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

2015-02-01 Thread Steven Ericsson-Zenith
Dear Terry,

First, allow me to respond to your questions on my own account and then
further challenge your own.

No, information is not for me a stereochemical property, in that I am
less concerned about the particulars of the chemistry involved. However, my
principal concern is a generalized (flexible and closed) structure that may
be formed by different elements in different environments. So it is
structure that is primary and not chemistry, that may simply be seen as a
means to an end.

Your question concerning my definition of knowledge is insightful. Indeed,
knowledge embodied by an organism may be false, but this has no impact at
all upon the responses that the organism produces in its utilization. The
false knowledge may, in fact, benefit the organism. All knowledge, indeed
any knowledge, is that which determines subsequent physical actions, be it
true or false. Fallibilism is simply part of a method of knowledge
refinement. Of course, this model opens up some interesting philosophical
questions in that sustained error can now potentially play an important
role in evolution.

You claim that to understand information requires a theory of dynamical
constraints and further these constraints do not have reducible
components. You are perhaps inspired by Darwin's constraint of natural
selection? These are, for me, posterior determinants. But natural selection
is not itself dynamic and nor does it have an existential status that would
allow me to say that it has level specific properties. This, again,
suggests dualism (sorry).

Regards,
Steven

 PS. Let's just say that I posted this to FIS on Monday, and I'll limit
myself next week. :-)



On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 9:23 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
wrote:

 Dear Steven,

 Sadly Taking the time (and wordiness) required to explain my critique
 and redefinition of emergence is beyond the scope this venue and your
 patience, so I can only point to my too lengthy book for that account.
 Needless to say I do not accept either dualism or identity theory. My
 claim is that to understand information requires a theory of dynamical
 constraints, and since constraints don't have reducible components
 they are level specific relational properties, not identified with
 intrinsic properties of specific material objects or energetic
 systems, but not epiphenomenal.

 Do I understand you to be reducing information to a stereochemical
 property? And do you reduce knowledge to anything that determines
 physical actions? Obviously, I must be missing something. I would
 not be alone in arguing that for something to be information about
 something, it must be capable of being in error. How can simple
 physical properties or causal interactions have this property of
 falliblism?

 — Terry

 On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
  Dear Terry,
 
  This emergence theory, at least on the face of it, is then surely an
  advocacy of dualism, since epiphenomenalism is logically
 indistinguishable
  from identity theory. So I must ask how you propose to distinguish the
 two.
 
  Information theory is a way of speaking about what happens in the
 world.
  As such it is a pragmatic, like many other pragmatics before it, it is a
  step in the right direction but not, of itself, able or required to meet
  the explanatory goal.
 
  My best definition of information does not standalone: Information is
  that which adds to knowledge and identifies cause, where knowledge is
  generalized to include all that determines subsequent action
 (importantly,
  it is the immediate that includes all physical actions).
 
  It is possible, in my theory, to reduce reference to an intrinsic
 physical
  property. Briefly, sense is formed as a shape upon the surface of
 flexible
  closed structures (biophysics, with latent receptors and motor
 functions),
  characterized by a holomorphic functor, covariant with another shape upon
  the closed surface, bound as a hyper-functor. The hyper-functor provides
 a
  sense/response decision point between the two. IOW, a clear reference is
  always associated with a response.
 
  Regards,
  Steven
 
 
 
 
  On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 7:25 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
 
  wrote:
 
  Hi Steven,
 
  My apologies for wordiness. We all have our weaknesses. I am curious
  about your claim that a complete theory of information may be
  impossible. I am not even sure what this would mean — except
  irresolvable dualism. But as to the issue of whether I advocate an
  identity theory, I can provide a clear no. Mine is an emergence theory
  in which it is not possible to reduce reference to an intrinsic
  physical property.
 
  Thanks, Terry
 
  On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
   Dear Terry, list.
  
   I apologize that I have not had the time to keep up with this
  discussion. I
   did try to read Terry's text but found it strangely impenetrable with
  many
   more word than were necessary to make a point. This 

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

2015-01-31 Thread Terrence W. DEACON
 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 model(s).

 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,

 Joseph
   

Message d'origine
De : dea...@berkeley.edu
Date : 30/01/2015 - 12:43 (PST)
À : joe.bren...@bluewin.ch
Cc : fis@listas.unizar.es
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
too.

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 are seeking a
complete theory of information.

I anticipate that there is much unmentioned detail that remains to be
unpacked and debated here. Pursuing some of these details could be
very informative, even if it doesn't change entrenched positions.

I think

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

2015-01-30 Thread Steven Ericsson-Zenith
Dear Terry, list.

