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    42
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013
     
    Posted By: alsetalokin"Computers are useless. They only provide answers."
    -- Pablo Picasso


    Pablo never tried to debug code, I guess.
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    No, that was Dali, I think.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013
     
    Posted By: alsetalokinNo, that was Dali, I think.


    I bet Dali never said they only provide answers, then.
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      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013 edited
     
    No, that was Picasso.
    GOTO 42;
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013
     
    spaghetti code
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    Ah, but the switch-case statement is an implicit GOTO
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    Posted By: TrimYT

    The End of Space and Time? - Professor Robbert Dijkgraaf.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDAJinQL2c0&feature=em-subs_digest-vrecs&html5=1
    I'm fairly sure that I watched this recently. It's great. I like the connection to thermodynamics. I think it's meaningful to talk about the thermodynamics of a single particle. Everything seems to be pointing towards a physics based on information/entropy (two sides of the same coin). Does anyone but I have a problem with Shannon Information Theory's complete agnosticism to context?
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    Yes and no.
    I use the Theory of Signal Detection to design and analyze many different kinds of experiments. It is particularly useful in parapsychology. Most recently I designed and ran a double-blind experiment testing the idea that some stones, called Raetia stones, could be detected by the use of a particular pendulum dowsing technique. The experiment was designed to use TSD from the get-go and revealed several interesting things, in addition to falsifying the claimant's assertions. Observer bias, noise in the system, possible leaks in the protocols, and more can be revealed by an analysis using TSD.
    However I am also of the strong opinion that information requires some one or some thing to be informed. It is transactional, a "difference that makes a difference" and no differences can be "made" without values... and the only systems we know with values are biological cognitive sentient systems, a tiny subset of reality.
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    I'm stuck on this aside by Shannon: "These semantic aspects of communication are irrelevant to the engineering problem." Here's a little discussion
    http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/46096/the-role-of-context-in-information-theory
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013 edited
     
    @al
    So, you would say that the fact that there is a pawn on e-4 does not embody information unless somebody knows it?

    This sounds a bit like the early problems people ran into with the uncertainty principle that led to the idea that somehow minds created reality.
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    Not quite. I'm saying that the particular arrangement of items and energies that you call, in shorthand, "a pawn on e-4" is just that: a state of being, a substate of a larger state of being. What makes it a pawn on e4, a White pawn, the first move of the game, suggesting a Ruy Lopez or a Sicilian variation as a response from Black.... is that it is a part of a human interaction given its meaning by cognition. The amount of information conveyed by "a pawn on e4" is immeasurably greater than the mere arrangement of atoms that is the reality. The atomic arrangement isn't that different from "a pawn on d4" and the physical "information" content is arbitrary, reducable to zero by proper choices of viewpoint and doesn't contain Modern Chess Openings. But the outcome of the game between two players is highly dependent upon the real information content of the move... which is vast.

    It should be clear that here is where my conception of information... or rather, information processing... differs from those who wave their hands about and proclaim that the Universe is made of information. Of course it is... or rather, all that we may know of the Universe consists of information... meanings that we assign to physical energies or matters or events.
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    Posted By: Andrew PalfreymanI'm stuck on this aside by Shannon: "These semantic aspects of communication are irrelevant to the engineering problem." Here's a little discussion
    http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/46096/the-role-of-context-in-information-theory


    Very low S/N ratios make Shannon's asides more or less irrelevant to his main thesis. In other words, yep.
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    Which brings up an interesting point. If mathematics is pre-existing, just waiting to be discovered, and not a creation of cognition, then I think you would have to also claim, by pretty much the same reasoning, that the Sicilian Defense (1. e4 c5, etc.) must also have been "out there", just waiting to be discovered and played.
    But math is a model of reality and can be used to predict! And so Chess can be a restricted model of a portion of reality, and I can pretty well predict that White's second move will be 2. Nf3.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013
     
    Information in the technical sense that we are using here is only a measure of how many different ways it would be possible to rearrange the item in question - in this case the pawn by itself on the chessboard. There are sixty four different squares, each one Angus wide, it can be on. At the quantisation level of the Angus length it exhibits five bits. All the context you talk about is new additional information you have brought in by insisting we play with more pieces, rules, and even strategies on top of the rules. You might wish to figure out how much more information a pawn takes on when you consider all these extra constraints but I couldn't possibly do it.
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    Wait.... in another thread I thought you maintained that the world was not granular at any scale. But never mind, if your chessboard is 64 square Angii, and your only degree of physical freedom is to be contained within one of those delimited regions (which are essentially pointlike for the purposes of information in your model), you still are left with the readout problem. That is, it matters absolutely not upon which dimensionless point your pawn is located, unless and until its position is read out by some information processing system. And the only persons who possess and operate those are sentients of one sort or another, cogitating and evaluating the information they derive from whatever physical input they may transduce.
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      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013 edited
     
    And if you use fuzzy analog bits you'd only need two.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YyXOkEzC7s
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 29th 2013
     
    This chessboard is not the world. It is a planck that has been arbitrarily ruled into sixty-four squares one Angus wide for the specific purpose of the discussion we are having, and it will be destroyed afterwards. The pawn is an indivisible, featureless item sitting on one of them. You are introducing a new, unwanted and unneeded concept with your "matter". The information is simply the number of different squares it could be on rather than the one it is on. What good that knowledge is to anybody is irrelevant to the information the pawn contains.
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    In other words, Claude has no idea that he is playing chess, but he's damned good at counting.
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    Posted By: alsetalokinAnd if you use fuzzy analog bits you'd only need two.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YyXOkEzC7s
    You need an infinite number of oscillators to do "everything". Because Fourier is right.

    But if you allow to pump X and Y with independent and arbitrary waveforms, then you can do everything (I think). In fact, that specification might be overkill. Perhaps one can do everything with ONE waveform used on both X and Y, but with an arbitrary phase between them. Perhaps the phase needs to be a function of time.

    This is a difficult thing to prove mathematically, I suspect.