### Re: [Fis] Is information physical? OR Does the information exist without the carrier?

```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 existence to two as a noun. The Russelian alternative  — to take two
to be the collection of all couples — is a fascinating intellectual move, but
I prefer to avoid it by not having to speak of the existence of two in such a
way. Two is a concept and it is outside of formal systems and outside of the
physical
except in that we who have that concept are linked with formalism and linked
with the apparent physical.

And let us not forget the other question.
What is "the physical”?
What we take to be physical arises as a relation between our sensing (and
generalized sensing) and our ability to form concepts.
To imagine that the “physical” exists independent of that relation is an extra
assumption that is not necessary for scientific work, however
attractive or repelling it may seem.
Best,
Lou Kauffman
P.S. With this letter, I reach my quota for the week and will remain silent
until next Monday.
If anyone wants a private email conversation, I shall be happy to carry on in
that fashion.

> On Apr 25, 2018, at 2:20 AM, Krassimir Markov  wrote:
>
> Dear Mark and Colleagues,
>
>
> Very nice “simple question”:  “Is information physical?”
>
> I agree that “letters, electromagnetic waves and actually all physical
> objects are only carriers of information”.
>
> The brain is carrier of information, too.
>
>
> Now, I think, what we need to clear is another “simple question” closely
> interrelated to yours:
>
>
> Does the information exist without the carrier?
>
>
> In other words, can the color, speed, weigh, temperature, time, etc., exist
> without objects which these characteristics belong to and may be measured by
> other objects.
>
> To understand more clearly, let see the case of “time”.
>
> Does the time really exist?
>
> Does the time exist without real regular processes which we may reflect and
> compare?
>
> The time is falling drops of water, the movement of the pendulum, etc.
>
> One may say, the time is information about all these processes.
>
> OK! But, if these processes do not exist, will we have “time”?
>
>
> I think, we have a question in two interrelated explanations:
>
> - Is information physical?
>
> - Does the information exist without the carrier?
>
>
> Friendly greetings
>
> Krassimir
>
>
> From: Burgin, Mark
> the movement of the pendulum
>
> falling drops of water
>
> Sent: Wednesday, April 25, 2018 4:47 AM
> To: fis@listas.unizar.es
> Subject: Re: [Fis] Is information physical?
>
> 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 information
> is physical. When people receive an e-mail, they comprehend that it is
> information because with the e-mail they receive information. The e-mail
> comes to the computer in the form of electromagnetic waves, which are
> physical. As a result, people start thinking even more that information is
> physical.
>However, letters, electromagnetic waves and actually all physical objects
> are only carriers or containers of information.
>To understand this better, let us consider a textbook. Is possible to say
> that this book is knowledge? Any reasonable person will tell that the
> textbook contains knowledge but is not knowledge itself. In the same way, the
> textbook contains information but is not information itself. The same is true
> for letters, e-mails, electromagnetic waves and other physical objects
> because all of them only contain information but are not information. For
> instance, as we know, different letters can contain the same information.
> Even if we make an identical copy of a letter or any```

### Re: [Fis] Is information physical? OR Does the information exist without the carrier?

```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 existence to two as a noun. The Russelian alternative  — to take
> two to be the collection of all couples — is a fascinating intellectual move,
> but
> I prefer to avoid it by not having to speak of the existence of two in such a
> way. Two is a concept and it is outside of formal systems and outside of the
> physical
> except in that we who have that concept are linked with formalism and linked
> with the apparent physical.
>
> And let us not forget the other question.
> What is "the physical”?
> What we take to be physical arises as a relation between our sensing (and
> generalized sensing) and our ability to form concepts.
> To imagine that the “physical” exists independent of that relation is an
> extra assumption that is not necessary for scientific work, however
> attractive or repelling it may seem.

Indeed, the existence of a physical ontology is an hypothesis in metaphysics,
and not in physics. It was brought mainly by Aristotle and even more by its
followers.

What can be shown, is that if we assume Digital Mechanism in the cognitive
science, then the physical cannot be ontological, and physics has to be reduced
to the psychology, or better the theology of the digital machine. My
contribution shows this testable, and the physical observations, up to now,
favour the non existence of primary matter (as amazing and counter-intuive this
could seem).

