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Themesicon: navigation pathAesthetics of the Digitalicon: navigation pathArt/Science

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words or world-views of its own. For that reason, «the worlds of art and science are ideologically no longer opposites,» as Ilya Prigogine states, «the variety of the significates and the basic opacity of the world are reflected in new languages and new formalisms.» [7]

The origins of information theory

The technological revolution received its fundamental impetus from the first industrial revolution in the nineteenth century. By starting up a process of mechanization, the industrial revolution triggered the phenomenon of crises of control. [8] The mounting production levels resulting from mechanization led to the need for control systems to accelerate the flow of information. Researchers began to seek solutions in feedback techniques, automatic control systems, and information processing.

Under the title «On Governors» in 1868, Clerk Maxwell presented the first theoretical study towards an analysis of control and feedback mechanisms, so ushering in the radical transformation in automatic control engineering. By the late nineteenth century, a series of developments and technical innovations were


underway that in the 1940s would serve as the basis of a new theory, namely cybernetics. [9]

The control revolution produced not only feedback techniques and a new hierarchization of media, but also revolutionized the cultural reproduction forms of society. [10] This included areas like communications and art, since the technologies exercised a direct influence on the forms of sociocultural (re)production.

Until then, nevertheless, the themes associated with control mechanisms and automation were discussed in connection with only one common parameter, namely energy. As the basic concept of Newtonian mechanics, energy retained the same position in the natural sciences and in research fields like acoustics, electrical science, and optics. The invariant of ‹mass› similarly occupied a central position in physics. However, as production techniques continued to be improved, so the relationship of human and machine began to change likewise, leading to the emergence of questions about new terms and theories able to make this communication process between biological and technological systems the object of targeted research.

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