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A Computable Universe: Understanding and Exploring Nature as Computation

A Computable Universe: Understanding and Exploring Nature as Computation

~ Hector Zenil (author) More about this product
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This volume, with a foreword by Sir Roger Penrose, discusses the foundations of computation in relation to nature.
It focuses on two main questions:

What is computation?
How does nature compute?
The contributors are world-renowned experts who have helped shape a cutting-edge computational understanding of the universe. They discuss computation in the world from a variety of perspectives, ranging from foundational concepts to pragmatic models to ontological conceptions and philosophical implications.


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Self-Organization, Emergence, and Constraint in Complex Natural Systems

Contemporary complexity theory has been instrumental in providing novel rigorous definitions for some classic philosophical concepts, including emergence. In an attempt to provide an account of emergence that is consistent with complexity and dynamical systems theory, several authors have turned to the notion of constraints on state transitions. Drawing on complexity theory directly, this paper builds on those accounts, further developing the constraint-based interpretation of emergence and arguing that such accounts recover many of the features of more traditional accounts. We show that the constraint-based account of emergence also leads naturally into a meaningful definition of self-organization, another concept that has received increasing attention recently. Along the way, we distinguish between order and organization, two concepts which are frequently conflated. Finally, we consider possibilities for future research in the philosophy of complex systems, as well as applications of the distinctions made in this paper.

 

Self-Organization, Emergence, and Constraint in Complex Natural Systems
Jonathan Lawhead

http://arxiv.org/abs/1502.01476


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Eli Levine's curator insight, February 14, 9:23 PM

We are naturally constrained by many natural laws in our universe.  Our governments are likewise constrained by physical laws of nature as well as the natural laws behind people, societies, economies, and ecosystems.  Where the constraints came from in nature, I don't know.  But what I do see, is that like the natural laws of the universe, societies impose other constraints upon our actions, behaviors, perceptions, chosen courses of action, abilities to frame issues and topics, abilities to define conditions within our social systems.  Governments can likewise make and define constraints for behaviors or willingness and ability to behave on the part of the citizenry, either by offering incentives to get people to behave in a particular way or to penalize and possibly limit some actions and chosen patterns of behavior. 

 

It should be noted that the laws and chosen constraints and incentives of the government on this level of existence can only be as good as the people who sit within them and make choices.  They are also limited by the physical laws of the universe and the natural laws, conditions, desires, and motives of the general public that composes the whole of society in aggregate and as that which is greater than the aggregate; the combined whole of human thought, behavior, and sentiment. 

 

These human-made constraints (created by governments and social authority figures) are also imperfect in their ability to contain and constrain the society, since the society and its members have autonomy from the government.  Humans and human societies are more constrained by the natural laws and the limitations of knowledge and perception that are present in our brains and neural systems.  Therefore, it can be said that human-made social constraints are less important than the natural ones that exist amongst ourselves and within the universe that we are apart of.

 

Therefore, I think that in order to continue to advance humanity and contribute to our potential to survive, endure, and thrive, we should be constantly and safely pushing at the constraints of what we already know and can do as individuals and as a species.  Our government(s) should focus on studying the universal natural laws of societies, economies, human behavior, and environmental functions in addition to the particular laws of their own societies, making laws and legal systems that work better and better with the natural laws of their own societies and amongst all human societies.  We should capitalize on our differences of perspective and opinion, sifting out those that don't fall into line with discovered reality while using that which is accurate to complete the puzzles of our universe in order to produce something greater than what we've presently got and to continue to advance ourselves safely and in accordance with what is actually helpful, healthful, and ethical for all sentient life in the universe.  Study, research, observation, and exploration are what will make tomorrow better than today, even as the natural laws and some conditions remain the same.  Health, well-being, quality of life, sustainability, and the ability to thrive for all are what we need to prioritize and produce as a society over financial profits and short term economic gains for a few.  Some constraints can be pushed, some can't, and some really shouldn't from the perspective of health, well-being, quality of life, and the ability to thrive for all.  Welcome to nature.

