Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-15 Thread Bruno Marchal


On 14 Oct 2016, at 16:16, Dai Griffiths wrote:

To trying to answer this question, I find myself asking "Do patterns  
exist without an observer?".


Would 2+2=4 be true without the big bang occurring?

Of course this depend on the fundamental theory chosen. With a  
physicalist theory, it is arguable that a pattern does not exist  
without an observer, but this raise the question of what is an  
observer. If it is itself a pattern, where does the first observer  
come from, etc.
With Mechanism, which has been shown epistemologically inconsistent  
with physicalism, we can accept that the truth or falsity of  
arithmetical relations is independent of the existence of an observer,  
and then we can easily defined an observer in term of arithmetical  
relations. This, nevertheless, will multiply it an infinity of times  
and leads to many-worlds, which are somehow confirmed by the  
observation if we agree that there is no wave-collapse (Everett).


To sum up, with Mechanism, some pattern exist independently of the  
observer, but most will make sense only relative to some observer,  
i.e. some universal number.





A number of familiar problems then re-emerge, which blur my ability  
to distinguish between foreground and background.


That is why a strong, yet natural, hypothesis can help, like (Digital)  
Mechanism. In that case it is a fractal similar to the Mandelbrot set  
(to simplify and shorten things).
Then incompleteness refutes Socrates critics of Theaetetus' definition  
of the knower (the logic of []p & p does differ from the logic of []p,  
even in the case of p <-> []p, as we get with the basic elementary  
arithmetic sentences (sigma_1-sentences).
This might explain why some blurring is unavoidable, and why all  
universal number, from its first person point of view, can't  
distinguish the foreground and the background. Such distinction is  
intrinsically complex and universal machine related.


Bruno




Dai

On 13/10/16 11:32, Karl Javorszky wrote:

Do patterns contain information?


--
-

Professor David (Dai) Griffiths
Professor of Education
School of Education and Psychology
The University of Bolton
Deane Road
Bolton, BL3 5AB

Office: T3 02
http://www.bolton.ac.uk/IEC

SKYPE: daigriffiths
UK Mobile +44 (0)749151559
Spanish Mobile: + 34 687955912
Work: + 44 (0)7826917705
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email:
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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-15 Thread Jose Javier Blanco Rivero
Dear Fis members,

I have followed with interest the discussion and I have not intervened
until now since I am just a beginner in information theory. But from my
background in systems theory (Luhmann) and intellectual history, the
questions raised here are familiar to me. Louis has differentiated between
meaning and information, as I see it. And I think that distinction is of
particular relevance for social systems, such as science. Social systems
process meaning and information as well. They process meaning through
semantics. So science develops concepts and discusses about them.
Information is processed by the code of the science system, producing
redundance and variety at once. The permanent reproduction of meaning make
differences that lead an observer (maybe science itself) to indicate or
mark the 'apophatic', non linguistic, meaning surplus (Ricoeur), la penuria
lingüística (Gadamer)... Hermann Haken's concept of information adaptation
has been useful to me to illustrate this point: the difference between
Shannons information and semantic information and their feedback. Although
Haken does not properly distinguishes between meaning and information.
I am sorry if I'm leading astray the discussion.

Best regards,

Javier Blanco
El oct 14, 2016 2:59 p.m., "Louis H Kauffman"  escribió:

> Dear Dai,
> Consider the pattern
> .142857142857142857142857142857142857142857…
> In our world of observers and technology, this pattern is constructed so
> that it can be transmitted verbatim by this computer system to you.
> No meaning is transmitted, just the list of numbers. Even the fact that
> the pattern repeats is not evident just from the finite list of symbols.
> You, as an observer, “know” that the “three dots: …” indicates indefinite
> repetition. And you know about infinite decimals, so the dot at the
> beginning of the string
> indicates to you that this is an infinite decimal number.
> With that in mind, you can operate on the pattern and deduce that it is
> representing 1/7. You know that we are communicating about
> a delicate choice of actions and that  I have signaled to you that the
> 7-th action is to be preferred. Unfortunately, any eavesdropper (another
> observer) would probably come to the same conclusions, so this is not a
> very good cipher! The point is, that no matter how radical is our
> constructivism, we have to admit that we are capable of sending , not
> meaning, but literal
> patterns that can be reproduced quite faithfully over various modes of
> transmission. Meaning is not transmitted, but physical relationships and
> orders of symbols are recorded and exchanged. The information in the
> pattern is dependent upon the observer. The kids in my math class will only
> get up to the 1/7. They will not know anything about the delicate and
> life-changing decision that the 7 represents. The key information in the
> cipher is not in the cipher. It is a potential that can emerge from an
> appropriate observer in the presence of the cipher.
> Note that the observer needs extra information. He needs to know that
> agent LK sent it and that it is not just an exercise in an elementary
> mathematics book.
> Best,
> Lou Kauffman
>
> > On Oct 14, 2016, at 9:16 AM, Dai Griffiths 
> wrote:
> >
> > To trying to answer this question, I find myself asking "Do patterns
> exist without an observer?".
> >
> > A number of familiar problems then re-emerge, which blur my ability to
> distinguish between foreground and background.
> >
> > Dai
> >
> > On 13/10/16 11:32, Karl Javorszky wrote:
> >> Do patterns contain information?
> >
> > --
> > -
> >
> > Professor David (Dai) Griffiths
> > Professor of Education
> > School of Education and Psychology
> > The University of Bolton
> > Deane Road
> > Bolton, BL3 5AB
> >
> > Office: T3 02
> > http://www.bolton.ac.uk/IEC
> >
> > SKYPE: daigriffiths
> > UK Mobile +44 (0)749151559
> > Spanish Mobile: + 34 687955912
> > Work: + 44 (0)7826917705
> > (Please don't leave voicemail)
> > email:
> >   d.e.griffi...@bolton.ac.uk
> >   dai.griffith...@gmail.com
> >
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>
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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-14 Thread Louis H Kauffman
Dear Dai,
Consider the pattern 
.142857142857142857142857142857142857142857…
In our world of observers and technology, this pattern is constructed so that 
it can be transmitted verbatim by this computer system to you.
No meaning is transmitted, just the list of numbers. Even the fact that the 
pattern repeats is not evident just from the finite list of symbols.
You, as an observer, “know” that the “three dots: …” indicates indefinite 
repetition. And you know about infinite decimals, so the dot at the beginning 
of the string
indicates to you that this is an infinite decimal number. 
With that in mind, you can operate on the pattern and deduce that it is 
representing 1/7. You know that we are communicating about 
a delicate choice of actions and that  I have signaled to you that the 7-th 
action is to be preferred. Unfortunately, any eavesdropper (another observer) 
would probably come to the same conclusions, so this is not a very good cipher! 
The point is, that no matter how radical is our constructivism, we have to 
admit that we are capable of sending , not meaning, but literal
patterns that can be reproduced quite faithfully over various modes of 
transmission. Meaning is not transmitted, but physical relationships and orders 
of symbols are recorded and exchanged. The information in the pattern is 
dependent upon the observer. The kids in my math class will only get up to the 
1/7. They will not know anything about the delicate and life-changing decision 
that the 7 represents. The key information in the cipher is not in the cipher. 
It is a potential that can emerge from an appropriate observer in the presence 
of the cipher.
Note that the observer needs extra information. He needs to know that agent LK 
sent it and that it is not just an exercise in an elementary mathematics book.
Best,
Lou Kauffman

> On Oct 14, 2016, at 9:16 AM, Dai Griffiths  wrote:
> 
> To trying to answer this question, I find myself asking "Do patterns exist 
> without an observer?".
> 
> A number of familiar problems then re-emerge, which blur my ability to 
> distinguish between foreground and background.
> 
> Dai
> 
> On 13/10/16 11:32, Karl Javorszky wrote:
>> Do patterns contain information?
> 
> -- 
> -
> 
> Professor David (Dai) Griffiths
> Professor of Education
> School of Education and Psychology
> The University of Bolton
> Deane Road
> Bolton, BL3 5AB
> 
> Office: T3 02
> http://www.bolton.ac.uk/IEC
> 
> SKYPE: daigriffiths
> UK Mobile +44 (0)749151559
> Spanish Mobile: + 34 687955912
> Work: + 44 (0)7826917705
> (Please don't leave voicemail)
> email:
>   d.e.griffi...@bolton.ac.uk
>   dai.griffith...@gmail.com
> 
> ___
> Fis mailing list
> Fis@listas.unizar.es
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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-14 Thread John Collier
Peirce's answer is a definite "yes", and is a form pf realism. The idea that 
patterns require an observer is the basis for nominalism, which was adopted by 
most empiricists like Locke and Hume. Plato, though, was also a nominalist, 
though the reasoning is not so straight-forward. The empiricist Berkeley, with 
his requirement of God's observation, is an objective idealism, but 
nominalistic nonetheless, in line with the other British Empiricists of his era.

