Information and the Nature of Reality
From Physics to Metaphysics
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Many scientists regard mass and energy as the primary currency of nature. In recent years, however, the concept of information has gained importance. Why? In this book, eminent scientists, philosophers and theologians chart various aspects of information, from quantum information to biological and digital information, in order to understand how nature works. Beginning with a historical treatment of the topic, the book also examines physical and biological approaches to information, and its philosophical, theological and ethical implications.Read more
- Proposes new views of fundamental concepts in science regarding mass, energy and information, to benefit those working on the philosophical implications of the information revolution
- Charts various aspects of information, from historical investigations to contemporary ideas
- Explores the philosophical, theological and ethical implications of approaches to information
Reviews & endorsements
“This is the anthology we have been waiting for … seminal papers deal with matter through the history of Greek thought, seventeenth-century materialism and twentieth-century dematerialism, the need for a new scientific world view in the light of the quantum nature of the universe, and the storage and transmission of information in biological systems with the new knowledge of their genomes and development … Philosophers, theologians and scientists all have their say, wrestling with the theme of God as the ultimate informational and structuring principle in the universe.”
Professor Sir Brian Heap, St Edmund’s College, President, European Academies Science Advisory Board, German Academy of SciencesSee more reviews
"... an illustrious cast of senior academics with backgrounds ranging from theoretical physics, through molecular biology, to philosophy and theology."
Bogdan Hoanca, Optics and Photonics News
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- Date Published: December 2010
- format: Adobe eBook Reader
- isbn: 9780511855115
- contains: 5 b/w illus.
- availability: This ISBN is for an eBook version which is distributed on our behalf by a third party.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction: does information matter?
Paul Davies and Niels Henrik Gregersen
Part I. History:
2. From matter to materialism … and (almost) back Ernan McMullin
3. Unsolved dilemmas: the concept of matter in the history of philosophy and in contemporary physics Philip Clayton
Part II. Physics:
4. Universe from bit Paul Davies
5. The computational universe Seth Lloyd
6. Minds and values in the quantum universe Henry Pierce Stapp
Part III. Biology:
7. The concept of information in biology John Maynard Smith
8. Levels of information: Shannon-Bolzmann-Darwin Terrence W. Deacon
9. Information and communication in living matter Bernd-Olaf Küppers
10. Semiotic freedom: an emerging force Jesper Hoffmeyer
11. Care on earth: generating informed concern Holmes Rolston
Part IV. Philosophy and Theology:
12. The sciences of complexity - a new theological resource? Arthur Peacocke
13. God as the ultimate informational principle Keith Ward
14. Information, theology and the universe John F. Haught
15. God, matter, and information: towards a Stoicizing Logos christology Niels Henrik Gregersen
16. What is the 'spiritual body'? Michael Welker
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