The Beauty of it All

Not exactly beautiful

purple-mud-frog

The purple frog is a relatively large burrowing frog with a distinct, bloated or plump appearance. The head is conical and short in comparison with the rest of the body, and has a white, protruding snout. The fore- and hind-limbs are short, ending in partially webbed feet with rounded toes and each hind foot possesses a large, white wart-like growth, most likely used for digging. The eyes are small, rounded, and have a horizontal pupil. This species has smooth, dark purple skin that fades into grey along the stomach. Purple frogs reach a total length of about 7 cm.

The purple frog spends most of the year underground, surfacing only for about twoweeks during the monsoon season in order to mate. It lives 1.3-3.7m below ground and the frog’s reclusive fossorial (digging or burrowing) lifestyle is what caused the species to escape earlier detection by biologists. It comes to the surface for a few weeks a year to breed in temporary and permanent ponds and ditches

The main threat to the purple frog is believed to be ongoing forest loss for coffee, cardamom, ginger and other species for cultivation.

Photo credit: Karthickbala From:www.facebook.com/scienceisawsome 5/19/13

 

 

The Science of it All

Information vs materialism part 3

data_vs_info

All right, we have discussed the five “Universal Rules of Information” (in part one-where we took a side trip to distinguish between material and non-material entities). We then used those rules to enumerate four “Scientific Laws of Information” (and we needed to define an ‘intelligent sender’) in part two. The fourth law: “Universal information can only be produced by an intelligent sender” is so complex that we will break it down into four easier to understand sections and get a working grasp of it in this part three of Information vs Materialism.

SLI-4a: Every code is based upon a mutual agreement between sender and receiver

The essential characteristic of a code symbol (which uses characters) is that it was at one point in time freely defined. By definition the set of symbols so created represents all allowed symbols. They are structured in such a way as to fulfil their designated purpose (e.g. musical symbols must be able to describe the duration and pitch of the notes; chemical symbols must be able to designate all the elements). An observed signal may give the impression that it is composed of symbols, but if it can be shown that the signal is a physical or chemical property of the system then the fundamental “free mutual agreement” attribute is missing and the signal is not a symbol according to our definition.[1]

SLI-4b: There is no new universal information without an intelligent sender

The process of the formation of new information (as opposed to simply copied information) always depends upon intelligence and free will. A sequence of characters are selected from an available, freely defined set of symbols such that the resulting string of characters represents all five levels of information. Since this cannot be achieved by a random process, there must always be an intelligent sender. One important aspect of this is the application of will, so that we may also say: Information cannot be created without a will.

SLI-4c: Every information transmission chain can be traced back to an intelligent sender[2]

It is useful to distinguish here between the original and the intermediate sender. We mean by the original sender the author of the information, and that must always be an individual equipped with intelligence and a will. After the original sender there may be a sequence of links transmitting the information. The last link in the chain might be mistaken for the originator of the message but it is only apparently the sender, this is the intermediate sender (but it is not the original one!).

The original sender is often not visible: in many cases, the author of the information is not or no longer visible. It is not in contradiction to the requirement of observability when the author of historical documents is no longer visible—in such a case, the author was observable once upon a time.

The actual (intermediate) sender may not be an individual: we could gain the impression that, in systems with machine-aided intermediate links, that the last observed member is the sender: The user of an X-Box can only trace the game they are using back to the computer programmer—but the computer is only the intermediate sender; the original sender (the programmer) is nowhere to be seen. The internet-surfer sees all kinds of information on his screen, but his home computer is not the original sender, but rather someone who is perhaps at other end of the world has thought out the information and put it on the internet. It is by no means different in the case of the DNA molecule. The genetic information is read off a material substrate, but this substrate is not the original sender; rather, it is only the intermediate sender.

It may seem obvious that the last member of the chain is the sender because it seems to be the only discernible possibility. But it is never the case in a system with multiple links that the last member is the original sender or rather the author of the information—it is just the intermediate sender. This intermediate sender may not be an individual, but rather only part of a machine that was created by an intelligence. Individuals can pass on information they have received and in doing so act as intermediate senders. However, they are in actuality only intermediate senders if they do not modify the information. If an intermediate changes the information, they will be considered the original sender of a NEW piece of information. Even in the special case where the information was not transmitted via intermediaries, the author may remain invisible. We find in Egyptian tombs or on the obelisks numerous hieroglyphic texts, but the authors are nowhere to be found. No one would conclude that there had been no author.

SLI-4d: Attributing meaning to a set of symbols is an intellectual process requiring intelligence

We have now defined the five rules (statistics, syntax, semantics, pragmatics and apobetics) at which universal information operates. Using SLI-4d we can make the following general observation: these five aspects are relevant for both the sender and the receiver.

