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6986Re: [decentralization] Generalizing Peer Production into the Physical World

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  • Miles Fidelman
    Nov 11, 2007
      Mike Dierken wrote:
      >> It's an internet solution to a
      >> physical problem. The stuff on either end is physical; there's
      >> historical sheet music on one side, and guitar players at open mic
      >> nights on the other side. But in the middle is the internet.
      > But the Internet is physical (electrons, silicon, copper, glass fiber, etc)
      > ideas are not. That's the "exists" I was referring to.
      > The statement that "[...] (the world of ideas) is increasingly
      > indistinguishable from the world of things." seems ridiculous. Ideas
      > actually are distinguishable from things. Sure, ideas can affect people and
      > change their behavior and mass digital media has increased that rate of
      > change, so it's extremely important. But saying they are indistinguishable
      > sounds like intellectual puffery.
      More to play devil's advocate on a Sunday morning, than anything else...

      Are ideas indistinguishable from things, or vice versa?

      Ideas are often stored/represented as states of matter, or systems
      behavior. Consider:

      - the difference between two books: they may weigh the same, but what's
      printed on the pages makes all the difference, or,

      - a computer running a specific program behaves very differently than
      one running a different program, or one that's halted (and that can
      effect very physical things like energy used by that machine, or,

      - the physical states of our bodies are very much interdependent with
      what we are thinking, the activities of our autonomic nervous systems,
      and the state of various chemicals (natural and otherwise) in our

      Is an endorphin "high" an idea or a physical state or both? What about
      being agitated?

      And then you can always look toward basic physics: energy and matter are
      interchangeable, as are energy and information content (entropy).
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