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Does information need a physical substrate?

Discuss any topics related to metaphysics (the philosophical study of the principles of reality) or epistemology (the philosophical study of knowledge) in this forum.
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BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 22nd, 2018, 12:10 am

Belindi wrote:
October 18th, 2018, 10:36 am
Big Bango wrote:
The problem with science is that its hard empirical proofs are based on the use of instruments made only of the kind of matter that we are already familiar with, visible electromagnetically active matter, yet we know that is only 10% of the mass of the universe. For that reason, we must broaden our methods by introducing "forms" that are not just imagined but are derived from our knowledge of reality and might be true at lower "fractal" levels of the world. (see my topic "The fractal evolution of the universe". Once one has a good idea of what might be present within cells, to account for the behavior of molecules within the cells, then one can do the hard work of discovery just as we did with the spread of disease.
"Just as we did with the spread of disease" was a new paradigm. The paradigm that preceded the germ theory of disease was the miasma theory of disease. Each of those theories was within the materialist (physicalist)theory of existence.

By contrast if we introduce " "forms" that are not just imagined but are derived from our knowledge of reality" we'd be thinking outwith the materialist(physicalist) theory of existence.Reality is what we seek to find when we do science, and it would be unproductive to rely upon any theory unless there was also empirical evidence. Fractal levels of the world are not evidence.

I'm not against leaps of fantasy. I do however trust current science more than I trust science fiction.
In the process of advancing science we almost always lead with the introduction of new "forms". It is those assertions that lead to either the confirmation or rejection, through physical verification, of those ideas. That is what leads most people to believe that "forms" are only nominally true. This is why I hoped Fooloso4 would weigh in on Plato's assertions that "forms" may actually be more fundamental.

In today's world philosophy has to resume its place of dominance over science that it has historically had. You may ask why? The answer is that science has become stuck in a method of empirical verification that only applies to visible matter which is only 10% of the mass of the universe. Do we philosophers have to also be limited by those narrowly limited restraints? No, we have to lead science into broader conceptions of reality that can also expand their castrated methods.

To say Belindi that "Fractal levels of the world are not evidence" may be true but to acknowledge its structure is simply meant to guide our inquiry.

Eduk
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Eduk » October 22nd, 2018, 3:04 am

As evidence that science is still working I present the reality of an accelerating amount of technological advances year on year.
Unknown means unknown.

BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 22nd, 2018, 3:55 am

Eduk wrote:
October 22nd, 2018, 3:04 am
As evidence that science is still working I present the reality of an accelerating amount of technological advances year on year.
Haha! More and more about less and less. What is dark matter? What have they discovered about the other 90% of the mass of the universe. Total Ignorance of the greater part of reality by science does not grant them any kind of authority to put the kibosh on speculative theory. Yes our visible universe is expanding at an ever increasing rate but our knowledge is not. Our knowledge of the visible universe is trending toward the fact that what we know about it will just be ancient history that is therefore not verifiable!

Eduk
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Eduk » October 22nd, 2018, 5:01 am

I love how you use science to disprove science without realising the irony.
Unknown means unknown.

Belindi
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Belindi » October 22nd, 2018, 7:29 am

Big Bango wrote:
In today's world philosophy has to resume its place of dominance over science that it has historically had. You may ask why? The answer is that science has become stuck in a method of empirical verification that only applies to visible matter which is only 10% of the mass of the universe.
I like metaphysics as much as anybody. I also like empirical evidence, and trying to turn back the clock from scientific Enlightenment is not possible.

BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 22nd, 2018, 9:58 pm

Belindi wrote:
October 22nd, 2018, 7:29 am
Big Bango wrote:
In today's world philosophy has to resume its place of dominance over science that it has historically had. You may ask why? The answer is that science has become stuck in a method of empirical verification that only applies to visible matter which is only 10% of the mass of the universe.
I like metaphysics as much as anybody. I also like empirical evidence, and trying to turn back the clock from scientific Enlightenment is not possible.
One does not like "metaphysics" or dislike "metaphysics" any more than one could like "structure" or dislike "structure" . The same for "epistemology" or "logic" or "rational thought" or "truth". Sure there is mistaken "metaphysics" as well as wrong ideas about how we know reality, but we condemn the ideas not the categories of knowledge.

I also like empirical evidence and we don't have to choose, as in a zero sum game, between empirical evidence and metaphysics. There are metaphysical assumptions that underlie the veracity of empirical evidence. Contemporaneously those metaphysical assumptions are that reality is essentially electro dynamically(visible). of course that is not true. It is only true of 10% of the mass of the reality we know exists from our knowledge about the relation of gravity to mass. Thus the rotation of stars in a galaxy tells us that we are missing any information at all about 90% of reality's mass.

Those facts are what call philosophy back into the task of how to correct science or expand sciences empirical toolkit.

This conundrum all began with Kant's "A Prolegomena to any future Metaphysics" which was written to explain to wannabe philosophers what he had said in "A Critique of Pure Reason". That was a slap in the face to a herd of philosophers that were dabbling in some form of "Spiritualism" or whacky thinking. Good for Kant. What a blessing was that man.

We reaped the benefits of his thinking and now we are approaching the limits of what can be discovered by our narrow interpretation of "verification" using only instruments that are electromagnetically sensitive. That approach has yielded quantum mechanics. But QM turns out to be the science of what can be known using instruments made of electromagnetically sensitive matter.

What those limited methods have produced is a realization that QM has stifled the development of the expansion of our knowledge of reality by the use of "forms". "Forms" which have absolutely no limitation as to "size" are ruled out at the get go by QM measure of reality in terms of Plank's constant. That is, the empirical method of verification has eliminated what could be a useful tool in the discovery of the real nature of reality.

