The Evolution of Complexity

  • Mark A. Bedau
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science book series (BSPS, volume 266)

The evolution of the biosphere exhibits a trend of increasing complexity of the most complex organisms. Even though we are uncertain about the proper way to measure complexity, it is hard to deny that the earliest prokaryotic cells were simpler than the eukaryotic cells that arose from them, and these were simpler than the multicellular life forms that evolved from them, and so on. But it is controversial how to interpret and explain this trend, and even how to describe it properly (see e.g., Gould 1989, McShea 1991, Gould 1996, Sterelny and Griffiths 1999). Some think that increasing maximal organism complexity has for all intents and purposes been explained by Darwin, Miller and Urey, Watson and Crick, or some other past or present biologists.

Keywords

Biomass Entropy Agar Assure Cambrian 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark A. Bedau
    • 1
  1. 1.Professor of Philosophy and HumanitiesReed CollegePortlandUSA

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