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Calculating the information content of an information process for a domain expert using Shannon's mathematical theory of communication: A preliminary analysis

Authors
Journal
Information Processing & Management
0306-4573
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
33
Issue
6
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/s0306-4573(97)00038-1
Disciplines
  • Archaeology
  • Communication
  • Mathematics

Abstract

Abstract The problem addressed in this article is to use Bertram Brookes' ‘fundamental equation’ as a starting off-point for a conceptual exercise whose purpose is to set out a method for calculating the information content of an information process. The knowledge structure variables in the Brookes' equation are first operationalized, following principles set out in Claude Shannon's mathematical theory of communication. The set of ‘a priori’ alternatives and the a priori probabilities assigned to each member of the set by the person undergoing the information process is the operational definition of the variable ‘K[S]’ from the ‘fundamental equation,’ which represent the person's knowledge structure ‘before’ the information process takes place. The set of ‘a posteriori’ alternatives and the revised probabilities assigned to each member of the set by the person undergoing the information process is the operational definition of the Brookes' variable ‘ K[ S + ΔS],’ which is the person's knowledge structure ‘after’ the information process takes place. To illustrate how the variables can be determined, an example of a information process is used from a recent real-life archeological discovery.

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