Linked

  • by Albert-Laszlo Barabasi
  • Narrated by Henry Leyva
  • 8 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

From a cocktail party to a terrorist cell, from an ancient bacteria to an international conglomerate - all are networks, and all are part of a surprising scientific revolution. A maverick group of scientists is discovering that all networks have a deep underlying order and operate according to simple but powerful rules. This knowledge promises to shed light on the spread of fads and viruses, the robustness of ecosystems, the vulnerability of economies - even the future of democracy.Now, for the first time, a scientist whose own work has transformed the study of "links and nodes" takes us inside the unfolding network revolution. Albert-Laszlo Barabasi traces the fascinating history of connected systems, beginning with mathematician Leonhard Euler's first forays into graph theory in the late 1700s and culminating in biologists' development of cancer drugs based on a new understanding of cellular networks.Combining narrative flare with sparkling insights, Barabasi introduces us to the myriad modern-day "cartographers" mapping networks in a range of scientific disciplines. Aided by powerful computers, they are proving that social networks, corporations, and cells are more similar than they are different. Their discoveries provide an important new perspective on the interconnected world around us.Linked reveals how Google came to be the Internet's most popular search engine, how Vernon Jordan's social network affects the entire American economy, what it would take to bring down a terrorist organization like al Qaeda, and why an obscure finding of Einstein's could change the way we look at the networks in our own lives. Understanding the structure and behavior of networks will forever alter our world, allowing us to design the "perfect" business or stop a disease outbreak before it goes global.Engaging and authoritative, Linked provides an exciting preview of the next century in science.Also available in print from Perseus Publishing.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The reconstruction of complex systems.

Reductionism is at the heart of the scientific process, but in the end, we must be able to reconstruct a complex system from its basic components in order to understand its emergent behaviors. Such behaviors frequently go unexplained. The realization that complex systems that appear to be chaotic and random actually follow quite simple laws that is mathematically quantifiable cuts across a multitude of disciplines. This book is not just about the internet, although it is certainly discussed. It is more about a possible paradigm for explaining how and why complex systems demonstrate a self-organizing capability. Although it can be quite dry listening, this book presents the listener with an insight into what the next century of science has to offer.

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- Robert

Network theory for beginners

This was, in retrospect, critical for me to listen to. It provides a framework for understanding complex natural systems.
Network theory has seen a boom recently and this book by one of the founders of modern day 'scale free network topology' theory lays it out in plain english (except for the name, I guess). Beginning with Euler's theorems he follows through his own research and that of others to construct a picture of how network architecture arises, what factors affect it, and it's strengths and vulnerabilities. The theory is supported with examples of real networks (businesses, hollywood stars, the brain, the internet, and the spread on AIDS).
The theories also make sense, there's a real feeling of 'ah-haa' in every chapter as layers of complexity are added on. This seminal work describes the basis of a theroy that will be the starting point for a deeper understanding of the world around us.
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- Alex

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-27-2002
  • Publisher: Random House Audio