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Compressibility, laws of nature, initial conditions and complexity

Chibbaro, Sergio and Vulpiani, Angelo (2017) Compressibility, laws of nature, initial conditions and complexity. [Preprint]

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Abstract

We critically analyse the point of view for which laws of nature are just a mean to compress data. Discussing some basic notions of dynamical systems and information theory, we show that the idea that the analysis of large amount of data by means of an algorithm of compression is equivalent to the knowledge one can have from scientific laws, is rather naive. In particular we discuss the subtle conceptual topic of the initial conditions of phenomena which are generally incompressible. Starting from this point, we argue that laws of nature represent more than a pure compression of data, and that the availability of large amount of data, in general, is not particularly useful to understand the behaviour of complex phenomena.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Chibbaro, Sergiosergio.chibbaro@upmc.fr
Vulpiani, Angelo
Additional Information: Foundations of Physics, In press
Keywords: Statistical mechanics, Chaotic dynamics, Algorithms,
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Depositing User: Dr Sergio Chibbaro
Date Deposited: 21 Sep 2017 18:53
Last Modified: 21 Sep 2017 18:53
Item ID: 13461
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1007/s10701-017-0113-4
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Date: 10 September 2017
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/13461

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