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By Eric Smith, Harold J. Morowitz

Uniting the conceptual foundations of the actual sciences and biology, this groundbreaking multidisciplinary publication explores the starting place of existence as a planetary procedure. Combining geology, geochemistry, biochemistry, microbiology, evolution and statistical physics to create an inclusive photo of the residing kingdom, the authors increase the argument that the emergence of existence was once an important cascade of non-equilibrium part transitions that opened new channels for chemical power movement on the earth. This complete color and logically established e-book introduces the most components of value and offers a well-ordered and available creation to a number of literatures open air the confines of disciplinary specializations, in addition to together with an intensive bibliography to supply context and extra analyzing. For researchers, execs coming into the sector or experts trying to find a coherent evaluation, this article brings jointly different views to shape a unified photograph of the starting place of existence and the continued association of the biosphere.

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Extra resources for The Origin and Nature of Life on Earth: The Emergence of the Fourth Geosphere

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They have in common that they are all stochastic: the events of interest, at a microscopic scale, can all be treated as random. The emergence of order is defined by a law-like reduction in the range of this microscale randomness, but the fundamentally random nature at the small scale remains, and it is what makes the formation of order difficult. The processes, as a class, are also Markovian [232]: the present state of the world, described in sufficiently fine detail, contains all effects from the past that affect the trajectory of the future.

The existence and degree of change is secondary to the existence of a stable dynamical state of chemical order. 2. The emergence of forms of organization that bring the Darwinian abstractions of replication, competition, and selection into existence The second problem in the emergence of living dynamics to be explained is the emergence of organizational forms that can live and reproduce autonomously, and can therefore undergo competition and Darwinian selection. Note that the emergence of a Darwinian process does not by itself imply that the process supports unlimited variation.

This set includes the full range of phase transitions in equilibrium and non-equilibrium bulk processes [307, 506], it includes models of reliable error correction in information theory [732], and it includes Darwinian evolution. As we will explain in Chapter 7, a shared mathematics21 associated with robustness lies behind all of these phenomena. We expect that, as a fuller understanding of development, physiology, ecological dynamics, and population processes is formed, many more classes of robust dynamics from these fields will be added as new distinct examples to the list above.

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