Len Fisher's Crashes, Crises, and Calamities: How We Can Use Science to PDF

By Len Fisher

ISBN-10: 0465021026

ISBN-13: 9780465021024

Why do convinced civilizations, societies, and ecosystems cave in? How does the domino impression relate to the credits crunch? while can arithmetic aid clarify marriage? and the way in the world do toads are expecting earthquakes? the longer term is doubtful. yet technological know-how might help foretell what lies ahead.Drawing on ecology and biology, math and physics, Crashes, Crises, and Calamities deals 4 primary instruments that scientists and engineers use to forecast the chance of unexpected switch: balance, disaster, complexity, and video game theories. In available prose, Len Fisher demonstrates how we will be able to foresee and deal with occasions that would in a different way trap us through surprise.At the leading edge of technology, Fisher is helping us locate how you can act prior to a full-fledged disaster is upon us. Crashes, Crises, and Calamities is a witty and informative exploration of the chaos, complexity, and styles of our day-by-day lives.

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Robert Todd Carroll, author of The Skeptic’s Dictionary, explains premonitions in terms of “the Law of Truly Large Numbers”: Say the odds are a million to one that when a person has a dream of an airplane crash, there is an airplane crash the next day. 5 million people a day who have dreams that seem clairvoyant. True believers, though, will always hang on to their belief that premonitions must have “something in them,” even though Aristotle dismissed precognition, Freud himself ridiculed the idea that dreams could reveal the future, and modern “clairvoyants” have repeatedly failed scientific tests of their supposed abilities and often been exposed as frauds.

Nimrod would have had to be virtually all bone to support his own weight at the earth’s surface, and a three-quarters-of-a-mile-high walking, talking Lucifer would be frankly impossible. Unaware at the time of the disproportionate scaling required for objects to be able to support their own weight, Galileo blithely continued to apply the principle of simple proportion to calculate the thickness of the roof. Here he decided to scale up the dimensions of Brunelleschi’s famous self-supporting dome in Florence Cathedral, which is 147 feet wide at the base, yet only 13 feet thick on average.

The dome of the sky was divided into degrees, with the stars represented by pearls and the earth, sun, moon, and planets by precious stones, all being moved by hand to follow their changing positions in the sky. Unfortunately for Hsi and Ho, a planetarium was not the only thing that they had access to. It appears that they also had an entrée to the emperor’s store of wine, which they were busy drinking when the eclipse made its unpredicted appearance. According to the ancient Chinese document Shu Ching, “Hsi and Ho, drunk with wine, had made no use of their talents.

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Crashes, Crises, and Calamities: How We Can Use Science to Read the Early-Warning Signs by Len Fisher

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