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Open Mike: Cornell OBI Conference—Is a new definition of information needed for biology?

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Biological Information

To facilitate discussion, we are publishing the abstracts of the 24 papers from the Cornell Conference on the Origin of Biological Information here at Uncommon Descent, with cumulative links to previous papers at the bottom of each page.

Here’s the Abstract for 1.1.1 Biological Information — What is It? 11 by Werner Gitt, Robert Compton and Jorge Fernandez:

Scientific discoveries, especially over the last six decades, have left no doubt that ‘information’ plays a central role in biology. Specialists have thus sought to study the information in biological systems using the same definitions of information as have been traditionally used in engineering, computer science, mathematics and in other disciplines. Unfortunately, all of these traditional definitions lack aspects that even non-specialists recognize as being essential attributes of information — qualities such as meaning and purpose. To remedy that deficiency, we define another type of information — Universal Information — that more accurately embodies the full measure of information. We then examine the DNA/RNA protein synthesizing system with this definition of Universal Information and conclude that Universal Information is indeed present and that it is essential for all biological life. Furthermore, other types of information, such as Mental Imaging Information, also play a key role in life. It thus seems inevitable that the biological sciences (and science in general) must consider other-than-the-traditional definitions of information if we are to answer some of the fundamental questions about life. More.

Do you agree that a new definition of information is needed for biology?

Mikes are live.

Note: All conference papers here

See also: Origin of Biological Information conference: Its goals

Origin of Biological Information conference: Origin of life studies flatlined

Open Mike: Cornell OBI Conference— Can you answer these conundrums about information?


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