# The Naked Scientists Forum

### Author Topic: What is Information?  (Read 3032 times)

#### dkv

• Sr. Member
• Posts: 299
##### What is Information?
« on: 29/09/2007 14:53:43 »
What is the defintion of Information?
And can the defintion be used to express everything thing or event as it is?

#### another_someone

• Guest
##### What is Information?
« Reply #1 on: 29/09/2007 15:22:51 »
Information, like intelligence, is a word in the English language that tends to mean different things to different people depending on their own sphere of interest.

The only real measurable that one can associate with information is entropy.

Entropy is can be thought of as the number of measurements you can make of a system that could not have been predicted by inherent patterns in the system (in other words, the amount of measurable randomness).

Another way of of looking at the same thing is by asking "what is the minimum amount of data I need to tell somebody about this system in order that they can recreate the system as accurately as I can measure it?".  The more data you need to send to be able to recreate the system, the more information that system must contain.

#### dkv

• Sr. Member
• Posts: 299
##### What is Information?
« Reply #2 on: 29/09/2007 16:49:42 »
Is entropy absolute?

#### ukmicky

• Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3011
##### What is Information?
« Reply #3 on: 29/09/2007 16:55:43 »
information is anything which says something about something. If you can measure it ,then it contains information

#### another_someone

• Guest
##### What is Information?
« Reply #4 on: 29/09/2007 17:20:53 »
Is entropy absolute?

In theory, I suppose it might be; but we presently have no way of measuring it at an absolute level.

#### dkv

• Sr. Member
• Posts: 299
##### What is Information?
« Reply #5 on: 29/09/2007 17:30:43 »
Neither the Information nor the Entropy is absolute.
But does it matter?
Only humans are the observers.

So with respect to Humans can we define Information and Entropy.

#### another_someone

• Guest
##### What is Information?
« Reply #6 on: 29/09/2007 18:00:37 »
Neither the Information nor the Entropy is absolute.
But does it matter?
Only humans are the observers.

So with respect to Humans can we define Information and Entropy.

In a sense, it does matter, at least to humans.

One can regard science as an attempt to reduce our observation of the universe to its minimum representation, and so we have to understand how much information exists in the universe (or some part of the universe), since the minimum representation of any part of the universe much be limited by its information content.

Within computing and communications engineering, understanding the information content within same data is key to understanding how one can maximise the utilisation of computing resources and communication bandwidth.  On the other hand, we do have a better understanding of the information content of data in electronic form than we have of data in the wider universe.

Entropy is in any case a concept that exists in both information theory and thermodynamics, and it is open to dispute how much the two are manifestations of the same thing, or two different concepts that share certain features.

#### dkv

• Sr. Member
• Posts: 299
##### What is Information?
« Reply #7 on: 29/09/2007 19:21:10 »
From Information system point of view we humans are open systems.  We learn and we forget.
Individually the information content might increase or decrease. If we register 1000 observations a day
then we remember some day or some period or some event of significance.
The net information measured and net information available for transfer or communication after time T gets exponentially reduced.
Can you imagine what keeps the system running?
The net information content gets reduced.
If information is independent of Method of representation and observation then
the information content gets reduced and also the entropy.(Measured Value >> Available Value.. there is a loss)
But if we assume that Information consumption leads to increase in physical representation of carrier then we know where the information is going. It is manifesting in physical dimensions.
After death even that dimension is lost.
So we finally a skeleton or skull is left. Rest of body composition gets randomized.It becomes formless. In some cultures the information breaks into gases liquids and solids. Which is not reusable.Therefore the information still decreases if we consider the information manifesting as Physical body.
This is not we have observed ... the information has been increasing.
Why?

#### dkv

• Sr. Member
• Posts: 299
##### What is Information?
« Reply #8 on: 30/09/2007 18:42:24 »
What is true and false?
(So far i didnt get any answers)
A biological prespective:
Lie is strategy towards better future.
Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesnt.
The strategy is personal and is as dangerous high jump or imagination.

Overall with respect to a group a lie may stand for what "carrier of lie" expresses to its own group for some future benefit or to avoid possible loss.

Most probably this better future stands for pleasure.

But can lies lead to movement towards sustainable pleasure??
In other words can pleasure be sustained if past is based on lies.
This might appear to be a question of morality.
But at physical level I am curious to know whether a space craft can fly in sky because someone lied to make money?
Can a collection of lies lead to real events?
What happens if the lies get caught?
The real events do not vanish. But the liar may suffer some losses.
Nature appears to be neutral to truth and lie.

#### The Naked Scientists Forum

##### What is Information?
« Reply #8 on: 30/09/2007 18:42:24 »