Large Grants
    - Introduction
    - Awardees
    - Introduction
    - Winners
Previous Programs

2018 Agency in the Physical World
Awardees; RFP download

2016 Physics of the Observer
Awardees; RFP download

2015 The Physics of What Happens
Awardees; RFP download

2013 Physics of Information
Awardees; RFP download

2010 The Nature of Time
Awardees; RFP download

2008 Foundational Questions in Physics and Cosmology
Awardees; RFP download

2006 Foundational Questions in Physics and Cosmology
Awardees; RFP download

Jacob Biamonte
ISI Foundation


Mario Rasetti, ISI Foundation

Project Title

inert vs. living matter: facing the ultimate challenge of aggregate matter physics

Project Summary

If you were to send information to me, you might do so in English, with the message broken down into zeros and ones and sent through a wire. As has recently been discovered in biological experiments, cells — the building blocks that make up all life — communicate via a different language, via signals generated by small molecules. In the first track of this project we analyze the complexity of this language as it tells us how complex these life building blocks must be and what it takes to be living. In a second related track we ask how else might information be exchanged between parts of a living system. Our answer builds on the fact that the arrangement of matter and the relationship between its fundamental constituents itself represents a kind of language, which offers a medium for information exchange. In a third track, we explore how language may not only describe the communication between the building blocks of matter but also how they replicate and develop, a fundamental part of life. By studying this language of life one analyzes, from the perspective of information, what it means to be alive.

Back to List of Awardees  
Please enter your e-mail address:

Note: Joining the FQXi mailing list does not give you a login account or constitute membership in the organization.