Archive for January, 2011

Alan M. Turing documentary teaser

Posted in General on January 28th, 2011 by Hector Zenil – Be the first to comment

Randomness Through Computation

Posted in General on January 18th, 2011 by Hector Zenil – 2 Comments
The official announcement of the book I edited has been released:

Some Answers, More Questions
edited by Hector Zenil
450pp (approx.)
ISBN: 978-981-4327-74-9

The book will be available next month (February 2011) from Amazon, Borders and other large online bookstores, as well as on the publisher’s (World Scientific and Imperial College Press) websites.

The volume, which title should be understood as “(Explaining) Randomness Through Computation” consists of a set of chapters written by leading scholars, most of them founders of their fields. It explores the connections of Randomness to other areas of scientific knowledge, especially its fruitful relationship to Computability and Complexity Theory, and also to areas such as Probability, Statistics, Information Theory, Biology, Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Learning Theory and Artificial Intelligence. The contributors cover these topics without neglecting important philosophical dimensions, sometimes going beyond the purely technical to formulate age old questions relating to matters such as determinism and free will. The book will be a great source for learning the basics, applications and the state of the art of the field, accounted by the very creators of the fields, each with original ideas and their idiosyncratic point of view. Using a question and answer format, they share their visions from their several distinctive vantage points.

Contents:

Is Randomness Necessary? (R Graham)
Probability is a Lot of Logic at Once: If You Don’t Know Which One to Pick, Get’em All (T Toffoli)
Statistical Testing of Randomness: New and Old Procedures (A L Rukhin)
Scatter and Regularity Imply Benford’s Law… and More (N Gauvrit & J-P Delahaye)
Some Bridging Results and Challenges in Classical, Quantum and Computational Randomness (G Longo et al.)
Metaphysics, Metamathematics and Metabiology (G Chaitin)
Uncertainty in Physics and Computation (M A Stay)
Indeterminism and Randomness Through Physics (K Svozil)
The Martin-Löf-Chaitin Thesis: The Identification by Recursion Theory of the Mathematical Notion of Random Sequence (J-P Delahaye)
The Road to Intrinsic Randomness (S Wolfram)
Algorithmic Probability – Its Discovery – Its Properties and Application to Strong AI (R J Solomonoff)
Algorithmic Randomness as Foundation of Inductive Reasoning and Artificial Intelligence (M Hutter)
Randomness, Occam’s Razor, AI, Creativity and Digital Physics (J Schmidhuber)
Randomness Everywhere: My Path to Algorithmic Information Theory (C S Calude)
The Impact of Algorithmic Information Theory on Our Current Views on Complexity, Randomness, Information and Prediction(P Gács)
Randomness, Computability and Information (J S Miller)
Studying Randomness Through Computation (A Nies)
Computability, Algorithmic Randomness and Complexity (R G Downey)
Is Randomness Native to Computer Science? Ten Years After (M Ferbus-Zanda & S Grigorieff)
Randomness as Circuit Complexity (and the Connection to Pseudorandomness) (E Allender)
Randomness: A Tool for Constructing and Analyzing Computer Programs (A Kucera)
Connecting Randomness to Computation (M Li)
From Error-correcting Codes to Algorithmic Information Theory (L Staiger)
Randomness in Algorithms (O Watanabe)
Panel Discussion Transcription (University of Vermont, Burlington, 2007): Is the Universe Random? (C S Calude, J Casti, G Chaitin, P Davies, K Svozil, S Wolfram)
Panel Discussion Transcription (University of Indiana Bloomington, 2008): What is Computation? (How) Does Nature Compute? (C S Calude, G Chaitin, G Csicsery, E Fredkin, T Leggett, R de Ruyter, T Toffoli, S Wolfram)

An ordering guide can be found here. You can get your copy at a good discount from the publisher bookstore. Contact me and I may be able to provide you with a discount code before 20 February, 2011. If you can and find the book interesting, please recommend it to your library and colleagues, this will allow me and other authors and editors to keep projects going, such as my next book project Computation in Nature & the Nature of Computation.

Update: I have been told by WSPC that the book is one of the top sellers this year at a rate of about 2-3 books per day during the first 4 months (which is high for a technical book). It has also made it into several occasions into the top 100 books of information theory in Amazon and the used version are already way more expensive than the new one.