The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
CDN$ 14.40
  • List Price: CDN$ 19.95
  • You Save: CDN$ 5.55 (28%)
FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25.
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca.
Gift-wrap available.
Quantity:1
Add to Cart
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood Paperback – Mar 6 2012


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
CDN$ 14.40
CDN$ 10.40 CDN$ 13.32

Join Amazon Student in Canada



Frequently Bought Together

Customers buy this book with Chaos: Making a New Science CDN$ 15.68

The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood + Chaos: Making a New Science
Price For Both: CDN$ 30.08

Show availability and shipping details

  • This item: The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood

    In Stock.
    Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca.
    FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ CDN$ 25. Details

  • Chaos: Making a New Science

    In Stock.
    Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca.
    FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ CDN$ 25. Details


Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Product Details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage (March 6 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400096235
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400096237
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 13.2 x 2.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 522 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #8,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
6
4 star
2
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 8 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most helpful customer reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A. Volk #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on May 20 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I wasn't sure if this was a four-star or a five-star book, so I went with the more conservative rating. The idea behind this book is simple: explain information from a historical and scientific perspective. The book covers the history of information, from spoken word, to written word, to the telegraph, telephone, etc. Along the way it discusses relevant scientific issues surrounding information theory. Information theory attempts to understand the form, function, and transmission of information. It's not at all my area of research, but I nevertheless found it to be really interesting to actually consider "what is information"? How does one create systems of information. African drum languages, really languages based on drumming, are my favorite example from the book. At times the book gets fairly heavy as it starts to meld information theory with modern quantum theory from physics. That's mostly in the last few chapters, and I found that going a bit dense. I did really enjoy the sections on genes and memes, which were very interesting reviews of how important information is for life (indeed, life may be all about information).

My only quibble with the book is that it really is a flood. This book covers so much ground that at times I felt a little lost trying to get through it all. Generally speaking, the author is a good writer and the pages flew by pretty quickly. But still, there's a lot to try and soak in, especially once one hits the 20th Century and the proper beginnings of a real scientific theory of information. That stuff is pretty complicated for people outside of the field, and the many historical anecdotes thrown in sometimes hindered, rather than helped, comprehension.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Format: Hardcover
Beautifully written and very relevant overview of "information" from the early days of telegrams all the way to quantum computing, including works from Morse, Russel, Turing, Shannon, Van Neumann, Kolmogorov, Bennett and... Gilles Brassard (U of Montreal).

The central topic remains Claude Shannon's Information Theory and fundamental questions such as "what is information" and "how to measure information". But this books features a very appealing balance between history, short biographies, anecdotes and hard theory. Challenging topics such as Gödel's Theorem, Russel's Paradox, Cryptography, Complexity, etc. are very well articulated, with enough depth and substance and no overly boring technical details or mathematical proofs.

Of particular interest is the chapter on the birth of Cognitive Sciences: The clash between early humanists for whom a strong intuition was good enough to build knowledge upon versus more prosaic scientists who'd insist on testing hypotheses before declaring them good for consumption. There are interesting excerpts from Shannon politely suggesting "more research and less exposition" and Shrödinger advocating for "more rigor over speculation".

Cognitive Sciences are at this crossroads today between fraud and science. Luckily, Gleick reminds us of the time when Biology too used to be a loosely experimental science, and how it became an exact science during the course of the XXth Century.

Not a small book (544 pages) but definitely a Must-Read.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By bernie TOP 100 REVIEWER on Aug. 13 2011
Format: Hardcover
Many great insights as to "The meaning of life, the universe and everything" begins with a vision or a universal concept that was just under our nose but required someone to tell us what we already knew and bring this to our forethought. Think back to economics classes before the classes economics was just to term for money handling. Now today we see that every Great War every great invention and even the small ones were encouraged and even made available due to economics. Before reading such books as "Homo Evolutis" by Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans, we knew of evolution and its controversies but never thought that we would see it all around us and realize much of it is our doing. Now there is "The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood" by James Gleick also the author of "Faster: The Acceleration of Just About Everything." The title of this book is definitely an understatement of what you're about to be presented. Just keep in mind that as much fun as this book is to read it is how you use this" information" that gives the book its worth.

We will see that every little "bit" of the universe and everything in it is "information." Do not over look the prolog for an encompassing hint as what the book is about. No information related subject is glossed over we het extensive history and in-depth views of what information is, how it was all-around ups and where t is going. I will not go into every detail of you would not need to read the book

Be prepared for over 400 footnotes and an extensive bibliography which will take some time to "look the references up."
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
By vivalakt on May 29 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
I loved this book. I loved this book so damn much. So full disclosure, I say in my reviews I’m a librarian. This is true. The more fun thing is my degree is actually a Masters of Information. Yes. I am a Master of Information. This is a thing. So I got this book because how could I not? So yes I geeked out a million percent while reading this book, and my review is 100% biased in that this is a topic I love.

So. Things about this book. The title is exactly what the book is about the history of information which is SO DAMN FASCINATING because honestly guys, our ability to comprehend is staggering. How we transmit, perceive and underestimate information is fascinating. Seriously, it is and I don’t think just to people who generally geek out over it. Think about it – what we’re doing, understanding and thinking about not long ago would have been considered actual miracles. We can find out anything, and not only can we, but we now expect it to be easy. We can change, transmit, edit and argue over what information is and how we understand it and those of us who know are scared equally of the struggle to contain and provide access to it.

To be honest again I actually picked up this book back when it was released in 2011 and I didn’t read it then because at the time I was just finishing up my Masters and honestly couldn’t emotionally handle the idea of reading anything else about it. But the thing is, I’m SO glad I found it and read it. I don’t think it’s written in a particularly high style, it was an easy-ish read and I sincerely think it’s worth a grab for everyone. This is cool stuff guys.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.


Feedback