Showing posts from June, 2006

RFID @ home

RFID (Radio Frequency IDentification) tags are becoming very popular. For example, in Europe pets have ID chips installed under the skin, so if they get lost, their owners can be traced. Public transport cards also use this technology, where you need only to pass a card close to the entrance, and your trip fare gets deducted automatically. They can also be included for tracking of shippings or luggage.
Still, in recent years RFID tags have become cheaper and cheaper, so now many supermarkets plan to use them instead of barcodes. Like this, the shoppers would only approach to the cashier, and all items would be identified with radio signals. No more queues! Like with barcodes, the shops can use RFID tags to track inventories, e.g. to know how much stock they have, and it can be easily known if more products should be ordered, or put on sale because they are about to expire.
But I was thinking the other day that this technology could have even more uses at homes. If there was a RFID detec…


Following Nadia's steps and advice, I've been making some "artistic" pictures, some of them you can find here.

Non-reducible systems

Some thoughts have come recently... about why we cannot reduce the behaviour of complex systems to the behaviour of their components. There are reducible systems where you can do this, e.g. where properties of a system are given by the average or sum of the properties of the parts. But, where does the emergent "more than the sum" comes from?
The answer is:Interactions.
When two elements interact, new information can be produced. This information is not included in the information of the elements. Thus, it cannot be predicted from that. The system needs to "run" to express its properties, generated only when elements interact. Emergent properties are a posteriori.
Because of this, reductionism is doomed. It simply cannot predict the precise information that will be produced by interactions that cannot be specified before they are observed. They need to be observed first to be described and understood. Feedback between experience and reason.