Edward Lorenz, theorist of ‘butterfly effect’, dies


This video is about chaos theory and the butterfly effect.

From the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the USA:

Edward Lorenz, father of chaos theory and butterfly effect, dies at 90

April 16, 2008

Edward Lorenz, an MIT meteorologist who tried to explain why it is so hard to make good weather forecasts and wound up unleashing a scientific revolution called chaos theory, died April 16 of cancer at his home in Cambridge. He was 90.

A professor at MIT, Lorenz was the first to recognize what is now called chaotic behavior in the mathematical modeling of weather systems. In the early 1960s, Lorenz realized that small differences in a dynamic system such as the atmosphere–or a model of the atmosphere–could trigger vast and often unsuspected results.

These observations ultimately led him to formulate what became known as the butterfly effect–a term that grew out of an academic paper he presented in 1972 entitled: “Predictability: Does the Flap of a Butterfly’s Wings in Brazil Set Off a Tornado in Texas?”

The butterfly effect played a role in why this blog started. See here.

Mandelbrot, chaos theory and evolution: here.

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5 thoughts on “Edward Lorenz, theorist of ‘butterfly effect’, dies

  1. A People’s History of Science
    Miners Midwives and Low Mechaniks

    By Clifford D. Conner

    “A delightfully refreshing new look at the history of science.”–Howard Zinn
    Science has always been a collective endeavor. In A People’s History of Science the attention is at last turned to hunter-gatherers, peasant farmers, sailors, miners, blacksmiths, folk healers, and others who wrested the means of their survival from an encounter with nature on a daily basis.

    Chapter listings include: What Science? What History? What People?, Who were the Revolutionaries in the Scientific Revolution?’ The Union of “Capital and Science.”

    paperback,550pp,index, bibliography

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