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Dennis Gabor gave an excellent exposition on the limitations of information propagation in his article, "The Theory of Communication" [1]. This is an article I refer to constantly in trying to understand how real physical signals are transmitted. The theory of communication is based on wave theory.

In terms of wave analysis we try to get a best estimate or best description of a physical signal which exists inside of sound by creating simple wave packets enveloped by a Gaussian function. These simple wave packets provide the best description of a real physical wave. It is not possible to give a better description due to Nature's limitation on what we can measure. As the wave form increases in complexity we can use these simple little wave packets or wavelets to build more complex signals as in the sound waves of speech.

To reconstruct a signal, various simple wave packet objects are numbered or tagged in an orderly fashion and then used inside of a mathematical function to build a complex signal. These numbered tags are called coefficients. They are used in the Gabor function which represents the construction of a complex signal from many little wave packets.

An analogy to constructing a real signal like a sound wave from speech is abstractly putting together parts of alphabets and words into a sequence. This is what you do in your brain before you speak; before you create the real physical sound waves with your vocal cords. The abstract creation of alphabetic word sequences is studied in computer natural language programming. The software Prism was created from using tools in computer programming

A modestly successful methodology of encapsulating ideas in set of word clusters is using a profile as was done in the Prism software. A profile consists of words which represent similar characteristics of the idea. These characteristic subsets of words and phrases are selected in relation to the other word subsets or profile clusters in our universal word set. In the grammatical representation using strings, the profile cluster becomes the characteristic coefficients of a function like a Gabor transform. (I understand that terminology like tags and coefficients, and functions and transforms may be confusing, they are essentially the same corresponding thing. It takes a long time to get comfortable with this terminology. You might just intuitively feel you way through this for now, if it's unclear to you.)

The Prism program uses these "profile coefficients" to classify a random input signal. A group of these coefficients make up the profile dictionary. In the grammatical representation using strings, the profile cluster becomes the characteristic coefficient.


We know that thought processes are naturally wrapped or packaged in language. Language elements such as words, sentences, and the associations these language elements make up in the minds exists because, maybe, the creation of language necessarily required a construction built on the mind's architecture. Language, including music, exists because of how the mind is built.

We're learning from the structure and operation of the brain how to construct an information processor resembling or modeling how we speak. We're trying to encode the information in spoken words in dynamic binary sequences. These sequences exist in a temporal or time-ordered dimension inside wave forms like simple wave packets. Hopefully this is not an over simplification of the fundamental processes occuring in our neural circuits, but the passing of time will tell the truth. So be a little skeptical, and always create the "truth" for yourself by thinking it through for yourself.

Spoken and written language enables us to associate or connect sequences of word elements together. Spoken language in particular places special meaning on the temporal sequence of words. Images are composed of picture elements which are meaningful to each other in terms of the spatial relationship they have to each other. Both verbal and visual language elements can be described by sequences of words or picture elements, and our brain processes this information by associating these elements together in a sequence.


1. Theory of Communication, Dennis Gabor, 1946,
The Journal of the Institution Of Electrical Engineers, 93(3):429-457.

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