Order Out of Randomness


Yuval Ne’eman

Publisher Van Leer Institute Press and Hakibbutz Hameuchad
Language Hebrew
Year of Publication 1999
Series Connections

This book presents two original and surprising theories based on the neo-Darwinist theory of evolutionary synthesis. As background to the theories, the book describes the processes of the creation of the universe, the creation of its chemical elements, the development of the galaxies, stars, and planets, and the creation of life and the development of various species, up to the appearance of humankind. From this point, evolution becomes cultural and economic development. In each evolutionary process a mechanism is at work that generates random changes, and at the same time selection occurs, leaving new, more advanced systems.

One of Ne’eman’s theories points to the role of science in the process of society’s development, a role that consists primarily of introducing random changes. The second theory has to do with the development of scientific ideas themselves, which is also influenced by random changes. The book’s main strength lies in the many dozens of persuasive examples from all scientific disciplines—starting with the events on the eve of Columbus’s journey, which was intended to shorten the route to India and thus to lower the cost of spices, and ending with the treatment of Russell and Whitehead’s logical contradiction that led to the invention of the modern computer by the student Alan Turing.

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