David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
There has recently been a good deal of controversy about Landauer's Principle, which is often stated as follows: The erasure of one bit of information in a computational device is necessarily accompanied by a generation of kT ln 2 heat. This is often generalised to the claim that any logically irreversible operation cannot be implemented in a thermodynamically reversible way. John Norton (2005) and Owen Maroney (2005) both argue that Landauer's Principle has not been shown to hold in general, and Maroney offers a method that he claims instantiates the operation reset in a thermodynamically reversible way. In this paper we defend the qualitative form of Landauer's Principle, and clarify its quantitative consequences (assuming the second law of thermodynamics). We analyse in detail what it means for a physical system to implement a logical transformation L, and we make this precise by defining the notion of an L-machine. Then we show that logical irreversibility of L implies thermodynamic irreversibility of every corresponding L-machine. We do this in two ways. First, by assuming the phenomenological validity of the Kelvin statement of the second law, and second, by using information-theoretic reasoning. We illustrate our results with the example of the logical transformation 'reset', and thereby recover the quantitative form of Landauer's Principle.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Vassilios Karakostas (1996). On the Brussels School's Arrow of Time in Quantum Theory. Philosophy of Science 63 (3):374-400.
Jos Uffink (2001). Bluff Your Way in the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 32 (3):305-394.
D. Parker (2011). Information-Theoretic Statistical Mechanics Without Landauer's Principle. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (4):831-856.
John D. Norton (2011). Waiting for Landauer. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 42 (3):184-198.
John D. Norton (2005). Eaters of the Lotus: Landauer's Principle and the Return of Maxwell's Demon. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 36 (2):375-411.
H. C. (2003). Notes on Landauer's Principle, Reversible Computation, and Maxwell's Demon. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 34 (3):501-510.
James Ladyman, Stuart Presnell, Anthony J. Short & Berry Groisman (2007). The Connection Between Logical and Thermodynamic Irreversibility. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 38 (1):58-79.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads23 ( #81,683 of 1,140,280 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #142,694 of 1,140,280 )
How can I increase my downloads?