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From Stars to Brains: Milestones in the Planetary Evolution of Life and Intelligence

Authors: Glikson, Andrew Y.

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  • Offers a treatise on evolution of life and intelligence
  • Covers an Earth science-based view of evolution
  • Presents a discussion of the origin of complexity in nature
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eBook $69.99
price for USA in USD (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-10603-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $89.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-030-10602-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

The permutation of basic atoms—nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen, carbon and  phosphorus―into the biomolecules DNA and RNA, subsequently evolved in cells and brains, defining the origin of life and intelligence, remains unexplained. Equally the origin of the genetic information and the intertwined nature of ‘hardware’ and ‘software’ involved in the evolution of bio-molecules and the cells are shrouded in mystery. This treatise aims at exploring individual and swarm behaviour patterns which potentially hint at as yet unknown biological principles. It reviews theories of evolution with perspectives from the earth sciences, commencing with the earliest observed records of life. This is followed by reviews and discussion of the building blocks of life, marine and terrestrial communities, the arthropods, birds and finally humans. It is suggested that, further to the mutation/natural selection processes established by Darwin and Wallace, an understanding of the evolution of intelligence remains little understood. A directionality of evolutionary trajectories is evident, not least the purposeful thinking process of humans as well as animals. It is not clear how directional intelligence, manifested for example by the collective intelligence of arthropod colonies, has evolved from mutation/natural selection processes. Potential clues for the understanding of life and evolution are provided by Aristotle’s dictum of “the whole being greater than the sum of the parts”, Niels Bohr’s principle of quantum complementarity and George Ellis’ theory of top-down causality. Inherent in the question of the origin of life is an anthropocentric bias, related to the self-referential Anthropic Principle and theological paradigms of man’s supposed dominion over all other species. The Anthropic Principle, however, should be capable of being circumvented using the scientific falsification method, assuming  universal verified constants of physics. The phenomenon of the human mastery of fire and the splitting of the atom, leading to the seventh major mass extinction of species, remains incomprehensible.

About the authors

Andrew Yoram Glikson, an Earth and paleo-climate scientist at the Australian National University, studied geology at the University of Jerusalem and graduated at the University of Western Australia. He conducted geological surveys of the oldest geological formations in Australia, South Africa, India and Canada, underpinning the effects of large asteroid impacts, including their effects on the atmosphere and oceans and the mass extinction of species. Since 2005 he studied the relations between climate and human evolution.


Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $69.99
price for USA in USD (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-10603-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $89.99
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-3-030-10602-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
From Stars to Brains: Milestones in the Planetary Evolution of Life and Intelligence
Authors
Copyright
2019
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-10603-4
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-10603-4
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-10602-7
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XXIV, 160
Number of Illustrations
3 b/w illustrations, 79 illustrations in colour
Topics