Why the bias against materialism?

 Originally posted by Fliption Let's think of the laws of math for instance. The fact that the diameter of a circle multiplied by Pi equals it's circumference is an algorythm that is true. The laws of nature are full of many other algorythms that do exists to allow the universe to operate the way it does. These things are no different from the software code behind Windows. I'm not talking about a material paper printout of the code. I'm talking about the holistic information content built into the code itself. It is a real existing thing. And it is not physical. Heh maybe my new motto will be "If god exists then he is an algorythm!"[:D]
I think you are approaching it from the wrong direction. I don't see physical laws as being 'programed into' matter, and therefore a real thing, but as a basic property that is as much a description of an object as weight. We don't say that 'weight' exists, we say 'an object has weight'...do you see what I am trying to get across? We don't say that 'red' exists as a thing unto itself, it is a way of describing something that exists.

 Originally posted by Fliption Let's think of the laws of math for instance. The fact that the diameter of a circle multiplied by Pi equals it's circumference is an algorythm that is true. The laws of nature are full of many other algorythms that do exists to allow the universe to operate the way it does. These things are no different from the software code behind Windows. I'm not talking about a material paper printout of the code. I'm talking about the holistic information content built into the code itself. It is a real existing thing. And it is not physical. Heh maybe my new motto will be "If god exists then he is an algorythm!"[:D]
Or, at the very least it "testifies" to the intelligence behind the design. [;)]

By the way Zero, the only nonsense that exists is inside your head. I'm just an observer man, reporting to you what I've seen.

 Originally posted by Iacchus32 By the way Zero, the only nonsense that exists is inside your head. I'm just an observer man, reporting to you what I've seen.
What? You haven't actually reported seeing anything, except things you imagined. I've read lots of your posts, and most of the time you imagine stuff, then come to unfounded conclusions based on your imaginings.

 Originally posted by Zero I think you are approaching it from the wrong direction. I don't see physical laws as being 'programed into' matter, and therefore a real thing, but as a basic property that is as much a description of an object as weight. We don't say that 'weight' exists, we say 'an object has weight'...do you see what I am trying to get across? We don't say that 'red' exists as a thing unto itself, it is a way of describing something that exists.
But what about Microsoft Windows itself? Does it exists? My point isn't isolated to the laws of physics. I'm arguing that "information" does exists and it is not physical. Whether the laws of nature or math are in this category may be debatable but I know we can agree on a program written by humans. So does Windows exists?

Also, to your point on the laws of nature,I do see what you're saying, but I do see a distinction. I agree that color and things like that are simply ways of describing and distinguishing one object from another. But these laws that I am referring to are not subject to subjective interpretation from the observer. They are constant. The program running inside of DNA has a holistic existence. Yet it is not material. It doesn't matter whether someone programmed it or whether it was programmed blindly over the course of millions of years. The code is information.

Zero, I'm not sure if you've glanced at it yet but if you haven't you might want to check out the post and link that Wuli provided called "the holographic Universe" I believe. It is an article in scientific american. This idea is not entirely new but it is making the point (and we are slowing realizing this) that "information" is as much a component of the universe as matter and energy. And in my mind information is not a material thing.

 Originally posted by Fliption But what about Microsoft Windows itself? Does it exists? My point isn't isolated to the laws of physics. I'm arguing that "information" does exists and it is not physical. Whether the laws of nature or math are in this category may be debatable but I know we can agree on a program written by humans. So does Windows exists? Also, to your point on the laws of nature,I do see what you're saying, but I do see a distinction. I agree that color and things like that are simply ways of describing and distinguishing one object from another. But these laws that I am referring to are not subject to subjective interpretation from the observer. They are constant. The program running inside of DNA has a holistic existence. Yet it is not material. It doesn't matter whether someone programmed it or whether it was programmed blindly over the course of millions of years. The code is information. Zero, I'm not sure if you've glanced at it yet but if you haven't you might want to check out the post and link that Wuli provided called "the holographic Universe" I believe. It is an article in scientific american. This idea is not entirely new but it is making the point (and we are slowing realizing this) that "information" is as much a component of the universe as matter and energy. And in my mind information is not a material thing.
Information doesn't have a separate existance from the physical medium which carries it, is the point I am trying to get across...

 Originally posted by Zero Information doesn't have a separate existance from the physical medium which carries it, is the point I am trying to get across...
So you're saying that Windows is no different than PC hardware?

