
On p. 49, he formulated:  ... so that the relations of neuronal activity
generated under consensual behavior become perturbations and components to
further consensual behavior, an observer is operationally generated. And
furthermore (at this same page):  ... the second-order consensual domain
that it establishes with other organisms becomes indistinguishable from a
semantic domain.

This observer (at the biological level) is able to provide meaning to the
information. However, as Maturana argues later in this paper this semantics
is different from that of human super-observers introduced from p. 56

My interest is in human super-observers. I consider the latter as
psychological systems which are able not only to provide meaning to the
observations, but also to communicate meaning. The communication of meaning
generates a supra-individual super-semantic domain, in which meaning
cannot only be provided, but also changed; not in the sense of updated but
because of the reflexivity involved. Robert Rosen's notion of anticipatory
systems is here important.

Dubois (1998) distinguished between incursive and hyper-incursive systems
and between weak and strong anticipation. Both psychological observers and
interhuman discourses can be considered as strongly anticipatory, that is,
they use future states -- discursively and reflexively envisaged -- for the
update. Non-human systems do not have this capacity: they learn by
adaptation, but not in terms of entertaining and potentially discussing

Models provide predictions of future states that can be used for updating
the persent state of the systems which can entertain these models. Thus, new
options are generated. This increases the redundancy; that is, against the
arrow of time. Meaning providing already does so, but communication and
codification of meaning enhances this process further. Non-human observers
(e.g., monkeys) are able to provide meaning and perhaps sometimes to
entertain a model, but they are not able to communicate these models. That
makes the difference. If models cannot be communicated, they cannot be
improved consciously and reflexively.

Thus, a non-human may be an observer, but it cannot be a cogito. This makes
the psychological system different from the biological. Cogitantes can
entertain and discuss models (as cogitata). One of the models, for example,
is the one of autopoiesis.

Best wishes, 

Loet Leydesdorff 
Professor, University of Amsterdam
Amsterdam School of Communications Research (ASCoR), 
Kloveniersburgwal 48, 1012 CX Amsterdam. 
Tel.: +31-20- 525 6598; fax: +31-842239111 ; 

-Original Message-
From: [] On
Behalf Of Pedro C. Marijuan
Sent: Friday, April 01, 2011 11:29 AM

Re: [Fis] Discussion colophon--James Hannam. Orders and Ordering Principles

2011-03-28 Thread

Dear Karl, Dear Loet,
Thank you both for your postings and the perspectives they provide. They leave 
me with just two questions, and I am glad Karl does not want to close the 
discussion so that I may ask for your and other views on them.
1. Does Loet's reply to Karl regarding frameworks for observation of actual 
states vs. frameworks for expectations imply that such frameworks are 
completely mutually exclusive?
2. Regarding information (copying from Karl), the two views in summary are: 
By information, this approach means the deviation of the actual cases from the 
ideal-typical case, in which an order exists. (universalia sunt ante rem)

The opposing view explains information by means of the axiomatic idea of order.
The information content is then the deviation of the actual cases from the 
ideal-typical state, as Loet defines, and concurrently an implication of which 
order prevails, as the opposing view suggests.
Are both these views, however, purely epistemological or do they have an 
ontological content? Both depend (today, of course, not historically) on the 
reality of the axiomatic idea of order and/some ideal case. On first reading, 
it would appear that Karl would accept some ontological content, perhaps 
partly, since he writes: 
The difference between the Middle Ages and today is, in my view, that they had 
no possibility to face the idea that there is no ultimate
ordering principle behind the many obviously existing ordering principles.
This statement, however, if I understand it, would exclude the possibility of a 
new general, if not ultimate, ordering principle for reality being discovered, 
that would not be an order per se. Here, I would agree with Loet, that the 
paradigm of epistemology has indeed changed, but what else?! 
I look forward to hearing from you.
Best wishes,

Ursprüngliche Nachricht
Datum: 27.03.2011 11:41
An: Pedro C.
Betreff: Re: [Fis] Discussion colophon--James Hannam

Dear James,

thank you for the widening of this discussion.

