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The large, the small and the human mind

  1. Aug 7, 2004 #1
    This book of Penrose is short, so you can read it in a whole day (as I did)
    I first read "The emperor's new mind", and there's a continuation called "Shadows of the mind", but I have not read this, but the third part that carries the title of the thread
    I think that is a bit deceiving the book, as there's not essentially nothing new that you can't find in The emperor's. There are a lot of drawings that appeared in The Emperor's and also appear here. It's a bit repetitive. The ideas are basically the same: that the mind is not computable, that quantum mechanics is imcomplete, blah, blah, blah. The book is divided in :
    1)a basic review of special and general relativity
    2)a basic review of quanutm mechanics
    3)His ideas about the mind as a consequence of a process called Orchestrated Objective reduction
    4) Three essays by Abner Shimony, Stephen Hawking and Nancy Cartwright critisizing the ideas of Penrose
    6) Penrose defending its position against the mentioned critiques
    7)Appendices commenting the Goodstein theorem, and proposing an experiment to test if OOR is really something that happens

    From the review of relativity I will highlight his proposal called Weyl's curvature hypothesis: According to it, the Weyl curvature of the universe was very near to zero just after Big Bang
    Penrose's also shows his repulse to inflationary cosmology
    The chapter of quantum mechanics contains an experiment called Elitzur-Vaidman bomb testing, taht I sincerely didn't understood, but will give a new reading
    The third chapter exposes his own theory. He thinks taht inside microtubules in the brain there are occuring coherent macroscopic processes. In fact the microtubules are made of a protein called tubulin, and if he says, the microtubules are isolated by a sheet of ordered water, each of the tubulins can also be in a superposition of states, making each of the microtubules a kind of miniature cellular automaton
    All the book is full of details that show the great Platonism of Sir Roger
    Interesting if you have not read the other two
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2004
  2. jcsd
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