What many people seem to miss is that the notion of universal machine and the
notion of computations (Turing, Post, Church, Kleene) are purely arithmetical
notion. Anyone who is able to believe that (3^3) + (4^3) + (5^3) = (6^3) is
necessarily either true or false even without verifying which it is, should be
able to understand that all computations exists independently of the existence
of anything physical, and then a reasoning can show that it is easier to
explain the illusion of an otological matter to complex number relation, than
to explain the numbers in term of complex relation between primary matter. In
fact it is impossible, and the notion of primary matter adds unnecessary
insuperable difficulties in the “mind-body” problem.

Now, Landauer, and others, have given some evidence that some notion of
information is physical (like quantum information). That does not contradict
the idea that information is not physical. The illusion of physical appearances
is real, obeys laws, and physics is eventually reduced into an internal
statistics on all computations in arithmetic, and that can explain some special
form of physical information (and indeed the quantum one is already explained
in some testable way).

The origin of information comes from the fact that aTuring machine cannot
distinguish the physical reality from the arithmetical reality (which emulates
all computations) except by observation. The machines are distributed in
infinitely many exemplars in arithmetic, and that defines a sort of indexical
differentiating consciousness flux, leading to (collective) sharable deep
dreams which we call the physical.

Now, all this is long to explain, and I’m afraid this can look too much
provocative, if I do not add the proofs and much more explanations. People can
consult my papers, but needs to study a bit of mathematical logic.

Physicalism/materialism is a long lasting habit of thought, and, as I have
experienced my whole life, some materialist defend the dogma with more
integrism and violence than some (pseudo)-religious radicals in history.

Once we assume mechanism, all we need to assume to get both mind and matter is
*any* universal machine or machinery, and then the usual platonic
epistemological definitions can be used (but they can also be motivated through
some thought experience).
For the universal machinery, I use (very) elementary arithmetic, because
everyone is familiar with them, and can accept that “17 is prime” is true
independently of them, which would not be the case with ((K K) K) = K in
combinators theory (generally not known). But we can derive arithmetic, and the
physical dreams from just very small theories, like

((K x) y) = x
(((S x) y) z) = ((x z) (y z))

(Axioms of the SK-combinators: that is Turing Universal!)