Order and Information

Let us not close this session on the historical perspective of the
modern concept of Science yet. Loet’s thoughtful remarks about the
relation between information and order bring us back to some deep
problems they were addressing in the Middle Ages.

The discussion about the relative importance of the universalia vs.
the re (also known as Occam’s) can be restated in today’s terms as
follows: is the idea behind the thing more useful as a description of
the world as the descriptions of the things themselves?

In Loet’s view, there exists a framework within which we can observe
how the actual states of the things are. Therefore, in this approach
there is no need for a separate concept of order; as each possible
alternative is a priori known, it is the information content that
gives a description of the world. By information, this approach means
the deviation of the actual cases from the ideal-typical case, in
which an order exists. (universalia sunt ante rem)

The opposing view explains information by means of the axiomatic idea
of order. The system is in the same fashion closed, and every possible
alternative is equally known a priori. The difference in viewpoints
lies in the focusing on the properties of the ideal-typical case vs.
the actual types of cases. (universalia sunt post rebus).

The numbers offer a nice satisfying explanation. As we order the
things, we encounter ties. (A sort on 136 additions will bring forth
cases which are indistinguishable with respect to one aspect.) The
members of a tie can represent the universalia. (“All additions where
a+b=12” is e.g. a universalium) The actual cases will – almost – each
deviate from the ideal-typical case.

The information content is then the deviation of the actual cases from
the ideal-typical state, as Loet defines, and concurrently an
implication of which order prevails, as the opposing view suggests. So
it is the same extent and collection which both see, but the names are
different as is different the approach of calculating it. A reorder
creates different ties, therefore a different information content.

The difference between the Middle Ages and today is, in my view, that
they had no possibility to face the idea that there is no ultimate
ordering principle behind the many obviously existing ordering
principles. Our generation has credible news about societies which are
ordered in a completely different fashion and yet are not struck down.
We have experienced too many ideal orders to believe that any such


2011/3/24, Pedro C. Marijuan

 Dear all,

 Thank you very much to Pedro for asking me to suggest a discussion for
 the list and to everyone else for indulging me.  As a historian, I have
 learnt that questions I naively thought were quite simple have turned
 out to be very complicated indeed.  The 

Re: [Fis] Poetry, Computers and Information - reply to Zhao

2011-03-03 Thread

Dear Ted,
I would like to believe that we are in the same business, that of seeking new 
logical tools that describe reality, which is what my Logic in Reality, 
mentioned here on and off purports to do. I suppose my logic is a 
three-sorted logic, whose structural elements are the actual and potential 
aspects of real processes in evolution.
It is, also, very much directed toward analog rather than digital descriptions, 
seeking principled ways of looking at, that is, making logical inferences 
about, components of life, including information and meaning. I see my logic as 
basis for better definitions of the qualitative aspects of information. Art and 
poetry, also, Zen actions, in my jargon, would be third terms emerging from the 
contradictory or antagonistic forces (two samurai fighting, if you wish). 
As I wrote you about two years ago, I, and now I am sure the group also, would 
be interested in knowing more about your logical approach. Your reference to 
causal potential is very suggestive, since it recalls the treatment I have made 
of causality, also, in terms of energetic actualities and potentialities.
It would be most interesting if synergies were to appear. For example, how 
might the logic of situations be related to the dynamic logic of processes of 
Logic in Reality, etc.?
Best regards,

Ursprüngliche Nachricht
Datum: 04.03.2011 02:58
Betreff: Re: [Fis] Poetry, Computers and Information - reply to Zhao

I must start with an apology for my absence from the email list. I have 
overcome most of the distractions that were in the way, and I return to see the 
best energy I recall in the group. I wish I had been in Beijing, but I was 
helping with another meeting at the same time.Now, I hope to plan a trip soon.

Let me start by responding to some points of our Chinese colleagues, starting 
in reverse order.

I am truly impressed by Zhao‘s email. 

FIS discussions have a challenge that is rare: we know that the FIS agenda 
forces us to re-examine the notion of meaning as described in logical terms, 
and yet in doing so we fall back on logic-based arguments. Some of these have 
been going on here for a decade now. It is clear to me that a new science (of 
the kind we need) will involve the addition of new logical tools. Also, it will 
involve encountering the world as it is, not just the parts that seem to fit 
logic, whether naturally logical or not.

