Pedro C. Marijuan pcmarijuan.iacs at aragon.es
Tue Sep 21 13:54:04 CEST 2021

Dear FISers!

It is quite a long time without list activity... As you all know, the 
IS4SI 2021 event just took place during last week . Many of FIS parties 
participated, though it was complex to explore all subconference tracks 
and follow them under the ZOOM scheme. It is a new "virtual" regime that 
the pandemics has precipitated--and it will stay... In any case, for 
those who missed the sessions, there will be complete recordings 
available in due time.

Anecdotally, one of the discussion themes, biological & computer codes, 
was raised by me during the final, closing session. I had never thought 
about codes in that way. Joseph made a quick response and sent later a 
message which I paste below. I think continuing as an open discussion 
could be interesting for the list.

Well, I realized that if we compare biological & computer systems with 
inanimate systems, codes are one of the most significant differences. 
Apart of the genetic code, there are many biological others: metabolic 
codes, degradation codes, adhesion codes, histone codes, sugar codes, 
cytoskeleton codes, dvelopmental codes, neuronal codes, etc., etc. It is 
quite interesting that prokaryotes did develop very few codes and so, 
presumably, could not develop their constructive complexity. Something 
similar would have occurred in the development of computer architecture 
layers, based on increasing codes hierarchically arranged in general.

I am not aware of any physical system which had created any kind of code 
(except, hypothetically, in the origins of life). Well, symmetry groups 
in crystallographic systems could be close, but its constructive 
complexity is low, quite "flat", directly dictated by the components...

Are codes really significant for the information realm? Do they 
represent the obligatory way of channeling the inner self-construction 
(dynamic) information flows?

Could there be a deeper discussion on codes?

All the best,



Dear Pedro and All,

Just as the Conference was closing, Pedro brought out the extremely 
important subject of codes, and the result of my rushed interaction with 
him can be summarized as follows: codes are epistemological; dynamics 
are ontological.

This means that codes and dynamics co-exist but are of a different 
nature. Codes describe the catalysts of change in living systems, but 
they do not change themselves without an input of energy/informatin. The 
same is true of codes in non-living systems, say, inorganic catalysts 
that degrade over time. Computer codes are purely epistemological, as 
many of you have said in other terms.

Codes and dynamics can be separated physically but not functionally. 
They instantiate non-separability as a fundamental principle.

Thanks and to be continued, I hope.

Best wishes,


Pedro C. Marijuán
Grupo de Bioinformación / Bioinformation Group

pcmarijuan.iacs at aragon.es

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