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Darwin-L Message Log 2:45 (October 1993)

Academic Discussion on the History and Theory of the Historical Sciences

This is one message from the Archives of Darwin-L (1993–1997), a professional discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences.

Note: Additional publications on evolution and the historical sciences by the Darwin-L list owner are available on SSRN.


<2:45>From John_Wilkins@udev.monash.edu.au  Sun Oct 10 18:14:06 1993

Date: Mon, 11 Oct 1993 09:12:46 +0000
From: John Wilkins <John_Wilkins@udev.monash.edu.au>
Subject: Re- Textual transmission
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu

Reply to:
     Re: Textual transmission
I wonder how this relates to G C Williams' (_Natural Selection: Levels,
confusions and issues_, 1992, pub forgotten) use of the term _codical domain_
(in which information is selected in evolution) and his discussion of Fred
Dretske's _xerox principle_.

As I understand these two terms, the codical domain is the domain of structural
information (the codex). It is the programmatic information contained within
the gene and expressed in ontogeny and the environment. The xerox principle is
that the information is the same when transcribed to another medium, but that
it is not the same codex in a different medium -- a photocopy of a book is not
the same as printed copy of the book, because while it is the same information
in the codical domain, the material storage medium is different.

I raise this because I am having difficulties sorting these concepts and would
welcome anyone else's responses to them.

John Wilkins
Monash University, Melbourne Australia
Internet: john_wilkins@udev.monash.edu.au
Tel: (+613) 565 6009

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