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PhD Scholarships in Complex Systems @Sydney_Uni

Funding is available for applicants interested in carrying out fundamental and applied research in the field of complex systems. The research will involve theoretical work as well as computer simulations. It will aim to discover fundamental connections between information-theoretic and statistical-mechanical approaches to self-organisation, while investigating a variety of topics in nonlinear critical phenomena, with particular focus on information dynamics during phase transitions. 

The PhD will be supervised by Prof. Mikhail Prokopenko. The applicant will join the Complex Systems Research Group (CSRG) at The School of Civil Engineering – The University of Sydney. The CSRG group comprises ten academics, and has wide collaborations across the University, Australia, and internationally. It is a vibrant, world-leading group in the fields of guided self-organisation and critical phenomena forecasting.

...

The scholarship also includes covering the fees payable by international students.


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Entropy | Special Issue : Information Theoretic Incentives for Cognitive Systems

In recent years, ideas such as "life is information processing" or "information holds the key to understanding life" have become more common. However, how can information, or more formally Information Theory, increase our understanding of life, or life-like systems?

Information Theory not only has a profound mathematical basis, but also typically provides an intuitive understanding of processes, such as learning, behavior and evolution terms of information processing.

In this special issue, we are interested in both: a.) the information-theoretic formalization and quantification of different aspects of life, such as driving forces of learning and behavior generation, information flows between neurons, swarm members and social agents, and information theoretic aspects of evolution and adaptation and b.) the simulation and creation of life-like systems with previously identified principles and incentives.

Topics with relation to artificial and natural systems:

information theoretic intrinsic motivationsinformation theoretic quantification of behaviorinformation theoretic guidance of artificial evolutioninformation theoretic guidance of self-organizationinformation theoretic driving forces behind learninginformation theoretic driving forces behind behaviorinformation theory in swarmsinformation theory in social behaviorinformation theory in evolutioninformation theory in the braininformation theory in system-environment distinctioninformation theory in the perception action loopinformation theoretic definitions of life

Dr. Christoph Salge
Dr. Georg Martius
Dr.  Keyan Ghazi-Zahedi
Dr. Daniel Polani
Guest Editors


Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2015


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Arthur Doohan's curator insight, September 20, 2014 9:56 AM

This will be fascinating.....

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Advances in Complex Systems | Lake Como School of Advanced Studies, 29 June – 3 July 2015 (Como)

The school will take place from 29 June to 3 July 2015
The scope of the school is to present recent advances in complex systems discussing applications of  statistical mechanics of non-equilibrium and disordered systems, theories of complex  networks and  other stochastic systems to different topics in materials science, social sciences, biology and biomedical research.  The broad choice of  interdisciplinary topics is designed to expose the students to some of the multiple  facets of complex systems theory.
The school is open to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows working in complex systems and related fields.

 

Advances in Complex Systems
Lake Como School of Advanced Studies, 29 June – 3 July 2015 (Como)

http://acss.lakecomoschool.org/


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Leading experts reveal role of chaos & complexity in biological info processing - Phys.Org

Leading experts reveal role of chaos & complexity in biological info processing - Phys.Org | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
Phys.org Science News Wire : Leading experts reveal role of chaos & complexity in biological info processing -- a press release is provided to you ìas isî with little or no review from Phys.org staff.
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Two-Dimensionality of Yeast Colony Expansion Accompanied by Pattern Formation

Two-Dimensionality of Yeast Colony Expansion Accompanied by Pattern Formation | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
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Climate Change May Impact El Nino Rainfall Patterns - reportingclimatescience.com

Climate Change May Impact El Nino Rainfall Patterns - reportingclimatescience.com | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
Climate Change May Impact El Nino Rainfall Patterns
reportingclimatescience.com
Chadwick, R., Boutle, I. & Martin, G. Spatial Patterns of Precipitation Change in CMIP5: Why the Rich Do Not Get Richer in the Tropics.
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Numerical Heat Transfer and Fluid Flow (Hemisphere Series on Computational Methods in Mechanics and Thermal Science)

