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The Emperor's New Mind: Concerning Computers, Minds, and the Laws of Physics: Concerning Computers, Minds and the Laws of Physics (Popular Science)

The Emperor's New Mind: Concerning Computers, Minds, and the Laws of Physics: Concerning Computers, Minds and the Laws of Physics (Popular Science) [Kindle Edition]

Roger Penrose , Martin Gardner
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Some love it, some hate it, but The Emperor's New Mind, physicist Roger Penrose's 1989 treatise attacking the foundations of strong artificial intelligence, is crucial for anyone interested in the history of thinking about AI and consciousness. Part survey of modern physics, part exploration of the philosophy of mind, the book is not for casual readers--though it's not overly technical, it rarely pauses to let the reader catch a breath. The overview of relativity and quantum theory, written by a master, is priceless and uncontroversial. The exploration of consciousness and AI, though, is generally considered as resting on shakier ground.

Penrose claims that there is an intimate, perhaps unknowable relation between quantum effects and our thinking, and ultimately derives his anti-AI stance from his proposition that some, if not all, of our thinking is non-algorithmic. Of course, these days we believe that there are other avenues to AI than traditional algorithmic programming; while he has been accused of setting up straw robots to knock down, this accusation is unfair. Little was then known about the power of neural networks and behavior-based robotics to simulate (and, some would say, produce) intelligent problem-solving behavior. Whether these tools will lead to strong AI is ultimately a question of belief, not proof, and The Emperor's New Mind offers powerful arguments useful to believer and nonbeliever alike. --Rob Lightner


perhaps the most engaging and creative tour of modern physics that has ever been written Sunday Times


