“Herein, we present the foundations of a new theoretical approach to agnostically quantify the amount of potential pathway assembly information contained within an object. This is achieved by considering how the object can be deconstructed into its irreducible parts, and then evaluating the minimum number of steps necessary to reconstruct the object along any pathway. The analysis of pathway assembly is done by the recursive deconstruction of a given object using shortest paths, and this can be used to evaluate the effective pathway assembly index for that object (13). In developing pathway assembly, we have been motivated to create an intrinsic measure of an object forming through random processes, where the only knowledge required of the system is the basic building blocks and the permitted ways of joining structures together. This allows determining when an extrinsic agent or evolutionary system is necessary to construct the object, permitting the search for complexity in the abstract, without any specific notions of what we are looking for, thus removing the requirement for an external imposition of meaning, see Figure 1.” Quantifying the pathways to life using assembly spaces Stuart M. Marshall, Douglas Moore, Alastair R. G. Murray, Sara I. Walker, Leroy Cronin (Submitted on 6 Jul 2019 (v1), last revised 9 Aug 2019 (this version, v2)) (ArXiv)
We’re told that author Sara Walker is a long-time collaborator with Paul Davies at Arizona State and that she put this material forward at “Mind Matters: Intelligence and Agency in the Physical World” in July 2019 in Italy. Other talks’ pdfs here.
Another reader writes to ask, about that and some of the other conference papers’ themes: “Mind Matters? Natural and Artificial Intelligence? Irreducible parts? Minimum number of steps? Extrinsic agent? Biological or technological processes?” Where have we seen this stuff before?
Oh yes, we’ve seen it hanging from the racks in our own toolshed.
Okay, they lifted our tools. But did they remember to take the troll spray too?
We might have lent them the tools. But without No! Troll, begone!TM, oh dear…
Another reader points out that their stuff is probably not called ID simply because no known ID sympathizer is associated with the paper. Cute.
Okay, fine. No one owns a general idea. No dispute here.
But to proceed without a means of neutralizing trolls risks careers. One must hope that they have developed a troll spray themselves. One that survived beta testing.