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The Fabric of Reality: Towards a Theory of Everything (Penguin Science) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I am not a trained scientist, simple a well informed non-specialist with an interest in these areas, and I would have to say that this is the best written book of its type I have come across. It deals with extremely deep concepts across an enormous range of different but related areas of study, and I found myself at times almost shocked at the superb skill with which the author is able to deliver new concepts and arguments so cleanly and simply. The chapter that deals with quantum theory and the many-worlds hypothesis alone stands out as a masterpiece of elegance and simplicity when compared with many other works that attempt to deal with this issue.
Rather than delighting and wallowing in the apparent paradoxes that quantum theory implies for the macroscopic world (as so many authors do), Deutsch simply points out that irrespective of our inability to understand and resolve those paradoxes, the conclusions at least are clear and unarguable, and this is where he starts the real work of philosophical integration that is the books theme.
The rate at which new ideas in this book are delivered can leave one stunned at times, and I must recommend this book without any hesitation at all.
The author seems to subscribe to most (but not all) of Karl Popper's philosophy of physics written in "The Logic of Scientific Discovery" and its "The Postscript." I appreciate that the author is trying to show his innovative idea for the understanding of the Fabric of Reality, but his idea is still very plastic and difficult to grasp a concrete image of it, at least for me. And, because of my being a non-materialist, my I say that he seems to be a typical reductionist materialist.
I would like to mention only a few points regarding the quantum multiverse, which is only one of the author's "four strands" which comprise the fabric of reality:
(1) The author spends many pages to criticize modern Idealism in defense of Realism. Karl Popper also criticized modern Idealism, referring to Dr. Samuel Johnson's alleged refutation (by kicking a rock) of Berkeley's Idealism. Dr. Johnson's name appears many times in the present book, which implies the author's uncomfortableness with the Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics. The author is an advocate of the Many-Worlds Interpretation or the idea of quantum multiverse. Karl Popper critically refers to Heisenberg's crying of "objective reality has evaporated" due to the advent of quantum mechanics.
(2) So Popper tried to exorcise "the Observer" from quantum mechanics (see Popper's "Quantum Theory and the Schism in Physics"). The present author Deutsch seems to solve this Observer problem accepting the idea of quantum multiverse, which includes the Observer in the quantum system.Read more ›
The particular theories Deutsch proposes in these subjects are: the parallel universes or many worlds interpretation; Karl Popper's hypothetico-deductive model; Charles Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection, specifically in the gene-centric interpretation given it by Richard Dawkins (the selfish gene school); and, in regard to computation, the Church-Turing conjecture of universal computation, universal virtual reality based on universal computation, Deutsch's own theory of quantum computation and artificial intelligence.
A wilder application of computation to physical reality is Frank Tippler's theory of the omega point, a state reached in the last moments of the collapsing universe, where the minds of all previous people can be resurrected.
The Fabric of Reality is altogether an excellent book, marred only by David Deutsch's insistence that anyone who doubts the many worlds interpretation does not understand quantum theory properly (and his strong hint that we are retarded by lack of imagination or honesty).
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It hasn't got off my reading pile yet but just commenting that the quality of the paper it's printed on is poor - flabby and awkward to turn pages etc. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
I have recently finished reading this book and have to agree with others reviewers who find Deutsch arrogant; self belief is an admirable quality but some of his musings on the... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Nick Gall
The author has a punchy, distinctive, and controversial view of where quantum physics is taking us in the 21st century. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Harry's Till
A good overview of the many worlds theory of QM and a refreshingly clear explanation of the scientific method, how we know one theory is better than another and make progress -... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Mike Gould
The author is basically forcing unto the reader the many-worlds interpretation of Quantum Mechanics as "the only reasonable explanation a sensible person would come up... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Ivan Korotkov
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