Elsewhere. I’ve mentioned our work in two-sorted logic based on situation 
theory. The “second sort” has interesting soft characteristics. Among them is 
the notion of narrative assembly, what Koichiro calls the tense mode. In my 
work, this has required rather deep involvement in information density and 
transfer by analogic means: yes, poetry. This deserves as much a place in the 
second sort as all the maneuvers of semiotics and entropy do in the first sort. 
A “streak” in this context is more than human to human conveyance or at least I 
see it so.

Said another way: part of what we do here is extend abstractions: biological 
self-organization to general systems: Peirciean semiotics to components of 
life; negentropic probability as a structural imperative. If we allow that, 
surely we should allow extending abstractions from how we structure information 

Back to the previous session that I missed and Yixin‘s hefty post. It is 
motivated by the same dynamic, in my mind. Information — the way most of us 
think of it — is packetized and transferred in ways that bind logic and physics 
as John has pointed out. For better or worse this was set by the school of 
Aristotle and we are stuck with it (as James has noted). Intelligence on the 
other hand can be seen as situated, structured, received information (or the 
product of same). 

Yixin’s proposal is remarkable, and it is no wonder that it has unsettled a 
few. I endorse it wholeheartedly. I have a minor quibble with some details in 
the preamble; I believe that the characterization of the “three schools” though 
historically correct could be better framed differently. (I can elaborate 
later.) But that does not affect the proposal.

I’ll observe here my tendency to think of:

information - knowledge - intelligence
abstractions - cognition - situated structure with causal potential, 

The first (“abstractions“) are qualified with reference to Jerry's observation 
that different domains use different abstract sets and therefore the rest of 
the food chain similarly differs.

The last (“situated structure with causal potential“) is colored by Soren’s 
patient insistence on the importance of an extended concept of perception and 

Forgive me for revisiting a closed session, but it bears on Zhao’s email and 
the two together reinforce each other in a powerful way. If Yixin’s proposal 
was an information-centric approach to the problem of information and 
intelligence, Zhao’s was an intelligence-centric 

Re: [Fis] comments next session. Logic of Non-Distinctions

2011-01-27 Thread

Dear Krassimir and All,
Please let me direct your attention to the following in Soeren's last note, as 
well as Pedro's comment on Karl's system and Logic of Distinctions:
 severe limitations to  a view of information theory as a  universal 
glue, a universal predicate, a universal code  the problem of feeling 
consciousness, perception and qualia, meaning and language as prerequisites for 
any kind of information science

I see no reason why the necessary qualitative aspects of information cannot 
exist in concert with the universal quantitative ones, giving each the proper 
emphasis depending on conditions. The Logic in Reality (LIR) of which some of 
you are aware is a logic of overlaps or interactive complements, a Logic of 
/Non-Distinctions/ that complements Karl's logic. I suggest both are necessary 
to organize and explicate the qualitative-quantitative complex of information, 
which co-exist and are never clearly one or the other part of the time. 
Thus, and this may be new to you Krassimir, in my approach it is not necessary 
to have a frame in which the concepts will not be contradictory ! In my 
logic, contradictory and conflicting concepts of information, exactly like the 
properties of information itself, co-evolve and illuminate one another, 
allowing the emergence of new ones.
Best wishes,

Ursprüngliche Nachricht


Datum: 27.01.2011 15:37

An: Pedro C.,

Betreff: Re: [Fis] comments amp; next session

Dear Pedro and FIS

In Russian literature there exists
an collective “author” Kuzma Prutkov , i.e. a group of writers who have used
this common name to publish sentences.


One of Kuzma Prutkov’s sentence is
“Нельзя обнять небъятного!”, or in English “It is impossible to embrace the


What I mean? It is impossible to
have only one information theory to cover all information phenomena.


Because of this we need to have
philosophical paradigm which will unite all particular information


I think we need to clear what a theory
will discuss in given moment. This way we will have a frame in which the
concepts will be not contradictory.


How such frames can be drawn is
topic just of the common philosophical paradigm.


Friendly regards





P.S. Many thanks to all who became
members of the ITA 2011 GIT Int. Conference Committees. 

