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Turtles, Termites, and Traffic Jams: Explorations in Massively Parallel Microworlds
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Turtles, Termites, and Traffic Jams: Explorations in Massively Parallel Microworlds

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  66 ratings  ·  7 reviews
Mitchel Resnick's book is one of the very few in the field of computing with an interdisciplinary discourse that can reach beyond the technical community to philsoophers, psychologists, and historians and sociologists of science."
-- Sherry Turkle, Professor, Program in Science, Technology, and Society, Massachusetts Institute of Technology "Resnick's work provides a rare
Paperback, 184 pages
Published January 22nd 1997 by Bradford Book (first published 1994)
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The Cambrian Cloud
Overall a nice book though I am partial to the first half in which Resnick does an excellent job of describing how large numbers of simple agents, following simple rules are capable of self organizing so as to produce enormously complex interactions in nature. Classic examples of self organizing behavior are ants, termites, flocks of geese etc...The second half of the book is more specifically geared toward the development of experimental software capable of producing complex behaviors found in ...more
Charlie Whitney
Though StarLogo, the program in which much of the book takes place, is dated, the ideas are still very relevant and interesting to consider, perhaps even more so in the light of social media. The main point of the book revolves around the idea of a decentralization as a method of programming and understand behavior. How do lots of small autonomous creatures interact without a leader? I'd like to think that facebook and twitter users are more complex creatures than logo turtles, but for some reas ...more
Interesting albeit dated, but a good intro to the field for someone with no background.
Feb 04, 2008 Kip rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: students of emergent systems
This was recommended by a friend who re-reads it every year or so. It's good, and powerful as a book that introduces you to ideas, but it's 1997 and feels pretty dated. It's good to read for academic completeness, but later books cover its argument.

A very nice and easy to read book which introduce us to the massive parallel computational systems. The author studies several problems from the "parallel point of view" using a variant of the Logo programming language.

Very didactic and enjoyable!
Ajay Menon
More about computing than economics really, but at it's core the book is about the study of decentralised systems. It's a solid exploration, but possibly dated given that it was published in the '90's.
A quick read, unassumingly written. I really like the things Resnick has to say about the "centralized mindset" and how to combat it through education that employs playful computer simulations.
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