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The Nonlinear World: Conceptual Analysis and Phenomenology (Springer Series in Synergetics) Hardcover – 30 Oct 2012


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From the Back Cover

The most important characteristic of the “world filled with nonlinearity” is the existence of scale interference: disparate space–time scales interfere with each other. Thus, the effects of unknowable scales invade the world that we can observe directly. This leads to various peculiar phenomena such as chaos, critical phenomena, and complex biological phenomena, among others. Conceptual analysis and phenomenology are the keys to describe and understand phenomena that are subject to scale interference, because precise description of unfamiliar phenomena requires precise concepts and their phenomenological description. The book starts with an illustration of conceptual analysis in terms of chaos and randomness, and goes on to explain renormalization group philosophy as an approach to phenomenology. Then, abduction is outlined as a way to express what we have understood about the world. The book concludes with discussions on how we can approach genuinely complex phenomena, including biological phenomena. The main target of this volume is young people who have just started to appreciate the world seriously. The author also wishes the book to be helpful to those who have been observing the world, but who wish to appreciate it afresh from a different angle.

About the Author

Professor Oono received his Dr.Eng.. in applied chemistry from Kyushu University in Japan in 1976. After serving as an assistant professor in the Research Institute of Industrial Science at Kyushu University, he joined the physics faculty at the University of Illinois in 1981.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
An illuminating book, a true gem for every thoughtful and broadminded person 22 July 2013
By Secluded Path - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Among the plethora of books about chaos, complexity and related subjects, this book stands out as a unique gem, in the same class as "Structural Stability and Morphogenesis" by Thom. This is a deep, thoughtful and clearly written work, where the author has poured years of deep thought about understanding our world. This book is very difficult to classify in the traditional subjects, it is truly interdisciplinary. On one hand there is a substantial amount of deep and difficult mathematics in it, but it is not a mathematical book. On the other hand, it is not a philosophical treatise, but abounds in thoughtful and profound discussions on the connections between dynamics, life and complexity and other broader aspects of human endeavor. As the author states, neither aspect should deter anyone from reading it: this is a book for thoughtful and broadminded people irrespective of their field of expertise. The book can also be read in many ways: either from cover to cover, chapter-wise, or even through its extensive, insightful and witty footnotes.
The downside is that it is ridiculously expensive (Springer... if you understand what I mean). I was fortunate to find it in my university library. If you are as lucky as I was do not miss the opportunity to read and re-read this treasure.
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