Excellent Overview but some Problems With Pacing,
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This review is from: The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood (Hardcover)
Gleick's survey is obviously important and needed as it becomes increasingly obvious that information is the real currency of the global economy (viz. a recent article in the NY Times, "Mining of Raw Data May Bring New Productivity") . He does a good job of introducing basic concepts of information theory such as Shannon entropy. However the "information density", if you will, of the book is uneven: some chapters, such as those concerning Shannon, Turing and Kolmogorov, are very substantial and provide useful introduction to key concepts of contemporary information and computing; other chapters, such as those dealing with "memes" and information glut, come off as lightweight and vague.
Why discuss memes instead of the theoretical but still tantalizing implications of the holographic principle, the idea that the universe physically IS information, which follow from Gleick's all-too-cursory discussion of black hole thermodynamics? Why repeat the same tired discussion of the societal implications of information glut, instead of covering the increasing importance of Bayesian statistics - the science of constructing quantitative predictions based on prior information? E.T. Jaynes' "The Logic of Science," for example, demonstrates the extreme relevance of Shannon's information theory for analytic prediction yet does not get so much as a nod. These are areas in which Gleick's book, good as it is, still leaves the reader unsatisfied.