The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood

The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood

by James Gleick
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The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 65 reviews.
Winterlight00 More than 1 year ago
A word often used with Glieck's books is "scholarly". Thats a good word and usually it means "complete" and "has depth." I can't use that word with The Information, but something close to it, thats maybe not as complimentary; "textbook". The Information needed an editor with a more liberal use of the blue pen. Unlike a scholarly work that you find enjoyment in, The Information sometimes simply plods. I often felt I was working through it, trying to get to the, well, information. Like a textbook. There is a great book in here though. The diamond in this rough is the exposition about Claude Shannon and those that, along with him (like Alan Turing and Norbert Weiner and Jon Von Neumann) devised Information Theory and put it on the straight path towards the future. Here Gleick shines, effortlessly pulling together the personal, professional and theoretical with breathtaking ease. Gleick makes his subjects live, breath, think and argue but also shows you *what* they were thinking and arguing about in an interesting and easy to follow way. Overall its not a bad book, just something you'd more enjoy perusing than going through start to finish. The bottom line for this one is that you should pull out your wallet and go past the credit card...to the library card.
catwak More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing. I liked it a lot, even though much of it was WAY over my head. The level of my non-understanding began to depress me about two-thirds of the way through, but by the end I felt strangely revived. I think that the discussion of Charles Bennett's work helped my frame of mind. It's comforting to hear that some information professionals actually value quality over quantity and that not everyone defines complexity the same way. I believe that Mr. Gleick presumes more knowledge on the part of his readers than most of them possess. But this may just be his way of protecting his work from jumping the shark, bit by bit.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Worthwhile for anyone wanting to know the history of information, and how we got to where we are now. The quick summary: it all changed in 1948. The book keeps a fairly tight focus on information theory, including its ties to modern physics. Might be a little technical for some.
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