The updated Call for Papers is
published for the FIS society at:




From:Pedro C. Marijuan
Sent: Thursday, January 27, 2011 3:34 PM
Subject: [Fis] comments amp; next session
FIS colleagues,

I found very intriguing the fast amp; furious messages
of past days. One of the main triggers, I think, was Karl's response to Joseph's
requests on his info theory... The logic of distinctions that Karl worked out
years ago was in my view an outstanding contribution (the use of
multidimensional partitions in set theory). Unfortunately he linked it to very
idiosyncratic notions on cellular dynamics between DNA and cytoplasm, and he
also miscalculated the number of multidimensional partitions. These are
nontrivial matters that he has to solve or that we can discuss (necessarily in
face to face exchanges!!), at least for me to accept any of his further
developments. But let me insist that his logic of distinctions is highly
original and very elegant. 

Then, among the many other exchanges (Jerry,
Loet, Gavin, John, Bob...) my contention is that most of them were insisting in
the predominance of some disciplinary orientation versus the competing ones.
Jerry put it in a very clear way: The abstract symbol systems of Dalton,
Lavoisier, and Coulomb underly the foundations of thermodynamics as well as the
Shannon theory of information as well as our concept of such abstractions as
“energy” and “entropy.” These symbol systems are now firmly embedded in the
logic of scientific communications...

Thus, was the exciting discussion
basically a rhetorical contest between disciplinary orientations (where
unfortunately neuroscience was missing)? Yes and No. Let me interpret it in
favor of what I argued about the undefinability of information, and the
possibility to establish a number of info conceptions after reliance on some
particular disciplinary narrative. If we accept that undefinability, we can
start to discuss in a different and more productive way: about conditions and
procedures to establish the most elegant and economic general approach to

Thus the past
discussion on intelligence and information was very strategic (entering a new
focus in our discussions), as can be the coming session, on the historical
background of modern science. What kind of info theory and what conceptions of
information could be framed or were present in the medieval world? How were they
recombining their 

Re: [Fis] Info Theory

2011-01-21 Thread

Dear Karl,   


The assumption I would like to
check that we share is that existence and energy are primitive and numbers
something derived. When one moves from the quantum vacuum or singularity into
the thermodynamic world, as soon as change occurs, something is no longer
totally itself; there is something new along side of it in 4D space-time. The
number of entities has increased, and this is the situation is the reality of
which addition is the model. Iteration, which also occurs in reality, does the
rest. If I understand you correctly, you feel that numbers, once available and 
in more complex ways, can model many other things, especially, of course, 
of information.


If a numerical perspective is
convenient and even necessary for an understanding of nature, I would
still like to know if it is sufficient. Are you able to capture, in your
information theory, for example, the informational processes involved in:




anti-social behavior (rational and irrational)

complex political processes

your own theory?


I think it would make for a more interesting and productive discussion if you 
were to tell us where your
theory does NOT apply, rather than let us raise naïve objections to which you 
have clear answers. I would like to know, for example, which of several 
possible approaches to the definition of a logical object are involved; at 
what point the limitations of machines become determining; and under what 
conditions one should seek to maximize (because valuable) heterogeneity as 
opposed to homogeneity. Very interesting discussions can then be envisaged at 
the “boundaries”
between different approaches.


Thank you and best wishes,



Ursprüngliche Nachricht


Datum: 20.01.2011 21:03

An: Jerry, Joseph, Pedro C.

Betreff: Info Theory

Hope that the FIS server will eventuially accept this, too. For you, 

Information Theory:

Let me answer the points raised so far:

Joe Brenner:

My hope is that this discussion will have a
good deal to do with qualitative as well as quantitative aspects of
information. Perhaps people should state clearly what the primary interests and
objectives are of their remarks. 

Jerry Chandler:

The unspoken premise of many discussants
appears to me to be a view of information theory as a universal glue, a
universal predicate, a universal code.
The assertion is outspoken, explicit and apodictically declaratory: information 
theory IS a universal glue, a
universal predicate, a universal code

Yet, any effort to use quantum logic to
describe inheritance requires the construction of semantic bridges between
messages before the encoding occurs. The existence of such semantic links or
connections is intrinsic to the logical premise or assertion lies in the
encoding process, not the experimental science that generates the information.
concepts and procedures underlying quantum logic and inheritance root
BOTH in a common concept of rationality. Rationality as understood and
codified heretofore roots in traditional concepts of additions. Once the
next techniques of addition will have been mastered, both quantum logic
and inheritance will be understood to agree to the same unified
underlying theory of information.

Why did the sciences develop separate
and distinct encoding systems for expressing the natural behaviors of
is an epistemological and a neurological-traditional explanation for
this phenomenon. Thinking can discover (as Thomas said ca 1260 in Summa
Theologiae) that an order exists behind the orders. This is in fact so.
So a discursive distinction between concepts observed as appearances of
the minor orders and concepts deducted as being principles of the maior
order is reasonable. The neurological-traditional teaching orients
itself on requirements and limitations of the human neurology. The
complexity of understanding the advanced techniques of additions places
it far outside the capacity of human brains to conceive yet alone
understand and utilize. The unsolved - in fact, without the help of
machines: unsolvable - task of mastering the additions has forced human
scientists and philosophers to assign processes that can only be
understood by advanced additions to the realm of irrational;
reasonable again. (The task to observe patterns on 136x9x72 integers is
outside human capacity unaided by machines. Ours is the first generation
to have pattern-recognising machines at its disposal at leisure.) 

(The theory will..) inform us of the natural
foundations of Shannon information theory and
give the logical reasons for its spectacular practical and economic success.
theory will inform us of the natural foundations of the FIS information
theory and give the logical reasons of 

Re: [Fis] Future discussions

2011-01-18 Thread

Dear Pedro and All,

Thank you for your note and the ambitious program. My brief comments by theme:

  --Theme 1: Historical Foundations of Modern Science. 
Sounds very interesting; the Science and Society aspect fits well with Theme 

-- Theme 2: On Information Theory. 

My hope is that this discussion will have a good deal to do with qualitative as 
well as quantitative aspects of information. Perhaps people should state 
clearly what the primary interests and objectives are of their remarks. 

-- Theme 3: Foundations of Social Information Science.

This should be a fascinating occasion to evaluate different social models from 
an informational standpoint.



fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] cfp: Hermeneutics Science: Worlds, Realities and Life

2010-04-27 Thread

Dear Olga and Laszlo.

Thank you for calling my attention to this area of research, of which I 
personally was not aware, and for the invitation to participate in your 

Would it be too much, however, to ask if you could send us, rather than just a 
bare invitation, a few introductory lines that provide a preliminary answer 
to the question you ask yourselves: Why a hermeneutical philosophy of the 
natural sciences? Do you also, just as a possible start of a dialogue, see a 
relation of it to information and information science?

Best regards,

Joseph Brenner

Message d'origine
Date: 26.04.2010 21:48
Objet: [Fis] cfp: Hermeneutics amp; Science: Worlds, Realities and Life

Dear Colleagues,

You are kindly invited to the conference on 

Hermeneutics amp; Science: Worlds, Realities and Life 
27-29 August 2010 in Vienna, Austria 

organized by the International Society for Hermeneutics and Science and 
the Sigmund Freud University.

You can find more information on the conference website:

Deadline of abstract submission: 15 May 2010
Notification of acceptance: 30 May 2010

With kindest regards,
Olga Kiss and Laszlo Ropolyi
International Society for Hermeneutics and Science

fis mailing list

fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Explaining Experience In Nature

2010-03-02 Thread

Dear Steven,

I have made a first reading of your text and am sympathetic to its 
objectives. Three quick comments:

a) In 1947, Stephane Lupasco wrote: Logic is experience; experience is 
logic. He then and I now in my rework of his theory Logic in Reality (2008) 
Springer reject standard logic in favor of a logic of real physical 
interactions. Thus when you write about opposition against the 
primitive, the dynamics of opposition look very similar.

b) My logical system, however, does not have to establish a new 
primitive, since I believe all the necessary interactions can be derived
 from the fundamental physical dualities at the quantum level, 
percolating into the thermodynamic and eventually the cognitive world.

c) Under these circumstances, I would like to understand the necessity 
of the concept of Peircean signs. In what way is it necessary to say that 
physical, informational processes, in which 
information is both a means to model the world, and a part of the world 
modeled, are something else than what they are? Can you please expand on this 

Perhaps the complete book does this, but I am concerned that the manuscript as 
is fails to discuss the implications of your approach to information as in the 
work that has become familiar to me of the people in the FIS group, also 
Floridi and others.