I strongly disagree with this. Software is not a physical thing. The paper, cd, or harddrive it is printed on is a totally different thing.

 Originally posted by Fliption So you're saying that Windows is no different than PC hardware? I strongly disagree with this. Software is not a physical thing. The paper, cd, or harddrive it is printed on is a totally different thing.
You know, it makes perfect sense in my head, and I am just not explaining it right...let me think some more on it, ok? Your criticism would be spot-on, if I meant what you think I mean, which I don't.[g)]

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In the interest of coherency, I have decided to write my reply a second time, and make it a little more succinct [:D]

 Originally posted by Fliption Software is not a physical thing. The paper, cd, or harddrive it is printed on is a totally different thing.
This all appears to me to be essentially the same as the Objective - Subjective thing. You cannot deny that we are subjective....but how does subjectivity come about? I mean, we have the objective brain things (collection of cells transmitting electro-chemical signals etc) and from those things, somehow, our subjective point of view arises.

I think our subjectivity can be simply explained (although we don't know how to) as a direct consequence of the physical make up of our brain.

Now, the Software not being a physical thing: I think the substratum of the software is the only actual existence of the information. It exists as a CD, and nothing else. Our perception of 'Information' as if it was something else, is just a consequence of our subjectivity: just as we experience lightning, although lightning is nothing more than static electricity. To look at paint and see paint, but then get magic atom glasses and look at the atoms that make up the paint, and see atoms, is to miss the point that the atoms actually are the paint.

For instance, the red example: Where we experience red, there is actually only light of a particular wavelength. Just because we experience Red, does not mean that 'Light carries the information for Red', but rather that something in the subjectivity creating factory in our brains is triggered by light hitting it, which makes us experience red. Cause and effect. 'Information' above and beyond the existence of the light wave is not required. Just as information above and beyond the existence of the particle (which has mass be definition) is not required, and just as the structure of the 'bits' on the CD require no extra information above and beyond the physical structure of those bits. Although the consequence of the structure ends up being quite meaningful to our subjectivity, that is simply a causal relationship that flows through the CD, to the CD player, into the Processor, through the RAM, into the monitor/speakers etc, into our eyes ears etc, into our subjectivity factory in the brain.

Train of cause and effect, no 'information' above and beyond the mere existence of the intermediate particles, behaving in their characteristic ways is required.

Hope I could help....?
 AG, From my understanding of what I'm reading yo are saying the there is no difference between a blank CD that I can buy for $2-3 and a CD with information on it that may cost me$200-300. As I am a frugel man I would obviously but the blank CD but try as I might to load the program into my computer I get nothing. Knowledge is. Information is. Our physical brain is the hardware on which the information and knowlege reside and operate. The electrochemical processes supply the energy and electrons to allow the hardware to run the software. I can buy the most expensive complicated and advanced computer in the world and set it up and plug it in and turn it on. Even it I buy all he CD's in the world written or un written and load them onto my computer, the computer is not going to do anything until I tell it to do something and the it is only go to do exactly what I tell it to do, not necessarily what I want it to do. It is the same with our brains and minds. Every living human being has a funtioning brain. Every living human being does not know how or use his brain with the same efficency or to do the same thing. Even if we spent 20 years loading information into a number of brains as in education people, the results will differ drastically from one individual to another. All phd's are not the same. If it were just a matter of physical brains there would not be that much difference in final results.

 Originally posted by Another God This all appears to me to be essentially the same as the Objective - Subjective thing. Train of cause and effect, no 'information' above and beyond the mere existence of the intermediate particles, behaving in their characteristic ways is required.
I understand what you're saying, but I don't agree. The color red is a subjective interpretation of a light wave. But the function of a software program is distinct and can have real effects on the world whether a human being is around to see it or not. To go back to the laws of nature... the fact that circumference divided by diameter always equals Pi is NOT subjective. It is a universal rule that is not physical. (I understand that all these math labels are man made, but that doesn't change the fact that the ratio is constant in nature.)

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 Originally posted by Royce AG, From my understanding of what I'm reading yo are saying the there is no difference between a blank CD that I can buy for $2-3 and a CD with information on it that may cost me$200-300.

What I am saying does not mean that at all. In fact, it says the very opposite. It says that the $200 CD is much more worth it, because the CD has a very important part of it altered so that the computer which interacts with it does something impressive. The$2 CD does not have this alteration, and so makes for a very boring interaction.

