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Principles of Quantitative Living Systems Science

  • James R. Simms

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Pages 1-14
  3. Pages 169-192
  4. Pages 193-229
  5. Pages 257-266
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 267-280

About this book

Introduction

In 1978, when the book Living Systems was published, it contained the prediction that the sciences that were concerned with the biological and social sciences would, in the future, be stated as rigorously as the “hard sciences” that study such nonliving phenomena as temperature, distance, and the interaction of chemical elements. Principles of Quantitative Living Systems Science, the first of a planned series of three books, begins an attempt to fulfill that prediction. The view that living things are similar to other parts of the physical world, differing only in their complexity, was explicitly stated in the early years of the twentieth century by the biologist Ludwig von Bertalanffy. His ideas could not be published until the end of the war in Europe in the 1940s. Von Bertalanffy was strongly opposed to vitalism, the theory current among biologists at the time that life could only be explained by recourse to a “vital principle” or God. He c- sidered living things to be a part of the natural order, “systems” like atoms and molecules and planetary systems. Systems were described as being made up of a number of interrelated and interdependent parts, but because of the interrelations, the total system became more than the sum of those parts. These ideas led to the development of systems movements, in both Europe and the United States, that included not only biologists but scientists in other fields as well. Systems societies were formed on both continents.

Keywords

animals behavior development equation evolution form information measure organization time

Authors and affiliations

  • James R. Simms
    • 1
  1. 1.Simms Industries, Inc.Fulton

Bibliographic information

  • DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/b116791
  • Copyright Information Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002
  • Publisher Name Springer, Boston, MA
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-0-306-45979-5
  • Online ISBN 978-0-306-46966-4
  • Series Print ISSN 1574-0463
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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