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Leon Brillouin (1889 – 1969)


French physicist.
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Leon Brillouin
With Heisenberg's uncertainty principle, the fundamental role of experimental errors became a basic feature of physics.
Brillouin quotes
Both the uncertainty principle and the negentropy principle of information make Laplace's scheme [of exact determinism] completely unrealistic. The problem is an artificial one; it belongs to imaginative poetry, not to experimental science.
Brillouin
We completely ignore the human value of the information. A selection of 100 letters is given a certain information value, and we do not investigate whether it makes sense in English, and, if so, whether the meaning of the sentence is of any practical importance. According to our definition, a set of 100 letters selected at random (according to the rules of Table 1.1), a sentence of 100 letters from a newspaper, a piece of Shakespeare or a theorem of Einstein are given exactly the same informational value.




Brillouin Leon quotes
The laws of classical mechanics represent a mathematical idealization and should not be assumed to correspond to the real laws of nature. ... We now have to realize that errors are inevitable (..) a discovery that makes strict determinism impossible.
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