Evolution's Information Theory...

Jayabalan Joseph Jan. 8, 2018, 11:31 p.m. PST
Hello Perry,

I actively support your concept of Evolutionary tool box with a Swiss army knife... Yet I have my own doubts when it comes to your interpretation of Shanon's information theory in Evolutionary terms...

As you would know, each gene has many variations in the form of point mutations termed as SNPs.


These SNPs are responsible for all 7 billion humans on earth being Not identical (but for identical twins)...


But as against being random, these SNPs are very specific... Which is that, a given SNP is allowed 'only' certain variations and Not every possible variation available. In other words a SNP at a given position does Not have the capacity to code for all 20 aminoacids, but is only allowed certain permitted amino acids... You probably would know why...

The reason is that only certain amino acid variants are allowed at any given position of a protein. If other amino acids were to get introduced; the proteins would not fold properly (due to steric hinderence) and so would not function.

So Not all variations are allowed at any given SNP... Hence in reality these point mutations are just variants, and Not Noise as seen from the information theory perspective... Nature's Selection has its role even at the level of proteins & SNPs; by not allowing just any amino acid to be incorporated in a given position of a protein and as obvious will Not permit just any SNP variant in a given position on a gene...

An anology in human terms would be the difference in spelling of certain words inbetween the English language and American.



As we know, both the version of the word make sense...!

It appears though, as against Shanon's information theory which strives to transmitt the Perfect signal devoid of noises; Nature probably works by sending multiple versions of a signal so that in the end atleast one would make sense... With 0s & 1s Humans try sending the "Perfect" signal which either gets decoded at the other end or make no sense at all...! On the other hand by providing multiple choices Nature probably sends out the most "Practical" signal which gets decoded no matter any kind of decoder is present at the recieving end. In short nature sents out the equivalent of British, American & Australian versions of a given word, instead of we humans sending out just one of them...!

Perry, I wish to know what you think about this.. I will be happy to have your reply.


concepter Sept. 22, 2018, 10:26 a.m. PDT
I would also like to know the answer, because your observation seems interesting to me and in any case a radical critique of information theory.

Nature always wins, however, and I believe that information theory can easily be reviewed and corrected many times before we can correctly describe what happens in a cell.
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