Algorithmic entropy of sets
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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In a previous paper a theory of program size formally identical to information theory was developed. The entropy of an individual finite object was defined to be the size in bits of the smallest program for calculating it. It was shown that this is − log2 of the probability that the object is obtained by means of a program whose successive bits are chosen by flipping an unbiased coin. Here a theory of the entropy of recursively enumerable sets of objects is proposed which includes the previous theory as the special case of sets having a single element. The primary concept in the generalized theory is the probability that a computing machine enumerates a given set when its program is manufactured by coin flipping. The entropy of a set is defined to be − log2 of this probability.
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