Notes on Landauer's principle, reversible computation, and Maxwell's Demon

Abstract
Landauer's principle, often regarded as the basic principle of the thermodynamics of information processing, holds that any logically irreversible manipulation of information, such as the erasure of a bit or the merging of two computation paths, must be accompanied by a corresponding entropy increase in non-information-bearing degrees of freedom of the information-processing apparatus or its environment. Conversely, it is generally accepted that any logically reversible transformation of information can in principle be accomplished by an appropriate physical mechanism operating in a thermodynamically reversible fashion. These notions have sometimes been criticized either as being false, or as being trivial and obvious, and therefore unhelpful for purposes such as explaining why Maxwell's Demon cannot violate the second law of thermodynamics. Here I attempt to refute some of the arguments against Landauer's principle, while arguing that although in a sense it is indeed a straightforward consequence or restatement of the Second Law, it still has considerable pedagogic and explanatory power, especially in the context of other influential ideas in nineteenth and twentieth century physics. Similar arguments have been given by Jeffrey Bub
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1016/S1355-2198(03)00039-X
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 26,188
External links

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
Maxwell's Demon and the Thermodynamics of Computation.Jeffrey Bub - 2001 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 32 (4):569-579.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Waiting for Landauer.John D. Norton - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 42 (3):184-198.
Eaters of the Lotus: Landauer's Principle and the Return of Maxwell's Demon.John D. Norton - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 36 (2):375-411.
The Connection Between Logical and Thermodynamic Irreversibility.James Ladyman, Stuart Presnell, Anthony J. Short & Berry Groisman - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 38 (1):58-79.
The Use of the Information-Theoretic Entropy in Thermodynamics.James Ladyman, Stuart Presnell & Anthony J. Short - 2008 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 39 (2):315-324.
The (Absence of a) Relationship Between Thermodynamic and Logical Reversibility.O. J. E. Maroney - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 36 (2):355-374.

View all 10 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Notes on Landauer's Principle, Reversible Computation, and Maxwell's Demon.H. C. - 2003 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 34 (3):501-510.
Eaters of the Lotus: Landauer's Principle and the Return of Maxwell's Demon.John D. Norton - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 36 (2):375-411.
Maxwell's Demon and Computation.Richard Laing - 1974 - Philosophy of Science 41 (2):171-178.
Exorcist XIV: The Wrath of Maxwell's Demon. Part II. From Szilard to Landauer and Beyond.J. Earman & D. J. - 1999 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 30 (1):1-40.
Exorcist XIV: The Wrath of Maxwell's Demon. Part II. From Szilard to Landauer and Beyond.John Norton - 1999 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 30 (1):1-40.
Maxwell's Demon and the Thermodynamics of Computation.Jeffrey Bub - 2001 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 32 (4):569-579.
Information-Theoretic Statistical Mechanics Without Landauer's Principle.D. Parker - 2011 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (4):831-856.
Maxwell's Demon.Orly Shenker & Meir Hemmo - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (8):389-411.
The Connection Between Logical and Thermodynamic Irreversibility.James Ladyman, Stuart Presnell, Anthony J. Short & Berry Groisman - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 38 (1):58-79.
The Thermodynamic Cost of Fast Thought.Alexandre Castro - 2013 - Minds and Machines 23 (4):473-487.

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2010-09-01

Total downloads

57 ( #89,682 of 2,153,830 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

8 ( #90,536 of 2,153,830 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums