[e2e] [SPAM] Re: a means to an end
touch at ISI.EDU
Thu Nov 13 10:40:43 PST 2008
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David P. Reed wrote:
> Computation (measurement) doesn't necessarily have a single location
You've made that argument repeatedly, as I have made the point that
having a location doesn't mean having a single point location.
> Your brain happily functions without a tiny homunculus that
> makes the final decision. A computer can make a decision without
> representing the output of the decision in one place.
As can a tree fall in the forest without anyone to hear it. However,
decisions that are hidden from the rest of the world are irrelevant; at
some point, the brain components need to coordinate a decision (as do
computer components), and the output is represented in a set of locations.
There's no such thing as computation - or information - that has *no*
> A flock of geese
> maneuvers (and hence makes decisions) without there ever being a
> "command goose".
That's not quite correct; the lead goose is the one that others track in
general (by feeling air currents); follower geese can initiate actions
from their place backward, and the rest of the group will react when
visual or auditory cues indicate (e.g., gunshots, trees falling in the
> And a slime mold "decides" to turn from slime to a
> stalk to a vermiform without a single decision maker.
Emergent behavior is fine, but it's still coordinated either by
chemical, mechanical, etc. means.
However, as others have noted, we've strayed far afield of the original
issue - that information has a location (even if not a *point*), as I
asserted originally. If you have a counterexample - i.e., information
that has *no* location, please provide it. Examples for which the
location is spread out, but for which a location exist, do not disprove
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