The Connection Between Information Theory and Criminal Charges
You and your friend have been talking on the phone for days now you need to get some information from him. Naturally, you both want the information now and not later. However, you both could not remember your information so had to call each other later and ask him or her about the number he or she is calling. Here are some tips to remember in order to get the information you need from a cell phone owner.
Ask the caller a challenging question such as; What do you think is your real name? This way you can put some physical information to the question and also have a new information. This new information is informational equivalent of what you gave your friend which is your name. In the previous example, you asked your friend; What do you think is your real name? To get the informational equivalent, you would have to ask him or her; What is your last name?
The information theory states that the meaning of every word depends on its content. That means if you give someone a sentence containing three words; one of which is the unknown word, then the meaning of the other two words is unknown. These unknown words are the causal inputs to your cognitive system and these must be matched with your experiential awareness or knowledge to get the meaning. To match these causal inputs with your knowledge, you must use the words you are giving as well as the ones you know to make sentences from them.
However, this information theory will not work well in most cases. Since many legal cases end up with plea bargains, judges will usually deny the request for a trial because they are not bound by the informational theory. This means that in order to convict someone of a criminal charge, you must use an analytical approach which is different from the information argument. This is the reason why most legal juries rarely find guilty people who are accused of crimes.
The second alternative to convicting a person of a criminal charge using information presented by means of semiotics is Pragmatics. Proponents of this conviction argue that using semiotics in court is a violation of the rights of a defendant to a fair trial. If a legal case ends up in a miscarriage of justice due to the inability to prove a defendant’s guilt, then the blame must be laid at the feet of the information presented by the prosecution. In this instance, a guilty plea may be justified.
Many legal experts also believe that applying knowledge from facts to establish guilt is a more reasonable way of resolving a case than resorting to semiotics. Many people also believe that it is unwise to apply information theory to criminal cases. They prefer to use their common sense and experience in coming up with a verdict. On the other hand, there are also many people who believe that criminal cases should be judged on the strength of the evidence presented against the suspects. No matter what the case, applying information theory to convict a suspect is usually unwise since the process of proving a criminal case with overwhelming evidence usually leads to a conviction.