John Collier
Emeritus Professor and Senior Research Associate
Philosophy, University of KwaZulu-Natal
http://web.ncf.ca/collier

> -Original Message-
> From: Fis [mailto:fis-boun...@listas.unizar.es] On Behalf Of Dai Griffiths
> Sent: Friday, 14 October 2016 4:16 PM
> To: fis@listas.unizar.es
> Subject: Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)
> 
> To trying to answer this question, I find myself asking "Do patterns exist
> without an observer?".
> 
> A number of familiar problems then re-emerge, which blur my ability to
> distinguish between foreground and background.
> 
> Dai
> 
> On 13/10/16 11:32, Karl Javorszky wrote:
> > Do patterns contain information?
> 
> --
> -
> 
> Professor David (Dai) Griffiths
> Professor of Education
> School of Education and Psychology
> The University of Bolton
> Deane Road
> Bolton, BL3 5AB
> 
> Office: T3 02
> http://www.bolton.ac.uk/IEC
> 
> SKYPE: daigriffiths
> UK Mobile +44 (0)749151559
> Spanish Mobile: + 34 687955912
> Work: + 44 (0)7826917705
> (Please don't leave voicemail)
> email:
> d.e.griffi...@bolton.ac.uk
> dai.griffith...@gmail.com
> 
> ___
> Fis mailing list
> Fis@listas.unizar.es
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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-14 Thread Dai Griffiths
To trying to answer this question, I find myself asking "Do patterns 
exist without an observer?".


A number of familiar problems then re-emerge, which blur my ability to 
distinguish between foreground and background.


Dai

On 13/10/16 11:32, Karl Javorszky wrote:

Do patterns contain information?


--
-

Professor David (Dai) Griffiths
Professor of Education
School of Education and Psychology
The University of Bolton
Deane Road
Bolton, BL3 5AB

Office: T3 02
http://www.bolton.ac.uk/IEC

SKYPE: daigriffiths
UK Mobile +44 (0)749151559
Spanish Mobile: + 34 687955912
Work: + 44 (0)7826917705
(Please don't leave voicemail)
email:
   d.e.griffi...@bolton.ac.uk
   dai.griffith...@gmail.com

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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-11 Thread Loet Leydesdorff
Dear Mark and colleagues, 

 

Loet, clearly the redundancy is apophatic, although one has to be cautious
in saying this: the domain of the apophatic is bigger than the domain of
Shannon redundancy. At some point in the future we may do better in
developing measurement techniques for 'surprise' in communication (I wonder
if Lou Kauffman's Recursive Distinguishing is a way forwards...). 

 

The extension of the redundancy is not primarily a matter of measurement
techniques, but of theorizing. The redundancy depends on the specification
of the system. The Shannon-type information is empirical, but only the
specification of the system enables us to specify the H(max) and therefore
the redundancy.

 

As the system grows, it may develop new dimensions which are manifest as
bifurcations. (Reaction-diffusion dynamics; Rashevsky, Turing.) When one
goes from one dimension n to a two-dimensional system [n,m], the number of
options [H(max)] goes from log(n) to log(n * m), and thus the redundancy
increases rapidly. 

 

For example: as long as transport over the Alps is limited to passes like
the Brenner, the capacity can become exhausted. Digging tunnels or flying
over the Alps adds degrees of freedom to the transport system. The number of
options (n * m * k * ..) can "explode" by cultural and technological
developments.  The transitions come as surprises (e.g., the demise of the
Soviet-Union). Suddenly, the relevant systems definitions have to be
revised.

 

The systems definitions have the status of hypotheses. Hypotheses can be
considered as theoretically informed expectations. The world of expectations
proliferates with a dynamic different from the actualizations. The two
realms are coupled since the actualizations can be considered as
instantiations of the order of expectations; but only if the latter is
specified as different from the empirical order of realizations.