I apologize that I have not had the time to keep up with this discussion. I
did try to read Terry's text but found it strangely impenetrable with many
more word than were necessary to make a point. This is, perhaps, merely a
question of style, repeated in the recent books of his that I have
purchased but that sit essentially unread although I have tried.

To clarify, I have spent more than my share of time reading the work of
Charles Peirce, readily acknowledged, although many of you may now
recognize my preference for his father's work and its priority. Both quite
brilliant men, but Charles suffers, both conceptually and in his readership
at the hands of neology. Who among us wants to sit through yet another
argument with followers of Charles on the nature of semeiois or a sign? Not
I.

I have also spent a good deal of my time with the work of Claude Shannon.
My discipline of origin is, after all (in French), Informatique. I do
this not merely to comprehend Shannon's theory of communication but also to
inquirer concerning the role that his mathematization plays in its
unfolding. I find, in the end, that the theory applies well to its original
intent, telephony engineering (a human activity), but it lacks any true
ontology.

That is, from my point of view, communication does not exist because there
is a lack of continuity. What I may speak of instead is apprehension. This
suggests that no complete theory of information is, in fact, conceivable.

I confess that I am stunned by Joe's advocacy of necessary duality. But
then, it is not entirely clear what he is implying. He could, for example,
simply be an advocate of a universal property not widely considered and
advocated by myself as the basis of experience or as Benjamin Peirce's
universal will or Charles' (weaker) matter as effete mind, all being
the universal equal of gravitation and of light and to be found ultimately
in the same equations as a force that have an effect upon the world, in
this case in the flexible closed structures that form biophysics. A theory
based upon such a premise, even though it requires something physically
extra today, is clearly not at all dualist.

I, naturally enough, am sympathetic to Terry's denial of dualism, but I
wonder if Terry merely advocates an identity theory. As I have noted often
such a theory is, in fact, a dualism.

Regards,
Steven

--
   Dr. Steven Ericsson-Zenith
   Institute for Advanced Science  Engineering
   http://iase.info










On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 12:43 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
wrote:

 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
 too.

 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 are seeking a
 complete theory of information.

 I anticipate that there is much unmentioned detail that remains to be
 unpacked and debated here. Pursuing some of these details could be
 very informative, even if it doesn't change entrenched positions.

 I think that it is interesting that so many responses have betrayed a
 sort of thinly 

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

2015-01-30 Thread Terrence W. DEACON
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
too.

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 are seeking a
complete theory of information.

I anticipate that there is much unmentioned detail that remains to be
unpacked and debated here. Pursuing some of these details could be
very informative, even if it doesn't change entrenched positions.

I think that it is interesting that so many responses have betrayed a
sort of thinly veiled irritation and anger. To me it suggest that we
are close to a nerve—i.e. some critical issues that are of central
importance.

Thanks, Terry



On 1/30/15, joe.bren...@bluewin.ch joe.bren...@bluewin.ch wrote:
 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 

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

2015-01-30 Thread Terrence W. DEACON
Hi Steven,

My apologies for wordiness. We all have our weaknesses. I am curious
about your claim that a complete theory of information may be
impossible. I am not even sure what this would mean — except
irresolvable dualism. But as to the issue of whether I advocate an
identity theory, I can provide a clear no. Mine is an emergence theory
in which it is not possible to reduce reference to an intrinsic
physical property.

Thanks, Terry

On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
 Dear Terry, list.

 I apologize that I have not had the time to keep up with this discussion. I
 did try to read Terry's text but found it strangely impenetrable with many
 more word than were necessary to make a point. This is, perhaps, merely a
 question of style, repeated in the recent books of his that I have
 purchased but that sit essentially unread although I have tried.

 To clarify, I have spent more than my share of time reading the work of
 Charles Peirce, readily acknowledged, although many of you may now
 recognize my preference for his father's work and its priority. Both quite
 brilliant men, but Charles suffers, both conceptually and in his readership
 at the hands of neology. Who among us wants to sit through yet another
 argument with followers of Charles on the nature of semeiois or a sign? Not
 I.

 I have also spent a good deal of my time with the work of Claude Shannon.
 My discipline of origin is, after all (in French), Informatique. I do
 this not merely to comprehend Shannon's theory of communication but also to
 inquirer concerning the role that his mathematization plays in its
 unfolding. I find, in the end, that the theory applies well to its original
 intent, telephony engineering (a human activity), but it lacks any true
 ontology.

 That is, from my point of view, communication does not exist because there
 is a lack of continuity. What I may speak of instead is apprehension. This
 suggests that no complete theory of information is, in fact, conceivable.