Or, very elemen```

### Re: [Fis] Is information physical? OR Does the information exist without the carrier?

```
Dear Bruno,
You claim: "all computations exists independently of the existence of anything
physical".
I never heard, apart probably from Berkeley and Tegmark, a more untestable,
metaphyisical, a-scientific, unquantifiable claim.
Dear FISers, we NEED to deal with something testable and quantifiable,
otherwise we are doing philosophy and logic, not science!  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 purposes.
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 Android venerdì, 27 aprile 2018, 10:10AM +02:00 da
Bruno Marchal  marc...@ulb.ac.be :

>Hi Lou, Colleagues,
>
>
>>On 25 Apr 2018, at 16:55, Louis H Kauffman < kauff...@uic.edu > 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 existence to two as a noun. The Russelian alternative  — to take
>>two to be the collection of all couples — is a fascinating intellectual move,
>>but
>>I prefer to avoid it by not having to speak of the existence of two in such a
>>way. Two is a concept and it is outside of formal systems and outside of the
>>physical
>>except in that we who have that concept are linked with formalism and linked
>>with the apparent physical.
>>
>>And let us not forget the other question.
>>What is "the physical”?
>>What we take to be physical arises as a relation between our sensing (and
>>generalized sensing) and our ability to form concepts.
>>To imagine that the “physical” exists independent of that relation is an
>>extra assumption that is not necessary for scientific work, however
>>attractive or repelling it may seem.
>
>
>Indeed, the existence of a physical ontology is an hypothesis in metaphysics,
>and not in physics. It was brought mainly by Aristotle and even more by its
>followers.
>
>What can be shown, is that if we assume Digital Mechanism in the cognitive
>science, then the physical cannot be ontological, and physics has to be
>reduced to the psychology, or better the theology of the digital machine. My
>contribution shows this testable, and the physical observations, up to now,
>favour the non existence of primary matter (as amazing and counter-intuive
>this could seem).
>
>What many people seem to miss is that the notion of universal machine and the
>notion of computations (Turing, Post, Church, Kleene) are purely arithmetical
>notion. Anyone who is able to believe that (3^3) + (4^3) + (5^3) = (6^3) is
>necessarily either true or false even without verifying which it is, should be
>able to understand that all computations exists independently of the existence
>of anything physical, and then a reasoning can show that it is easier to
>explain the illusion of an otological matter to complex number relation, than
>to explain the numbers in term of complex relation between primary matter. In
>fact it is impossible, and the notion of primary matter adds unnecessary
>insuperable difficulties in the “mind-body” problem.
>
>Now, Landauer, and others, have given some evidence that some notion of
>information is physical (like quantum information). That does not contradict
>the idea that information is not physical. The illusion of physical
>appearances is real, obeys laws, and physics is eventually reduced into an
>internal statistics on all computations in arithmetic, and that can explain
>some special form of physical information (and indeed the quantum one is
>already explained in some testable way).
>
>The origin of information comes from the fact that aTuring machine cannot
>distinguish the physical reality from the arithmetical reality (which emulates
>all computations) except by observation. The machines are distributed in
>infinitely many exemplars in arithmetic, and that defines a sort of indexical
>differentiating consciousness flux, leading to (collective) sharable deep
>dreams which we call the physical.
>
>Now, all this is long to explain, and I’m afraid this can look to```

### 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
measurement.
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
substrate!
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
measurement.
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
understanding.
Best,
Lou

> On Apr 27, 2018, at 4:38 AM, tozziart...@libero.it wrote:
>
> Dear Bruno,
> You claim: "all computations exists independently of the existence of
> anything physical".
> I never heard, apart probably from Berkeley and Tegmark, a more untestable,
> metaphyisical, a-scientific, unquantifiable claim.
>
> Dear FISers, we NEED to deal with something testable and quantifiable,
> otherwise we are doing philosophy and logic, not science!  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 purposes.
> 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 Android
>
> venerdì, 27 aprile 2018, 10:10AM +02:00 da Bruno Marchal marc...@ulb.ac.be
> :
>
> 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 existence to two as a noun. The Russelian alternative  — to take
>> two to be the collection of all couples — is a fascinating intellectual
>> move, but
>> I prefer to avoid it by not having to speak of the existence of two in such
>> a way. Two is a concept and it is outside of formal systems and outside of
>> the physical
>> except in that we who have that concept are linked with formalism and linked
>> with the apparent physical.
>>
>> And let us not forget the other question.
>> What is "the physical”?
>> What we take to be physical arises as a relation between our sensing (and
>> generalized sensing) and our ability to form concepts.
>> To imagine that the “physical” exists independent of that relation is an
>> extra assumption that is not necessary for scientific work, however
>> attractive or repelling it may seem.
>
>
> Indeed, the existence of a physical ontology is an hypothesis in metaphysics,
> and not in physics. It was brought mainly by Aristotle and even more by its
> followers.
>
> What can be shown, is that if we assume Digital Mechanism in the cognitive
> science, then the physical cannot be ontological, and physics has to be
> reduced to the psychology, or better the theology of the digital machine. My
> contribution shows this testable, and the physical observations, up to now,
> favour the non existence of pr```

### Re: [Fis] Is information physical? OR Does the information exist without the carrier?

```
Dear colleagues,

Not only logic, but also language is not directly and one-to-one coupled
to physics. The hidden positivism of claiming priority for physics by
some of us, is at odds with the linguistic turn in the philosophy of
science. Furthermore, the issue is not directly related to the
definition of information as probablistic entropy or otherwise.

I agree with most of what Lou Kauffman said, but:

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.
The emphasis in the above remains on the individual sensing and feeling,
mediated by measurement. However, scientific observation is not such
immediate feeling, but careful and discursively constructed
articulations of expectations which are tested against observations. The
cocon of language (a la Maturana) is opened at specific places which are
carefully reasoned. The feelings do enter only after having been
articulated into observational reports. The latter contain knowledge
claims which are validated discursively. No escape! The observations
enable us to improve the codification in the specialist language
(jargon).

Physics is part of this edifice of science. It has no privileged access
to reality, but constructs its own reality. Nobody senses the particles
at CERN. The observational reports are readings from an instrument which
have to be discussed before one can interpret.

If any science can claim priority, it is communication studies. The
specialist languages are shaped in processes of communication. How does
this work? Can it be improved?

Best,
Loet

5. Beyond those places where significant related pairs of opposites
that cannot be separated (complementarities) occur there is our (in at

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 understanding.

Best,
Lou

On Apr 27, 2018, at 4:38 AM, tozziart...@libero.it wrote:

Dear Bruno,
You claim: "all computations exists independently of the existence of
anything physical".
I never heard, apart probably from Berkeley and Tegmark, a more
untestable, metaphyisical, a-scientific, unquantifiable claim.