Origin of information: SLI-4d describes our experience of how any information comes into being. Firstly, we draw on a set of symbols (characters) that have been defined according to SLI-4a. Then we use one symbol after another from the set to create units of information (e.g. words, sentences). The sender has knowledge of the language he is using and he knows which symbols he needs in order to create his intended meaning.

The connection between any given symbol and meaning is not originally determined by laws of physics or energy. For example, there is nothing physically about the three letters “d, o, g” that necessarily originally caused it to be associated with man’s much loved pet. The fact that there are other meanings for the letters such as “god” demonstrates that the association between a word and its meaning is mental rather than physical or energetic. In other words, the original generation of information is an intellectual process.

We can make three remarks that have fundamental significance:

Remark R1: Technical and biological machines can store, transmit, decode and translate information without understanding the meaning and purpose.

Remark R2: Information is the non-material basis for all technological systems and for all biological systems.

There are numerous systems that do not possess their own intelligence, but can transfer or store information or steer processes. Some such systems are inanimate (e.g. networked computers, process controls in a chemical factory, automatic production lines, car auto-wash, robots); others are animate (e.g. cell processes controlled by information, bee waggle dance).

It is important to recognize that biological information differs from humanly generated information in three essential ways: 1) In living systems we find the highest known information density. 2) The programs in living systems obviously exhibit an extremely high degree of sophistication. No scientist can explain the program that produces an insect that looks like a withered leaf. No biologist understands the secret of an orchid blossom that is formed and coloured like a female wasp. We are able to think, feel, desire, believe and hope. We can handle a complex thing such as language, but we are eons away from understanding the information control process that develop the brain in the embryo. Biological information displays a sophistication that is unparalleled in human information. 3) No matter how ingenious human inventions and programs may be, it is always possible for others to understand the underlying ideas. For example, during World War II, the English succeeded, after considerable effort, in understanding completely the German “Enigma” coding machine, which had fallen into their hands. From then on, it was possible to decode German radio messages. However, most of the ingenious ideas and programs we find in living organisms is at best only partly understood by us at all. To make an exact replica of even the simplest protein has been impossible.

Remark R3: The storage and transmission of information requires a material medium.

Imagine a piece of information written on a sandy beach. Now the tide comes in and wipes the beach clean. The information has vanished, even though all the particles of sand are still present. The sand in this case was the necessary material medium but the information was represented by the particular arrangement of the letters written in the sand. And this arrangement did not come about by chance—it had a mental origin. The same information could have been stored/transmitted in Indian smoke signals through the arrangement of puffs of smoke, or in a computer’s memory through magnetized domains. One could even line up an array of massive rocks into a Morse code pattern. So, the amount or type of matter upon which the information resides is not the issue. Even though information requires a material substrate for storage/transmission, information is not a property of matter. In the same way, the information in living things resides on the DNA molecule. But it is no more an inherent property of the physics and chemistry of DNA than the blackboard’s message was an intrinsic property of chalk.

Finally we have reached a conclusion (but keep hanging around because I will mention many of the false representations that the evillutionists provide to try to obfuscate the issue). So I conclude after this three part study: All these four laws of nature about information have arisen from observations in the real world. None of them has been falsified by way of an observable process or experiment.

The grand theory of atheistic evolution must attribute the origin of all information ultimately to the interaction of matter and energy, without reference to an intelligent or conscious source. A central claim of atheistic evolution must therefore be that the macro-evolutionary processes that generate biological information are fundamentally different from all other known information-generating processes. However, the natural laws described here apply equally in animate and inanimate systems and demonstrate this claim to be both false and absurd.

[1] By contrast, the triplet code carried on DNA can easily be shown to meet the criterion of being freely chosen in the sense of being arbitrary. In other words, there is no physical/chemical reason why the biomachinery of cells has to assign to the triplet GAC, for instance, the meaning of the amino acid “leucine”. In fact, in some yeast species it is translated as “serine”? This underscores the point—since the code is not the inevitable outcome of the physics and chemistry of the system, it was at some prior time freely chosen

[2] Intelligent Source always refers to an individual who is equipped with a will and consciousness. It is not in contradiction to SLI-4c if the author of the information cannot always be specifically identified, but, rather, sometimes only identified generally, as in the following examples: texts in Egyptian Pharaoh’s tombs (Egyptians), historical documents (unknown author), secret radio messages (the military), computer viruses in the internet (criminals), graffiti (graffiti artists), information in biological systems (creator).