 I confess that I am stunned by Joe's advocacy of necessary duality. But
 then, it is not entirely clear what he is implying. He could, for example,
 simply be an advocate of a universal property not widely considered and
 advocated by myself as the basis of experience or as Benjamin Peirce's
 universal will or Charles' (weaker) matter as effete mind, all being
 the universal equal of gravitation and of light and to be found ultimately
 in the same equations as a force that have an effect upon the world, in
 this case in the flexible closed structures that form biophysics. A theory
 based upon such a premise, even though it requires something physically
 extra today, is clearly not at all dualist.

 I, naturally enough, am sympathetic to Terry's denial of dualism, but I
 wonder if Terry merely advocates an identity theory. As I have noted often
 such a theory is, in fact, a dualism.

 Regards,
 Steven

 --
Dr. Steven Ericsson-Zenith
Institute for Advanced Science  Engineering
http://iase.info










 On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 12:43 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
 wrote:

 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
 too.

 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 

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

2015-01-30 Thread Terrence W. DEACON
Dear Steven,

Sadly Taking the time (and wordiness) required to explain my critique
and redefinition of emergence is beyond the scope this venue and your
patience, so I can only point to my too lengthy book for that account.
Needless to say I do not accept either dualism or identity theory. My
claim is that to understand information requires a theory of dynamical
constraints, and since constraints don't have reducible components
they are level specific relational properties, not identified with
intrinsic properties of specific material objects or energetic
systems, but not epiphenomenal.

Do I understand you to be reducing information to a stereochemical
property? And do you reduce knowledge to anything that determines
physical actions? Obviously, I must be missing something. I would
not be alone in arguing that for something to be information about
something, it must be capable of being in error. How can simple
physical properties or causal interactions have this property of
falliblism?

— Terry

On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
 Dear Terry,

 This emergence theory, at least on the face of it, is then surely an
 advocacy of dualism, since epiphenomenalism is logically indistinguishable
 from identity theory. So I must ask how you propose to distinguish the two.

 Information theory is a way of speaking about what happens in the world.
 As such it is a pragmatic, like many other pragmatics before it, it is a
 step in the right direction but not, of itself, able or required to meet
 the explanatory goal.

 My best definition of information does not standalone: Information is
 that which adds to knowledge and identifies cause, where knowledge is
 generalized to include all that determines subsequent action (importantly,
 it is the immediate that includes all physical actions).

 It is possible, in my theory, to reduce reference to an intrinsic physical
 property. Briefly, sense is formed as a shape upon the surface of flexible
 closed structures (biophysics, with latent receptors and motor functions),
 characterized by a holomorphic functor, covariant with another shape upon
 the closed surface, bound as a hyper-functor. The hyper-functor provides a
 sense/response decision point between the two. IOW, a clear reference is
 always associated with a response.

 Regards,
 Steven




 On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 7:25 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
 wrote:

 Hi Steven,

 My apologies for wordiness. We all have our weaknesses. I am curious
 about your claim that a complete theory of information may be
 impossible. I am not even sure what this would mean — except
 irresolvable dualism. But as to the issue of whether I advocate an
 identity theory, I can provide a clear no. Mine is an emergence theory
 in which it is not possible to reduce reference to an intrinsic
 physical property.

 Thanks, Terry

 On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
  Dear Terry, list.
 
  I apologize that I have not had the time to keep up with this
 discussion. I
  did try to read Terry's text but found it strangely impenetrable with
 many
  more word than were necessary to make a point. This is, perhaps, merely
  a
  question of style, repeated in the recent books of his that I have
  purchased but that sit essentially unread although I have tried.
 
  To clarify, I have spent more than my share of time reading the work of
  Charles Peirce, readily acknowledged, although many of you may now
  recognize my preference for his father's work and its priority. Both
 quite
  brilliant men, but Charles suffers, both conceptually and in his
 readership
  at the hands of neology. Who among us wants to sit through yet another
  argument with followers of Charles on the nature of semeiois or a sign?
 Not
  I.
 
  I have also spent a good deal of my time with the work of Claude
  Shannon.
  My discipline of origin is, after all (in French), Informatique. I do
  this not merely to comprehend Shannon's theory of communication but
  also
 to
  inquirer concerning the role that his mathematization plays in its
  unfolding. I find, in the end, that the theory applies well to its
 original
  intent, telephony engineering (a human activity), but it lacks any true
  ontology.
 
  That is, from my point of view, communication does not exist because
 there
  is a lack of continuity. What I may speak of instead is apprehension.
 This
  suggests that no complete theory of information is, in fact,
 conceivable.
 
