Deep Simplicity: Chaos, Complexity and the Emergence of Life (Penguin Press Science) Paperback – 27 Jan 2005
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"Exhilarating... Gribbin uses a step-by-step historical method to ground contemporary thought in classical physics' the Daily Telegraph 'Gribbin...takes us through the basics of all this with his customary talent for accessibility and clarity' the Sunday Times '(Gribbin) breathes life into the core ideas of complexity science, and argues convincingly that the basic laws, even in biology, will ultimately turn out to be simple' Nature' "What makes Deep Simplicity different from other books on complexity theory is that Gribbin ! goes back to the fundamentals' Daily Telegraph 'Gribbin takes us through the basics with his customary talent for accessibility and clarity' Sunday Times 'One is left feeling even more - if this is possible - filled with admiration for science and delight at the world it investigates' Financial Times 'Gribbin breathes life into the core ideas of complexity science' Nature'
About the Author
John Gribbin is one of today's greatest writers of popular science and the author of bestselling books, including In Search of Schrödinger's Cat, Stardust, Science: A History and Deep Simplicity. He is famous to his many fans for making complex ideas simple, and says that his aim in his writing - much of it done with his wife, Mary Gribbin - is to share with his readers his sense of wonder at the strangeness of the universe. John Gribbin trained as an astrophysicist at Cambridge University and is currently Visiting Fellow in Astronomy at the University of Sussex.
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Top Customer Reviews
In the chapter on the facts of life in particular his contrived arguments in support of neo-Darwinism simply cause one to ask if this is a really serious book.Read more ›
The scene set, the book then focuses on its chosen area of interest, the role of chaos in the development of life and its evolution. In particular it focuses on what it describes as activity at `the edge of chaos', the point where things begin to get interesting - where outcomes are deterministic, but not predictable. It is in this apparent paradox that the fascination of chaos lies.
Though the answer to the question where did life come from still sits a little out of reach of this book and our understanding, the picture created provides an overwhelming case for the presence and importance of chaos not simply in the construction of our world through the shaping of trees or river estuaries for example, but also in the operation of our world. Here we are not simply interested in the ways that trees grow or river estuaries form, but throughout the whole range of processes of how things work from the orbiting of the planets, to the frequencies of electrical interference on telephone lines.
Indeed Beniot Mandelbrot, one of chaos theory's pioneers, developed many of his ideas attempting to solve precisely this problem whilst employed at IBM, He concluded that interference was inevitable the solution was to detect corrupted data and resend.
Somewhat startlingly this same pattern of inevitability of unpredictable events can be seen throughout the operation of many of nature's processes. For example the frequency and severity of earthquakes follows the same fractal pattern, as does the pattern of craters on the moon, and thereby on the Earth. This is leading geologists and seismologists to profoundly rethink their understanding.Read more ›
It certainly left me with the feeling not just that I vaguely understood current trends, but that I really understood where those trends and theories *came from*. And that, for me, is the hallmark of a very exceptional book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not much original thought, a combination of basic physics and name dropping through history.Published 12 months ago by Mr. Neil Thomason
The universe has some surprising commonalities. Earthquakes, piles of sands about to collapse, the beating of the human heart, Bach's Brandenburg Concerti. Read morePublished on 12 May 2014 by Nya Murray
Interesting book. Gives a new perspective on nature and the evolution of life. I read it because Charlie Munger recommended it and he nailed it one more time.Published on 28 Dec. 2013 by Diego Otero
An excellent follow up to Gleick's Chaos - Making a new Science, for the layman and student alike. Easy to understand explanations although in some areas he does seem to miss the... Read morePublished on 1 Dec. 2012 by Malc
Chaos theory is said to be one of the most important governing theories of the function of Universe. Read morePublished on 20 Jan. 2010 by A. S. Laourdekis
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