Cause and Process in Evolution

“Most scientific explanations are causal. This is also the case in evolutionary biology, where the primary goals are to explain the diversity of life and the adaptive fit between organisms and their surroundings. Yet, the nature of causation[…]

Read more

Spontaneous Spirals

Spirals are common in nature. We’ve all admired the beautiful spirals that occur on sea shells, we can find spirals in plants, and even in the arms of galaxies or weather patterns. There are also situations in which[…]

Read more

The Mathematics of Kindness

Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection is one of the most profound scientific theories to have ever been developed. However, there were several questions about evolution that Darwin himself could not answer. Not that he wasn’t[…]

Read more

Autocatalytic Sets Arising

I’ve made a short movie showing autocatalytic sets arising in a dynamical simulation of a simple polymer model. It shows how autocatalytic subsets appear, one after another, and then grow in concentration. This provides a nice visual and[…]

Read more

Life: It’s Chemistry!

What is life? This question is still much debated in science. After the discovery of the structure of DNA by Watson and Crick in 1953, and the more recent advances in DNA sequencing technology, living organisms have become[…]

Read more

The Living Set

Life is a self-sustaining network of chemical reactions. A living system produces its own components from basic food sources in such a way that these components maintain and regulate the very chemical network that produced them. Based on this[…]

Read more

Recognizing the Illusion of ‘Homo Economicus’

Standard economic theory assumes that humans behave rationally and are able to objectively calculate the value (or cost) of the different choices they are presented with. In fact, we pride ourselves on our rationality. Different from the animals, we humans have the unique capacity for logical thought and rational decision making. Or do we?

Read more