  I confess that I am stunned by Joe's advocacy of necessary duality. But
  then, it is not entirely clear what he is implying. He could, for
 example,
  simply be an advocate of a universal property not widely considered and
  advocated by myself as the basis of experience or as Benjamin
  Peirce's
  universal will or Charles' (weaker) matter as effete mind, all
  being
  the universal equal of gravitation and of light and to be found
 ultimately
  in the same equations as a force that have an effect 

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

2015-01-30 Thread joe.bren...@bluewin.ch
Terry, 

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 
model(s).

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,

Joseph  
  

Message d'origine
De : dea...@berkeley.edu
Date : 30/01/2015 - 12:43 (PST)
À : joe.bren...@bluewin.ch
Cc : fis@listas.unizar.es
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
too.

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] Fwd: Re: Concluding the Lecture?

2015-01-30 Thread Steven Ericsson-Zenith
Dear Terry,

This emergence theory, at least on the face of it, is then surely an
advocacy of dualism, since epiphenomenalism is logically indistinguishable
from identity theory. So I must ask how you propose to distinguish the two.

Information theory is a way of speaking about what happens in the world.
As such it is a pragmatic, like many other pragmatics before it, it is a
step in the right direction but not, of itself, able or required to meet
the explanatory goal.

My best definition of information does not standalone: Information is
that which adds to knowledge and identifies cause, where knowledge is
generalized to include all that determines subsequent action (importantly,
it is the immediate that includes all physical actions).

It is possible, in my theory, to reduce reference to an intrinsic physical
property. Briefly, sense is formed as a shape upon the surface of flexible
closed structures (biophysics, with latent receptors and motor functions),
characterized by a holomorphic functor, covariant with another shape upon
the closed surface, bound as a hyper-functor. The hyper-functor provides a
sense/response decision point between the two. IOW, a clear reference is
always associated with a response.

Regards,
Steven




On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 7:25 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
wrote:

 Hi Steven,

 My apologies for wordiness. We all have our weaknesses. I am curious
 about your claim that a complete theory of information may be
 impossible. I am not even sure what this would mean — except
 irresolvable dualism. But as to the issue of whether I advocate an
 identity theory, I can provide a clear no. Mine is an emergence theory
 in which it is not possible to reduce reference to an intrinsic
 physical property.

 Thanks, Terry

 On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
  Dear Terry, list.
 
  I apologize that I have not had the time to keep up with this
 discussion. I
  did try to read Terry's text but found it strangely impenetrable with
 many
  more word than were necessary to make a point. This is, perhaps, merely a
  question of style, repeated in the recent books of his that I have
  purchased but that sit essentially unread although I have tried.
 
  To clarify, I have spent more than my share of time reading the work of
  Charles Peirce, readily acknowledged, although many of you may now
  recognize my preference for his father's work and its priority. Both
 quite
  brilliant men, but Charles suffers, both conceptually and in his
 readership
  at the hands of neology. Who among us wants to sit through yet another
  argument with followers of Charles on the nature of semeiois or a sign?
 Not
  I.
 
  I have also spent a good deal of my time with the work of Claude Shannon.
  My discipline of origin is, after all (in French), Informatique. I do
  this not merely to comprehend Shannon's theory of communication but also
 to
  inquirer concerning the role that his mathematization plays in its
  unfolding. I find, in the end, that the theory applies well to its
 original
  intent, telephony engineering (a human activity), but it lacks any true
  ontology.
 
  That is, from my point of view, communication does not exist because
 there
  is a lack of continuity. What I may speak of instead is apprehension.
 This
  suggests that no complete theory of information is, in fact,
 conceivable.
 
  I confess that I am stunned by Joe's advocacy of necessary duality. But
  then, it is not entirely clear what he is implying. He could, for
 example,
  simply be an advocate of a universal property not widely considered and
  advocated by myself as the basis of experience or as Benjamin Peirce's
  universal will or Charles' (weaker) matter as effete mind, all being
  the universal equal of gravitation and of light and to be found
 ultimately
  in the same equations as a force that have an effect upon the world, in
  this case in the flexible closed structures that form biophysics. A
 theory
  based upon such a premise, even though it requires something physically
  extra today, is clearly not at all dualist.
 
  I, naturally enough, am sympathetic to Terry's denial of dualism, but I
  wonder if Terry merely advocates an identity theory. As I have noted
 often
  such a theory is, in fact, a dualism.
 
