Author | Bak, Per. author |
---|---|

Title | How Nature Works [electronic resource] : the science of self-organized criticality / by Per Bak |

Imprint | New York, NY : Springer New York : Imprint: Copernicus, 1996 |

Connect to | http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4757-5426-1 |

Descript | XIII, 212 p. 36 illus., 9 illus. in color. online resource |

SUMMARY

and acknowledgments Self-organized criticality is a new way of viewing nature. The basic picture is one where nature is perpetually out of balance, but organized in a poised state-the critical state-where anything can happen within well-defined statistical laws. The aim of the science of self-organized criticality is to yield insight into the fundamental question of why nature is complex, not simple, as the laws of physics imply. Self-organized criticality explains some ubiquitous patterns existing in nature that we view as complex. Fractal structure and catastrophic events are among those regularities. Applications range from the study of pulsars and black holes to earthquakes and the evolution of life. One intriguing conseยญ quence of the theory is that catastrophes can occur for no reason whatsoever. Mass extinctions may take place without any external triggering mechanism such as a volcanic eruption or a meteorite hitting the earth (although the theยญ ory of course cannot rule out that this has in fact occurred). xu How Nature Works Since we first proposed the idea in 1987, more than 2,ooo papers have been written on self-organized criticality, making ours the most cited paper in physics during that period. How Nature Works is the first book to deal with the subject. The basic idea is simple, and most of the mathematical models that have been used in the implementation of the theory are not complicated

CONTENT

1 Complexity and Criticality -- 2 The Discovery of Self-Organized Criticality -- 3 The Sandpile Paradigm -- 4 Real Sandpiles and Landscape Formation -- 5 Earthquakes, Starquakes, and Solar Flares -- 6 The โ{128}{156}Game of Lifeโ{128}{157}: Complexity Is Criticality -- 7 Is Life a Self-Organized Critical Phenomenon? -- 8 Mass Extinctions and Punctuated Equilibria in a Simple Model of Evolution -- 9 Theory of the Punctuated Equilibrium Model -- 10 The Brain -- 11 On Economics and Traffic Jams

Mathematics
Chemometrics
Earth sciences
Computer simulation
Mathematical analysis
Analysis (Mathematics)
Biomathematics
Statistical physics
Dynamical systems
Mathematics
Analysis
Statistical Physics Dynamical Systems and Complexity
Simulation and Modeling
Math. Applications in Chemistry
Earth Sciences general
Mathematical and Computational Biology