HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Big news! LibraryThing is now free to all! Read the blog post and discuss the change on Talk.
dismiss
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid (1979)

by Douglas R. Hofstadter

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
11,610109381 (4.34)2 / 220
Douglas Hofstadter's book is concerned directly with the nature of "maps' or links between formal systems. However, according to Hofstadter, the formal system that underlies all mental activity transcends the system that supports it. If life can grow out of the formal chemical substrate of the cell, if consciousness can emerge out of a formal system of firing neurons, then so too will computers attain human intelligence. Gödel, Escher, Bach is a wonderful exploration of fascinating ideas at the heart of cognitive science: meaning, reduction, recursion, and much more.… (more)
  1. 101
    Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson (Zaklog)
    Zaklog: Cryptonomicon strikes me as the kind of book that Hofstadter would write if he wrote fiction. Both books are complex, with discursive passages on mathematics and a positively weird sense of humor. If you enjoyed (rather than endured) the explanatory sections on cryptography and the charts of Waterhouse's love life (among other, rarely charted things) you should really like this book.… (more)
  2. 60
    Logicomix: An Epic Search for Truth by Apostolos Doxiadis (tomduck, EerierIdyllMeme)
    EerierIdyllMeme: An obvious suggestion (surprised it's not here already). Both are creative and fictional riffing off of formal logic and incompleteness.
  3. 50
    Metamagical Themas: Questing for the Essence of Mind and Pattern by Douglas R. Hofstadter (JFDR)
  4. 40
    Incompleteness: The Proof and Paradox of Kurt Gödel by Rebecca Goldstein (michaeljohn)
  5. 20
    A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper by John Allen Paulos (heidialice)
    heidialice: GEB is a thousand times as intense, but if you enjoyed the parts about self-referentiality it's worth a skim. Conversely, if GEB is just too much, Paulos' concise introduction to the theme is very accessible.
  6. 00
    Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension: A Mathematician's Journey Through Narcissistic Numbers, Optimal Dating Algorithms, at Least Two Kinds of Infinity, and More by Matt Parker (Lorem)
    Lorem: Things in 4D I consider a more accessible version of GEB in its breadth and how it does get to complex topics. If you enjoyed the more complicated parts of 4D, definitely look at GEB and if GEB was a little too much, 4D might remind you why math(s) are never boring… (more)
  7. 00
    The Gold Bug Variations by Richard Powers (hippietrail)
  8. 33
    A New Kind of Science by Stephen Wolfram (Anonymous user)
  9. 01
    Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglas Adams (EerierIdyllMeme)
    EerierIdyllMeme: A few similar themes (Bach, human cognition) come up in similar ways.
  10. 03
    The Flanders Panel by Arturo Pérez-Reverte (P_S_Patrick)
    P_S_Patrick: Arturo Perez-Reverte has recieved inspiration for his excellent mystery thriller from Hofstadter's Godel Escher Bach, even without some of the chapter introduciton quotes, that much is clear. He uses the bewildering Escherian theme of worlds within a world, Godels incompleteness theorum is alluded to in the monologue of one character, and Bach is discussed in relevance to the mystery too, along with a few miscellaneous paradoxes which are also slipped in, in a similar spirit in which they permeate the more complex non-fictional work. Non-fiction readers who have enjoyed GEB should be amused by the Flanders panel, and I think they should enjoy it even if they do not often dip into fiction. It would be harder to recommend GEB to fans of the Flanders Panel, due to its sheer length, but if you were intrigued by the themes in the story then it should at least be worth finding GEB in a library and dipping into it.… (more)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

English (102)  Hebrew (1)  Spanish (1)  Danish (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (106)
Showing 1-5 of 102 (next | show all)



from Randall Munroe. Mouseover says: 'This is the reference implementation of the self-referential joke.'

------------------------

I know, I know, I know. I'm just kidding myself. I'm as likely to read this as a book on string theory. (Please don't. Please don't tell me I have read a book on string theory, I'm trying to forget the whole sordid story.) But. I hope you like this.

A friend of mine established The Harvester Press in the 1970s. He did it on a wing and a prayer, he was a young teaching academic who couldn't find in print the old literary books he wanted to use as texts and so he set about publishing them. He was probably as surprised as anybody when the idea quickly became viable. He put together a list of books, sold them as a subscription to libraries and away he went. He wasn't an academic any more, he was a proper publisher with a strong reputation for intellectually high end output.

At some point he got sent a completely insane looking ms, ridiculously long, bits of paper stuck on bits of paper, all these pictures which hadn't any copyright permission, and as for the title...well, who was going to buy a book called that....he sent it back with a polite letter.

Some years later he was in NY lunching with the boss of Basic Books, a US academic publisher. He wanted to publish this strange ms. he'd been given. As he was describing it, John interrupted with 'Godel, Escher, Bach I presume?' Evidently Hofstadter had gotten lucky and had on loan a very early word processor. The whole thing was no longer the shambles it once was. Basic Books was keen.

John got talked into taking some thousands of copies. This turned out well for him, but. What he had lost. Ouch. Godel, Escher, Bach in English and in translation would have made him many millions. I won't say he cried about it, but he did ask for a discount on the books he was buying. After such a sad tale it was impossible to say no.
  bringbackbooks | Jun 16, 2020 |



from Randall Munroe. Mouseover says: 'This is the reference implementation of the self-referential joke.'