Numerical Heat Transfer and Fluid Flow (Hemisphere Series on Computational Methods in Mechanics and Thermal Science) Offer Price $196.23 ISBN:0891165223 Authors Suhas Patankar List Price : $231.00 Availablity Usually ships in 24 hours Publisher :...
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NIMBioS Investigative Workshop: Information and Entropy

NIMBioS Investigative Workshop: Information and Entropy | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it

NIMBioS will host an Investigative Workshop on Information and Entropy

Topic: Information and entropy in biological systems

Meeting dates: April 8-10, 2015

Location: NIMBioS at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

 

Organizers:

John Baez, Mathematics, Univ. of California, RiversideMarc Harper, Educational and biotechnology consultantJohn Harte, Environmental Science, Policy and Management, Univ. of California, Berkeley
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Big Brains. Small Films. Benoît Mandelbrot, The Father of Fractals | IBM

IBM and http://IBMblr.Tumblr.com celebrate the life of Benoit B. Mandelbrot, IBM Fellow Emeritus and Fractal Pioneer. In this final interview shot by filmmaker Erol Morris, Mandelbrot shares his love for mathematics and how it led him to his wondrous discovery of fractals. His work lives on today in many innovations in science, design, telecommunications, medicine, renewable energy, film (special effects), gaming (computer graphics) and more.


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NetSci 2014

NetSci 2014 will take place on Jun 2-6, 2014 at the Clark Kerr Campus of Berkeley University in California.

http://netsci2014.cpt.univ-mrs.fr


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Fractal Dimension - File Exchange - MATLAB Central - MathWorks

Fractal Dimension - File Exchange - MATLAB Central - MathWorks | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
The fractal dimension (FD) image is generated by considering each pixel in the original CT image as a single fractal dimension estimated from its 7x7 neighbours. The FD generated image remarkably enhances the tissue ...
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Science in a Complex World: 30 years of complexity science in Santa Fe

Science in a Complex World: 30 years of complexity science in Santa Fe | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
It’s hard to believe it has been three decades since a group from LANL  devised a plan that would revolutionize science.
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What Isn't Complexity?

The question What is Complexity? has occupied a great deal of time and paper over the last 20 or so years. There are a myriad different perspectives and definitions but still no consensus. In this paper I take a phenomenological approach, identifying several factors that discriminate well between systems that would be consensually agreed to be simple versus others that would be consensually agreed to be complex - biological systems and human languages. I argue that a crucial component is that of structural building block hierarchies that, in the case of complex systems, correspond also to a functional hierarchy. I argue that complexity is an emergent property of this structural/functional hierarchy, induced by a property - fitness in the case of biological systems and meaning in the case of languages - that links the elements of this hierarchy across multiple scales. Additionally, I argue that non-complex systems "are" while complex systems "do" so that the latter, in distinction to physical systems, must be described not only in a space of states but also in a space of update rules (strategies) which we do not know how to specify. Further, the existence of structural/functional building block hierarchies allows for the functional specialisation of structural modules as amply observed in nature. Finally, we argue that there is at least one measuring apparatus capable of measuring complexity as characterised in the paper - the human brain itself.

 

What Isn't Complexity?
Christopher R. Stephens

http://arxiv.org/abs/1502.03199


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Postdoctoral and Student/Predoctoral Research Positions @NECSI

The New England Complex Systems Institute has funding for postdoctoral and predoctoral research appointments. We look for outstanding applicants with training in physics, mathematics or computer science. We value strong writing abilities. Candidates should be interested in contributing to a wide range of NECSI's research areas, including analysis and modeling of

Socio-economic systems relevant to:
- The food and economic crises,
- Conflicts, revolutions, and ethnic violence
- International development, and
- Pandemics

Fundamental mathematical advances such as:
- Multisc ale representations
- Network representations
To apply please visit: http://www.necsi.edu/education/postdoc/app.php


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Entropy | Special Issue : Information Processing in Complex Systems

All systems in nature have one thing in common: they process information. Information is registered in the state of a system and its elements, implicitly and invisibly. As elements interact, information is transferred and modified. Indeed, bits of information about the state of one element will travel—imperfectly—to the state of the other element, forming its new state. This storage, transfer, and modification of information, possibly between levels of a multi level system, is imperfect due to randomness or noise. From this viewpoint, a system can be formalized as a collection of bits that is organized according to its rules of dynamics and its topology of interactions. Mapping out exactly how these bits of information percolate through the system could reveal new fundamental insights in how the parts orchestrate to produce the properties of the system. A theory of information processing would be capable of defining a set of universal properties of dynamical multi level complex systems, which describe and compare the dynamics of diverse complex systems ranging from social interaction to brain networks, from financial markets to biomedicine. Each possible combination of rules of dynamics and topology of interactions, with disparate semantics, would reduce to a single language of information processing.