Belindi
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Belindi » October 23rd, 2018, 9:47 am

Big Bango wrote:
There are metaphysical assumptions that underlie the veracity of empirical evidence.
I think that metaphysical theories don't underlie truth but that any metaphysical theory is inert until it's preferred and chosen.Even then, having been preferred and chosen, a specific metaphysical theory may chime with empirical evidence but cannot be the foundation of its truth.

BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 23rd, 2018, 8:22 pm

Belindi wrote:
October 23rd, 2018, 9:47 am
Big Bango wrote:
There are metaphysical assumptions that underlie the veracity of empirical evidence.
I think that metaphysical theories don't underlie truth but that any metaphysical theory is inert until it's preferred and chosen.Even then, having been preferred and chosen, a specific metaphysical theory may chime with empirical evidence but cannot be the foundation of its truth.
Well sure, a theory of the nature of the objects in reality is only one part of a theory of reality. A fundamental principle of the scientific method is that all current knowledge is subject to review.

Take, for example, the "Standard Theory". It is the most empirically confirmed metaphysical theory of contemporary science about the nature of physical objects". However, it is the most well funded continuing experimental business of all our particle accelerators to either extend those metaphysical assertions or reject them.

My point is that the word "Metaphysics" is the most misused word in our philosophical discussions. There was a whole thread in this forum that was mostly total nonsense.

Metaphysics is just a category of thinking that emphasizes what one thinks is the nature of objects in one's system.

Belindi
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Belindi » October 24th, 2018, 5:32 am

Big Bango wrote:
Take, for example, the "Standard Theory". It is the most empirically confirmed metaphysical theory of contemporary science
Is this an example of "private language"? Please refer to the meaning of 'metaphysics' as used within philosophy as an academic discipline.

BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 24th, 2018, 10:34 am

Belindi wrote:
October 24th, 2018, 5:32 am
Big Bango wrote:
Take, for example, the "Standard Theory". It is the most empirically confirmed metaphysical theory of contemporary science
Is this an example of "private language"? Please refer to the meaning of 'metaphysics' as used within philosophy as an academic discipline.
From the dictionary we get its derivation. If from medieval Greek ta meta ta physika meaning the (works) after the Physics. Referring merely to what Aristotle wrote about AFTER he wrote the Physics. This gets misinterpreted as above or beyond what can be verified by physics. But really it is just what Aristotle wrote about after he wrote about physics. Of course what he wrote about after The Physics was mainly about first principles.

What its meaning has become in modern day academic philosophy we can get from Wiki: "Major sub-fields of academic philosophy include metaphysics (concerned with the fundamental nature of reality and being), epistemology (about the nature and grounds of knowledge [and] ... its limits and validity", ethics aesthetics, political philosophy, logic and philosophy of science"

Belindi
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Belindi » October 24th, 2018, 11:26 am

So, Big Bango, the standard theory is a physical not a metaphysical theory.

BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 24th, 2018, 11:49 am

Belindi wrote:
October 24th, 2018, 11:26 am
So, Big Bango, the standard theory is a physical not a metaphysical theory.
Stop! Are you just pushing my buttons you clever thang!

A physical theory is a metaphysical theory because it is concerned with the fundamental nature of reality. Especially the "Standard Theory" because it is concerned with the physical nature of small objects.

Belindi
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Belindi » October 24th, 2018, 11:59 am

Big Bango, "------ "Standard Theory" because it is concerned with the physical nature of small objects."

But very small objects are relatively small, whereas theories of existence itself are to do with absolutes.

Ontology is concerned with theories of existence itself . Theories of existence itself deal with whether or not the Standard Theory is about physical existence or alternatively about mental existence. Big Bango, if there were no minds would the Standard Theory exist? You may perhaps have opinion about it but you cannot have evidence one way or the other.

BigBango
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by BigBango » October 24th, 2018, 12:36 pm

Belindi wrote:
October 24th, 2018, 11:59 am
Big Bango, "------ "Standard Theory" because it is concerned with the physical nature of small objects."

But very small objects are relatively small, whereas theories of existence itself are to do with absolutes.

Ontology is concerned with theories of existence itself . Theories of existence itself deal with whether or not the Standard Theory is about physical existence or alternatively about mental existence. Big Bango, if there were no minds would the Standard Theory exist? You may perhaps have opinion about it but you cannot have evidence one way or the other.
The theories of philosophy and science are "mental". But some of the theories are about physical things(metaphysics) as asserted to be real fundamental entities and some of the theories are about the validity of our source of knowledge(epistemology).

Ontology is essentially a metaphysical statement about reality.

I tend to agree with Tamminen that physical things would not "exist" without a mental subject. However, I do not think we need to get into an argument about different metaphysical theories because all I am trying to do here is explain how these terms are correctly used in academic contemporary philosophy.

Belindi
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Re: Does information need a physical substrate?

Post by Belindi » October 25th, 2018, 5:30 am

Big Bango wrote in the original post in this thread:
------If I believe that the square root of the sum of two sides of a right triangle is the length of the hypotenuse then what do you believe is the "physical substrate" of that abstraction?
The physical substrate of Pythagoras's theorem is the hunger of local Nile basin farmers resulting in the apportioning of fertile land. Or some such historical explanation.

A physical substrate is not a theory of existence. The theories of existence that pertain to mathematics are 1. mathematics is real whether or not minds exist. 2. Mathematics is invented .

A dual aspect theory i.e. neutral monism would incorporate both that maths is invented by minds and also that maths is independent of minds and is discovered by mathematicians.I prefer dual aspect ontology . I'm not a mathematician so I can add nothing to the debate except my opinion.

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