Informational Closure in the Human and the Machine:

Harish's Notebook - My notes... Lean, Cybernetics, Quality & Data Science.

Art by Dall-E

One of the concepts that seems hard to grasp with regards to Cybernetics is the idea of “informational closure”. This idea was introduced by Ross Ashby as “informational tightness”. Ashby defined Cybernetics as the study of systems that are open to energy but closed to information and control – systems that are “information-tight”. Just like something that is described as water-tight, where water does not enter it from outside, information-tight refers to the condition where information does not enter it from outside.

Ashby also said that when a machine breaks, it changes its mind. Ashby referred to “machine” as a collection of parts that interact on one another and an “organization” as the specific way they are put together. For example, when a user pushes on a button, a door opens. The machine in this case is the button together with the wiring that can interact…

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