Information does not exist as such

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Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Tue Jan 30, 2018 9:06 am

Greta wrote:
Tue Jan 30, 2018 8:18 am
Consider two ostensibly identical computer chips.

Their substance might be exactly the same, even down to the same number of atoms of the same type with the same charge and spin, but the information - the configuration or arrangement of those atoms - is different.
Well then we have two different physical systems, because the positions of those atoms are different.

Troll
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Troll » Wed Feb 07, 2018 12:14 am

The conception of "matter" goes back to Aristotle. So there is an extrinsic, if you like, difficulty. The conflation of the conception of matter still understood until around the time of Locke, and the current ordinary use of that word. Since one speaks of matter and means body. Body is something available to the senses, to touch. The confusion is largely due to the fact that the ancients thought the intellect had access to things the senses didn't have in their reach. Of course, we still have folks like Penrose who echo the older attitude. Newton already was willing to say what his contemporary Leibniz wouldn't admit, which is that the math is not reaching into the thing itself, via the intellect, but is only an extrinsic description that functions. If it functions, I believe the modern physicist is satisfied to say it exists and not bother about the details of the controversy you raise. After all, physicists spend all day staring at computer screens, they don't give a damn about reality!

Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:12 am

Troll wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 12:14 am
The conception of "matter" goes back to Aristotle. So there is an extrinsic, if you like, difficulty. The conflation of the conception of matter still understood until around the time of Locke, and the current ordinary use of that word. Since one speaks of matter and means body. Body is something available to the senses, to touch. The confusion is largely due to the fact that the ancients thought the intellect had access to things the senses didn't have in their reach. Of course, we still have folks like Penrose who echo the older attitude. Newton already was willing to say what his contemporary Leibniz wouldn't admit, which is that the math is not reaching into the thing itself, via the intellect, but is only an extrinsic description that functions. If it functions, I believe the modern physicist is satisfied to say it exists and not bother about the details of the controversy you raise. After all, physicists spend all day staring at computer screens, they don't give a damn about reality!
Yeah it always baffles me that the majority of physicists don't want to interpret physics, and so are divorced from reality. I mean how can you work your entire life in a field, with great enthusiasm, without understanding what you are doing? Luckily there are exceptions, especially among the brightest.

And of course, all of math is description too. It starts with the concept of "one". Surprising as it may be but there is no such thing as "one" in reality. But, as far as we can tell so far, the universe works in a certain way, with absolute precision, so our math will be absolutely correct. Which creates the illusion of being more to it.

Yeah some believe in this extra world of ideas too (did this start with Plato?), but there is no such extra world.

Some believe in mind-matter dualism, but there is no such thing.

Some believe in hard emergence, that consciousness emerges out of complexity of material properties or whatever the hell. It's an accepted form of magic in science, it does not exist.

And some confuse layers of thinking with layers of reality, they don't understand how humans think. And they project their misunderstanding onto reality. They play some kind of language-game without knowing. It's another accepted form of magic in most of science. That's the main problem with information too, apparently even the fathers of information theory didn't understand that they were playing a language-game.

1. layer: Some words refer directly to the "thing-in-itself" which can't be pinned down. It is a basic conceptualization.
2. layer: Some words are abstractions of this 1. layer conceptualization.
3. layer: Some words are abstractions of this 2. layer conceptualization.
...
and so on ad infinitum, you can apply abstraction an arbitrary number of times.

Matter is layer 1. Information is layer 2. Most people don't get this and have tha hallucination that information is a "thing".

Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:51 am

Soo nowadays many people, including scientists, say that the universe may be a simulation or a hologram, because "there seems to be so much more to information".

I sometimes wonder, is this a new brainwashing technique, funded by certain governments and interest groups? :)
Tell the average idiot that he's just a simulation, and has no control over anything. And there's a Big Daddy simulator God watching over him.
And it's all okay and it feels good.

So this way you can manipulate and control the average idiot much better.

uwot
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by uwot » Wed Feb 07, 2018 10:52 am

Troll wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 12:14 am
If it functions, I believe the modern physicist is satisfied to say it exists and not bother about the details of the controversy you raise. After all, physicists spend all day staring at computer screens, they don't give a damn about reality!
I think this is basically true. There's all sorts of physicists and the vast majority are in the business of making things function. For practical purposes, why it functions is irrelevant, hence 'Shut up and calculate'. If the maths functions, it's job done, but since a better understanding of the ontological reality might lead to more functional mathematical models, there are still theoretical physicists.

