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Setting the demons loose: computational irreducibility does not guarantee unpredictability or emergence

Tabatabaei Ghomi, Hamed (2021) Setting the demons loose: computational irreducibility does not guarantee unpredictability or emergence. [Preprint]

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Abstract

A phenomenon resulting from a computationally irreducible (or computationally incompressible) process is supposedly unpredictable except via simulation. This notion of unpredictability has been deployed to formulate some recent accounts of computational emergence. Via a technical analysis of computational irreducibility, I show that computationally irreducibility can establish the impossibility of prediction only with respect to maximum standards of precision. By articulating the graded nature of prediction, I show that unpredictability to maximum standards is not equivalent to being unpredictable in general. I conclude that computational irreducibility fails to fulfill its assigned philosophical roles in theories of computational emergence.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Tabatabaei Ghomi, Hamed
Keywords: emergence, weak emergence, computational irreducibility, prediction, unpredictability, simulation
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
Specific Sciences > Computation/Information
Specific Sciences > Computer Science
Depositing User: Hamed Tabatabaei Ghomi
Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2021 21:49
Last Modified: 25 Nov 2021 21:49
Item ID: 19923
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
Specific Sciences > Computation/Information
Specific Sciences > Computer Science
Date: 2021
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19923

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