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Instructional Information Processing: Replies Considered

Instructional Information Processing: Replies Considered Philos. Technol. (2013) 26:71–72 DOI 10.1007/s13347-012-0072-9 COMMENTARY Instructional Information Processing: Replies Considered Nir Fresco Received: 10 April 2012 /Accepted: 12 April 2012 /Published online: 5 May 2012 Springer-Verlag 2012 . . Keywords Information processing Information erasure Control information Wolf and White address different aspects of the paper, and in this present reply, space only permits making two brief remarks. Starting with White's intriguing observation, digital computation without erasing information is possible. This clearly has impor- tant implications for real-world digital computing systems, since they can be designed and constructed in a more energy-efficient manner, if information erasure operations are kept to a minimum. Yet, avoiding information erasure operations completely in the course of computation is another matter. At least prima facie, this introduces difficulties relating to memory storage. Information is conveyed by data and (partic- ularly persistent) data in computing systems occupy space. However, computation that only adds new information without erasing any will inevitably require an infinite memory space. Whilst idealised Turing machines have this capacity by definition, real-world computing systems do not. The second remark is about control information in digital computing sys- tems. White omits the fifth requirement from the list of requirements, which an information http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Philosophy & Technology Springer Journals

Instructional Information Processing: Replies Considered

Philosophy & Technology , Volume 26 (1) – May 5, 2012

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 by Springer-Verlag
Subject
Philosophy; Philosophy of Technology
ISSN
2210-5433
eISSN
2210-5441
DOI
10.1007/s13347-012-0072-9
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Philos. Technol. (2013) 26:71–72 DOI 10.1007/s13347-012-0072-9 COMMENTARY Instructional Information Processing: Replies Considered Nir Fresco Received: 10 April 2012 /Accepted: 12 April 2012 /Published online: 5 May 2012 Springer-Verlag 2012 . . Keywords Information processing Information erasure Control information Wolf and White address different aspects of the paper, and in this present reply, space only permits making two brief remarks. Starting with White's intriguing observation, digital computation without erasing information is possible. This clearly has impor- tant implications for real-world digital computing systems, since they can be designed and constructed in a more energy-efficient manner, if information erasure operations are kept to a minimum. Yet, avoiding information erasure operations completely in the course of computation is another matter. At least prima facie, this introduces difficulties relating to memory storage. Information is conveyed by data and (partic- ularly persistent) data in computing systems occupy space. However, computation that only adds new information without erasing any will inevitably require an infinite memory space. Whilst idealised Turing machines have this capacity by definition, real-world computing systems do not. The second remark is about control information in digital computing sys- tems. White omits the fifth requirement from the list of requirements, which an information

Journal

Philosophy & TechnologySpringer Journals

Published: May 5, 2012

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