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Entropy 2013, 15(8), 3297-3311; doi:10.3390/e15083297

Entropy and Computation: The Landauer-Bennett Thesis Reexamined

Department of Philosophy, University of Haifa, Haifa 31905, Israel
Program in the History and Philosophy of Science, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem 91905, Israel
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 July 2013 / Revised: 2 August 2013 / Accepted: 14 August 2013 / Published: 21 August 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Maxwell’s Demon 2013)
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The so-called Landauer-Bennett thesis says that logically irreversible operations (physically implemented) such as erasure necessarily involve dissipation by at least kln2 per bit of lost information. We identify the physical conditions that are necessary and sufficient for erasure and show that the thesis does not follow from the principles of classical mechanics. In particular, we show that even if one assumes that information processing is constrained by the laws of classical mechanics, it need not be constrained by the Second Law of thermodynamics.
Keywords: entropy; erasure; Landauer-Bennett thesis; macrostates; Second Law of thermodynamics entropy; erasure; Landauer-Bennett thesis; macrostates; Second Law of thermodynamics
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Hemmo, M.; Shenker, O. Entropy and Computation: The Landauer-Bennett Thesis Reexamined. Entropy 2013, 15, 3297-3311.

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