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  1. Algorithmic Randomness and Probabilistic Laws.Jeffrey A. Barrett & Eddy Keming Chen - manuscript
    We consider two ways one might use algorithmic randomness to characterize a probabilistic law. The first is a generative chance* law. Such laws involve a nonstandard notion of chance. The second is a probabilistic* constraining law. Such laws impose relative frequency and randomness constraints that every physically possible world must satisfy. While each notion has virtues, we argue that the latter has advantages over the former. It supports a unified governing account of non-Humean laws and provides independently motivated solutions to (...)
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  2. The Substrate-Prior of Consciousness.Gabriel Leuenberger -
    Given functionally equivalent minds, how does the expected quantity of their conscious experience differ across different substrates and how could we calculate this? We argue that a realistic digital brain emulation would be orders of magnitude less conscious than a real biological brain. On the other hand, a mind running on neuromorphic hardware or a quantum computer could in principle be more conscious than than a biological brain.
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  3. A Dilemma for Solomonoff Prediction.Sven Neth - 2023 - Philosophy of Science 90 (2):288-306.
    The framework of Solomonoff prediction assigns prior probability to hypotheses inversely proportional to their Kolmogorov complexity. There are two well-known problems. First, the Solomonoff prior is relative to a choice of Universal Turing machine. Second, the Solomonoff prior is not computable. However, there are responses to both problems. Different Solomonoff priors converge with more and more data. Further, there are computable approximations to the Solomonoff prior. I argue that there is a tension between these two responses. This is because computable (...)
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  4. Multiple patterns, multiple explanations.Steve Petersen - 2023 - In Jonah N. Schupbach & David H. Glass (eds.), Conjunctive Explanations: The Nature, Epistemology, and Psychology of Explanatory Multiplicity. New York: Routledge. pp. 38-48.
    A "patternist" approach to explanation seeks to formalize unificationism using notions from algorithmic information theory. Among other advantages, this account provides both a rigorous sense of how data can admit multiple explanations, and a rigorous sense of how some of those explanations can conjoin, while others compete.
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  5. Real patterns and indispensability.Abel Suñé & Manolo Martínez - 2021 - Synthese 198 (5):4315-4330.
    While scientific inquiry crucially relies on the extraction of patterns from data, we still have a far from perfect understanding of the metaphysics of patterns—and, in particular, of what makes a pattern real. In this paper we derive a criterion of real-patternhood from the notion of conditional Kolmogorov complexity. The resulting account belongs to the philosophical tradition, initiated by Dennett :27–51, 1991), that links real-patternhood to data compressibility, but is simpler and formally more perspicuous than other proposals previously defended in (...)
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  6. Strengthening Weak Emergence.Nora Berenstain - 2020 - Erkenntnis 87 (5):2457-2474.
    Bedau's influential (1997) account analyzes weak emergence in terms of the non-derivability of a system’s macrostates from its microstates except by simulation. I offer an improved version of Bedau’s account of weak emergence in light of insights from information theory. Non-derivability alone does not guarantee that a system’s macrostates are weakly emergent. Rather, it is non-derivability plus the algorithmic compressibility of the system’s macrostates that makes them weakly emergent. I argue that the resulting information-theoretic picture provides a metaphysical account of (...)
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  7. Composition as pattern.Steve Petersen - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (5):1119-1139.
    I argue for patternism, a new answer to the question of when some objects compose a whole. None of the standard principles of composition comfortably capture our natural judgments, such as that my cat exists and my table exists, but there is nothing wholly composed of them. Patternism holds, very roughly, that some things compose a whole whenever together they form a “real pattern”. Plausibly we are inclined to acknowledge the existence of my cat and my table but not of (...)
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  8. Probability and Randomness.Antony Eagle - 2016 - In Alan Hájek & Christopher Hitchcock (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Probability and Philosophy. Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press. pp. 440-459.
    Early work on the frequency theory of probability made extensive use of the notion of randomness, conceived of as a property possessed by disorderly collections of outcomes. Growing out of this work, a rich mathematical literature on algorithmic randomness and Kolmogorov complexity developed through the twentieth century, but largely lost contact with the philosophical literature on physical probability. The present chapter begins with a clarification of the notions of randomness and probability, conceiving of the former as a property of a (...)
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  9. God is Random: A Novel Argument for the Existence of God.Serkan Zorba - 2016 - European Journal of Science and Theology 12 (1):51-67.
    Applying the concepts of Kolmogorov-Chaitin complexity and Turing’s uncomputability from the computability and algorithmic information theories to the irreducible and incomputable randomness of quantum mechanics, a novel argument for the existence of God is presented. Concepts of ‘transintelligence’ and ‘transcausality’ are introduced, and from them, it is posited that our universe must be epistemologically and ontologically an open universe. The proposed idea also proffers a new perspective on the nonlocal nature and the infamous wave-function-collapse problem of quantum mechanics.
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  10. Toward an algorithmic metaphysics.Steve Petersen - 2013 - In David Dowe (ed.), Algorithmic Probability and Friends: Bayesian Prediction and Artificial Intelligence. Springer. pp. 306-317.
    There are writers in both metaphysics and algorithmic information theory (AIT) who seem to think that the latter could provide a formal theory of the former. This paper is intended as a step in that direction. It demonstrates how AIT might be used to define basic metaphysical notions such as *object* and *property* for a simple, idealized world. The extent to which these definitions capture intuitions about the metaphysics of the simple world, times the extent to which we think the (...)
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  11. Randomness Is Unpredictability.Antony Eagle - 2005 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 56 (4):749-790.
    The concept of randomness has been unjustly neglected in recent philosophical literature, and when philosophers have thought about it, they have usually acquiesced in views about the concept that are fundamentally flawed. After indicating the ways in which these accounts are flawed, I propose that randomness is to be understood as a special case of the epistemic concept of the unpredictability of a process. This proposal arguably captures the intuitive desiderata for the concept of randomness; at least it should suggest (...)
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  12. Algorithmic information theory and undecidability.Panu Raatikainen - 2000 - Synthese 123 (2):217-225.
    Chaitin’s incompleteness result related to random reals and the halting probability has been advertised as the ultimate and the strongest possible version of the incompleteness and undecidability theorems. It is argued that such claims are exaggerations.
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  13. On interpreting Chaitin's incompleteness theorem.Panu Raatikainen - 1998 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 27 (6):569-586.
    The aim of this paper is to comprehensively question the validity of the standard way of interpreting Chaitin's famous incompleteness theorem, which says that for every formalized theory of arithmetic there is a finite constant c such that the theory in question cannot prove any particular number to have Kolmogorov complexity larger than c. The received interpretation of theorem claims that the limiting constant is determined by the complexity of the theory itself, which is assumed to be good measure of (...)
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