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A New Kind of Science

Written by Stephen Wolfram

Dramatic discoveries from one of the world's most respected scientists.

Starting from a collection of simple computer
experiments—illustrated in the book by striking computer graphics—Stephen Wolfram shows how their unexpected results force a whole new way of looking at the operation of our universe.

Wolfram uses his approach to tackle a remarkable array of fundamental problems in science, from the origins of apparent randomness in physical systems, to the development of complexity in biology, the ultimate scope and limitations of mathematics, the possibility of a truly fundamental theory of physics, the interplay between free will and determinism, and the character of intelligence in the universe. Buy Online »

Contents

Preface | The Foundations for a New Kind of Science | The Crucial Experiment | The World of Simple Programs | Systems Based on Numbers | Two Dimensions and Beyond | Starting from Randomness | Mechanisms in Programs and Nature | Implications for Everyday Systems | Fundamental Physics | Processes of Perception and Analysis | The Notion of Computation | The Principle of Computational Equivalence | Notes | Index

About the Author

Stephen Wolfram was born in London and educated at Eton, Oxford, and Caltech. He received his PhD in theoretical physics in 1979 at the age of 20, and in the early 1980s made a series of discoveries which launched the field of complex systems research. Starting in 1986 he created Mathematica, the primary software system now used for technical computing worldwide, and the tool which made A New Kind of Science possible. Wolfram is the founder and CEO of Wolfram Research, Inc.—the world's leading technical software company. [He is also the creator of the Wolfram|Alpha computational knowledge engine launched in 2009.]