Extinction

How Life on Earth Nearly Ended 250 Million Years Ago - Updated Edition

Author: Douglas H. Erwin

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 0691165653

Category: Science

Page: 320

View: 8766

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Some 250 million years ago, the earth suffered the greatest biological crisis in its history. Around 95 percent of all living species died out—a global catastrophe far greater than the dinosaurs' demise 185 million years later. How this happened remains a mystery. But there are many competing theories. Some blame huge volcanic eruptions that covered an area as large as the continental United States; others argue for sudden changes in ocean levels and chemistry, including burps of methane gas; and still others cite the impact of an extraterrestrial object, similar to what caused the dinosaurs' extinction. Extinction is a paleontological mystery story. Here, the world's foremost authority on the subject provides a fascinating overview of the evidence for and against a whole host of hypotheses concerning this cataclysmic event that unfolded at the end of the Permian. After setting the scene, Erwin introduces the suite of possible perpetrators and the types of evidence paleontologists seek. He then unveils the actual evidence--moving from China, where much of the best evidence is found; to a look at extinction in the oceans; to the extraordinary fossil animals of the Karoo Desert of South Africa. Erwin reviews the evidence for each of the hypotheses before presenting his own view of what happened. Although full recovery took tens of millions of years, this most massive of mass extinctions was a powerful creative force, setting the stage for the development of the world as we know it today. In a new preface, Douglas Erwin assesses developments in the field since the book's initial publication.
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Astrobiological Neurosystems

Rise and Fall of Intelligent Life Forms in the Universe

Author: Jerry L. Cranford

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3319104195

Category: Science

Page: 204

View: 4344

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This book explains why scientists believe that life may be more common in the Universe than previously considered possible. It presents the tools and strategies astronomers and astrobiologists are using in their formal search for habitable exoplanets as well as more advanced forms of life in other parts of our galaxy. The author then summarizes what is currently known about how and where organic molecules critical to our form of carbon-based life are manufactured. The core of the book explains (and presents educated guesses) how nervous systems evolved on Earth, how they work, and how they might work on other worlds. Combining his knowledge of neuroscience, computers, and astrobiology the author jumps into the discussion whether biological nervous systems are just the first step in the rise of intelligence in the Universe. The book ends with a description from both the psychologist’s and the neuroscientist’s viewpoints, exactly what it is about the fields of astrobiology and astronomy that “boggles the minds” of many amateur astronomers and interested non-scientists. This book stands out from other popular science books on astrobiology by making the point that “astro-neurobiologists” need to begin thinking about how alien nervous systems might work.
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Kentucky's Natural Heritage

An Illustrated Guide to Biodiversity

Author: Greg Abernathy,Deborah White,Ellis L. Laudermilk,Marc Evans

Publisher: University Press of Kentucky

ISBN: 0813168678

Category: History

Page: 256

View: 5402

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Kentucky's abundance of plant and animal life, from the bottomland swamps in the west to the rich Appalachian forests in the east, is extraordinary as well as beautiful. Glades, prairies, forests, wetlands, rivers, and caves form a biologically diverse patchwork that is unique to the state. Kentucky's Natural Heritage: An Illustrated Guide to Biodiversity provides an essential reference to the remarkable natural history of the commonwealth and is a rallying call for the conservation of this priceless legacy. Kentucky's ecosystems teem with diverse native species, some of which are found nowhere else in the world. Kentucky's Natural Heritage brings these sometimes elusive creatures into close view, from black-throated green warblers to lizard skin liverworts. The aquatic systems of the state are home to rainbow darters, ghost crayfish, salamander mussels, and an impressive array of other species that constitute some of the greatest levels of freshwater diversity on the planet. Kentucky's Natural Heritage presents a persuasive argument for conservation of the state's biodiversity. Organized by a team from the Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission, the book is an outgrowth of the agency's focus on biodiversity protection. Richly detailed and lavishly illustrated with more than 250 color photos, maps, and charts, Kentucky's Natural Heritage is the definitive compendium of the commonwealth's amazing diversity. It celebrates the natural beauty of some of the most important ecosystems in the nation and presents a compelling case for the necessity of conservation.
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Trajectory Analysis in Health Care

Author: David W. Hollar

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3319596268

Category: Medical

Page: 263

View: 5135

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This innovative volume introduces Trajectory Analysis, a new systems-based approach to measuring nonlinear dynamics in continuous change, to public health and epidemiology. It synthesizes influential strands of statistical and probability science (including chaos theory and catastrophe theory) to complement existing methods and models used in the health fields. The computational framework featured here pinpoints complex cause-and-effect processes in behavioral change as individuals and populations adjust to health interventions, with examples from neuroscience and cardiology. But this is no mere academic exercise, as the author illustrates how these methods can be harnessed toward finding real-world answers to longstanding public health problems, starting with treatment recidivism. Included in the coverage: · The universality of physical principles in the analysis of health and disease · The problem of recidivism in healthcare intervention studies · Stability and reversibility/irreversibility of health conditions · Chaos theory and sensitive dependence on initial conditions · Applications in health monitoring and geographic systems · Simulations, applications, and the challenge for public health A stimulating new take on statistics with powerful implications for future study, practice, and policy, Trajectory Analysis in Health Care should interest public health epidemiologists, researchers, clinicians, and policymakers.
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Big History

From the Big Bang to the Present

Author: Cynthia Stokes Brown

Publisher: New Press/ORIM

ISBN: 1595588450

Category: History

Page: 320

View: 8139

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Extend the human story backward for the five thousand years of recorded history and it covers no more than a millionth of a lifetime of the Earth. Yet how do we humans take stock of the history of our planet, and our own place within it? A “vast historical mosaic” (Publishers Weekly) rendered engaging and accessible, Big History interweaves different disciplines of knowledge to offer an all-encompassing account of history on Earth. Since its publication, Cynthia Brown’s “world history on a grand scale” (Kirkus) has been translated into nine languages and has helped propel the “big history” concept to viral status. This new edition of Brown’s seminal work is more relevant today than ever before, as we increasingly must grapple with accelerating rates of change and, ultimately, the legacy we will bequeath to future generations. Here is a pathbreaking portrait of our world, from the birth of the universe from a single point the size of an atom to life on a twenty-first-century planet inhabited by 7 billion people.
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Choice

Publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries, a Division of the American Library Association

Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Best books

Page: N.A

View: 9717

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