6.050J | Spring 2008 | Undergraduate

Information and Entropy

Unit 4: Noise and Errors






General Technical Books

There are many excellent texts on coding theory and communications, most of which assume a familiarity with mathematics beyond introductory calculus.

  • Buy at MIT Press Truxal, John G. The Age of Electronic Messages. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1990. ISBN: 9780262701020.
    Aimed at providing technology and engineering exposure to liberal arts students. Nonmathematical, with lots of great examples. Based on material taught at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
  • Pierce, John R. An Introduction to Information Theory: Symbols, Signals, and Noise. 2nd ed. New York, NY: Dover Publications, Inc., 1980. ISBN: 9780486240619.
    Mostly nonmathematical, by one of the nation’s great scientific contributors at AT&T Bell Laboratories, who was also interested in reaching a general audience. He was later on the faculty at Caltech. One of his interesting sideline activities was writing science fiction stories under the pen name J. J. Coupling. He died April 2, 2002 at the age of 92.
  • Gallager, Robert G. Information Theory and Reliable Communications. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1968. ISBN: 9780471290483.
    One of the early textbooks, designed for first-year graduate students, by one of the pioneers in communications, an MIT faculty member, later awarded the IEEE Medal of Honor, its most prestigious award.
  • Cover, Thomas M., and Joy A. Thomas. Elements of Information Theory. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2006. ISBN: 9780471241959.
    Aimed at university seniors and first-year graduate students. One of several excellent books of that era. Professor Cover, at Stanford University, is one of the world leaders in information theory.
Learning Resource Types
Problem Sets with Solutions
Online Textbook
Programming Assignments