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Emergence: The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities and Software Paperback – 1 Aug 2002

4.1 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; New Ed edition (1 Aug. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140287752
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140287752
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.7 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 98,272 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


" Mind-expanding...intelligent, witty and tremendously thought-provoking" -- The Guardian

"A delight...clever and thought provoking" -- Washington Post

"A dizzying, dazzling romp through fields as disparate as urban planning, computer game design, neurology and control theory" -- The Economist

"Fascinating and timely" -- Steven Pinker

A successful and fluent attempt to put complexity theory at the service of cultural criticism" -- Independent, Books of the Year


It is fast becoming clear that our lives revolve around the powers of emergence. Order arrives from the bottom-up, not top-down. Complexity is resolved through simplicity. Everywhere the same laws are obeyed, the same swarm logic is at work. "Emergence" looks at the cities we inhabit, the media frenzies we suffer and the games we play, showing how individual actions without central planning often create a wonderfully adaptive communal intelligence. In this compelling, revelatory book, Johnson investigates the artificial emergence which is bringing sweeping cultural and political change in its wake. Rich with insights into the future, this book allows us to witness the exhilating arrival and sudden ascendancy of a potent new idea.

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1 April 2002
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