Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale And The Nature Of History (Unabridged) Audio Cassette – Audiobook, August 1, 1990
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The reading may be too detailed and "boring" to the lay--but that is what a seminal and perfectly reasoned logical epoch making piece should be. After 30 years, I am still awe-stricken when thinking of the ramification of this corollary to Darwin's original idea. Gould makes it so much more complete---and mathematical: the laws of probabilities working as the final determinant.
I was lucky enough (pawns intended) to meet Dr. Gould as a colleague (but not fit enough--given the major age difference). And I am so proud of having held the company of a giant of science and a keen observer such as him.
Gould writes to be accessible to all people, certainly not just scientists. But he's also faithful to the science, patiently describing the evidence and its place in the story.
Illustrations are plentiful and add greatly to the explanations.
My personal favourite fossil, the amazing pikaia, is left to the end. I wanted more about this little treasure. For this I removed a star.
For the rest of the book I give five stars.
If you're interested in the real history of life on Earth, you'll be glad to read this. Especially if you're not a traditional scientist.
easy to identify and name the leg bones of a T Rex from hundreds of millions of years ago because the bone structure is virtually identical to humans. The answer seems to be random physical events for which particular characteristics
of life forms have particular survival value. Thus evolution is not a steady march toward perfection but a journey through time interrupted by physical events that semi-randomly select for particular life forms.