These are some thoughts I’ve had while listening to a Lex Fridman interview with Edward Frenkel, a mathematician at UC Berkeley working on mathematical quantum physics.
In the information age, we like to see everything as computation. But what do we mean when we say that something is computation? We mean that a physical system with predictable interactions has a meaningful result. If we somehow learned that the universe was computational in nature, the only thing that adds is that the universe’s state is meaningful somehow.Read more
These are notes I made after finishing the book, so they’ll be more heavily weighted toward concepts discussed near the end. The first half of the book was primarily dedicated to a history of genetic research, which I think helped the reader understand the issues discussed in the latter half.
playing God permalink It seems like our identity derives from a complicated combination of genes and chance environmental effects. Part of our strength as a species has been our natural variation, and to begin editing the genome is to assume that we can do it better than evolution has done up until this point.Read more