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

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as a whole, which is a basic prerequisite for understanding the range of the cybernetic approach.

Unlike Newton’s mechanics, which operates with closed systems, information is applied to open systems. In this way it must be seen as a key enabling linkage and communication between dissimilar systems, and between the latter and the external world. ‹Mass› and ‹energy› are directly related to matter in the natural sciences, whereas ‹information› is not conveyed by any substance, but is based on variable properties: Information can be reproduced (duplicated or copied), destroyed (erased), or reiterated (repeated). «Information is a name for the content of what is exchanged with the outer world as we adjust to it, and make our adjustment felt upon it. The process of receiving and of using information is the process of our adjusting to the contingencies of the outer environment, and of our living effectively within that environment.» [15] To this extent, not the possible quantity of circulating information is crucial to the effectiveness of communication, but the degree to which this information is integrated into communication. Along the lines of cybernetics, then,


significant information is not the entirety of all information transmitted, but that information which passes through the ‹filters.›


In the field of information and communication Wiener devoted particular attention to the question of automatons and the development of feedback models. His core interest lay in investigating machines capable of evaluating input and of integrating the stored experience into the further feedback loops. In this respect, feedback is a method of making systems self-regulating, by which the results of preceding activities are re-integrated in the procedural sequence and thus enable runtime corrections to be made permanently. To this end, machines must be capable of learning processes.

Although his approaches and conclusions are very different from those of Wiener, Turing in his essay likewise clearly indicated the necessity of developing systems capable of learning. Devoted to the subject of learning machines, the essay takes as its starting point the principle that «education can take place provided

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