David Deutsch

DeutschI’ve just spent twenty minutes watching David Deutsch on TED Talks, a funny speech on our place in the universe (and what to do about that), by the author of The Fabric of Reality. I’ve not read his book, but, if his writing is as fresh as his speaking, i definitely should. Enjoy!

(A mostly unrelated but curious piece of trivia about David Deutsch: he’s also a Mac developer!)


4 Responses to “David Deutsch”

  1. sergio Says:

    Hi Jao! very refreshing, indeed, but also illuminating as to the kind of strange beliefs that physicists can share… :-) something really strikes me in David’s reasoning… at one point, he notes: “the laws of physics have this special property that physical objects as unlike each other as they could possibly be, can nevertheless embody the same mathematical and causal structure and do it more and more so over time”. now, it is clear to me that this special property is no coincidence at all — it reminds me of an old joke i heard about someone wondering how come a typewriter can be so fit for human fingers… well, human hands and a typewriter are not so unlike as the human brain and a quasar, but what a strange coincidence nevertheless! :-) in the end, what makes me worry most is his final recipee about global warming (and others ongoing challenges we endure), that is “our special relationship with the laws of physics, our ability to create new explanations, new knowledge” — but, wait a minute! if this “special relationship” is by no means more special than the relationship between human hands and a typing machine?

    or is it?

    take care and try to revive a bit your other blog, please! :-)

  2. joe leibersmer Says:

    Great speech. Very inspirational. These are concepts and ideas ppl do not talk about nearly often enough.

    As far as the typewriter analogy of the other writer, I’d say it is slightly different since a typewriter was designed by humans for humans to fit human hands. Not so much a coincidence.

  3. Jayce3000 Says:

    The power of the human mind. The more accurate our knowledge is of any object in the universe, the more deep is our understanding of that object. The deeper our understanding, the more we are able to create models to explain that object, and make predictions. In other words, the longer human beings spend time studying any 1 thing in the universe, the more likely we are to affect that entity in the future or find some kind of use for it – even if that’s just using knowledge of that object to supplement some other theory or working model. So, for something as far, distant, huge, and as complex as Quasars, it would be a long shot before we’re able to interface with it directly (as we do with typewriters), but given enough time, resources, and knowledge, we should be able to directly interface with it in the future (theoretically speaking), if we human beings continue to explain the universe, improve on it, and create technological innovations. This is why global warming is an issue we need to look at more seriously because we may lose that opportunity.

  4. Andy Says:

    David’s speech makes more sense if you read his book The Fabric of Reality. He goes further in depth about the Spaceship theory and Steven Hawking’s quote about chemical scum on a typical planet. As far as Sergio’s comment, I’d argue that it’s not so much a property of physics that allows two objects as unlike each other as they could possibly be to nevertheless embody the same mathematical and causal structures. It is a characteristic of human beings as a whole that allows humans to embody the same mathematical and causal structures of everything. I suppose if you considered humans mere physical objects, that sort of makes sense.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: