On the formal definition of information

Authors: Pavlov-Pinus K.A. Published: 04.03.2020
Published in issue: #1(81)/2020  
DOI: 10.18698/2306-8477-2020-1-643  
Category: The Humanities in Technical University | Chapter: Philosophy Science  
Keywords: information, informing processes, action, influence, probability, irreversibility, partial ordering of information, information about information

The paper considers the idea of a general formal definition of information, or information process. In contrast to the fundamental concepts of action, interaction, and/or direct influence, the concept of an information process is essentially probabilistic and incompatible with deterministic ontologies. Just the probabilistic nature of information sharing is one of the reasons for: 1) the irreversibility of informing processes (i.e., the fact that information is always positive); 2) the existence of tight relations to decision-making procedures; 3) the existence of significance and value, which are genetically intersubjective invariants of communication processes. The last statement is related to the axiom: information about information is always positive, i.e. it is something fundamentally informative. In contrast to the established idea of information as something that reduces the amount of uncertainty that occurs only in fixed contexts remaining untouched by informing processes, the proposed formalism also covers those situations where informing processes may affect the adding complexity of the context, resulting in increase of uncertainty. The concept of the amount of information is an insufficient mathematical characteristic, since the informative circumstance is also the ways of ordering information, which in general are complex partial ones, but not linear orders.

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