  Regards,
  Steven
 
  --
 Dr. Steven Ericsson-Zenith
 Institute for Advanced Science  Engineering
 http://iase.info
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 12:43 PM, Terrence W. DEACON 
 dea...@berkeley.edu
  wrote:
 
  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 

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

2015-01-30 Thread Francesco Rizzo
Cari Tutti,
non vi frastornate. Il pensiero pensante non lo ferma nessuno. Una legge
dell'informazione per tutto il sapere e l'intera  esistenza è possibile e
inevitabile, al di là di ogni specificazione. Inform-azione significa
sempre e in tutti i settori del sapere, dare o prendere forma, diversamente
quantificabile, con o senza significazione immediata. Questo ho cercato di
dire scrivendo nella lingua che conosco. Ma ho l'impressione che, per
ragioni diverse, il mio pensiero non sia passato. La Nuova economia che
propongo da circa 45 anni è una scienza della mediazione, anzi una scienza
delle scienze o al servizio delle scienze, seguendo la strada aperta da
Ernst Mach.Grazie lo stesso e buon lavoro a tutti.
Francesco Rizzo

2015-01-31 4:50 GMT+01:00 Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us:

 Dear Terry,

 This emergence theory, at least on the face of it, is then surely an
 advocacy of dualism, since epiphenomenalism is logically indistinguishable
 from identity theory. So I must ask how you propose to distinguish the two.

 Information theory is a way of speaking about what happens in the world.
 As such it is a pragmatic, like many other pragmatics before it, it is a
 step in the right direction but not, of itself, able or required to meet
 the explanatory goal.

 My best definition of information does not standalone: Information is
 that which adds to knowledge and identifies cause, where knowledge is
 generalized to include all that determines subsequent action (importantly,
 it is the immediate that includes all physical actions).

 It is possible, in my theory, to reduce reference to an intrinsic physical
 property. Briefly, sense is formed as a shape upon the surface of flexible
 closed structures (biophysics, with latent receptors and motor functions),
 characterized by a holomorphic functor, covariant with another shape upon
 the closed surface, bound as a hyper-functor. The hyper-functor provides a
 sense/response decision point between the two. IOW, a clear reference is
 always associated with a response.

 Regards,
 Steven




 On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 7:25 PM, Terrence W. DEACON dea...@berkeley.edu
 wrote:

 Hi Steven,

 My apologies for wordiness. We all have our weaknesses. I am curious
 about your claim that a complete theory of information may be
 impossible. I am not even sure what this would mean — except
 irresolvable dualism. But as to the issue of whether I advocate an
 identity theory, I can provide a clear no. Mine is an emergence theory
 in which it is not possible to reduce reference to an intrinsic
 physical property.

 Thanks, Terry

 On 1/30/15, Steven Ericsson-Zenith ste...@iase.us wrote:
  Dear Terry, list.
 
  I apologize that I have not had the time to keep up with this
 discussion. I
  did try to read Terry's text but found it strangely impenetrable with
 many
  more word than were necessary to make a point. This is, perhaps, merely
 a
  question of style, repeated in the recent books of his that I have
  purchased but that sit essentially unread although I have tried.
 
  To clarify, I have spent more than my share of time reading the work of
  Charles Peirce, readily acknowledged, although many of you may now
  recognize my preference for his father's work and its priority. Both
 quite
  brilliant men, but Charles suffers, both conceptually and in his
 readership
  at the hands of neology. Who among us wants to sit through yet another
  argument with followers of Charles on the nature of semeiois or a sign?
 Not
  I.
 
  I have also spent a good deal of my time with the work of Claude
 Shannon.
  My discipline of origin is, after all (in French), Informatique. I do
  this not merely to comprehend Shannon's theory of communication but
 also to
  inquirer concerning the role that his mathematization plays in its
  unfolding. I find, in the end, that the theory applies well to its
 original
  intent, telephony engineering (a human activity), but it lacks any true
  ontology.
 
  That is, from my point of view, communication does not exist because
 there
  is a lack of continuity. What I may speak of instead is apprehension.
 This
  suggests that no complete theory of information is, in fact,
 conceivable.
 
  I confess that I am stunned by Joe's advocacy of necessary duality. But
  then, it is not entirely clear what he is implying. He could, for
 example,
  simply be an advocate of a universal property not widely considered and
  advocated by myself as the basis of experience or as Benjamin Peirce's
  universal will or Charles' (weaker) matter as effete mind, all being
  the universal equal of gravitation and of light and to be found
 ultimately
  in the same equations as a force that have an effect upon the world,
 in
  this case in the flexible closed structures that form biophysics. A
 theory
  based upon such a premise, even though it requires something physically
  extra today, is clearly not at all dualist.
 
  I, naturally enough, am sympathetic to Terry's denial