A Bit of Theory: Consciousness as Integrated Information

It's essential that we determine to what extent different neural architectures can generate integrated information

5 min read

If the level of consciousness has to do with how much integrated information a conscious entity generates, it is essential that we determine to what extent different neural architectures can generate integrated information. The integrated-information theory of consciousness, or IIT, is an attempt to do so, and to approach consciousness from first principles.

IIT introduces a measure of integrated information, represented by the symbol ο and given in bits, that quantifies the reduction of uncertainty (that is, the information generated when a system enters a particular state through causal interactions among its parts) This measure is above and beyond the information generated independently within the parts themselves. The parts should be chosen in such a way that they can account for as much nonintegrated (independent) information as possible.

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar

You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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