The authors describe mostly in non-technical language the development of a new scientific paradigm based on nonlinear deterministic dynamics and fractal geometry. The concepts from these two mathematical disciplines are interwoven with data from the physical, social and life sciences. In this way rather sophisticated mathematical concepts are made accessible through experimental data from various disciplines, and the formalism is relegated to appendices. It is shown that the complexity of natural and social phenomena invariably lead to inverse power law distributions, both in terms of probabilities and spectra. This book tries to show how to think differently about familiar phenomena, such as why the bell-shape curve ought not to be used in teaching or in the characterization of such complex phenomena as intelligence.

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