I finished Biocosm last week.  Finally.

It’s odd that it’s “Finally” – the book is really actually very interesting: a little bit of evolution, a little bit of cosmology, and a little bit of singularity theory all rolled into one volume.  It was like the Neopolitan of pop science books – three great flavors rolled into one.  For some reason, though, I kept bogging down in the first half.  I think it was me, not the book.

The premise of the book is that the reason the Universe is so life-friendly (sure, the universe may not be overflowing with life, but the natural laws almost ensure that intelligent life will develop somewhere, if not many somewheres) is that because intelligent life is what causes the universe to replicate itself, to create new little Big Bangs.  Fully actualized intelligence, once it is has reached the point where it has maximized the computations that the matter in the universe can produce, will be creating new big bangs as a side-product of these computations at a much faster rate than an unpopulated universe would.  Thus, a universe with intelligent life is more fit to reproduce, so it’s not surprising that we’re in a universe that produces intelligent life.

(Actually, I think the discussion supporting the premise of the book may be a little more exciting than the premise itself.)