Science: Say It Again

The mathematical concept known as "redundancy" can be applied to virtually any form of communication. In a transcript released last week, members of the Association of the Princeton Graduate Alumni recorded some thoughts on how far it could be pushed into the consideration of art.

"Redundancy," as devised by Mathematician Claude E. Shannon and others, is an evaluation of the effectiveness of the varied forms of communication—e.g., telegraphy, speech, art, music, semaphore, television—in terms of the idea that a certain percentage of symbols in a message does not convey information but merely combats "noise." Noise is sometimes defined as anything from the...

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