The Nonlinear Universe

Author: Alwyn C. Scott
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3540341536
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Written in Alwyn Scott’s inimitable style, one that readers will find both lucid and accessible, this masterwork elucidates the explosion of activity in nonlinear science in recent decades. The book explains the wide-ranging implications of nonlinear phenomena for future developments in many areas of modern science, including mathematics, physics, engineering, chemistry, biology, and neuroscience. Arguably as important as quantum theory, modern nonlinear science is essential for understanding the scientific developments of the twenty-first century.

Quantum Superposition

Author: Mark P. Silverman
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9783540718840
Format: PDF, ePub
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A clear and engaging discussion Written by a highly respected quantum physicist Puzzling phenomena made comprehensible Describes solutions to challenging quandries in physics

Mindful Universe

Author: Henry P. Stapp
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9783642180767
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The classical mechanistic idea of nature that prevailed in science during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries was an essentially mindless conception: the physically described aspects of nature were asserted to be completely determined by prior physically described aspects alone, with our conscious experiences entering only passively. During the twentieth century the classical concepts were found to be inadequate. In the new theory, quantum mechanics, our conscious experiences enter into the dynamics in specified ways not fixed by the physically described aspects alone. Consequences of this radical change in our understanding of the connection between mind and brain are described. This second edition contains two new chapters investigating the role of quantum phenomena in the problem of free will and in the placebo effect.

Symmetry Rules

Author: Joseph Rosen
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9783540759737
Format: PDF, Mobi
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When we use science to describe and understand the world around us, we are in essence grasping nature through symmetry. Emphasizing the concepts, this book leads the reader coherently and comprehensively into the fertile field of symmetry and its applications. Among the most important applications considered are the fundamental forces of nature and the Universe. Written by a renowned expert, this book will convince all interested readers of the importance of symmetry in science.

Relativity and the Nature of Spacetime

Author: Vesselin Petkov
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3642019625
Format: PDF, ePub
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Puts the emphasis on conceptual questions: Why is there no such thing as absolute motion? What is the physical meaning of relativity of simultaneity? But, the most important question that is addressed in this book is "what is the nature of spacetime?" or, equivalently, "what is the dimensionality of the world at the macroscopic level?" Develops answers to these questions via a thorough analysis of relativistic effects and explicitly asking whether the objects involved in those effects are three-dimensional or four-dimensional. Discusses the implication of the result (this analysis clearly shows that if the world and the physical objects were three-dimensional, none of the kinematic relativistic effects and the experimental evidence supporting them would be possible) for physics, philosophy, and our entire world view are discussed.

The Seneca Effect

Author: Ugo Bardi
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319572075
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The essence of this book can be found in a line written by the ancient Roman Stoic Philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca: "Fortune is of sluggish growth, but ruin is rapid". This sentence summarizes the features of the phenomenon that we call "collapse," which is typically sudden and often unexpected, like the proverbial "house of cards." But why are such collapses so common, and what generates them? Several books have been published on the subject, including the well known "Collapse" by Jared Diamond (2005), "The collapse of complex societies" by Joseph Tainter (1998) and "The Tipping Point," by Malcom Gladwell (2000). Why The Seneca Effect? This book is an ambitious attempt to pull these various strands together by describing collapse from a multi-disciplinary viewpoint. The reader will discover how collapse is a collective phenomenon that occurs in what we call today "complex systems," with a special emphasis on system dynamics and the concept of "feedback." From this foundation, Bardi applies the theory to real-world systems, from the mechanics of fracture and the collapse of large structures to financial collapses, famines and population collapses, the fall of entire civilzations, and the most dreadful collapse we can imagine: that of the planetary ecosystem generated by overexploitation and climate change. The final objective of the book is to describe a conclusion that the ancient stoic philosophers had already discovered long ago, but that modern system science has rediscovered today. If you want to avoid collapse you need to embrace change, not fight it. Neither a book about doom and gloom nor a cornucopianist's dream, The Seneca Effect goes to the heart of the challenges that we are facing today, helping us to manage our future rather than be managed by it.

The Essential Tension

Author: Sonya Bahar
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 9402410546
Format: PDF, Mobi
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'The Essential Tension' explores how agents that naturally compete come to act together as a group. The author argues that the controversial concept of multilevel selection is essential to biological evolution, a proposition set to stimulate new debate. The idea of one collective unit emerging from the cooperative interactions of its constituent (and mutually competitive) parts has its roots in the ancient world. More recently, it has illuminated studies of animal behavior, and played a controversial role in evolutionary biology. In Part I, the author explores the historical development of the idea of a collectivity in biological systems, from early speculations on the sociology of human crowd behavior, through the mid-twentieth century debates over the role of group selection in evolution, to the notion of the selfish gene. Part II investigates the balance between competition and cooperation in a range of contemporary biological problems, from flocking and swarming to experimental evolution and the evolution of multicellularity. Part III addresses experimental studies of cooperation and competition, as well as controversial ideas such as the evolution of evolvability and Stephen Jay Gould’s suggestion that “spandrels” at one level of selection serve as possible sources of variability for the next higher level. Finally, building on the foundation established in the preceding chapters, the author arrives at a provocative new proposition: as a result of the essential tension between competition and cooperation, multiple levels may be essential in order for evolutionary processes to occur at all.

Structure Formation in the Universe

Author: T. Padmanabhan
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521424868
Format: PDF, ePub
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Understanding the way in which large-scale structures such as galaxies form remains the most challenging problem in cosmology today. This text provides an up-to-date and pedagogical introduction to this exciting area of research. Part 1 deals with the Friedmann model, the thermal history of the universe, and includes a description of observed structures in the universe. Part 2 describes the theory of gravitational instability in both the linear and nonlinear regimes. This part also includes chapters on the microwave background radiation, Large-scale velocity fields, quasars, and high redshift objects. Part 3 of the book covers inflation, cosmic strings, and dark matter. Each chapter is accompanied by a comprehensive set of exercises to help the reader in self-study.

Information and Interaction

Author: Ian T. Durham
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319437607
Format: PDF
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In this essay collection, leading physicists, philosophers, and historians attempt to fill the empty theoretical ground in the foundations of information and address the related question of the limits to our knowledge of the world. Over recent decades, our practical approach to information and its exploitation has radically outpaced our theoretical understanding - to such a degree that reflection on the foundations may seem futile. But it is exactly fields such as quantum information, which are shifting the boundaries of the physically possible, that make a foundational understanding of information increasingly important. One of the recurring themes of the book is the claim by Eddington and Wheeler that information involves interaction and putting agents or observers centre stage. Thus, physical reality, in their view, is shaped by the questions we choose to put to it and is built up from the information residing at its core. This is the root of Wheeler’s famous phrase “it from bit.” After reading the stimulating essays collected in this volume, readers will be in a good position to decide whether they agree with this view.

Life As a Matter of Fat

Author: Ole G. Mouritsen
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3540270760
Format: PDF
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Presents a multi-disciplinary perspective on the physics of life and the particular role played by lipids and the lipid-bilayer component of cell membranes. Emphasizes the physical properties of lipid membranes seen as soft and molecularly structured interfaces. By combining and synthesizing insights obtained from a variety of recent studies, an attempt is made to clarify what membrane structure is and how it can be quantitatively described. Shows how biological function mediated by membranes is controlled by lipid membrane structure and organization on length scales ranging from the size of the individual molecule, across molecular assemblies of proteins and lipid domains in the range of nanometers, to the size of whole cells. Applications of lipids in nano-technology and biomedicine are also described.