Troll
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Troll » Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:07 pm

delete
Last edited by Troll on Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Troll
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Troll » Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:08 pm

Your account, I believe, corresponds to the essence of George Berkeley’s work on perception. His polemic was with people who claimed that there was an insensible extension or Philisophic Matter, which he claimed that "Irishmen cannot attain to”. When one understands correctly what he was arguing against, the fanciful interpretation of his philosophy, which is now generally accepted, disappears.

What we call mathematics, as you say: “one” doesn’t exist since it is a unit, a conception in the mind, for Plato, was the simplest form of a manner of reliable foreknowledge. Mathematikos originally had a larger compass. The sign on the Platonic Academy demanded that one could at least grasp arithmetic and geometry, as a stepping stone to the harder stuff, mathematikos meant also the ideas that are the same kind of beings but more difficult to grasp. The ideas are patterns: a tree, a human being, justice. A triangle, or an integer as a unit, is also such a pattern. Plato is interested in the patterns not only as the ground of an unchanging reality, archetypes or prototypes that always are, but also, one might say, as something for open contemplation. Insofar as one insist that Plato is identical to this or that discussion that occurs in the dialogues of Plato, e.g., to understand the ideas in the manner of a Penrose, one doesn't enter into the Greek thinking. Yet, that is the most common way to treat Plato.

“So this way you can manipulate and control the average idiot much better.”
I wouldn’t underestimate the lack of ability to think of most persons, even those in the highest places. Usually these things are not sinister. The account in Locke of primary and secondary substances is very powerful. It leads to the “two tables” account. Scientific and ordinary reality. Though, that said, one never knows what machinations are at work to vicious purpose.


All this leads to a radical mystery. Since one is left to the unassisted human intelligence to interpret reality. One has a correct memorey of how to make things function which calls out, as it were, for interpretation.


“ since a better understanding of the ontological reality might lead to more functional mathematical models, there are still theoretical physicists.”
The mighty Feynman had this to say: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NM-zWTU7X-k

Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:53 am

Troll wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:08 pm
Your account, I believe, corresponds to the essence of George Berkeley’s work on perception. His polemic was with people who claimed that there was an insensible extension or Philisophic Matter, which he claimed that "Irishmen cannot attain to”. When one understands correctly what he was arguing against, the fanciful interpretation of his philosophy, which is now generally accepted, disappears.
Dunno, I kind of reject the entire Western school of thought starting with Plato. I'm basically an Advaitan nonmonistic nondualist I guess, just without all the supernatural beliefs of Easterners. Figuring out all the nonsense in Eastern philosophy took some time too.

This Berkeley guy sounds interesting, I found this one about Berkeley:
All knowledge comes from perception; what we perceive are ideas, not things in themselves; a thing in itself must be outside experience; so the world only consists of ideas and minds that perceive those ideas; a thing only exists so far as it perceives or is perceived. Through this we can see that consciousness is considered something that exists to Berkeley due to its ability to perceive. "'To be,' said of the object, means to be perceived; 'to be,' said of the subject, means to perceive."
To me that's again, Plato-school dualistic nonsense. Just because the thing-in-itself is outside your individual experience, doesn't mean that it doesn't exist. The world doesn't only consist of ideas and "minds" that "percieve" those ideas. That's wrong on more than one level. An idea is something in the head and the head is part of the world.

uwot
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by uwot » Thu Feb 08, 2018 11:42 am

Troll wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:08 pm

“ since a better understanding of the ontological reality might lead to more functional mathematical models, there are still theoretical physicists.”
The mighty Feynman had this to say: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NM-zWTU7X-k
It's a tough job. As Feynman says at 1:48:
"every theoretical physicist that's any good knows 6 or 7 different theoretical representations for exactly the same physics."

Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Thu Feb 08, 2018 12:31 pm

Locke guy:
According to Locke, primary qualities are objectively true and mind-independent, meaning that they exist in the object itself. As examples, Locke identifies qualities like shape, mass, solidity, motion, and texture to be primary.

On the other hand, secondary qualities are subjectively true and mind-dependent, meaning that they have the ability to spur ideas in us depending on the observer and are not innate in an object. Locke identifies color, taste, sound, smell, and temperature to be secondary qualities.
As a nondualist I actually fail to see a difference between the two, it's an odd categorization. If anything, it's slightly backwards, since these secondary qualities are direct experiences in the head, and the primary qualities are conceptual direct experiences in the head.

What the primary point to, are "objectively" true.
What the secondary ones are, are also "objectively" true.

