"GRAVITATIONAL MASS" of information? Academic Article uri icon


  • We hypothesize possible new types of forces that would be the result of new types of interactions, static and a slow transient, between objects with related information contents (pattern). Such mechanism could make material composition dependence claimed by Fishbach, et al. in Eotvos type experiments plausible. We carried out experiments by using a high-resolution scale with the following memories: USB-2 flash drives (1-16GB), DVD and CD disks to determine if such an interaction exist/detectable with a scale resolution of 10 microgram with these test objects. We applied zero information, white noise and 1/ f noise type data. Due to the non-reproducible changes of static weight of these memories after changing the information in them, we have not been able to clarify the existence of a reproducible static force between the memory and its environment even though the variations of static weight could possibly be the manifestation of the new type of interaction with changing environment. Interaction between two memories containing the same information was not detected at the given weight resolution. The hypothesis of slow transient interaction is more in line with the observations provided the observed effects are not artifacts. Writing or deleting the information in any of these devices causes peculiar negative weight transients, up to milligrams (mass fraction around 105), which is followed by various types of relaxation processes. These relaxations have significantly different dynamics compared to transients observed during cooling after stationary external heating. Interestingly, a USB-1 MP3 player has also developed comparable transient mass loss during playing music, even though its information content was not changed, and its power dissipation and warming-up was much less than that of the USB-2 flash drives. A classical interpretation of the negative weight transients could be absorbed water in hygroscopic components, though comparison of relaxation time constants with air humidity data does not support an obvious explanation. Another classical interpretation with certain contribution is the lifting Bernoulli force caused by the circulation due to convection of the warm air. However, in this case all observed time constants with a device should have been the same unless some hidden parameter causes the observed variations. Thus further studies are warranted to clarify if there is indeed a new force, which is showing up as negative mass at weight measurement when high-density structural information is changed or read out (measured). We estimate that, if the information-based interaction is real, the weight of bodies could be reduced and floating engines could be achieved with several orders of magnitude greater data handling capacities than today's values at the same mass.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 2.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Kish, L. B.

citation count

  • 8

complete list of authors

  • Kish, LB

publication date

  • December 2007