Chapter 10: Process Of Perception And Analysis

By Xah Lee. Date:

Wolfram tries to define “Perceptions And Analysis”.

“Perception and Analysis” are usually done with a goal or purpose. However, Wolfram seems to use the phrase PA as some concept fundemanteal to human mind an or science.

The word Perception, and the concept of analysis, are similar but not the same thing. Perception is a innate ability built into us. Presumably, how we perceive is a biological procss evolved from evolution. The meaning of perception and its goal can be quite philosophical.

analysis, typically is used in the scientific context. It means to extract info with regards to some goal, some thing that we are looking for. Without this goal or a context, there's not meaning to the activity of analysis.

Wolfram discussed Perception and Analysis as one single concept, mixing these together, as if its some inherent, fundamental, universal human thing.

He argues, that given a CA, we usually couldn't determine its simple rule. Wolfram attribute this to some failure of Perception and Analysis. Note however, humans are not evolved to look at CAs and determine its rules. Determine some abstract systems formulation is not the meaning of perception. Also, the activity of analysis, usually insn't about findig some system's formation or solving some math problem.

Drawing conclusions about P or about A, by the fact of inability to solve a CA of a given snapshot, seems not correct.

Notions of randomness

Wolfram makes some fuzzy commetns about the N of R.

he seems to build a strawman and tear it down.

He seems to want to comment, and perhaps give a ultimate charaterization, on the meaning of randomness when people says something is random. This goal, is really philosophical, as in what it means when people says something is “beautiful”. (as a philosphical study, under Esthetics.).

After rejecting some argument he built, he seems to, very fuzzily, conclude that what randomness is just how people take it to be.

Note: in math or science, randomness is either given a precise definition, or such precise definition does not matter to the research and a general understanding suffices. How it is defined depends on the particular research. I don't think it makes sense to have a absolute, universal, definition of randomness, even if we limit the subject to just real numbers. For example, is 0 a random real number? Yes because it is equal likely to occur if a number is picked out from the real line. If π a random number? No because it