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4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Don't be fooled by kitsch materialists 24. März 2000
Von Ein Kunde
First, what this book is not: It is not "creation science" doesn't address evolution...or the existence of God...or existence of the human soul. In other words, it is NOT special pleading against modern science by someone with a religious agenda. What it IS rather, is a solid study of cognition, theories of artificial intelligence, and the enduring problem of the nature of human consciousness by one of the world's top physicists (a professed materialist by the way, not a religious believer), who together with Stephen Hawking developed the astrophysics of "black holes" in the '60's. What Penrose suggests here (a theory he expands on in his subsequent "Shadows of the Mind"), is that science, and specifically physics, is inadequate now, and more importantly will always be inadequate, to describe the nature of human intelligence, cognition, and consciousness--a thesis similar to the showing of Godel's 1931 Theorem that certain fundamental axioms of mathematics were incapable of proof within any mathematical system. In other words, Penrose suggests that there are elemental restrictions within science itself limiting our understanding of our own mental processes, which concomitantly limit the possibilities for development of artificial intelligence. And that obviously doesn't sit well with those for whom naturalistic science is itself a kind of "religion," as some of the dismissive reviews on this page show. My advice: just ignore them and read this book, and well as its successor, "Shadows of the Mind." It's a challenging read and not for intellectual lightweights, but it will richly reward those with the patience to make it through.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Superb 3. September 1998
Von Ein Kunde
There are two central themes to this book - first, a rejection of strong AI as a theory of consciousness, and second, the conjecture that the failure is related to the philosophical problems of quantum theory.
The first is very lucidly argued and does NOT, in the words of one frustrated (but clearly lazy) reviewer rely on some wishy-washy claim that the real world is too complicated for a computer to "understand". Nor has it anything to do with an appreciation of beauty.
Instead, it relies of Godel's theorem, which states that propositions can be true but non-algorithmic (non-provable by algorithm). Penrose claims that these same truths can nonetheless be grasped (and understood to be true) by human minds.
The second theme - the relationship of the failure of AI to quantum theory - is conjectural but fascinating.
I urge people to make the effort to read this book, by one of the great mathematical physicists of the post-war era.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Want to go fishing for non-algorithmic thought? 18. Mai 2000
Penrose is inviting the reader to a weekend fishing expedition. He hopes to catch a whopper and get a group snapshot -- refutation of hard AI. The bait he offers is rather strange: quasicrystaline analogy of dendritic spine growth and contraction; a Platonic, timeless world of mathematical truth; something he calls CQG (Correct Quantum Gravity) with its one graviton criterion and two quantum processes he calls U and R. If you swallow this strange bait then you are hooked and don't blame anyone else when you wake up sizzling in frying pan oil.
On the plus side Penrose throws caution to the wind in trying to pin down the ever elusive human consciousness. He constructs for the reader a mental mirror in which to view the Tower of Babel world of Artificial Intelligence. However, in trying to use the child's view metaphor positively he makes the mistake of rattling off a string of "whys" that can never be answered. Setting up the mind-body dichotomy in any form presents only a chicken-egg question. If consciousness is located in the reticular formation of the brain, why there? As to memory -- just because the sound of music can be stored on magnetic tape, the sounds replayed are only virtual or copycat sound from the real, live orchestra. The brain may be merely a recording device and consciousness only a playback of this recording.
Penrose is very puzzled and perplexed that his geometrically formulated ideas don't translate well into words. Penrose laments that consciousness may not possess the active skills (free will) and is left with merely a spectator role. His speculations lead the reader into the quantum vacuum foam, to a head full of constantly emerging sub-quantum singularities or submicro-wormholes, framing human consciousness as a model for the mind of a deity. Amen.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Penrose is heading in the right direction 17. Juli 1998
Von Ein Kunde
This is a book of insights. Penrose is touching the edge of the truth about the human mind but just missed it. I am now reading another book that has a section called "Emperor Penrose's Mind". In my opinion, that book is truly revolutionary in helping us understand the nature of reality and of the human mind. The author suggests that the square root of -1 is the psy-factor in laws of quantum mechanics and theories of relativity. He also shows why John Searle, Douglas Hofstdater and Denial Dennett all committed the Fallacy of Unity Projection. the author agrees with Penrose that quantum mechanics is a possible key to the mystery of the mind, and the mind is more fundamental than material. The most fascinating part is that all these ideas are demonstrated in sci-fi like adventure stories (thought experiments) in virtual reality. The title of the book is, Get Real: A Philosophical Adventure in Virtual Reality, by Philip Zhai.
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Die neuesten Kundenrezensionen
5.0 von 5 Sternen must read
being almost TOTALLY antithetic to penrose's views (regarding consciousness) i nevertheless deeply enjoy his writings. Lesen Sie weiter...
Vor 11 Monaten von Oetterli Rene veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen terrificly written journey through mathematics and science
i do not share penrose's point of view in the debate about artificial intelligence at all. still i deeply enjoyed reading this book, as well as his sequel "shadows of the... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 24. August 2010 veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen Brave Postulations!
I can't say enough for this book. Whether or not you agree with Penrose's idea that science will never be enough to grasp human consciousness or not, this book is a fascinating... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 9. Juni 2000 von "cosmos317"
5.0 von 5 Sternen Well worth the read
I do not believe that previous reviewers are at all correct when calling this book a "cult book" or attempting to completely refute the conclusion of this book. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 5. April 2000 veröffentlicht
1.0 von 5 Sternen Absolute Zero
From "Cold Numbers Unmake the Quantum Mind," as reported by Charles Seife in SCIENCE for February 4, 2000, Volume 287, on page 791. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 20. Februar 2000 veröffentlicht
1.0 von 5 Sternen A VERY BORING BOOK
its a very very boring wrting style and has no material except of science history, if any body is looking for a hisory book.. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 5. Februar 2000 von Ahmed Morsi
4.0 von 5 Sternen A very interesting speculation about the mind-body problem
Reading the book it is not clear wether you have to be an expert of quantum mechanics or you can know nothing about it and get a chance to learn. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 1. Dezember 1999 veröffentlicht
1.0 von 5 Sternen Fascinating work with a fatal flaw
Roger Penrose sets out to refute the claims of those researchers in artificial intelligence and cognitive neuroscience who claim that the mind is a product of algorithmic... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 7. November 1999 von David Gillies
5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent refutation of sloppyy-sci person-as-machine thesis
Although no doubt dated by the developments in neuroscience over the past 10 years, this book is still well worth reading. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 29. Oktober 1999 veröffentlicht
1.0 von 5 Sternen Not enough concrete stuff. Too speculative.
Couldn't finish the book. It was too whimsical to take seriously. Generally, it simply skipped all the fantastic reality there is to modern physics, and substituted speculation.
Am 29. Oktober 1999 veröffentlicht
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