[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

psychoceramics: Re: Compression of random data

acb sez:
> in short, it is mathematically impossible to  compress random data 

Isn't this truly in the left-handed sense that we say data are random if we
can't compress them?  (That's the import of using algorithmic complexity
to define randomness, for instance.) 

> Furthermore, this patent describes a compression method which it
> says can be recursively applied to data, reducing any file of data
> by one bit at a time.

Quine (_Quiddities_, s.v. ``Universal Library'') explains how to
compress Borges's Library of Babel, which contains every possible book,
into just two books, containing respectively ``0'' and ``1''.

Cosma Shalizi
I took my lyre and said:	|http://www.physics.wisc.edu/~shalizi/
Come now, my heavenly		|``Some kind of self-described part-time
tortoise shell: become		|  physicist''--- Bruce Sterling
a speaking instrument		|