 

Guest Editor: Dr. Rick Quax

 

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2015


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2015 Scholar Awards in Studying Complex Systems Grant Competition

2015 Scholar Awards in Studying Complex Systems Grant Competition | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
RT @JSMF: Guidelines for the 2015 JSMF Scholar Award in Studying Complex Systems are up http://t.co/3gV3cpw0TV 2015-03-1115:59CDT(20:59UTC)…
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Experts expose fundamental role of chaos and complexity in biological information processing | BeautycribTV.com

The interdisciplinary approach to problems that till recently were addressed in the hermetic framework of distinct disciplines such as physics, informatics, biology or sociology constitutes today one of the most active and innovative areas of...
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Thermodynamic Costs of Information Processing in Sensory Adaptation

Thermodynamic Costs of Information Processing in Sensory Adaptation | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
PLOS Computational Biology is an open-access
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Complexity, In Our Time - BBC Radio 4

Complexity, In Our Time - BBC Radio 4 | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss complexity theory.
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Quantum Teleportation and Entanglement: A Hybrid Approach to Optical Quantum Information Processing

Quantum Teleportation and Entanglement: A Hybrid Approach to Optical Quantum Information Processing Offer Price $97.72 ISBN:3527409300 Authors Akira Furusawa, Peter van Loock List Price : $140.00 Availablity Usually ships in 24 hours Publisher :...
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The Strange New Science of Chaos - YouTube

A 1989 program, with Lorenz


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Vasileios Basios's curator insight, April 1, 2014 9:43 AM

Wow! such a rare delightful material .... Ralph Abraham and Lorenz who could imagine!

Luciano Lampi's curator insight, April 16, 2014 8:31 AM

to be watched by the new generations!  old certitudes and new doubts?

Liz Rykert's curator insight, April 19, 2014 9:56 PM

Great to hear Lorenz

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TOMAEQ14

TOMAEQ14 | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it

TOMAEQ14:

Topological Matter out of Equilibrium

Focus Workshop — 27 - 29 March 2014

Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems

Dresden, Germany

 

Much of the work on non-equilibrium statistical mechanics has relied on the notion of a local order parameter,  absent in topological phases. Conversely, studies of topological phenomena have focused on equilibrium and ground-state properties. The intersection of these fields remains largely uncharted territory.

This workshop brings together theorists from both groups, as well as experimentalists studying dynamical phenomena in a variety of systems, covering topics such as topological phenomena in driven systems, hydrodynamic descriptions of phases with emergent gauge fields,
ultrafast and inelastic spectral probes of quantum matter, the development of numerical methods, and finally potential experiments in the solid state and ultracold atomic gases.

http://www.pks.mpg.de/~tomaeq14/announce.html

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Pattern Formations and Oscillatory Phenomena - Unlimited Zone

Pattern Formations and Oscillatory Phenomena - Unlimited Zone | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
Shuichi Kinoshita, "Pattern Formations and Oscillatory Phenomena" English | ISBN: 0123970148 | 2013 | 280 pages | PDF | 31 MB Patterns and their formations appear throughout nature, and are studied to.
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New Complexity MOOC Started - iProgrammer

New Complexity MOOC Started - iProgrammer | Physics of Complex, Nonlinear, Non-equilibrium systems | Scoop.it
New Complexity MOOC Started
iProgrammer
Introduction to Dynamical Systems and Chaos, the second course to be offered through the Santa Fe Institute's Complexity Explorer project started on January 6th and enrollment is still open.
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