Artificial life: a report from the frontier where computers meet biology

Front Cover
Vintage Books, 1992 - Computers - 390 pages
1 Review
This enthralling book alerts us to nothing less than the existence of new varieties of life. Some of these species can move and eat, see, reproduce, and die. Some behave like birds or ants. One such life form may turn out to be our best weapon in the war against AIDS.

What these species have in common is that they exist inside computers, their DNA is digital, and they have come into being not through God's agency but through the efforts of a generation of scientists who seek to create life in silico.

But even as it introduces us to these brilliant heretics and unravels the intricacies of their work. Artificial Life examines its subject's dizzying philosophical implications: Is a self-replicating computer program any less alive than a flu virus? Are carbon-and-water-based entities merely part of the continuum of living things? And is it possible that one day "a-life" will look back at human beings and dismiss us as an evolutionary way station -- or, worse still, a dead end?

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

The creatures cruise silently skimming the surface of their world
3
THE PROMISED LAND
11
PLAYING BY THE RULES
47
Copyright

11 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1992)

Steven Levy is a senior editor for "Newsweek." For ten years he wrote the "Iconoclast" column for "MacWorld" magazine. His previous books include "Hackers" & "Artificial Life.

Bibliographic information