"Information Theory: Representing information as symbolic states and exchanging state information between participants." #readingToday
Representing information as symbolic states, and exchanging state information between participants, is the simplest of ideas, but it proves also to be the basic unifying idea to understand information systems. Claude Shannon referred to this as a communications channel, and studied in in depth. The details of his work were published under the title The Mathematical Theory Of Communication in 1949. Today it is also called Information Theory.
Information theory begins with the representation, interpretation and transmission of patterns of data, i.e. patterns made up of different kinds of 'things'. We attach meanings to these patterns and call the result information. Patterns of data are mainly of interest when they are transmitted from a source to a receiver.
In Search of Certainty, Mark Burgess, 2013