The Engine of Complexity: Evolution as Computation
The concepts of evolution and complexity theory have become part of the intellectual ether permeating the life sciences, the social and behavioral sciences, and, more recently, management science and economics. In this book, John E. Mayfield elegantly synthesizes core concepts from multiple disciplines to offer a new approach to understanding how evolution works and how complex organisms, structures, organizations, and social orders can and do arise based on information theory and computational science.
Intended for the intellectually adventuresome, this book challenges and rewards readers with a nuanced understanding of evolution and complexity that offers consistent, durable, and coherent explanations for major aspects of our life experiences. Numerous examples throughout the book illustrate evolution and complexity formation in action and highlight the core function of computation lying at the work's heart.
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1 The Problem
3 Structure for Free
4 Purposeful Structure
5 Improbability and the Engine of Complexity
6 Algorithmic Evolution
7 Evolution Within the Body
11 Cultural Evolution
12 The Evolution of Complexity
13 Past and Present
14 The Future