A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age by Jimmy Soni

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Read A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age Online Free - The life and times of one of the foremost intellects of the twentieth century: Claude Shannon—the neglected architect of the Information Age, whose insights stand behind every computer built, email sent, video streamed, and webpage loaded.

Claude Shannon was a groundbreaking polymath, a brilliant tinkerer, and a digital pioneer. He constructed a fleet of customized unicycles and a flamethrowing trumpet, outfoxed Vegas casinos, and built juggling robots. He also wrote the seminal text of the digital revolution, which has been called “the Magna Carta of the Information Age.” His discoveries would lead contemporaries to compare him to Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton. His work anticipated by decades the world we’d be living in today—and gave mathematicians and engineers the tools to bring that world to pass.

In this elegantly written, exhaustively researched biography, Jimmy Soni and Rob Goodman reveal Claude Shannon’s full story for the first time. It’s the story of a small-town Michigan boy whose career stretched from the era of room-sized computers powered by gears and string to the age of Apple. It’s the story of the origins of our digital world in the tunnels of MIT and the “idea factory” of Bell Labs, in the “scientists’ war” with Nazi Germany, and in the work of Shannon’s collaborators and rivals, thinkers like Alan Turing, John von Neumann, Vannevar Bush, and Norbert Wiener.

And it’s the story of Shannon’s life as an often reclusive, always playful genius. With access to Shannon’s family and friends, A Mind at Play brings this singular innovator and creative genius to life.

Title : A Mind at Play: How Claude Shannon Invented the Information Age
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1476766681
Edition Language : English
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 384 pages


Hadrian rated it ★★★★☆

February 03, 2018

Biography of Claude Shannon, called the "father of information theory". At age 21, he published a Masters' thesis where he described how Boolean logic (where variables can only be true or false) could be conveyed through circuits. This was the gap between conveying information digitally, and is t...

Charlene rated it ★★★★★

September 28, 2017

Now this is how to write a biography! I recently read a biography of Paul Dirac that glossed over his achievements and highlighted his personal relationships. If you know anything about Dirac, you would know how absurd it is to focus on his personal relationships. The author could have at least g...

Brian rated it ★★★★☆

July 03, 2017

If you are familiar with the history of computing, there are a few names that you'll know well enough biographically to turn them into real people. Babbage and Lovelace, Turing and von Neumann, Gates and Jobs. But there's one of the greats who may conjure up nothing more than a name - Claude Shan...

Peter rated it ★★★★★

July 27, 2017

A good biography of an overlooked but seminal figure of physics and mathematics, Claude Shannon. His 1948 work on communication and information laid the foundation for the digital world we all inhabit figures like Shannon, Turing, and Von Neuman made modern computing possible. Shannon was an intr...

Jacqui rated it ★★★★★

July 09, 2017

Despite likely being the most brilliant man you've never heard of with the most comprehensive unknown impact on the advancement of technology, Claude Shannon, star of Jimmie Sonni and Rob Goodman's A Mind at Play (Simon and Schuster 2017), was by all accounts a normal kid through high school and...

Todd rated it ★★★★★

December 18, 2017

I find it more than a little upsetting that my hero Claude Shannon isn’t a household name. To paraphrase Fake Steve Jobs, “I invented the bit. Ever heard of it?” Just like that 1919 eclipse proved Einstein’s equations were right, our entire modern digital world proves that Shannon’s equations were...

Nooilforpacifists rated it ★★☆☆☆

August 18, 2017

Blecch. It's a good thing I knew something about Information Theory before reading this book. Because not only didn't authors Soni & Goodman, but they failed to communicate what little they had (especially how the switch to digital transmission could overcome most signal-to-noise issues, by m...

Dave rated it ★★☆☆☆

December 07, 2017

I approached this book eagerly, because I feel a connection with the man and his work. I did graduate study at MIT, and worked under people mentioned in the book. I also worked at IBM and Bell Labs (in the same New York building), and did original work in fields that Shannon had just about invent...

Debjani rated it ★★★★★

September 19, 2017

Very interesting book about reclusive genius Claude Shannon. I studied Shannon's noise theorems in college and it was delightful to come across this book displaying his multifaceted personality and his childlike wonder of the world.

Anirud rated it ★★★★★

October 29, 2017

Wow! What a journey this has been. Such a beautifully written account with tastefully interspersed explanations. A multitude of takeaways from this book, ranging from admiration to hero worship; introducing early impeccable trends in research, not caring for laurels and publicity from people, and...

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