FYI:SCI:COMP:YUMMY:Announcement for the NECSI working group: Information Mechanics (fwd)

Eugene Leitl (
Tue, 20 Jan 1998 22:50:53 +0300 (MSK)

Please, please, please. Any attendant please concoct&post a writeup
(however brief) of this session. 'gene

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 20 Jan 1998 13:35:48 -0500
From: Rick Bagley <>
Subject: Announcement for the NECSI working group: Information Mechanics

Announcement for the NECSI working group: Information Mechanics

First meeting:

Topic: Physical Limits to Computation.
Location: A room will be reserved on the MIT campus.
Date: Friday, Jan 30.
Schedule: 9am - 5pm, including a relaxed,informal lunch, lunch will be
served on the premises, possibility of going out to dinner afterwards
for those who wish.
Fee: We ask that each participant contribute $20, which will provide for
all refreshments and the lunch.

Second meeting:

Topic: Information flow in non-equilibrium systems.
Location: again MIT.
Date: Friday, March 27.
Schedule: similar, if we find that it works.


Participation is limited to 30 people and is by application/invitation
only. This is to ensure easy, informal communication between those
present. Interested people should contact me, Rick Bagley:,
with their queries and contributions. Michel Baranger and I are the
organizers. We will notify registered participants (and send
directions) via email beforehand.

What is expected of participants?:

Participants should be ready to present ideas which contribute to the

There will be no long formal talks. But hopefully there will be many
interested, knowledgeable people ready to contribute something from
their own work, some work from the literature, well-posed questions,
suggestions for collaborations, etc. We welcome suggestions from
participants beforehand concerning the format, the topics, or possible


Here are some possible topics to provoke interest:

- Potential and limitations of quantum computation (recent work on
teleportation is topical)
- Limits to the efficiency of a parallel computation (as a function of
the number of processors, or alternatively, the fundamental limits to
the decomposition of a computation)
- The possible role of self-organization in computation
- Minimal energy requirements for communication (ref: Landauer: 1996
Science 272:1914)
- Symbolic dynamics of dynamical systems seen as computational systems,
and association of dynamics regimes with different characterizations of
- Stability of a computation, and the role and limitations of error
correction, randomness
- Algorithmic stability (perhaps not directly relevant to physical
aspects of computation? )
- Applications of coding theory

We encourage interested people to contribute topics and improve upon
this list.

There will also be a web-based bulletin board available for the group to
augment the overall discussion.

The first meeting will allow time for exploration of the subjects of
future working group meetings and the objectives for collective
contributions from these meetings.

Additional information about working groups at NECSI on other topics can
be found at
and general information about necsi can be found at
(or contact, Yaneer Bar-Yam, president of NECSI at