Zitate von Roger Penrose

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Roger Penrose

Geburtstag: 8. August 1931

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Sir Roger Penrose OM ist ein englischer Mathematiker und theoretischer Physiker, dessen Arbeiten auf den Gebieten der mathematischen Physik und der Kosmologie hoch geachtet sind. Er hat sich auch in zahlreichen populärwissenschaftlichen Büchern zu Themen der Philosophie geäußert.

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Zitate Roger Penrose

„Zweifellos gibt es in Wirklichkeit nicht drei Welten, sondern nur eine, und das wahre Wesen dieser Welt können wir gegenwärtig nicht einmal erahnen.“

—  Roger Penrose
Schatten des Geistes: Wege zu einer neuen Physik des Bewusstsein, Heidelberg 1995. S 529. Aus dem Englischen von Anita Ehlers. Siehe auch: Drei-Welten-Lehre

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„How relevant, indeed, is our present lack of understanding of physics at the quantum/classical boundary? Or is consciousness really “no big deal,” as has sometimes been expressed?
It would be too optimistic to expect to find definitive answers to all these questions, at our present state of knowledge, but there is much scope for healthy debate...“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: Does life in some way make use of the potentiality for vast quantum superpositions, as would be required for serious quantum computation? How important are the quantum aspects of DNA molecules? Are cellular microtubules performing some essential quantum roles? Are the subtleties of quantum field theory important to biology? Shall we gain needed insights from the study of quantum toy models? Do we really need to move forward to radical new theories of physical reality, as I myself believe, before the more subtle issues of biology — most importantly conscious mentality — can be understood in physical terms? How relevant, indeed, is our present lack of understanding of physics at the quantum/classical boundary? Or is consciousness really “no big deal,” as has sometimes been expressed? It would be too optimistic to expect to find definitive answers to all these questions, at our present state of knowledge, but there is much scope for healthy debate... Foreword (March 2007) to Quantum Aspects of Life (2008), by Derek Abbott.

„Some years ago, I wrote a book called The Emperor's New Mind and that book was describing a point of view I had about consciousness and why it was not something that comes about from complicated calculations. So we are not exactly computers.“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: Some years ago, I wrote a book called The Emperor's New Mind and that book was describing a point of view I had about consciousness and why it was not something that comes about from complicated calculations. So we are not exactly computers. There's something else going on and the question of what this something else was would depend on some detailed physics and so I needed chapters in that book, which describes the physics as it is understood today. Well anyway, this book was written and various people commented to me and they said perhaps I could use this book for a course Physics for Poets or whatever it is if it didn't have all that contentious stuff about the mind in that. So I thought, well, that doesn't sound too hard, all I'll do is get out the scissor out and snip out all the bits, which have something to do with the mind. The trouble is that if I did that — and I actually didn't do it — the whole book fell to pieces really because the whole driving force behind the book was this quest to find out what could it be that constitutes consciousness in the physical world as we know it or as we hope to know it in future Interview in "Secrets of the Old One" in Berkeley Groks (16 March 2005) http://www.ugcs.caltech.edu/%7Efrank/BerkeleyGroks_Penrose.htm.

„Children are not afraid to pose basic questions that may embarrass us, as adults, to ask.“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: Beneath all this technicality is the feeling that it is indeed "obvious" that the conscious mind cannot work like a computer, even though much of what is involved in mental activity might do so. This is the kind of obviousness that a child can see—though the child may, later in life, become browbeaten into believing that the obvious problems are "non-problems", to be argued into nonexistence by careful reasoning and clever choices of definition. Children sometimes see things clearly that are obscured in later life. We often forget the wonder that we felt as children when the cares of the "real world" have begun to settle on our shoulders. Children are not afraid to pose basic questions that may embarrass us, as adults, to ask. What happens to each of our streams of consciousness after we die; where was it before we were born; might we become, or have been, someone else; why do we perceive at all; why are we here; why is there a universe here at all in which we can actually be? These are puzzles that tend to come with the awakenings of awareness in any one of us — and, no doubt, with the awakening of self-awareness, within whichever creature or other entity it first came. Ch. 10, Where Lies the Physics of the Mind?, p. 448–9 (p. 580 in 1999 edition).

„There are two other words I do not understand — awareness and intelligence.“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: There are two other words I do not understand — awareness and intelligence. Well, why am I talking about things when I do not know what they really mean? It is probably because I am a mathematician and mathematicians do not mind so much about that sort of thing. They do not need precise definitions of the things they are talking about, provided they can say something about the connections between them. The Large, the Small and the Human Mind (1997).

„Children sometimes see things clearly that are obscured in later life.“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: Beneath all this technicality is the feeling that it is indeed "obvious" that the conscious mind cannot work like a computer, even though much of what is involved in mental activity might do so. This is the kind of obviousness that a child can see—though the child may, later in life, become browbeaten into believing that the obvious problems are "non-problems", to be argued into nonexistence by careful reasoning and clever choices of definition. Children sometimes see things clearly that are obscured in later life. We often forget the wonder that we felt as children when the cares of the "real world" have begun to settle on our shoulders. Children are not afraid to pose basic questions that may embarrass us, as adults, to ask. What happens to each of our streams of consciousness after we die; where was it before we were born; might we become, or have been, someone else; why do we perceive at all; why are we here; why is there a universe here at all in which we can actually be? These are puzzles that tend to come with the awakenings of awareness in any one of us — and, no doubt, with the awakening of self-awareness, within whichever creature or other entity it first came. Ch. 10, Where Lies the Physics of the Mind?, p. 448–9 (p. 580 in 1999 edition).

„Does life in some way make use of the potentiality for vast quantum superpositions, as would be required for serious quantum computation?“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: Does life in some way make use of the potentiality for vast quantum superpositions, as would be required for serious quantum computation? How important are the quantum aspects of DNA molecules? Are cellular microtubules performing some essential quantum roles? Are the subtleties of quantum field theory important to biology? Shall we gain needed insights from the study of quantum toy models? Do we really need to move forward to radical new theories of physical reality, as I myself believe, before the more subtle issues of biology — most importantly conscious mentality — can be understood in physical terms? How relevant, indeed, is our present lack of understanding of physics at the quantum/classical boundary? Or is consciousness really “no big deal,” as has sometimes been expressed? It would be too optimistic to expect to find definitive answers to all these questions, at our present state of knowledge, but there is much scope for healthy debate... Foreword (March 2007) to Quantum Aspects of Life (2008), by Derek Abbott.

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„It seems to me that we must make a distinction between what is "objective" and what is "measurable" in discussing the question of physical reality, according to quantum mechanics.“

—  Roger Penrose
Context: It seems to me that we must make a distinction between what is "objective" and what is "measurable" in discussing the question of physical reality, according to quantum mechanics. The state-vector of a system is, indeed, not measurable, in the sense that one cannot ascertain, by experiments performed on the system, precisely (up to proportionality) what the state is; but the state-vector does seem to be (again up to proportionality) a completely objective property of the system, being completely characterized by the results it must give to experiments that one might perform. Ch. 6, Quantum Magic and Quantum Mastery, p. 269.

„Understanding is, after all, what science is all about — and science is a great deal more than mindless computation.“

—  Roger Penrose
As quoted in The Golden Ratio : The Story of Phi, the World's Most Astonishing Number (2002) by Mario Livio, p. 201.

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„General relativity is certainly a very beautiful theory, but how does one judge the elegance of physical theories generally?“

—  Roger Penrose
Ch. 1, Mathematical Elegance as a Driving Force, p. 7 https://books.google.com/books?id=T09kCwAAQBAJ&pg=PA7.

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