He identifies two distinct components in these human systems, the materials that constitute the infrastructure and the creative work that is produced. It turned out that fractals can explain a lot of complex systems using quite simple equations. Brilliantly, West has spent an entire career uncovering a few simple laws that put constraints on the evolution of any organism or non organism for that matter. Bad news for Peter Thiel and the Silicon Valley bros who are trying to overcome dying and some terrible news at the end for humanity. Even the waste products themselves are wonderful energy packed nutrients. A fact he rarely mentions when discussing the log tables he so loves. Is there an optimum size of cities, animals and plants? But I picked up some gems that I never knew before this book.
So the chart in the book is not only misleading by construction, it conveys the wrong idea. This fascinating book deserves very wide readership. Most people would guess that a cat that weighs 100 times more than a mouse requires 100 times more energy to sustain its life. He thinks that the new way forward must combine traditional scientific thinking and big data. Do cities, companies and human beings have natural, pre-determined lifespans? Since all life has independently optimized its metabolism: all life has discovered fractals. Their utility depends on the extent to which they capture some fundamental essence of how nature works, the extent to which their assumptions are reasonable, their logic sound, and their simplicity or explanatory power and internal consistency in agreement with observations. West spends quite a bit of time discussing aging.
Despite the movies making him agile. Both books, had a bigger problem for me. Speaking egocentrically, I'm quite frustrated with elusiveness of the presentation of theories in this book, perhaps partly due to West's absolute avoidance of any equation. Geoffrey West is a theoretical physicist, who has spent a lot of time at the Santa Fe Institute, deriving theoretical scaling laws, and applying them successfully to biology, cities, and companies. I have zero doubt that cities metabolize. There are probably well over fifty such scaling laws and another big surprise is their corresponding exponents the analog of the three quarters in Kleiber's law are invariably very close to simple multiples of one quarter. But very differently to the individual style owned before.
Furthermore, the efficiency of the mammalâs circulatory systems scales up precisely based on weight: if you compare a mouse, a human and an elephant on a logarithmic graph, you find with every doubling of average weight, a species gets 25% more efficientâand lives 25% longer. West has established a quantifiable physical framework how organisms are developing and why. The most perplexing question he addresses is, why do most cities live forever, while companies have short lifetimes? You see, all animals live for around one and a half billion heartbeats. Likewise, a metropolis can be seen as a scaled-up small town, and yet city life has a very different quality than does small-town life. Plants take in nutrients photons of light, carbon from the air, and water and nitrogen from soil and expel waste products H2O.
About 100 pages of the chapter on cities talks about sociology; it's framed as historical background which will help you explain his theory. While the concept of a mathematical formulation of biological scaling laws outlined in the first few chapters is interesting, unfortunately I did not like the style of this book and found it increasingly irritating as it went on. West applies his physicist's mind, trained in using mathematics to discern patterns hidden in nature, to reveal truths never-expected about biology, urban planning, and economics. Most of the world is not best modeled linearly this is why we have statisticians. The book claims that the odds of a company lasting 200 years are zero, and that the few exceptions are tiny companies. He writes clearly, with humor, humility, a minimum of necessary math, and only rare clots of technical jargon.
Scale addresses big, urgent questions about global sustainability, population explosion, urbanization, ageing, cancer, human lifespans and the increasing pace of life, but also encourages us to que Geoffrey West's research centres on a quest to find unifying principles and patterns connecting everything, from cells and ecosystems to cities, social networks and businesses. Ao longo do livro, ele discute princípios gerais pelos quais o mundo opera quando mudamos de esca Um daqueles livros raros e excelentes que integra áreas enormes com conceitos claros, bem explicados e detalhados por alguém que entende muito do que está falando. Why do cities keep growing and live almost forever? This was not true for businesses. And Scale is its story' -- Steven Strogatz, Professor of Mathematics, Cornell University and author of The Joy of X 'An enchanting intellectual odyssey. The author also limits the study to public companies, which are somewhat less important than even 20 years ago.
West's early papers, co-authored with James Brown and Brian Enquist, have spawned a myriad of works, extending scaling laws beyond biology into almost every fabric of our lives. There is a lot of first-rate material as well, but it's not packaged well. This part gave me hope for Chicago which is in a strong reversal decline after a stagnation plus period, but will rebound. It's true there is a citation to the original work although not a very helpful one. Geoffrey West is a theoretical physicist, who has spent a lot of time at the Santa Fe Institute, deriving theoretical scaling laws, and applying them successfully to biology, cities, and companies. . I think trying to understand companies from massive averaged datasets, without looking at the actual facts, is a slippery slope.
He wants to know the underlying common maths, the general quantitative theories and dynamics that seem to mechanistically link apparently disparate phenomena such as stock markets, vascular networks, fractals, size metrics and how they will evolve. Further, it would have been nice if the book wasn't only descriptive, but also prescriptive Ie what the information about cities can provide urban planners. One the one hand, one can get lulled into a false sense of understanding when the same mathematical relationship emerges in such a wide variety of contexts. By the end you realize it was just him cov This book is frustrating, it has some really cool facts and a lot of his philosophy of science which I mostly appreciated. He also holds visiting positions at Oxford University, Imperial College, and Nanyang Technical University in Singapore. This fascinating book deserves a very wide readership' -- Lord Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal 'An absolutely riveting read.