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rossum

Posts: 234
Joined: Dec. 2008

 Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Oct. 07 2012,08:14) The are ways to demonstrate algorithmic processes generating CSI; Jeff Shallit and I have done that before. However, the example cited is not one of them. In fact, Dembski's "The Design Inference" devotes a chunk of text to the discovery of specifications for encrypted text.

It is always possible to find a specification for encrypted text: "The string which when decrypted with the Caesar cypher, key 13, gives the text of the King James Bible."  The problem is knowing the specification in advance.

However, using that specification, the actual text of the KJV does not meet the specification, and so has zero CSI.  The regular process of decryption will destroy CSI, but conversely, the regular process of encryption will create CSI.

If we are allowed to change the specification in mid-calculation then we can effectively set any value of CSI we want to zero; just switch the specification to: "A design for a working perpetual motion machine."  Such a specification cannot be met.  Hence it would be 'easy' to show that nothing at all had any CSI and there was no design to be found anywhere.  Hardly the result that the ID side wants.

Dr Dembski's search for specifications for encrypted text, without knowing the key, is effectively a search for a universal code breaker.  In cryptography, if the output of an encryption algorithm can be distinguished from random, then that encryption is considered to be broken.  A mathematically perfect encryption cannot be distinguished from random, without the key.  I am sure that both the NSA and GCHQ would be very interested indeed if Dr Dembski had made any progress in this area.

I agree that my piece is far from rigorous, but I think that it is at about right level for most internet discussion fora.

rossum

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The ultimate truth is that there is no ultimate truth.

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