The Science of it All

2nd part of Information vs matter

Last time we examined the five “universal rules of information” and found out that information is always present when all the following five hierarchical levels are observed in a system: statistics, syntax, semantics, pragmatics and apobetics. If these five rules apply to a system in question, then we can be certain that the system falls within the domain of our definition of information. So now, let’s examine the scientific laws of information.[1]

Scientific Law of Information-1 (SLI-1): A material entity cannot generate a non-material entity

Most of us have observed that an apple tree bears apples, a marigold produces marigold seeds, horses give birth to foals, and women bear human babies. We can then observe that something which is itself solely material never creates anything non-material.

Scientific Law of Information-2 (SLI-2): Universal information is a non-material fundamental entity

The reality in which we live is divisible into two fundamentally distinguishable realms: namely, the material and the non-material. Matter involves mass, which is weighable in a gravitational field. In contrast, all non-material entities (e.g. information, consciousness, intelligence and will) are massless and thus have zero weight. Information is always based on an idea; it is thus also massless and does not arise from physical or chemical processes. Information is also not correlated with matter in the same way as energy, momentum or electricity is. However, information is stored, transmitted and expressed through matter and energy.[2]

Now we need to distinguish between Necessary Conditions and Sufficient Conditions. Stay with me, we’ll get through this logically and scientifically.

Necessary Condition (NC): That a non-material entity must be massless (NC: m = 0) is indeed a necessary condition, but it is not sufficient to assign it as non-material. To be precise, the “sufficient conditions” must also be met.

Sufficient Condition (SC): An observed entity can be judged to be “non-material” if it has no physical or chemical correlation with matter. This is always the case if the following four conditions are met: SC1: The entity has no physical or chemical interaction with matter. SC2: The entity is not a property of matter.

SC3: The entity does originate in pure matter. SC4: The entity is not correlated with matter.

Photons are massless particles and they are a good contrast to the SC because they do interact with matter and can originate from and be correlated with matter.

Information always depends on an idea; it is massless and does not originate from a physical or chemical process.[3] The necessary condition (NC: m = 0) and also all four sufficient conditions (SC1 to SC4) are also fulfilled, and therefore universal information is a non-material entity. The fact that it requires matter for storage and transportation does not turn it into matter. Thus we can state:

Universal Information is a non-material entity because it fulfils both necessary conditions:

  1. it is massless; and,
  2. it is neither physically nor chemically correlated with matter.

There is another very powerful justification for stating that information cannot be a physical quantity. The SI System of units has seven base units: mass, length, electric current, temperature, amount of substance, luminous intensity and time. All physical quantities can be expressed in terms of one of these base units (e.g. area = length x length) or by a combination (by multiplication or division) of several base units (e.g. momentum = mass x length / time). This is not possible in the case of information and therefore information is not a physical magnitude.

Scientific Law of Information-3 (SLI-3):

Universal information cannot be created by any statistical processes. The grand theory of evolution might make some sense if it could be demonstrated, in a real experiment, that information could arise from matter left to itself without the addition of intelligence. This has never been observed. To date, evolutionary theoreticians have only been able to offer computer simulations that depend upon principles of design and the operation of pre-determined information. These simulations do not correspond to reality because the theoreticians pre-prejudice the programs with their own presumptions and assumed information into the simulations.

Scientific Law of Information-4 (SLI-4): Universal information can only be produced by an intelligent sender

What is an intelligent sender? Several attributes are required to define an intelligent sender.

Definition D1: An intelligent sender as mentioned in SLI-4 1) is conscious 2) has a will of its own[4]

3) is creative

4) thinks autonomously

5) acts purposefully

SLI-4 is a very general law from which several more specific laws or refinements can be derived. We can look up and study the Maxwell equations from physics. It describes, in a brilliant generalization, the relationship between changing electric and magnetic fields. For most of us these equations are far too complex so we use more specific formulations, such as Ohm’s Law, or the induction law.

Time to rest, my brain is swimming uphill. The next edition will present four specific refinements of SLI-4 (SLI-4a to 4d) that will be easier to use for our conclusions.

1) Gitt, W., In the Beginning was Information, 3rd English ed., Christliche Literatur-Verbreitung, Bielefeld, Germany, 2001. Gitt, W., Am Anfang war die Information, 3. überarbeitete und erweiterte Auflage, Hänssler Verlag, Holzgerlingen, 2002. pp. 128–131

[2] http://creation.com/laws-of-information-1#txtRef8. Gitt, ref. 1b, pp. 170–180

[3] Information can direct, steer, control and optimize the running of material processes. These processes are carried out by programs that are freely thought out and designed. They are not based on physical or chemical correlations between matter and information. In contrast, there is a definite chemical correlation between hydrogen and oxygen that under certain circumstances will combine to produce water.

[4] “Will” here does not mean a decision that a computer makes following a particular algorithm; rather; it signifies a personified will that is able to reach a free and arbitrary decision that cannot be predicted in advance.