Perhaps you can outline a specific advance you have made which will make it 
easier to comment. 

Thank you and best wishes,



Message d'origine


Date: 02.03.2010 20:49

À: Foundations of Information Science Information

Objet: [Fis] Explaining Experience In Nature

Dear List,

After two years of intense and difficult work I am finally prepared to 
represent my Introductory Remarks, the first 75 pages of my book Explaining 
Experience In Nature: The Foundations of Logic and Apprehension.

I am still shy of showing off the mathematics, that'll please some and 
disappoint others, but I do encourage my friends to read this update.

This update is, I feel, a significant advance over earlier work and a plausible 
attack on the Church-Turing Thesis.

The update can be found at:

With respect,

--Dr. Steven Ericsson-ZenithInstitute for Advanced Science amp; 

fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Derrida's diferAnce and Kolmogorov's Information Operator

2010-02-23 Thread



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Dear Bob, Loet, Gyuri and All,


Progress?! Between Bob, Loet, and
something of my logical approach, I see the “art of understanding information”
developing in its necessarily dialectically connected synthetic and analytical
aspects. Here are a few of the ideas suggested by Bob’s historical notes, very
useful for me, and by Loet’s elaboration of the complexity of difference.


1. The quantitative
characteristics of information are more or less clear. My list of definitions
was not intended to be exhaustive.


2. The semantic question of
MacKay of what to send and where to send it is a process taking place in the
sender’s mind. His definition of information as the change in a receiver’s
mind-set and thus (concerned) with meaning also describes a dynamic process. He
should have added simply that there is, when the signal is finally sent, a
change in the sender’s “mind-set” also. These relations and changes can be
described in my logical terms.


3. The Gestalt description of sufficiently complex information and meaning
connected as figure and ground should have been obvious to me long ago, it
wasn’t, but it certainly is now. Logic in Reality provides a principled dynamic
description of the linked changes of figure and ground, alternately
predominating in the mind in two dimensions. The analogy is not perfect,
however. One needs to keep in mind, here, the vertical, inter-level relation
between information and meaning. It is this kind of information, and that in
point 2., that I would like to describe as logical information operators. 


4. Information without meaning,
(Bob’s paragraph 2) is information that is incapable of making a direct causal 
difference, to all intents
and purposes, such as a data base. 


5. The description of differences
in terms of levels of complexity and recursion affecting Shannon-type
information is essential because it provides an analytical basis of meaning 
also. Perhaps the sequence goes from
vector to tensor to spinor (?) as you go up in dimensionality of the entropy to
yield valuedness or valence? 


6. The concept of allegedly self-organizing,
autonomous and autopoïetic systems, however, requires the further explication
of the origin of these wonderful properties in reality. Loet’s statement that
the two approaches are “very akin” is very welcome in the analytic domain,
since it is indeed more strict and parsimonious and différance is only a 
philosophical concept. However, différance is in a sense directly related
to complex real physical systems, such as information producers and receivers. 
of autonomy, etc. where it does exist complicates things. I am trying to get a
handle on information as an ontological operators, not one related to epistemic
or doxastic differences. 


7, From this perspective, a
clarification to Gyuri’s note about the “simple form of information” to which
he gives the very intriguing designation “information on existence”. Everything
that has to do with existence is of interest to me, but my Logic in Reality does
not and is not intended to apply to the entire extant domain. The examples you
give, Gyuri, are binary or in other cases in a one-to-many relation. There is
existence here, double-valuedness and information and at an even more
fundamental level parity, as a property of quantum entities. But this is not 
opposition; there is no opposition
here, no exchange of energy, no caused differences. At the limit, there is no 
change at all of the duals as such, or if there is, it is only of the 
state-transition type (cf.
Loet’s Y/N, F/T, open-closed and your same color – different color, presence -
absence). So by all means let’s discuss the concept of existence type
information,. For me the test of its utility would be the extent to which it
might apply to or be included in (as lowest level semantic information is) 
something complex and interactive.


