It has always been a puzzle for me how a certain type of information can be discarded from a system when it is unused. Say, for example, the Internet Protocol (IP) specification states that packets whose version is neither 4 nor 6 are 'discarded'. Since the packets' representation is a signal of some sort, how is this information 'discarded'? Where does it go? Is it dissipated as heat or something else?
(I don't know how to tag this, or whether it's in the right section so excuse me if I'm wrong here)