IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Autocatalysis, Information and Coding


  • Peter R. Wills


Autocatalytic self-construction in macromolecular systems requires the existence of a reflexive relationship between structural components and the functional operations they perform to synthesize themselves. The possibility of reflexivity depends on formal features of the catalytic structure-function relationship, that is, the embedding of catalytic functions in the space of polymeric structures. Reflexivity is a formal property of some genetic sequences. These may serve as the basis for the evolution of coding as a result of autocatalytic self-organisation in a population of assignment catalysts. Autocatalytic selection is a mechanism whereby matter becomes differentiated in primitive biochemical systems. In the case of coding self-organisation it corresponds to the creation of symbolic information.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter R. Wills, 2000. "Autocatalysis, Information and Coding," Working Papers 00-01-003, Santa Fe Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:wop:safiwp:00-01-003

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. M. E. J. Newman & D. J. Watts, 1999. "Scaling and Percolation in the Small-World Network Model," Working Papers 99-05-034, Santa Fe Institute.
    2. Cristopher Moore & M. E. J. Newman, 2000. "Epidemics and Percolation in Small-World Networks," Working Papers 00-01-002, Santa Fe Institute.
    3. A. Barrat & M. Weigt, 2000. "On the properties of small-world network models," The European Physical Journal B: Condensed Matter and Complex Systems, Springer;EDP Sciences, vol. 13(3), pages 547-560, February.
    4. E. Roy Weintraub, 1992. "Introduction," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 24(5), pages 3-12, Supplemen.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Autocatalysis; self-construction; coding; reflexivity; information.;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wop:safiwp:00-01-003. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Thomas Krichel). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.