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How Nature Works : The Science of Self-Organized Criticality - Per Bak

How Nature Works

The Science of Self-Organized Criticality

By: Per Bak

Paperback Published: 23rd April 1999
ISBN: 9780387987385
Number Of Pages: 212

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Self-organized criticality, the spontaneous development of systems to a critical state, is the first general theory of complex systems with a firm mathematical basis. This theory describes how many seemingly desperate aspects of the world, from stock market crashes to mass extinctions, avalanches to solar flares, all share a set of simple, easily described properties.
..".a'must read'...Bak writes with such ease and lucidity, and his ideas are so intriguing...essential reading for those interested in complex systems...it will reward a sufficiently skeptical reader." -NATURE
..".presents the theory (self-organized criticality) in a form easily absorbed by the non-mathematically inclined reader." -BOSTON BOOK REVIEW
"I picture Bak as a kind of scientific musketeer; flamboyant, touchy, full of swagger and ready to join every fray... His book is written with panache. The style is brisk, the content stimulating. I recommend it as a bracing experience." -NEW SCIENTIST

Preface and Acknowledgments
Complexity and Criticalityp. 1
The Discovery of Self-Organized Criticalityp. 33
The Sandpile Paradigmp. 49
Real Sandpiles and Landscape Formationp. 65
Earthquakes, Starquakes, and Solar Flaresp. 85
The "Game of Life": Complexity Is Criticalityp. 105
Is Life a Self-Organized Critical Phenomenon?p. 113
Mass Extinctions and Punctuated Equilibria in a Simple Model of Evolutionp. 129
Theory of the Punctuated Equilibrium Modelp. 161
The Brainp. 175
On Economics and Traffic Jamsp. 183
Bibliographyp. 199
Indexp. 207
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780387987385
ISBN-10: 038798738X
Series: Copernicus
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 212
Published: 23rd April 1999
Publisher: SPRINGER VERLAG GMBH
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.24 x 15.6  x 1.88
Weight (kg): 0.33