What if the Miracle Behind Evolution is Quantum Mechanics?

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I, Quantum

“…about forty years ago the Dutchman de Vries discovered that in the offspring even of thoroughly pure-bred stocks, a very small number of individuals, say two or three in tens of thousands, turn up with small but ‘jump-like’ changes, the expression ‘jump-like’ not meaning that the change is so very considerable, but that there is a discontinuity inasmuch as there are no intermediate forms between the unchanged and the few changed. De Vries called that a mutation. The significant fact is the discontinuity. It reminds a physicist of quantum theory – no intermediate energies occurring between two neighbouring energy levels. He would be inclined to call de Vries’s mutation theory, figuratively, the quantum theory of biology. We shall see later that this is much more than figurative. The mutations are actually due to quantum jumps in the gene molecule. But quantum theory was but two years old when de Vries first published his discovery, in 1902. Small wonder that it took another generation to discover the intimate connection!” – Erwin Schrödinger, ‘What is Life?‘ (1944)

Table of Contents

    1. Miracles and Monsters
    2. Occam’s Fat-Shattering Razor
    3. Complexity is the Key – in Machine Learning and DNA    
    4. The Protein Folding Problem
    5. The Nature of Quantum Mechanics – Infinite, Non-Local, Computing Capacity
    6. Solving the Quantum Measurement Problem – Pointers, Decoherence, & Quantum Dynamics
    7. Quantum Networks – Using Dynamics to Restore and Extend Entanglement
    8. Quantum Biology – Noisy, Warm, Dynamical Quantum Systems
    9. Quasicrystals & Phasons – Shadows of Life?
    10. Holography & The Ultimate Quantum Network – A Living Organism
    11. Quantum Mechanics and Evolution
    12. Experimental Results in Evolutionary Biology


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