Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden BraidDouglas Hofstadter’s book is concerned directly with the nature of “maps” or links between formal systems. However, according to Hofstadter, the formal system that underlies all mental activity transcends the system that supports it. If life can grow out of the formal chemical substrate of the cell, if consciousness can emerge out of a formal system of firing neurons, then so too will computers attain human intelligence. Gödel Escher and Bach is a wonderful exploration of fascinating ideas at the heart of cognitive science: meaning, reduction, recursion, and much more. 
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User Review  KirkLowery  LibraryThingHere's where I first learned about formal linguistic systems, which forever changed the course of my intellectual pursuits. Worth read and rereading. Read full review
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User Review  kiparsky  LibraryThingThis is probably one of the most consistently difficult and enlightening books I've ever come across. Completely wonderful  it took me three tries over five years to finish it the first time, and ... Read full review
Contents
Cretan Labyrinth  119 
The structure of the Dialogue Little Harmonic Labyrinth  129 
Recursive Transition Networks for ORNATE NOUN and FANCY NOUN  132 
Copyright  
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Common terms and phrases
Achilles answer Anteater axiom Bach Bach's BlooP brain Buddhanature called cell Chapter chess ChurchTuring Thesis complex concepts Crab Canon decision procedure derivation Dialogue djinn enzyme Epimenides paradox example fact FANCY NOUN fantasy FIGURE FlooP formal system formula fugue Genie geometry Godel Godel number Godel's Theorem happens human idea infinite inside instance intelligence interpretation isomorphism kind koan language look M. C. Escher machine mathematicians mathematics meaning mind MlUsystem natural numbers neurons notion number theory paradox perhaps piece play pqsystem prime problem proof Propositional Calculus proteins question reasoning record player recursive rules of inference seems sense sentence SHRDLU simple sounds statement of number Strange Loops string structure suppose symbols tell theme things thought tion Tortoise translation triggering true typographical variable wellformed wellformed formulas words Zeno