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When I use the word "merge", I think of it as creating a new object with properties combined from several individual objects.

Does "merge" then also imply these individual objects no longer exist after they have formed the new singular object?

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    It's unclear what you're asking, because everything depends on what sort of "individual existence" the "merged" things had in the first place. I imagine all those people of whom it's been said that "they merged into the crowd" would be surprised if they were told they no longer existed afterwards. – FumbleFingers Mar 19 '14 at 13:30
  • That made my laugh, but I suppose you are right. I had to rewrite my question a couple of times because of its vague nature. This was the best I could formulate it. @dalarcop's answer and your comment suggest that "merge" does not always imply a destruction of the objects being merged. – Marc Dingena Mar 19 '14 at 13:44
  • Well, our own "experts" seem to agree that the Law of Conservation of Information is just so much technobabble put forward by [not-so-]Intelligent Design proponents, which creates a problem if you consider making an "exact molecular copy" of a human being (teleportation of the future?). Do we have to destroy the original? Would it/he just vanish anyway? Or simply cease to be "alive"? What about his "soul"? – FumbleFingers Mar 19 '14 at 14:11
  • Though digressing, certainly an interesting topic that I have heard and thought about before. Particularly how one's consciousness would be preserved in either copy of the human. – Marc Dingena Mar 19 '14 at 15:48
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It will depend on the context.

  • If you merge two glasses of water - the individuals are destroyed - and 1 remains.

  • If you merge 2 arrays in computer memory - the individuals are not necessarily destroyed. (depends on implementation) - and they and the whole remains.

  • If you merge 2 packs of cards - open to interpretation.

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Just as a further element of tought: Merging is a very active part of financial business which, in plain words, consist in putting together two or more firms to form a new single one. In that case people, money, property and experiences merge to create a new, hopefully more powerful, entity. Demerger also exit, that is the opposite process. To address your question, in this specific case, individual parts still exist after the merger and can be easily recognized but with time the new entity will prevail.

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