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Information Theory and Art


When we say things like:

“That picture is too noisy”
“The room is too cluttered”
“This song is boring”
“That script has good pacing”
“Put some reverb on that mic”

We are unintentionally invoking the spirit of Claude Shannon, who first described Information Theory in the late 1940s, at the dawn of the information age.

I wrote about this subject recently for the online magazine Mung Being.

Check it out!

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2 Responses to “Information Theory and Art”

  1. rgovostes Says:

    What you suggest is very plausible. There is definitely a balance between redundancy and entropy that seems to be pleasing, and I think it can be extended beyond artwork and music, although examples fail me.

    Consider the pencilled outline of a circle on a piece of paper. Not very exciting is it – high redundancy and low entropy. Now imagine instead a spiral spinning inward – the redundancy is less, and the entropy is higher. They reach a balance that makes an interesting shape.

    Thanks for the article!

  2. rgov.org Says:

    Redundancy and Entropy

    The Palace author Jim Bumgardner has written an interesting article on Claude Shannon, a Bell Labs employee whose 1948 paper, “A Mathematical Model of Communication,” first described Information Theory. Jim goes into the details of Shannon&…