Chaos and complexity

It is hard, of course, to be awake in the twentyfirst century and not be aware of chaos theory and complexity (Steven Spielberg's dinosaur movie guaranteed that). But it is important to recognize that these remarkable properties of nonlinear dynamical systems were appreciated only in the late 1970s (although some of the more mathematical behavior was known long before that). The history by Gleick (1988) is well worth reading. Strogatz (1994) provides a good introduction to more mathematical approaches and Stewart (2000) has written a short turn-of-the-millennium report on the subject.

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