Santa Fe Institute

Intelligent behavior as a response to entropy?

April 25, 2013 9:02 a.m.

SFI Research Fellow Simon DeDeo comments on a recent paper in Physical Review Letters that proffers a mathematical explanation for intelligent behavior based on entropy.

The paper "is basically an attempt to describe intelligence as a fundamentally thermodynamic process," connected mathematically to entropy says the paper's lead author, Alexander Wissner-Gross of Harvard and MIT. It suggests that intelligent behavior stems from the impulse to seize control of future events in the environment.

"It's a provocative paper," says DeDeo. "To me [the research] seems like a really authentic and honest attempt to wrestle with really big questions."

Read the article in Inside Science (April 22, 2013)

Read the paper in Physical Review Letters (April 19, 2013)

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