------------------------

I know, I know, I know. I'm just kidding myself. I'm as likely to read this as a book on string theory. (Please don't. Please don't tell me I have read a book on string theory, I'm trying to forget the whole sordid story.) But. I hope you like this.

A friend of mine established The Harvester Press in the 1970s. He did it on a wing and a prayer, he was a young teaching academic who couldn't find in print the old literary books he wanted to use as texts and so he set about publishing them. He was probably as surprised as anybody when the idea quickly became viable. He put together a list of books, sold them as a subscription to libraries and away he went. He wasn't an academic any more, he was a proper publisher with a strong reputation for intellectually high end output.

At some point he got sent a completely insane looking ms, ridiculously long, bits of paper stuck on bits of paper, all these pictures which hadn't any copyright permission, and as for the title...well, who was going to buy a book called that....he sent it back with a polite letter.

Some years later he was in NY lunching with the boss of Basic Books, a US academic publisher. He wanted to publish this strange ms. he'd been given. As he was describing it, John interrupted with 'Godel, Escher, Bach I presume?' Evidently Hofstadter had gotten lucky and had on loan a very early word processor. The whole thing was no longer the shambles it once was. Basic Books was keen.

John got talked into taking some thousands of copies. This turned out well for him, but. What he had lost. Ouch. Godel, Escher, Bach in English and in translation would have made him many millions. I won't say he cried about it, but he did ask for a discount on the books he was buying. After such a sad tale it was impossible to say no.
  bringbackbooks | Jun 16, 2020 |
Quite an undertaking. Bouncing between composition, mathematics, artificial intelligence, genetics, linguistics, art, and a host of other topics, Hofstadter weaves his theory of self-recursive "strange loops" throughout this massive book. There are probably only a handful of people who would be deeply engaged on every topic he covers, but when the book was engrossing, it was profoundly so. Particularly, in the chapters, "Brains and Thoughts" and "Minds and Thoughts," as well as the concluding chapter, "Strange Loops, or Tangled Hierarchies," he addressed some of the most absorbing themes of the book. In a few years, after further reading on some of the related topics, it would be interesting to revisit these sections. ( )
  drbrand | Jun 8, 2020 |
'What is a self, and how can a self come out of inaminate matter?' This is the riddle that drove Hofstadter to write this extraordinary book. Linking together the music of J.S. Bach, the graphic art of Escher and the mathematical theorems of Godel, as well as ideas drawn from logic, biology, psychology, physics and linguistics, Douglas Hofstadter illuminates one of the greatest mysteries of modern science: the nature of human thought processes. 'Every few decades an unknown author brings outa book of such depth, clarity, range, wit, beauty and originality that it is recognized at once as a major literary event. This is such a work' - Martin Gardner
Source: Publisher
Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid, also known as GEB, is a 1979 book by Douglas Hofstadter. By exploring common themes in the lives and works of logician Kurt Gödel, artist M. C. Escher, and composer Johann Sebastian Bach, the book expounds concepts fundamental to mathematics, symmetry, and intelligence.
Source: Wikipedia
  Shiseida.Aponte | May 30, 2020 |
It was not exactly what I thought I was getting myself into when I started, but informative. I will read it again someday. Most interesting is how much has come to pass that was thought difficult or impossible at the time the book was written. ( )
  dpevers | May 26, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 102 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (23 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hofstadter, Douglas R.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
尚紀, 柳瀬Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Feuersee, HermannTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jonkers, RonaldTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wahlén, JanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wolff-Windegg, PhilipTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
To M. and D.
First words
Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, came to power in 1740.
Quotations
In its absolute barest form, Gödel's discovery involves the translation of an ancient paradox in philosophy into mathematical terms. That paradox is the so-called Epimenides paradox, or liar paradox. Epimenides was a Cretan who made one immortal statement: “All Cretans are liars.”
Whereas the Epimenides statement creates a paradox since it is neither true nor false, the Gödel sentence G is unprovable (inside P.M.) but true. The grand conclusion? That the system of Principia Mathematica is “incomplete”—there are true statements of number theory which its methods of proof are too weak to demonstrate.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Il libro che ha svelato a una immensa quantità di lettori, in tutto il mondo, gli incanti e le trappole di un’Eterna Ghirlanda Brillante i cui fili si chiamano intelligenza artificiale, macchina di Turing, teorema di Gödel. Una «fuga metaforica» nel variegato mondo che si dispiega fra la mente, il cervello e i computer.

«Ogni due o tre decenni un autore ignoto produce un libro di tale profondità, chiarezza, vastità, acume, bellezza e originalità che subito esso viene riconosciuto come un avvenimento di prima importanza: Gödel, Escher, Bach è un’opera di tal genere… La struttura di questo libro è satura di complicato contrappunto non meno di una composizione di Bach o dell’Ulisse di Joyce»

MARTIN GARDNER, «Scientific American»
(piopas)
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.34)
0.5 1
1 13
1.5 4
2 54
2.5 17
3 185
3.5 39
4 526
4.5 99
5 1000

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 147,886,150 books! | Top bar: Always visible