IN SEARCH OF MATHEMATICS FOR BIOLOGY.
Final rept., 1 Nov 66-31 Jan 67,
RAYTHEON CO WALTHAM MASS RESEARCH DIV
Pagination or Media Count:
An account is given of the inquiries and reflections of a physicist and applied mathematician who explored problems in biology from the viewpoint that the development of information processing systems of organisms must occur in a sufficiently rule-like way to be mathematically describable. The report considers 1 bases for the supposition of transformation generating principles that are rooted both in evolutionary and developmental phenomena 2 a comparison of beginnings of results in artificial intelligence and results of research on relevant biological structure and 3 efforts to devise new kinds of mathematics for biology. Analogies are discussed between electronic and nervous circuits with the observation that the analogy between the brain and a very fancy circuit is an analogy between a brain which we do not understand and a circuit that is completely outside our experience with circuits and which we do not understand either. Considerations of perception and context lead to the statement that an organism can be taken as the expression of a point of view, and a point of view can be taken as a partitioning of the of the universe into classes of equivalence of response. Thus, a characteristic feature of a mathematical representation of structure would come from the credibility that a point of view attributes to other points of view. Though consideration of relations between points of view led back to those that stem from sets, a set may be an expression of a point of view that is yet, in the biological sense, to be described mathematically. Author
- Anatomy and Physiology