Quantum Information & More

I continue to be fascinated by the developments at the British Computer Society Cybernetic Machine Specialist Group (BCS Cybernetics Group or BCSCMSG for short) despite the dense specialist jargon making proceedings all but unintelligible to any lay reader like myself. Here is the synopsis of papers presented at the BCSCMSG Symposium 10 as part of CASYS’05 (Computing Anticipatory Systems 2005 Conference) in Liege in August earlier this year.

My principle fascination, and reason for following proceedings over several years (and blogging many previous references), has been the apparent fundamental nature of information underlying reality itself, as part of my specific interest in modelling and communicating information about reality, at least in so far as humans can know and communicate reality.

Paraphrasing … the BCSCMSG current mission is to establish the Evolutionary ‘Anthropic’ Semantic Principle, by which the fundamental physical foundations of computing as used in brains, can be realized. The human brain is a universal computational semantic machine and [the Diaz-Rowlands re-write of the Nilpotent Dirac Equation of] quantum physics provides a natural model and modes by which human natural language is realized to allow the human race to comprehend the evolutionary cosmos. No less.

The philosophy of mind and mind-matter angles, of what can be known about reality (epistemology), the processes of knowing of it (consciousness et al), and what any independent reality might be (ontology), is clearly relevant to the modelling of information about reality. Suspending disbelief it is also possible to accept that quanta (as the smallest significant differences that can exist between anything) are probably the most fundamental building blocks of information as well as the building blocks of “matter”.

Despite also accepting mind (consciousness) as emergent from brain physiology (matter & processes) what is mind blowing is the idea that the emergence (clearly complex and multi-layered) can have a causal and direct reductionist explanation that is also based on quantum mechanics. (Why not ? says Josephson. Yes, “microtubules” say Hammeroff and Penrose. No, “that’s mere pixie-dust” say the Churchlands, Blackmore and Dennett. Sceptical says Deutsch. Who needs reductionism and causality say Deutsch and Chalmers.) Quantum mechanical effects in brain-mind processes, not to mention in the wider DNA-life processes themselves – how weird can this get ?

OK, so holographic universe (Talbot); multiple interfering universes (Everett / Wheeler / Deutsch); are believable at the quantum scale, universes or states with small differences, small departures from coherence. OK too, non-locality, action-at-a-distance, anticipation, future actions travelling ahead faster than light, can also be credible at similar quantum scales and near coherence maybe ? (Even the practicioners working with these “models” struggle to accept these as everyday “paradigmatic” world-views.)

It’s all there to be read about. Quantum mechanics based mathematics behind everything from seemingly abstract things like fundamental number theory and mathematics itself and theories of computation, through physics naturally, to large-scale coherence in processes in brains and macro-cosmological feedback loops in the cosmos itself.

And if that’s not weird enough, it even comes with a bootstrapping mechanism to create something (ie everything) from nothing.

The nothing that is, that is.

Watch that space.
Hope these people also turn up at Tucson2006.

11 thoughts on “Quantum Information & More”

  1. I did say it was weird … I’m just reporting what I find … I’m saying I find it hard to believe.

    (BTW it’s not exactly “nothing” anyway … in their words it’s the “nothing that is”. They are re-defining nothing.)

    I see you’re at Cornell. I’ll take a look at the link you gave me. Thanks.

  2. Island, whoever you are, are you qualified to comment on the papers cited (I’m not) ?

    Not sure I treat Einstein or Occam as the last word here. Does the “Diaz-Rowlands re-write of the Dirac equation” stand up to academic refereeing ?

    (The something from nothing aspect here is incidental to my interest BTW. I can buy a no-beginning / no-end argument philosophically. I believe standards of argument and evidence get stretched thin in these domains, and are open to as much debate as the theories themselves.)

  3. I’m not qualified or I’d rewrite it myself, except as it applies to Einstein’s closed and finite model… where it belongs.

    You can probably get an answer to your question by asking it here:


    But not always and there is a moderation delay… so if not, then you might try here:


    But be sure to apologize in advance if you’re off whatever relevant topic is up for discussion.


    The point of my linked article was to show that Einstein got robbed… or at least, he missed an opportunity to reject the arguments for an infinite universe that severely weakened his theory, because matter generation in that model causes expansion.

    RE: Causality

    Particle creation in this model causes tension between the vacuum and ordinary matter to increase, since it results in an offset increase in negative pressure and gravity, so continuous matter generation will eventually create enough tension to compromise the forces that bind the universe… and it’ll blow… again… just like the last one and the one before that, inflationary theory is an un-necessary has-been band-aid if the vacuum has volume when a big bang occurs.

    Someone besides me needs to write down the basis of wave functions in this background, including an expansion of the field in corresponding creation and annihilation operators – compute the stress-energy tensor in that background – quantitatively describe the vacua – and then works out the matrix elements of the stress-energy tensor between the vacuum and the one-particle states.

    Once some better person than I does that, then it can hopefully be quantitatively shown how Dirac’s Hole Theory works to hold this model stable and “flat” as the universe expands, because particle creation becomes the mechanism for expansion when the normal distribution of negative energy does not contribute to particle pair creation, which can only occur in this vacuum by way of the condensation of negative pressure energy into isolated depatures from the normal background energy density. This new physics repairs Dirac’s Cosmological model and his Large Numbers Hypothesis, as well, which, in-turn, completes and clarifies the Anthropic Principle, which is where Robert Dicke originally got his anthropic coincidence from.

    The anthropic principle is actually a thermodynamic principle… but that’s a whole nother related story.

  4. I just don’t believe in quantum uncertainty… if given that I’ve reasonably proven that Einstein was right.

    So… why did you get so much grief?… Does it have anything to do with the anthropic principle and the ID debate?

  5. OHHHHH… you got grief from me… LOL… you’re kinda obscure in your method for communication, and I didn’t get the reference to the link at first.

    Sorry… *duh*

  6. Sorry the trackback links can be confusing – that’s the software for you.

    As I say, if you don’t believe in quantum uncertainty, and you think Einstein had the last word in this space, I can only assume you have some impressive physics credentials. I will point some other physicists at your anthropic proof of Einstein and see what they say.

    You say “resonably proven” – as I said in the other thread – what makes a good argument / explanation is my main topic here at Psybertron. (How do we know ? etc)

    Two things are certain – there’s more to it than Aristotelian rationality, and there is no such thing (beyond axiomatic mathematics) as “proof”.

  7. Yeah… like the physics that’s about halfway down the first page of my website… and I’ve already, in this thread explained what else needs to be done to see what happens with quantum theory.

    That doesn’t change the fact that Einstein could have rejected arguments for an infinite universe by postulating that the pre-existing mechanism for matter generation in his model will resolve the problem.

    Einstein didn’t know about particle potential in the quantum vacuum, but he didn’t need to in order to head-off the attack that killed his theory.

    The ball is still in their court, in other words… until someone proves him wrong.

    I hope that you will actually bring said physicist here, rather than to just have them dismiss my stuff without really having a clue about the physics that’s behind it.

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