By Michael Boulter
"Sixty-five million years in the past the dinosaurs have been destroyed in a mass extinction that continues to be unexplained. Out of that devastation, new existence constructed and the realm regained its equilibrium. earlier. using greatly new views at the technology of existence, scientists are starting to discover indicators of an analogous occasion at the horizon: the top of guy. In telling the tale of the final sixty-five million years, Michael Boulter finds striking new insights that scientists are just now commencing to comprehend concerning the fossil list, the increase and fall of species, and the character of existence. in keeping with Boulter, nature is a self-organizing method during which the entire is extra very important than its elements. The approach is self-correcting, and one in every of its instruments is extinction. If the procedure is disrupted, it is going to do what it needs to to revive stability. This ebook is a completely researched advent to the recent advancements within the technology of lifestyles and a chilling account of the results that people have had on the earth. the area will adapt and continue to exist; humanity most likely will not."--Publisher's description. Read more...
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Extra resources for Extinction: evolution and the end of man
The ﬁve prototype groups of new angiosperms had been tried and tested for millions of years and they worked well, though opportunities were limited. Suddenly, lots of new space opened up where once there had been conifer forest. The explosion of numbers of individual angiosperms had begun. When I ﬁrst noticed this sudden fall in the number of records of pine, another thought about the potential value of database mining came into my head. It was an application of my inversion of Lyell’s principle of uniformitarianism, mentioned in chapter 1.
The lower white layer was full of microscopic seashells well known to be Late Cretaceous in age. The red rock was like that found all over the region, known to be Early Tertiary. The clay lay between these two differently dated rocks. Did it come from the Cretaceous or the Tertiary? Were all three layers laid down in one continuous sequence? Or does the clay layer represent some kind of break in the process, a gap? Walter knew that his father’s laboratory was testing a new method of dating rocks that contain traces of heavy metal elements.
Our results have the same pattern as those from the third system. Nature, we argue, is in control of itself: biological evolution is controlled from within that system of life on Earth. Our analysis encourages a different way of looking at the large datasets of biological information from all the different disciplines now being brought together. It takes us away from the search for laws, precise deﬁnitions and quantitative testing. Instead, it leads us back into the state of mind where we worked with mystery and uncertainty, accepting that we cannot explain everything in detail.