Segments in this Video

Introduction: The Secret Life of Chaos (02:52)


Physicist Jim Al-Khalili talks about the simplicity of human life. The question of creation has been an interest for scientists for years.

Natural World (08:30)

Though the natural world seems to be made out of chaos, there are mathematical rules behind it. Mathematics was first applied to it by Alan Turing. He wanted to apply mathematics to biological processes.

Morphogenesis (04:11)

Turing's paper provided a mechanism for understanding and explaining morphogenesis. It expanded on Darwin's work on evolution and genetics.

Boris Belousov (06:26)

Russian chemist Boris Belousov was conducting similar work to Turing by applying chemistry to biology. He discovered something that seemed to break the laws of physics but followed Turing's equations.

Self-Organization (05:28)

Turing and Belousov's work was rejected during their times because the universe was viewed like a complicated machine that always followed a set of rules. Their work showed that the universe could not always be predicted.

Chaos (07:39)

Meteorologist Edward Lorenz made the scientific community accept the idea of chaos. The weather did not follow the mathematical equations it was thought to. It was known as the butterfly effect.

Patterns (08:39)

Though mathematical rules can be used for prediction, small changes can lead to feedback that creates chaos. It also produces patterns and a sense of order.

Mandelbrot Set (04:50)

The Mandelbrot set was created by Benoit Mandelbrot to show the mathematical patterns in nature. The complex image comes from a simple equation.

Evolution (10:05)

Evolution has built on patterns in the world and follows self-organizing principles. A computer uses the principles of evolution to update its systems.

Credits: The Secret Life of Chaos (00:54)

Credits: The Secret Life of Chaos

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The Secret Life of Chaos

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



Chaos theory has a bad name. It conjures up images of unpredictable weather, economic crashes, and science gone wrong. But there is a fascinating and hidden side to chaos, one that scientists are only now beginning to understand. It turns out that chaos theory answers a question humankind has asked for millennia... How did we get here? In this breathtaking program, Professor Jim Al-Khalili reveals the science behind much of the beauty and structure in the natural world and discovers that far from it being magic or an art of God, it is in fact an intrinsic part of the laws of physics. Amazingly, it turns out that the mathematics of chaos can explain how and why the universe creates exquisite order and pattern.

Length: 60 minutes

Item#: BVL145209

ISBN: 978-1-64198-465-2

Copyright date: ©2014

Closed Captioned

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Only available in USA and Canada.