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# Chaos: The Making of a New Science

by
James Gleick

*Chaos*records the birth of a new science. This new science offers a way of seeing order and pattern where formerly only the random, the erratic, the unpredictable -in short, the chaotic- had been observed. In the words of Douglas Hofstadter, "It turns out that an eerie type of chaos can lurk just behind a facade of order -and yet, deep inside the chaos lurks an even eerier...more

Paperback, 368 pages

Published
December 1st 1988
by Penguin Books
(first published 1987)

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**Chaos: The Tip of a Giant Iceberg**

Gleick only gives an introduction about the actual science and beauty of Chaos. Instead he focusses on giving a poetic account of the scientists who first stumbled on it -- and their great surprise and their struggles form the narrative crux of the book.

While some may say this makes it a less informative book, for me this made it one of the most intriguing non-fiction books I have read. Gleick's way of telling the stories makes the reader share in the wonder and...more

*is*. No equations and lots of graphs, but that's just to make sure the general public isn't scared away.

Still, Gleick conveys the 'appeal' of chaos theory, or at least what people think it is about. In a complex system, the most minuscule change in initial conditions leads to drastic or unpredictable changes in the output. It is important not just in physics or...more

Jan 07, 2014
مـــــــروة
rated it
3 of 5 stars
·
review of another edition

Shelves:
science,
pdf-version

لم أبدأ الكتاب إلا بعد نصيحة من أحد مُراجعي الكتاب على الموقع، ينصح من ليس له باع في الرياضيات بألا يخاف من الإقدام على قراءته ويعده بالكثير من الحماس!

حسناً، يمكنني القول أنني لم أفهم أكثر من نصف ما جاء في الكتاب، فالكتاب يعج بتجارب فيزيائية ومبادئ رياضية عجزت عن تصورها .. ربما بحكم بعد دراستي عن هذه الأمور "المرعبة"، ولكن نصيحة القارئ تحققت جزئياً، فقد أصبح لدي حماس كبير لمعرفة المزيد عن نظرية الفوضى

سأبدأ بعيوب الكتاب، كانت هناك معلومات لا داع لها على الإطلاق، فماذا سأستفيد من معرفة مكان سكن ا...more

حسناً، يمكنني القول أنني لم أفهم أكثر من نصف ما جاء في الكتاب، فالكتاب يعج بتجارب فيزيائية ومبادئ رياضية عجزت عن تصورها .. ربما بحكم بعد دراستي عن هذه الأمور "المرعبة"، ولكن نصيحة القارئ تحققت جزئياً، فقد أصبح لدي حماس كبير لمعرفة المزيد عن نظرية الفوضى

سأبدأ بعيوب الكتاب، كانت هناك معلومات لا داع لها على الإطلاق، فماذا سأستفيد من معرفة مكان سكن ا...more

One of the compelling features of the chaos story is that this scientific breakthrough wasn't a physics, mathematics, chemistry, astronomy, or biology breakthrough; it was all of them. A mathematic...more

If you haven't studied science...more

Reading

*Chaos*will teach you that the world is neat

*and*messy, predictable and unpredictable. The way you see it depends on how you look at it. For instance, the discussion of fractals will show you that there can be infinite space within a finite area. So, while you know when you reach into a box of chocolates that you're going to get chocolate, you still have no idea exactly what you're going to get: There is infinite "space" for possibilities within the finite categorical "area" of chocol...more

This book gives a wonderful explanation of the Butterfly Effect - one of those ideas in science that everyone thinks they know and understands, but that generally people have upside down and back to front.

I really do like popular science books, particularly if they are well written, relatively easy to follow and don'...more

Gleick is a fabulous writer. Though a popular science book can only gloss a highly technical subject, Gleick does it well. But I found this book...more

*The Information.*I caught myself skipping, counting pages to the end of the chapter, even yawning and dropping off. Not a good sign for me.

Some chapters had me on the edge of my seat, or thinking "Ah ha! That's how that works." The overall sense that chaos has a sometimes deeply hidden pattern (that applies to all things) is interesting, but I didn't need...more

Gleick's use of graphics, especially fractals, to explain this mathematically driven concept, greatly benefits math challenged people like myself. His use of short, attractive chap...more

Oct 01, 2009
Matthew
rated it
5 of 5 stars
·
review of another edition

Recommends it for:
the literate.

reads like a documentary into the creation of a new science, a (I hate saying this, so overused) paradigm shifting look at how we think of complex systems. A must read for anyone into any of the sciences, they all apply equally well and are all a part of the history of chaos.