Many thanks.





Message d'origine


Date: 22.02.2010 15:07


Copie: Pedro Clemente Marijuan,

Objet: Re: [Fis] Derrida's diferAnce and Kolmogorov's Information Operator

Dear Joseph - once again your post was most stimulating, provocative and 
enjoyable. Kolmogorov's

[Fis] Derrida's diferAnce and Kolmogorov's Information Operator

2010-02-21 Thread



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Dear FIS Colleagues and Friends,


As you have for a long time
before me, I have been trying to tame (I prefer the French make private – 
apprivoiser) the notion of information.
One thought was suggested by Bateson’s seemingly generally accepted dictum of
“a difference (and/or distinction) that makes a difference. But I think this
difference is no ordinary “delta”; this is an active referring or better
differing term like the différance of Derrida. I’m sure someone
has made a reference to this before – I’m new here – but then Derrida uses 
différance to question the structure of
binary oppositions, and says that différance “invites us to undo the
need for balanced equations, to see if each term in an opposition is not after
all an accomplice of the other. At the point where the concept of différance
intervenes, all of the conceptual oppositions of metaphysics, to the extent
that they have for ultimate reference the presence of a present
…(signifier/signified; diachrony/synchrony; space/time; passivity/activity,
etc.) become non-pertinent. Since most of the usual debates about information
are based on such conceptual oppositions, and classical notions of here and
now, it may be high time to deconstruct them.


I am sure you are familiar with this, but I
found it rather interesting to read that Kolmogorov had given one definition
of information as “any operator which
changes the distribution of probabilities in a given set of events”.
(Apparently, this idea was attacked by Markov.)


Différance in the informational context then started looking to me
like an operator, especially since in my process logic, where logical elements
of real processes resemble probabilities, the logical operators are also
processes, such that a predominantly actualized positive implication, for 
is always accompanied by a predominantly potentialized negative implication.


At the end of all this, then, one
has, starting from the lowest level:

information as what is processed by a computer;

information as a scalar quantity of uncertainty removed,
the entropy/negentropy picture;

semantic information as well-formed, meaningful data

information as a process operator that makes a
difference to and for other processes, including above all those of receivers
and senders.


A first useful consequence is
that information “operations” with my operator are naturally polarized,
positive, negative or some combination which I’ll leave open for the moment.
The negative effects of some information follow naturally. Many of you may
conclude I’m doing some oversimplification or conflation, and I apologize for
that in advance. But I believe that Kolmogorov’s original idea has been
neglected in the recent discussions of information I’ve seen, and I would very
much welcome comments. Thank you and best wishes.



fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Emerging Synthesis?

2009-01-23 Thread

Dear Stan and Bob,

I am absolutely delighted to learn that you both had felt the need to 
complexify the concept of self-organization. I would very much welcome more 
on the dialectical approach that you have used, as I think it might have, in my 
framework, further applications. These might be in the area of information, of 
general interest to this group, but also others.

Will you gratify my curiosity?

Best wishes,


Message d'origine
Date: 23.01.2009 22:54
À: Stanley
Objet: Re: [Fis] Emerging Synthesis?

Quoting Stanley Salthe

 Joseph --

 Dear Friends,

 1.But the good thing is to be able to go down to elementary  
 particle level with the same principle. My  Logic in Reality does  
 exactly that, where the principle is one of dynamic opposition  
 which has the advantage of avoiding what I consider questionable,  
 namely, so-called self-organization.

  Cannot self-organization not be interpreted in a dialectical  
 way?  I tried it in my 1993 book, Development and Evolution.


Right you are! I took the same approach in my 1997 book, Ecology, the  
Ascendent Perspective..

The best,

Robert E. Ulanowicz|  Tel: +1-352-378-7355
Arthur R. Marshall Laboratory  |  FAX: +1-352-392-3704
Department of Botany and Zoology   |  Emeritus, Chesapeake Biol. Lab
Bartram Hall 110   |  University of Maryland
University of Florida  |  Email
Gainesville, FL 32611-8525 USA |  Web

fis mailing list

fis mailing list

Re: [Fis] Emerging Synthesis?

