The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood - Chapter 7 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 7 Summary and Analysis

Chapter 7 is called "Information Theory (All I'm After Is Just a Mundane Brain)." During World War II both Claude Shannon and Alan Turing were working on separate cryptography projects. Although they could not speak to each other about their secret work, they often met and talked about ideas that had arisen from their work, including the question of whether it might be possible to create a machine that could think. In defining the question, Turing said he was not interested in trying to find a machine that could approach the intelligence of a human, but simply a "mundane brain."

Turing began to write about an imaginary machine that could process information. His machine consisted of an infinite tape made up of individual squares and a machine that could read the tape and act on the information on it. Each square would...

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