The Emperor's New Mind: Concerning Computers, Minds, and the Laws of PhysicsFor decades, proponents of artificial intelligence have argued that computers will soon be doing everything that a human mind can do. Admittedly, computers now play chess at the grandmaster level, but do they understand the game as we do? Can a computer eventually do everything a human mind can do? In this absorbing and frequently contentious book, Roger Penroseeminent physicist and winner, with Stephen Hawking, of the prestigious Wolf prizeputs forward his view that there are some facets of human thinking that can never be emulated by a machine. Penrose examines what physics and mathematics can tell us about how the mind works, what they can't, and what we need to know to understand the physical processes of consciousness. He is among a growing number of physicists who think Einstein wasn't being stubborn when he said his "little finger" told him that quantum mechanics is incomplete, and he concludes that laws even deeper than quantum mechanics are essential for the operation of a mind. To support this contention, Penrose takes the reader on a dazzling tour that covers such topics as complex numbers, Turing machines, complexity theory, quantum mechanics, formal systems, Godel undecidability, phase spaces, Hilbert spaces, black holes, white holes, Hawking radiation, entropy, quasicrystals, the structure of the brain, and scores of other subjects. The Emperor's New Mind will appeal to anyone with a serious interest in modern physics and its relation to philosophical issues, as well as to physicists, mathematicians, philosophers and those on either side of the AI debate. 
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LibraryThing Review
User Review  antao  www.librarything.comPenrose certainly has a generous idea of his readers' mathematical ability. It's a kind of running joke among Penrosefans: he always starts his books by saying you'll find it tough going if you haven ... Read full review
LibraryThing Review
User Review  RandyStafford  LibraryThingMy reactions upon reading this book in 1991. This was a long, grueling read. I won't say I clearly understood (or even dimly understood) all this book. At times my eyes glazed over, and my ... Read full review
Contents
Prologue  1 
1 CAN A COMPUTER HAVE A MIND?  3 
2 ALGORITHMS AND TURING MACHINES  40 
3 MATHEMATICS AND REALITY  98 
4 TRUTH PROOF AND INSIGHT  129 
5 THE CLASSICAL WORLD  193 
6 QUANTUM MAGIC AND QUANTUM MYSTERY  291 
7 COSMOLOGY AND THE ARROW OF TIME  391 
8 IN SEARCH OF QUANTUM GRAVITY  450 
9 REAL BRAINS AND MODEL BRAINS  483 
10 WHERE LIES THE PHYSICS OF MIND?  523 
Epilogue  583 
584  
596  
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Common terms and phrases
according actually algorithm amplitude Argand plane argument atoms behaviour big bang binary black hole brain calculation Chapter classical complex numbers complicated concept consciousness consider cortex deﬁned deﬁnite described device difﬁculties digits direction effect Einstein’s electron energy entropy equations Euclidean example fact ﬁgure ﬁnal ﬁnd ﬁnding ﬁnite ﬁrst ﬁxed formal system geometry Hamiltonian Hilbert Hilbert space idea inﬁnite kind large number light cone linear superposition low entropy Mandelbrot set mathematician Maxwell’s measurement momentum motion natural numbers neuron Newton’s Newtonian normally operation particle particular Penrose perhaps phase space photon physical picture position precise principle probability problem procedure propositions quantum gravity quantum mechanics quantum theory question real numbers recursively referred region Riemann sphere second law seems sense signiﬁcant simply slits space—time special relativity speciﬁc spin statevector tape theorem things Turing machine Turing test universe vector viewpoint wavefunction WEYL worldlines