2009-01-16 Thread

Dear Friends,

I have been in transit between home in Switzerland and  California where my 
wife and I spend the winter and thus have just  now looked at this emerging 
exchange.  It obviously requires more study, but three things jump out at me:

1.But the good thing is to be able to go down to elementary
particle level with the same principle. My  Logic in Reality does exactly 
that, where the principle is one of dynamic opposition which has the advantage 
of avoiding what I consider questionable, namely, so-called self-organization.

2. It is  fascinating, and I think important, that there seems to be a felt 
need for more unification in knowledge, and such approaches as Coordination 
Dynamics (and Logic in Reality??) are expressions of this.

3. Having said that, what I read about Coordination Dynamics in the postings to 
date, frankly, leaves me cold. The entities involved in the exchanges of 
information seem to lack reality, and Pedro quotes one to me doubtful 
characteristic of this system as involving informational quantities that 
transcend (emphasis mine) the medium. I worry as soon as one starts separating 
things. If information is energy and has meaning, it is in a dynamic relation 
to the medium.
Where is the Kaufmann-Logan information in Coordination Dynamics?

Best wishes,


Message d'origine


Date: 16.01.2009 20:48

À:, 'Pedro C. 

Objet: Re: [Fis] Emerging Synthesis?

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Dear Loet, 
I agree with you.
The goal is not to reduce everything to physics and to stay at
elementary particle level.
But the good thing is to be able to go down to elementary
particle level with the same principle.
How to build up understanding of the whole architecture of
existing things, physical objects (including biological ones),
minds, societies – is a question of complex systems and those
all seem to be organized via exchange of information.
Best regards,

From: [] On Behalf
Of Loet Leydesdorff

Sent: den 16 januari 2009 19:47

To: 'Pedro C. Marijuan'; 'fis'

Subject: Re: [Fis] Emerging Synthesis?

Dear Gordana, Pedro, and colleagues, 
That would be unfortunate because a reduction of the
information-theoretical approach to physics unnecessarily sacrifices
explanatory power. (As would by the way, a reduction to biology or any other
substantive theory.) At issue is --as you correctly note-- the autopoiesis
model itself which allows for coordination at different systems level. The
formalisms allow us to move from one level to another heuristically, and thus
to specify if necessary counter-intuitively.
For example, the market can be considered as a social coordination
system with its own dynamics. The coordination with other coordination
mechanisms by various forms of couplings can also be studied using the
information-theoretical approach because the expected information content of a
distribution is yet content-free. The specification of a system of reference
provides the (Shannon-type) information with meaning. For example, when H is
multiplied with the Boltzmann constant, the entropy is expressed in
Joule/Kelvin and physics is the system of reference. However, this is a special
case. Joule and degrees have no clear meaning in the case of the operation of
the market as a coordination mechanism.
Best wishes, 


Loet Leydesdorff 

Amsterdam School of Communications Research (ASCoR), 

Kloveniersburgwal 48, 1012 CX Amsterdam. 

Tel.: +31-20- 525 6598; fax: +31-20- 525 3681 ;



From: [] On Behalf
Of Pedro C. Marijuan

Sent: Friday, January 16, 2009 2:46 PM

To: fis

Subject: Re: [Fis] Emerging Synthesis?
Dear Gordana and Loet,

This is what the editors of the book literally say: 

The third main idea is that Coordination Dynamics deals with
informational quantities that transcend the medium through which the parts
communicate. Evidence shows that things may be coupled by mechanical forces, by
light, by sound, by smell, by touch and by intention. In Coordination Dynamics,
binding or coupling is mediated by information, not --or not only--
by conventional forces. Such information may not only be of a material but also
of a structural or topological nature. It may cause qualitative changes in the
dynamics of the coordinating parts and new states to emerge. Hence,
bound coordinative states in Coordination Dynamics are
informational, and information that changes bound states is
meaningful to the system. (Preface, p. IX) 

I agree with Gordana that it may support a