 

Best,

Loet

 

  _  

Loet Leydesdorff 

Professor, University of Amsterdam
Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)

  l...@leydesdorff.net ;
 http://www.leydesdorff.net/ 
Associate Faculty,   SPRU, University of
Sussex; 

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

Visiting Professor,   Birkbeck, University of London;


 
http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=ych9gNYJ=en

 

 

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Re: [Fis] Scientific communication (from Mark)

2016-10-10 Thread PEDRO CLEMENTE MARIJUAN FERNANDEZ

De: Mark Johnson [johnsonm...@gmail.com],



Dear Dai, Rafael, Loet and all,

Thank you for your comments - the theological connection interests me
because it potentially presents a paradigm of a more vulnerable
and open dialogue.

Loet, clearly the redundancy is apophatic, although one has to be
cautious in saying this: the domain of the apophatic is bigger than
the domain of Shannon redundancy. At some point in the future we may
do better in developing measurement techniques for 'surprise' in
communication (I wonder if Lou Kauffman's Recursive Distinguishing is
a way forwards...). Shannon's formulae have served us well because
we've constrained our digital world around them. "Surprise", from a
phenomenological perspective, is a much more slippery thing than the
measure of probability. There are, as Keynes and others identified,
fundamental ontological assumptions about induction which do not
appear to be sound in probabilistic thinking. These questions are not
separable from questions about the nature of empirical reasoning
itself (Keynes used Hume as his reference point), and by extension,
about the communication between scientists. I still don't know what
information is; I've simply found it more helpful and constructive to
think about constraint, and Shannon redundancy presents itself as a
fairly simple thing to play with.

Back to scientific communication, I've been looking at David Bohm
whose thoughts on dialogue are closely related to his thinking about
physics, and to my own concern for constraint. He writes:

"when one comes to do something (and not merely to talk about it or
think about it), one tends to believe that one already is listening to
the other person in a proper way. It seems then that the main trouble
is that the other person is the one who is prejudiced and not
listening. After all, it is easy for each one of us to see that other
people are 'blocked' about certain questions, so that without being
aware of it, they are avoiding the confrontation of contradictions in
certain ideas that may be extremely dear to them. The very nature of
such a 'block' is, however, that it is a kind of insensitivity of
"anaesthesia" about one's own contradictions." (Bohm, "On Dialogue",
p.4)

The blocks are complex, but "published work" and "reputation" are
important factors in establishing them. I was at a conference last
week where a highly established figure castigated a young PhD student
who was giving an excellent but challenging presentation: "have you
read ANY of my books?!". The student dealt with the attack elegantly;
everyone else thought it revealed rather more about the constraints of
ego of the questioner (confirming a few suspicions they might have had
beforehand!)

Our practices of "Not communicating" in science are, I think,
well-demonstrated by considering this encounter between Richard
Dawkins, Rowan Williams and Anthony Kenny.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bow4nnh1Wv0

I think it's worth pointing out the constraints (or "blocks") of their
respective
positions, which (particularly in Dawkins case) are very clearly on
display. My reading of this is that they attempt to communicate by
coordinating terminology/explanations/etc. All the time they are aware
of the fact that they have fundamentally different constraints: there
is no overlap of constraint, and really no communication. The medium
of the discussion is part
of the problem: it structures itself around the 'topics' for debate,
and then it becomes a matter of not making oneself vulnerable within
that frame (this is what Bohm advocated avoiding). Yet for
communication (or dialogue) to take place between
these people, mutual vulnerability (I suggest) would have to be the
starting point. The discussion is also framed by the history and
reputation established through the each participant's published work.

One of the reasons why I mentioned the theological work (and why I
think this is important) is that it is much harder to talk about
theology without making oneself vulnerable - or at least, an
invulnerable theology comes across as dogmatism... of the kind that in
this instance, is most clearly exemplified by Dawkins!

What's missing is usually our vulnerability.

Best wishes,

Mark

--
Dr. Mark William Johnson
Institute of Learning and Teaching
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences
University of Liverpool

Phone: 07786 064505
Email: johnsonm...@gmail.com
Blog: http://dailyimprovisation.blogspot.com

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