Science and the myth of information
Francis T. S. Yu
Emeritus Evan Pugh Professor of Electrical Engineering
Penn State University
University Park, PA 16802, USA
In this talk, I shall show the mythical relationship between science and information. Since every substance has a price-tag or price-tags of information which includes all the building blocks in our universe, one cannot simply ignore information when dealing with science. We have shown that there is a profound connection between information and entropy, a quantity that has been well accepted in science. Without this connection, information would be more difficult to apply in science. Two of the most important pillars in modern physics must be the Einstein’s relativity theory andtheSchrödinger’s quantum mechanics. We show that there exists a profound relationship between them, by means of the uncertainty principle. In due of uncertainty relation, we show that every bit of information takes time and energy to transfer, to create and to observe. Since one cannot create something from nothing, we show that, anything to be created needs a huge amount of energy and requires a great deal of entropy to make it happen! My question is that, can we afford it?
Francis T. S. Yu received his B.S.E.E. degree from Mapua Institute of Technology, Manila, Philippines, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan.
During the period from 1958 to 1965, he was a teaching fellow, an instructor, and a lecturer in the Electrical Engineering Department at the University of Michigan, and a research associate with the Communication Sciences Laboratory at the same University. From 1966 to 1980 he was on the faculty of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Wayne State University. He was a Visiting Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Michigan from 1978-1979. In 1980 he became a Professor in the Electrical Engineering Department at The Pennsylvania State University. He has been a consultant to several industrial and government laboratories. He is an active researcher in the fields of optical signal processing, holography, optics and information theory, and optical computing. He has published over 300 refereed papers in these areas. He is a recipient of the 1983 Faculty Scholar Medal for Outstanding Achievement in Physical Sciences and Engineering, a recipient of the 1984 Outstanding Researcher in the College of Engineering, was named Evan Pugh Professor of Electrical Engineering in 1985 at Penn State, a recipient of the 1993 Premier Research Award from the Penn State Engineering Society, was named Honorary Professor in Nankai University in 1995, the co-recipient of the 1998 IEEE Donald G. Fink Prize Paper Award, named Honorary Professor in National Chiao Tung University Taiwan in 2004, the recipients of the 2004 SPIE Dennis Gabor Award, and the 2017 OSA Emmet N. Leith Medal. Dr. Yu retired from Penn State University in 2004.
He is the author and co-author of ten books entitled: (1) Introduction to Diffraction, Information Processing and Holography (translated in Russian), (2) Optics and Information Theory, (3) Optical Information Processing (translated in Chinese), (4) White-Light Optical Signal Processing, (5) Principles of Optical Engineering (with I. C. Khoo) (translated in Chinese), (6) Optical Signal Processing, Computing, and Neural Networks (with S. Jutamulia) (translated in Chinese and Japanese), (7) Introduction to Optical Engineering (with X. Yang) ( translated Korean), (8) Entropy and Information Optics (being translated in Chinese) (9) Introduction to Information Optics (with S. Jutamulia and S. Yin), (10) Coherent Photonics, (with A. Larkin in Russian), (11) Neural Networks and Education: The Art of Learning, (translated in Chinese, Spanish and Russian), (12) Neural Stickman: The Art of …(translated in Chinese, Spanish and Russian). And he also has contributed several invited chapters in various monographs and books. He has co-edited four books entitled: (1) Optical Storage and Retrieval (with S. Jutamulia), (2) Optical Pattern Recognition (with S. Jutamulia), (3) Photorefractive Optics (with S. Yin), and (4) Fiber Sensors (with S. Yin). He has also c-edited two volumes of SPIE Milestone Series; Optical Pattern recognition (with S. Yin) and Coherent Optical Processing (with S. Yin). And Chairs/Editors (with R. Guo and S. Yin) over twenty five volumes of SPIE Proceedings on Photorefractive Fiber and Crystal Devices: Materials, Optical Properties, and Applications.
Dr. Yu is a life-fellow of IEEE and fellow of OSA, SPIE, and PSC.