In a nutshell, chaos is a state brought about by deterministic equations (think about that) that do not settle into an equilibrium and do not display a coherent pattern.

An example frequently cited is the weather.

Basically,...more

In a nutshell, chaos is a state brought about by deterministic equations (think about that) that do not settle into an equilibrium and do not display a coherent pattern.

An example frequently cited is the weather.

Basically,...more

I have not learned as much new in a single book ever. From the coastline length concept to Mandlebrot Sets, Feibengaum constants to Lorenz attractors, Julia sets and Cantor sets, the world of non-linear mathematics that is even at the fringe of linear mathematic is deep and beautiful (literally). The concepts of fractional dimensions, bounded areas with infinite perimeters, mode-locking, bifurcations, Newton fracta...more

Jan 20, 2011
Brian Burt
rated it
3 of 5 stars
·
review of another edition

Shelves:
science-physics-mathematics

Remember when you were in school and learned about linear equations and later on linear differential equations (a block on a spring is a classic textbook example) and you thought to yourself how elegantly this system is described by this equation? For the most part this thought recurred to me throughout my schooling and did not get any better when I had moved on to more advanced equations and mathematical models only to be presented with the ever-present qualifier that friction is ignored, or ai...more

Gleick's examination of the emergence of chaos theory is well written, and relatively easy to read (relative when one compares it to the technical and academic articles on the subject upon which he draws). However, his focus is not so much on explaining the theory of chaos than on telling the story of chaos's transition from the fringe to the mainstream. In this, his work is an excellent complement to Kuhn's work on the The Structure of...more

"Douady and Hubbard used a brilliant chain of new mathematics to prove that every floating molecule does indeed hang on a filigree that binds it to all the rest, a delicate web springing from tiny outcroppings on the main...more

Feb 14, 2008
David
rated it
5 of 5 stars

Recommends it for:
everyone

Recommended to David by:
Caryn Bohn

This book was everything I wanted Brian Greene's

Honestly, the first chapter sucks you in. You read about a man who was being paid by the government to walk around (and fly across the country) just looking at clouds and thinking. Once you glimpse the mind of a man discovering a new science (in an...more

*The Elegant universe*to be: engaging, exciting, revealing... OK, maybe Greene's book is that (I haven't finished it, it's sooo sloooow), but I couldn't put*Chaos*down. It's almost like reading a mystery.Honestly, the first chapter sucks you in. You read about a man who was being paid by the government to walk around (and fly across the country) just looking at clouds and thinking. Once you glimpse the mind of a man discovering a new science (in an...more

Gleick gives an unorganized overview some fun mathematical concepts like fractals, strange attractors, and chaos theory.

But he exaggerates the importance of these topics, presenting them as a holistic revolution in physics, overthrowing reductionism, which just isn't the case.

The last chapter was incomprehensible hippie mysticism, then the book just ended leaving me wondering what the whole point was.

It seems to me like this boo...more

this book takes you deep into the heart of Chaos Theory, the science of unpredictability and disorder.

the author goes deep into many problems in many scientific fields where Chaos emerged. overall, the book was hard to read. although i have a background in engineering i faced difficulties trying to understand many things in this book. i once had to ask my friend who is studying mechanical engineering to brief me about some problems in fluid mechanics. i loved...more

*Chaos*actually isn't all that bad as a fairly shallow introduction to chaos theory. It's not what I was looking for, but exactly what I expecte...more

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رابط تحميل الكتاب | 1 | 30 | Mar 19, 2013 10:12AM |

James Gleick (born August 1, 1954) is an American author, journalist, and biographer, whose books explore the cultural ramifications of science and technology. Three of these books have been Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award finalists, and they have been translated into more than twenty languages.

Born in New York City, USA, Gleick attended Harvard College, graduating in 1976 with a degree in...more

More about James Gleick...
Born in New York City, USA, Gleick attended Harvard College, graduating in 1976 with a degree in...more

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