What is Life?: With Mind and Matter and Autobiographical Sketches

By Erwin Schrodinger
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"What is Life?" by Erwin Schrödinger is a definitive exploration of the fundamental question that has intrigued scientists and philosophers for centuries: what is the nature of life itself?

In this groundbreaking work, Schrödinger offers unique insights and proposes a radical new theory by applying principles of physics and chemistry to the field of biology. His central focus lies in understanding how living organisms defy the second law of thermodynamics by maintaining order and entropy reduction.

Schrödinger elucidates the concept of genetic information, introducing the notion of an "aperiodic crystal" (later recognized as DNA) as the carrier of heredity. Drawing upon his vast knowledge in physics, he investigates the role of quantum mechanics and quantum states in the mechanisms through which living organisms perform complex tasks.

Delving into the concepts of entropy, free energy, and negentropy, Schrödinger addresses the origin and maintenance of life, contemplating the possibility of life emerging from non-living matter. He analyzes the limitations of existing theories, encourages a holistic and interdisciplinary approach, and emphasizes the need to integrate physical and biological sciences for a complete understanding of life's intricacies.

While recognizing the enormity of the question at hand, Schrödinger presents a thought-provoking and profound exploration of life's essence. With its concise and precise exposition, "What is Life?" offers a compelling bridge between the physical and biological sciences, inspiring scientists and readers alike to ponder the enigma of life and its eternal mysteries.
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