Now we may look at an object and you might see a blue object and I might see a red object, but that means that our heads are wired slightly differently.

OuterLimits
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by OuterLimits » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:39 pm

Atla wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 12:31 pm

As a nondualist I actually fail to see a difference between the two, it's an odd categorization. If anything, it's slightly backwards, since these secondary qualities are direct experiences in the head, and the primary qualities are conceptual direct experiences in the head.
Remember the often neglected truth:

The scientific method can tell you a lot but it can't tell you anything about the 2 most important beliefs and individual has:
* The world is real and not just in your mind
* In that real world, seemingly governed by physical laws, other people have subjective experiences just like you do

Science is mute on these most vital matters.

Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:57 pm

OuterLimits wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:39 pm
Remember the often neglected truth:

The scientific method can tell you a lot but it can't tell you anything about the 2 most important beliefs and individual has:
* The world is real and not just in your mind
* In that real world, seemingly governed by physical laws, other people have subjective experiences just like you do

Science is mute on these most vital matters.
It's not quite the fault of science though, since the Hard problem of consciousness is insoluble in Western philosophy. Which is why I'm an Eastern nondualist. :)

But then again, many scientists do hate the idea of being conscious. They just want a dead objective world that can't be interfered with in any way.

OuterLimits
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by OuterLimits » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:59 pm

Atla wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:57 pm
OuterLimits wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:39 pm
Remember the often neglected truth:

The scientific method can tell you a lot but it can't tell you anything about the 2 most important beliefs and individual has:
* The world is real and not just in your mind
* In that real world, seemingly governed by physical laws, other people have subjective experiences just like you do

Science is mute on these most vital matters.
It's not quite the fault of science though, since the Hard problem of consciousness is insoluble in Western philosophy. Which is why I'm an Eastern nondualist. :)

But then again, many scientists do hate the idea of being conscious. They just want a dead objective world that can't be interfered with in any way.
My point is that the problem of other minds is not soluble using the scientific method. Just like Descartes' demon vs "the world".
One may "solve" them using any philosophy one wishes, but it will not be "science".

Atla
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Atla » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:55 pm

OuterLimits wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:59 pm
My point is that the problem of other minds is not soluble using the scientific method. Just like Descartes' demon vs "the world".
One may "solve" them using any philosophy one wishes, but it will not be "science".
Hmm well let's agree to disagree then. If there is no scientific evidence for an ontological assumption, then I see no reason to make that assumption. So in my view, science has already refuted Western philosophy. And things like the problem of other minds are solved. But ultimately we can't know anything for sure, of course.

Troll
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Re: Information does not exist as such

Post by Troll » Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:22 am

“To me that's again, Plato-school dualistic nonsense.”
Of course, it’s the interpreter that’s writing nonsense. Just as with Plato. That’s what I call the fanciful interpretation of Berkeley. He never spoke of “ideas”. He spoke of “thoughts” by which he meant sense data. For instance, seeing the round mottled moon up in the sky giving off a foggy brilliance. He was anxious to show that unperceivable things don’t exist in the specific sense of things posited by speculative intelects. By the thing rather than we who look, what he meant is that when we see the moon, a tiny thing, that is what the moon is now, at this distance, and it may be a signal to us that if we approach it, we will see and feel the ground of the moon, but beyond all the different sense data there is nothing more (it is a rather phenomenological attitude). Not for common sense. They mangle him because he holds that God is always perceiving the things when we aren't around, which is the reason for the “Esse est percipi” language. The moon is in the sky, even when we aren't looking, but, it is perceivable, and thus, perceived by God. The point on which everything hangs, I reiterate, is to see the denial of the intellect's power to grasp hidden content not available to the immediate understanding of the sense data, which he calls “thoughts”. I agree, we don't know if there is more we can't perceive directly, Berkeley didn't hold that since he wanted to say God doesn't deceive us. This tendency to read philosophy of the past idiotically is a kind of leveling down which is largely due to the cause that most philosophers have no capability to think, but, rather, to retail paragraphs of text like the one you just adduced. I think it has much to do with the mass academic scaling up of size, in former times one had to have some intelligence to be a philosopher, now it is a routinized career and correspondingly consists of busied production of idiocies for the sake of an interested, not to say entertained, readership.

“As a nondualist I actually fail to see a difference between the two”
I think Locke’s view is due to taking touch and solidity, or “corpuscularity”, more seriously than the other senses. There is a sort of natural tendency towards that view. After all, one can close the eyes, but not the body as a whole.

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