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System Theory

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  1. 11.1 hrs • 7/10/2012 • Unabridged

    Katrina. Haiti. BP. Fukushima. The Great Recession. Those are just a few of the catastrophic disruptions the world has endured in recent years. As we try to respond to such crises, key questions arise: What causes one system to break under great stress and another to rebound? How much change can a complex system absorb while still retaining its purpose and function? What characteristics make it adaptive to change? Through original reporting ranging across disciplines including finance, neuroscience, oceanography, and social psychology, the authors explore how in answering these questions, the new science of resilience can help our institutions become more sustainable, enduring, and humane in the face of cataclysmic events. Provocative and eye-opening, Resilience sheds light on the multifaceted nature of change and gives readers access to cutting-edge tools—developed by the leading thinkers of our time—to help us adapt to an ever-evolving world rather than fall prey to its unpredictability.

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    Resilience

    11.1 hrs • 7/10/12 • Unabridged
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  2. 9.8 hrs • 5/4/2010 • Unabridged

    A revolutionary new theory showing how we can predict human behavior-from a radical genius and best-selling author. Can we scientifically predict our future? Scientists and pseudo scientists have been pursuing this mystery for hundreds and perhaps thousands of years. But now, astonishing new research is revealing patterns in human behavior previously thought to be purely random. Precise, orderly, predictable patterns. Albert Laszlo Barabasi, already the world's preeminent researcher on the science of networks, describes his work on this profound mystery in Bursts, a stunningly original investigation into human nature. His approach relies on the digital reality of our world, from mobile phones to the Internet and email, because it has turned society into a huge research laboratory. All those electronic trails of time stamped texts, voicemails, and internet searches add up to a previously unavailable massive data set of statistics that track our movements, our decisions, our lives. Analysis of these trails is offering deep insights into the rhythm of how we do everything. His finding? We work and fight and play in short flourishes of activity followed by next to nothing. The pattern isn't random, it's "bursty." Randomness does not rule our lives in the way scientists have assumed up until now. Illustrating this revolutionary science, Barabasi artfully weaves together the story of a 16th century burst of human activity-a bloody medieval crusade launched in his homeland, Transylvania, with the modern tale of a contemporary artist hunted by the FBI through our post 9/11 surveillance society. These narratives illustrate how predicting human behavior has long been the obsession, sometimes the duty, of those in power.

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    Bursts

    9.8 hrs • 5/4/10 • Unabridged
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  3. 8.1 hrs • 11/19/2002 • Unabridged

    In the 1980’s, James Gleick’s Chaos introduced the world to complexity. Now, Albert-László Barabási’s Linked reveals the next major scientific leap: the study of networks. We’ve long suspected that we live in a small world, where everything is connected to everything else. Indeed, networks are pervasive—from the human brain to the Internet to the economy to our group of friends. These linkages, it turns out, aren’t random. All networks, to the great surprise of scientists, have an underlying order and follow simple laws. Understanding the structure and behavior of these networks will help us do some amazing things, from designing the optimal organization of a firm to stopping a disease outbreak before it spreads catastrophically. In Linked, Barabási, a physicist whose work has revolutionized the study of networks, traces the development of this rapidly unfolding science and introduces us to the scientists carrying out this pioneering work. These “new cartographers” are mapping networks in a wide range of scientific disciplines, proving that social networks, corporations, and cells are more similar than they are different, and providing important new insights into the interconnected world around us. This knowledge, says Barabási, can shed light on the robustness of the Internet, the spread of fads and viruses, even the future of democracy. Engaging and authoritative, Linked provides an exciting preview of the next century in science, guaranteed to be transformed by these amazing discoveries.

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    Linked

    8.1 hrs • 11/19/02 • Unabridged
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