- Brossura: 224 pagine
- Editore: Harvard Univ Pr (giugno 1970)
- Lingua: Inglese
- ISBN-10: 0674627512
- ISBN-13: 978-0674627512
- Peso di spedizione: 200 g
While this was intentional, serendipity happened as it is wont to do and I found more parallels than I could follow. These two books come from radically different fields (Architecture and Complexity theory) and were published nearly 40 years apart yet are highly resonant with eachother.
Alexander effectively discusses the synthesis of form in the context of functional goals and/or constraints. He draws from architecture for his examples and ideas but the results are much broader.
He outlines the ideas which will eventually become his Pattern Language and "The Quality Without a Name".
Meanwhile Kauffman is speaking contemporarily of the underpinnings of "life itself" also from what is essentially a structural arguement.
Both are essentially speaking to the same thing: How form emerges from functional constraints in the context of evolving systems. In one case it is the artifacts of living spaces we build while in the other, it is the more intimate artifacts of the phenotype of a species or more generally, evolving complex systems such as our universe in all of it's glory.
Many have criticized Kauffman's work as being unoriginal in the sense that most of what he says has been said before, only separately and differently. In some sense, all works are "derivative".
I believe that the parallels between these two books are more an example of parallel evolution. Alexander was studying the essential qualities of a design discipline as old as man and therefore highly evolved. The topical area of architecture, built spaces for human work and habitation is extremely rich and complex in it's own right. It is not surprising that he would have discovered in this narrow field something as essential and interesting as Kauffman seems to be exposing if not discovering about the mathematical and structural underpinnings of "life itself".
An excellent (pair of) read(s)!
I look forward to Alexander's _Nature of Order_ whose title reminded me of Kauffman's _Origins of Order_ which in turn inspired me to read them together while awaiting Alexander's new books!