Put another way: What’s the difference between a bag of jigsaw puzzle pieces and a text message: “The city will get your car towed if you don’t move it within the next 8 minutes”?
The jigsaw puzzle pieces are complex but they are just stuff. The message is complex but it is also specified. It is addressed to you (= specified). It is telling you something in a language (complex, like all human languages).
From the podcast:
Robert J. Marks: In terms of meaningful information, I think it’s obvious. Michael, they used to say that it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to answer this or it doesn’t take a rocket scientist. Well, it turns out you’re a brain surgeon and I’ve done work for NASA and I got an NASA Tech Brief award. I guess that makes me a rocket scientist. So I think for both of us, the answer is obvious, yeah, that Mount Rushmore contains more information than does Mount Fuji. And it’s clear from the context that this refers to meaningful information. There’s more meaningful information on Mount Rushmore. There’s Lincoln and Roosevelt and Washington, and yep, what do we get? Well, if we get Mount Fuji, we just get a big chocolate gum drop. So yeah, there’s obviously more information on one than the other.News, “Complexity is not always a bad thing” at Mind Matters News
Specified complexity allows us to have an intellectual life.