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Discussion of the Essence# programming language, and related issues and technologies.

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How to Measure What We Don't Know


How do we discover new things? For scientists, observation and measurement are the main ways to extract information from Nature. Based on observations, scientists build models that, in turn, are used to make predictions about the future or the past. To the extent that the predictions are successful, scientists conclude that their models capture Nature’s organization. However, Nature does not reveal secrets easily - there is no way for observers to learn everything about a process, so some information always remains hidden from view; other kinds of information are present, but difficult to extract. In a recent study, researchers have investigated how to measure the degree of hidden information in a process (its “crypticity”) and, along the way, solved several puzzles involved in extracting, storing, and communicating information.
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