I was just talkin with mates about what't'd take to identify alien life totally different from our current conceptions, how it seems like the start would be broadening our understanding of intelligence, understanding the octopus
Yep, so this is basically Karl Friston's idea. I think intelligence is better defined by optimization of futures (cf forking paths), minimization of prediction error, but informationally, this looks a lot like maintaining homeostasis, maintaining boundaries. If you're interested, I'd read up on Friston's ideas about markov blanketsCan we think of intelligence as matters ability to impose order onto itself? Artificial organization, going against the currents of equilibrium/disorganization?