Reality is not the only figment in the book. Stewart and Cohen use a group of eight "weird alien beings from the planet Zarathustra, resembling fluffy yellow ostriches but with much stranger habits" as a sounding board, as comedy relief, and as a philosophical-experimental playpen. To quote:
"Ringmaster: What is this?Read it and think, read it and giggle, read it and come back for more. At long last, a worthy successor to Gödel, Escher, Bach, updated, twisted, and put through a Monty Python filter. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Liar-to-children [=teacher]: A continuing educational narrative of some kind, Ringmaster. Based upon a revered/reviled (delete whichever is inapplicable) ancient text. [Watches the screen and interprets the tale that unfolds--a long and dramatic story of an exploding universe, elements born in stars, complex carbon-based molecular machines, a doubly-helical genetic molecule, the origins of life, evolution, sense organs, brains, minds, and intelligence.]
R: What a fascinating narrative.
LtC: And such a convincing story.
Destroyer-of-facts [=scientist]: Such vigor and power! Such unified scientific insight!
R: Not a word out of place, no loose ends--amazing!
ALL: [In unison] Must be wrong, then."
the author must enjoy frequent lapses in his reality. the ideas are incoherent and striving towards mundane tautology. this is not a book for a curious mind. Read morePublished on Aug. 23 2002 by Sophie
A thoroughly enjoyable synthesis of many views concerning the evolution of mind, consciousness, free will etc.
Clearly written, with wit and parody where appropriate. Read more
Takes reductionist ideas about evolution and the human mind, hauls them round the back of the roadhouse and kicks them senseless -- and we cheer all the way. Read morePublished on Aug. 23 1998
JC & IS (Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart) have written another great book on complexity and evolution. Read morePublished on July 1 1998 by Travis Chalmers (email@example.com)
Who said the whole Universe should be comprensible to humans? Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen explain "flowlike" that Mind is not a thing, it's a process. Read morePublished on Nov. 30 1997