Biosemiotics

LAWS, LANGUAGE and LIFE

Howard Pattee’s classic papers on the physics of symbols with contemporary commentary

Authors: Pattee, Howard Hunt, Rączaszek-Leonardi, Joanna

  • It is a unique collection of Pattee’s papers on foundational principles relating physics, life, and informational symbol systems
  • It establishes the necessity of symbolic constraints on physical laws for life and evolution
  • It is an approach to reconciling the information processing (symbolic) and dynamic models of cognition
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eBook $169.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5161-3
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
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  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $219.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5160-6
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  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $219.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-017-8511-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

Howard Pattee is a physicist who for many years has taken his own path in studying the physics of symbols, which is now a foundation for biosemiotics. By extending von Neumann’s logical requirements for self-replication, to the physical requirements of symbolic instruction at the molecular level, he concludes that a form of quantum measurement is necessary for life. He explains why all non-dynamic symbolic and informational controls act as special (allosteric) constraints on dynamical systems. Pattee also points out that symbols do not exist in isolation but in coordinated symbol systems we call languages. Such insights turn out to be necessary to situate biosemiotics as an objective scientific endeavor. By proposing a way to relate quiescent symbolic constraints to dynamics, Pattee’s work builds a bridge between physical, biological, and psychological models that are based on dynamical systems theory. Pattee’s work awakes new interest in cognitive scientists, where his recognition of the necessary separation—the epistemic cut—between the subject and object provides a basis for a complementary third way of relating the purely symbolic, computational models of cognition and the purely dynamic, non-representational models. This selection of Pattee’s papers also addresses several other fields, including hierarchy theory, artificial life, self-organization, complexity theory, and the complementary epistemologies of the physical and biological sciences.

Table of contents (19 chapters)

  • Introduction—What These Papers Are About

    Pattee, Howard Hunt

    Pages 3-30

  • The Physical Basis of Coding and Reliability in Biological Evolution

    Pattee, Howard Hunt

    Pages 33-54

  • How Does a Molecule Become a Message?

    Pattee, Howard Hunt

    Pages 55-67

  • Physical Problems of Decision-Making Constraints

    Pattee, Howard Hunt

    Pages 69-79

  • Laws and Constraints, Symbols and Languages

    Pattee, Howard Hunt

    Pages 81-89

Buy this book

eBook $169.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5161-3
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $219.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5160-6
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $219.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-017-8511-2
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
LAWS, LANGUAGE and LIFE
Book Subtitle
Howard Pattee’s classic papers on the physics of symbols with contemporary commentary
Authors
Series Title
Biosemiotics
Series Volume
7
Copyright
2012
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
eBook ISBN
978-94-007-5161-3
DOI
10.1007/978-94-007-5161-3
Hardcover ISBN
978-94-007-5160-6
Softcover ISBN
978-94-017-8511-2
Series ISSN
1875-4651
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XVI, 336
Topics