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Customer Review

95 of 99 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another excellent book for non-experts, December 8, 2008
This review is from: Chaos: Making a New Science (Paperback)
I am not a hard scientist, but I like to have some idea of what is going on in those fields. Books like this one are ideal for people such as me. This book tackles the fascinating field of Chaos Theory. It turns out that certain patterns recur over and over in many diverse areas of the universe, whether it is the patterning of galaxies in clusters or the price of cotton.

Specialists working in many fields independently discovered curious patterns, and eventually, starting mainly in the 1970's, they became aware of each others' work. This book takes physics as the field on which it focuses, but it mentions many others. Since some of these fields involve conscious human decision making (especially economics), I have begun to wonder whether I can find comparable patterns in languages, my own specialty.

There are many reviews of a previous printing of this book: Chaos: Making a New Science, so you can go there to check them out. Other books useful to non-specialists interested in the history of and current research in the hard sciences are The Fabric of the Cosmos: Space, Time, and the Texture of Reality, A Briefer History of Time and Electric Universe: How Electricity Switched on the Modern World.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 27, 2013, 6:08:18 AM PST
Curious Geek says:
There should be patterns as to how languages evolved over time. Few languages developed completely independently. As a speaker of 5 languages, I come across words in these languages with etymologies that few native speakers of these languages are aware are evolved transplants from another culture.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 27, 2013, 10:07:45 AM PST
Language evolution involves many factors, both internal and external. In my comment above, I was thinking about internal factors.
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