Dear FISers, we NEED to deal with something testable and quantifiable,
otherwise we are doing philosophy and logic, not science!  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 purposes.
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 Android

venerdì, 27 aprile 2018, 10:10AM +02:00 da Bruno Marchal
marc...@ulb.ac.be:

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 existence to two as a noun. The Russelian alternative  —
to take two to be the collection of all couples — is a fascinating
intellectual move, but
I prefer to avoid it by not having to speak of the existence of two
in such a way. Two is a concept and it is outside of formal systems
and outside of the physical
except in that we who have that concept are linked with formalism
and linked with the apparent physical.

And let us not forget the other question.
What is "the physical”?
What we take to be physical arises as a relation between our sensing
(and generalized sensing) and our ability to form concepts.
To imagine that the “physical” exists independent of that relation
is an extra assumption that is not necessary for scientific work,
however

attractive or repelling it may seem.

Indeed, the existence of a physical ontology is an hypothesis in
metaphysics, and not in physics. It was brought mainly by Aristotle
and even more by its followers.

What can be shown, is that if we assume Dig```

### Re: [Fis] Is information physical? OR Does the information exist without the carrier?

```Dear Arturo,

Bruno is a metamathematician - as far as I can tell.
He regards everything as mathematics - an extension of arithmetic - which I
would contest.

In his 'Reality' we are all mathematics, not physics, not physical science.
So he seems not to require Popper or testing.

Bruno?

Alex

On 27 April 2018 at 15:08,  wrote:

> Dear Bruno,
> You claim: "all computations exists independently of the existence of
> anything physical".
> I never heard, apart probably from Berkeley and Tegmark, a more
> untestable, metaphyisical, a-scientific, unquantifiable claim.
>
> Dear FISers, we NEED to deal with something testable and quantifiable,
> otherwise we are doing philosophy and logic, not science!  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 purposes.
> 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 Android
> venerdì, 27 aprile 2018, 10:10AM +02:00 da Bruno Marchal marc...@ulb.ac.be
> :
>
>
> 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 existence to two as a noun. The Russelian alternative  — to take
> two to be the collection of all couples — is a fascinating intellectual
> move, but
> I prefer to avoid it by not having to speak of the existence of two in
> such a way. Two is a concept and it is outside of formal systems and
> outside of the physical
> except in that we who have that concept are linked with formalism and
> linked with the apparent physical.
>
> And let us not forget the other question.
> What is "the physical”?
> What we take to be physical arises as a relation between our sensing (and
> generalized sensing) and our ability to form concepts.
> To imagine that the “physical” exists independent of that relation is an
> extra assumption that is not necessary for scientific work, however
> attractive or repelling it may seem.
>
>
>
> Indeed, the existence of a physical ontology is an hypothesis in
> metaphysics, and not in physics. It was brought mainly by Aristotle and
> even more by its followers.
>
> What can be shown, is that if we assume Digital Mechanism in the cognitive
> science, then the physical cannot be ontological, and physics has to be
> reduced to the psychology, or better the theology of the digital machine.
> My contribution shows this testable, and the physical observations, up to
> now,  favour the non existence of primary matter (as amazing and
> counter-intuive this could seem).
>
> What many people seem to miss is that the notion of universal machine and
> the notion of computations (Turing, Post, Church, Kleene) are purely
> arithmetical notion. Anyone who is able to believe that (3^3) + (4^3) +
> (5^3) = (6^3) is necessarily either true or false even without verifying
> which it is, should be able to understand that all computations exists
> independently of the existence of anything physical, and then a reasoning
> can show that it is easier to explain the illusion of an otological matter
> to complex number relation, than to explain the numbers in term of complex
> relation between primary matter. In fact it is impossible, and the notion
> of primary matter adds unnecessary insuperable difficulties in the
> “mind-body” problem.
>
> Now, Landauer, and others, have given some evidence that some notion of
> information is physical (like quantum information). That does not
> contradict the idea that information is not physical. The illusion of
> physical appearances is real, obeys laws, and physics is eventually reduced
> into an internal statistics on all computations in arithmetic, and that can
> explain some special form of physical information (and indeed the quantum
> one is already explained in some testable way).
>
> The origin of information comes from the fact that aTuring machine cannot
> distinguish the physical reality from the arithmetical reality (which
> emulate```