Thursday, February 28, 2013

CH2: Good Design

“Natural selection is the blind watchmaker, blind because it does not see ahead, does not plan consequences, has no purpose in view. Yet the living results of natural selection overwhelmingly impress us with the appearance of design as if by a master watchmaker, impress us with the illusion of design and planning.”

Bats and Echo-location machinery

     One thing bats and echo-location machinery such as radars or sonars have in common  is their method of locating physical objects. Engineers spend a lot of time and effort solving difficult mathematical models which explain how radars and sonars work. Then they have to use a lot of effort protecting this intellectual property. Especially, in the time of war, those how have better echo locating technology can gain significant advantage. 
     
     Yet, bats have use echo-location techniques for a very long time, perhaps since the beginning of their existence. They do not have to think of mathematical model in order to use it. They just use it. Their ears are just like ours eyes. While we humans live in a visual world, bats lives in an audible world.     

     Physics is a complicated subject. But things that Physics studies about isn’t complicated. They can be explained by Mathematics language. That’s why Physics is full of mathematics.

      Evolution is very very powerful. We human try very hard to come up with the understanding of how echo-location works. We came up with various theories like frequency modulation, Doppler’s effect, and so on. Yet, we can barely grasp a glimpse of what seem to be a simple task for bats--echo-locating. The bats, on the other hands, can perform echo location fluently without knowing about the theories. 

     But we are not inferior to bats. If we were to make a comparison, bats should be compared with radar or sonar, not with us the designer of radar or sonar. In other words, radar and sonar devices, not their designer, should be compared with bats. Like bats, radars and sonars are electronic devices. They don’t understand the theories, but they can do they jobs. But they designer do need to understand the theories, in order to create the devices. If we were to make a comparison again, we should be compared with the unconscious natural selection--'The blind watchmaker'. 
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Book or Audiobooks?

Personally, I prefer audiobooks. It's fun, and I can listen when I'm doing something else. It also makes other activities (e.g., jogging) a lot more fun. For more detail about audiobooks, please read [this post].

There is one more reason that may encourage you to go for the audiobook version. You can get it now for FREE. Audible offers you a free trial for 14 days. Even if you get the book and cancel the subscription right away (so that you don't have to pay), you can keep the book. And, don't worry if you lost the audiobook file. Just log into audible.com. You can keep downloading the over and over again.
About the summary: It takes time to finish up a book. And, when you do, sometimes, you want to review what you learn from the book. If you do not make  notes as you read, you might have to go through the book once again. This can be time-consuming when you are dealing with a book. But you can still flip through the book and locate what you are looking for.

However, when the material is an audiobook, it is extremely hard to locate a specific part of content. Most likely you will have to listen to the entire audiobook once again.

This book summary will help solve the pain of having to go through the book all over again.

I am leaving out the details of the books. Most books have interesting examples and case studies, not included here. Reading the original book would be much more entertaining and enlightening. If you like the summary, you may want to get the original from the source below.

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