The Physics of Life explores the roots of the big question by examining the deepest urges and properties of living things, both animate and inanimate: how to live longer, with food, warmth, power, movement and free access to other people and surroundings. Bejan explores controversial and relevant issues such as sustainability, water and food supply, fuel, and economy, to critique the state in which the world understands positions of power and freedom. Breaking down concepts such as desire and power, sports health and culture, the state of economy, water and energy, politics and distribution, Bejan uses the language of physics to explain how each system works in order to clarify the meaning of evolution in its broadest scientific sense, moving the reader towards a better understanding of the world's systems and the natural evolution of cultural and political development.
The Physics of Life argues that the evolution phenomenon is much broader and older than the evolutionary designs that constitute the biosphere, empowering readers with a new view of the globe and the future, revealing that the urge to have better ideas has the same physical effect as the urge to have better laws and better government. This is evolution explained loudly but also elegantly, forging a path that flows sustainability.
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Adrian Bejan, chair professor of Mechanical Engineering at Duke University, is one of the world's preeminent energy scientists who developed the Constructal Law of design and evolution in nature. He also currently holds chairs at the University of Evora, University of Pretoria, and Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He has written leading books on applied physics, including Design in Nature, Advanced Engineering Thermodynamics, Convection Heat Transfer, and Convection in Porous Media. He has given two TED lectures.Review:
"Bejan isn’t the first person to study behavior as physics, or to use physics to describe wider systems. But his new book, The Physics of Life: The Evolution of Everything, may be the broadest consideration yet. Harking back to the original definition of the discipline―'knowledge of nature' in Greek―he ultimately concludes that 'life and evolution are physics.'" ―National Geographic
"Riveting and poetic...Renowned energy scientist Bejan...elegantly argues that evolution transcends the boundaries of the biological and governs the flow of all phenomena...Unique and entirely fascinating, this book will linger in your consciousness and prompt you to look at the world with fresh eyes." ―Kirkus Reviews (Starred)
"In this quirky, occasionally ingenious work, Bejan explores evolution as a phenomenon not of biology but of physics." ―Publisher's Weekly
"Bejan’s book and the theory that it expounds, I believe, would soon establish a new paradigm for biology, sociology, and human and cultural studies. Just as the laws of physics created a unifying vision of the universe and lead to a continuous development of technology, so will this breakthrough concept for these fields. With its depth and breadth, this book seized my attention, took hold of my imagination and resolved many design questions my field faces. Finally, 'design' can be grounded in theory, not simply observation and intuitive groping for answers; a theory that has explanatory and predictive power. In this sense, absorbing the book’s message becomes a liberating experience; it removes doubt and uncertainty from routine practical efforts. And with this certainty, comes a hopeful message amidst voices of gloom: the future is constructive, open-ended and full of promise. This book transcends The Origin of Species and complements Principia Mathematica" ―Fanis Grammenos, author of Remaking the City Street Grid – a new model for urban and suburban development.
"Anyone interested in wealth, happiness, freedom, sports, politics, cities, market, physics, biology―in life itself will find this book magnificently illuminating. You can turn to any page and find riveting insights into important fields of knowledge that will leave you better off." ―Victor Niederhoffer, chairman of Manchester trading and author of Education of a Speculator
"A revolutionary new way to understand the world around us―from the natural sphere to the human body to political and cultural institutions―based on author Bejan’s unique insights into the science of physics. Written with a deft touch for both experts and (myself among them) lay people, this book is a must-read; you won’t look at, well, birth, death and everything in between the same. If you enjoyed Jared Diamond’s writings on biology and Stephen Hawking’s on cosmology, you love The Physics of Life." ―New York Times bestselling author Jeffery Deaver
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