Thursday, June 7, 2012

History of Communication Part II, etc.

In Monday's class lecture, we finished the history of communication, from the invention of the telegraph in 1844 to the first use of the satellite in 1957. Other inventions that came later were the fax machine and data transmission. All of the technologies converged to create new media.

We also discussed the beginning of the information age, and Claude Shannon's information theory. Shannon maintained that energy, not matter, is the fundamental "stuff" of the universe. He ultimately defined information as "what is needed to reduce uncertainty." Information also reduces chaos and entropy and creates order. We also discussed sender/receiver/feedback loops, which creates a circuit. The negative feedback limits what information survives.

I thought it was interesting to learn that information is different from knowledge. I always thought they were the same thing, but they really go hand in hand, along with wisdom.

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