I am simply saying that you do not pay $200 for the CD with the funky alterations, and the information that comes with it. The information is only a consequence of the funky alterations. Of course, I say the above with an attempt at Objectivity, and I only say it that way because of the context of the discussion. It is true that in daily usage I would say "The$200 CD is worth it, because of the information it contains"....but that is a euphemism, a way of talking, a convenient expression to get a point across. It is important not to confuse 'ways of talking' with how things are, which is precisely what I think Fliption has done in this instance.

 Originally posted by Another God Wow...I explained it THAT bad? It is important not to confuse 'ways of talking' with how things are, which is precisely what I think Fliption has done in this instance.
What I say here I say because of many things I've read on the topic. So it isn't just me.

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 Originally posted by Fliption I understand what you're saying, but I don't agree. The color red is a subjective interpretation of a light wave. But the function of a software program is distinct and can have real effects on the world whether a human being is around to see it or not.
Absolutely in agreeance there, my point is that it only appears as 'information' because thats what us humans subjectively call it...it has a predictable causal relationship, a complex one at that, and so we call this particular example information.

In this way, we could call everything information. DNA holds information of the base pairs, the light waves holds the information of the the colour it will impart into the human consciousness, the atom holds the information of its mass and dimensions, the snooked ball holds the information of its momentum, and it even acts to impart some of this information into the snooker ball it collides with...not only that, but it instantaneously calculates a complicated trajectory equation, and the momentum is transformed in the passing.

But it becomes silly to talk about 'information' in this way. The fact is, these things are just acting in the way they act. Doing what they do. it is not that the ball carries the information of its momentum with it...it is that the ball is momentus (if thats not a word, then it is now) (the ball is in motion).

Now how you want to name that, how you want to say, how you want to think of it is your own deal, but don't confuse human simplification of the matter with how it is.

Having said that, I do have a slight suspicion that the universe is simply the consequence of a neat little mathematical relationship, and that equation dictates everything...which i guess would mean that everything 'is only information'...but thats just the same, but looked at oppositely, and so I am not completely contradicted. I still claim that there is not 'A ball AND the information with it', the is not "The CD AND the Software on it" There is only one unified entity.

 Originally posted by Fliption I understand what you're saying, but I don't agree. The color red is a subjective interpretation of a light wave. But the function of a software program is distinct and can have real effects on the world whether a human being is around to see it or not. To go back to the laws of nature... the fact that circumference divided by diameter always equals Pi is NOT subjective. It is a universal rule that is not physical. (I understand that all these math labels are man made, but that doesn't change the fact that the ratio is constant in nature.)
No, you don't understand what I'm saying.*grins* But, I'm still having a hard time explaining. Software is physical. Sure, ok, software is physical! And 'pi' doesn't exist, roundness does. 'Red' doesn't exist, but the visible light spectrum does.

 Originally posted by Another God Having said that, I do have a slight suspicion that the universe is simply the consequence of a neat little mathematical relationship, and that equation dictates everything...which i guess would mean that everything 'is only information'...but thats just the same, but looked at oppositely, and so I am not completely contradicted. I still claim that there is not 'A ball AND the information with it', the is not "The CD AND the Software on it" There is only one unified entity.
Nothing you are saying is refuting the fact that in order to have the universe, you have to have the things in the universe and then the rules which govern how those things interact. I don't care what you call it; information or not information. These rules are not material yet they do exists.

 Originally posted by Zero No, you don't understand what I'm saying.*grins* But, I'm still having a hard time explaining. Software is physical. Sure, ok, software is physical! And 'pi' doesn't exist, roundness does. 'Red' doesn't exist, but the visible light spectrum does.
I was referring to AG. I'll concede that I may not understand what you're trying to say if you say I don't.

But the ratio of Pi DOES exists. If humans were not present it wouldn't be known as Pi but this has no bearing on the fact that the universe is contructed in a certain way according to certain rules and constants. These rules are not physical in and of themselves but they DO exists.

 Originally posted by Fliption I was referring to AG. I'll concede that I may not understand what you're trying to say if you say I don't. But the ratio of Pi DOES exists. If humans were not present it wouldn't be known as Pi but this has no bearing on the fact that the universe is contructed in a certain way according to certain rules and constants. These rules are not physical in and of themselves but they DO exists.
Yeah, let's get metaphysical baby!