Information: A Very Short Introduction

Front Cover
Oxford University Press, Feb 25, 2010 - Science - 152 pages
8 Reviews
We live an information-soaked existence - information pours into our lives through television, radio, books, and of course, the Internet. Some say we suffer from 'infoglut'. But what is information? The concept of 'information' is a profound one, rooted in mathematics, central to whole branches of science, yet with implications on every aspect of our everyday lives: DNA provides the information to create us; we learn through the information fed to us; we relate to each other through information transfer - gossip, lectures, reading. Information is not only a mathematically powerful concept, but its critical role in society raises wider ethical issues: who owns information? Who controls its dissemination? Who has access to information? Luciano Floridi, a philosopher of information, cuts across many subjects, from a brief look at the mathematical roots of information - its definition and measurement in 'bits'- to its role in genetics (we are information), and its social meaning and value. He ends by considering the ethics of information, including issues of ownership, privacy, and accessibility; copyright and open source. For those unfamiliar with its precise meaning and wide applicability as a philosophical concept, 'information' may seem a bland or mundane topic. Those who have studied some science or philosophy or sociology will already be aware of its centrality and richness. But for all readers, whether from the humanities or sciences, Floridi gives a fascinating and inspirational introduction to this most fundamental of ideas. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
  

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Review: Information: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions #180)

User Review  - Thea Kinyon boodhoo - Goodreads

Floridi's writing is so packed with parentheticals and non-specific examples that the actual information contained in the book is, ironically, incredibly hard to get to. As a writer he completely ... Read full review

Review: Information: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions #180)

User Review  - Jlawrence - Goodreads

Clear, swift overview of different definitions of information, and different methods of evaluating and interpreting information. Part of the "Very Short Introduction" series of books, and you indeed ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
1
1 The information revolution
3
2 The language of information
19
3 Mathematical information
37
4 Semantic information
48
5 Physical information
60
6 Biological information
73
7 Economic information
88
8 The ethics of information
103
the marriage of physis and techne
119
References
123
Index
127
Copyright

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