Entropy, information and Omphalos cosmology Roger Penrose, in The Road to Reality, discusses the Second Law of Thermodynamics and the Universe’s entropy. He floats (section 27.13) an order-of-order-of magnitude argument that the entropy of our Universe has increased from mighty big (10^10^88) to humungous (10^10^101) from the time of decoupling to the present, as its available degrees of gravitational freedom (that were dormant in its initial state) are taken up. He seems to suggest that on a Universe-wide scale, the second law rules because of gravity. He also makes the point that there is plenty of scope for a further increase of entropy to monstrously vast (10^10^123) if degrees of gravitational freedom were to become fully taken up. Now there is a general inverse relationship between entropy and the rather difficult-to-specify concept of “information content”. The larger the entropy, the less the “information content”. A high-entropy jumbled string of 0's and 1's contains less information than the same-length sentence of ordered ASCII code. Folk who deal with this concept sometimes quantify information as the amount needed to specify the system, or to create it. The Second Law applied on the largest scale implies that the information content of the Universe as a whole (if such a “whole” exists) is decreasing as it evolves. Cosmologists may remember Philip Gosse, who in 1857 argued in Omphalos that the world (and the Universe?) was created only a few thousand years ago (say in 4004 B.C.); complete with all that was needed for it to function just as we find it does. According to Gosse the Universe was created with all the fossils needed to keep palaeontologists employed and alluvial gold deposits ready to be mined in California. Young-Earth theologists hold similar views to this day. It might be argued that the easiest Universe for a Creator to make is one that needs the least amount of information to specify it. Global operation of the second law would then ensure that this is a fully evolved Universe. The later you make it, the easier it gets! Perhaps Philip Gosse got the age of the Universe wrong, and it is only a nanosecond old. Or perhaps the Creator is Lazy and hasn’t made it yet. Is there evidence that the second law operates on a Universe-wide scale, or is it everywhere a local statistical phenomenon?