III. Ecosmos: A Revolutionary Fertile, Habitable, Solar-Bioplanet Lifescape
1. A Consilience of Biology and Physics: Active Matter
Nardini, Cesare, et al. Entropy Production in Field Theories without Time Reversal Symmetry: Quantifying the Non-Equilibrium Character of Active Matter. Physical Review X. 7/021007, 2017. A six member team with postings in the UK, Scotland, and France press this theoretical frontier researching these lively propensities of material nature as they engender self-emergent animate behaviors.
Nastasiuk, Vadim. Emergent Quantum Mechanics of Finances. Physica A. Online February, 2014. On the shores of the Black Sea, a South Ukrainian National Pedagogical University, Odessa, researcher proposes ways that quantum phenomena might be in dynamic effect even for widely removed economic transactions. If a cross-correspondence can be drawn, it would then aid studies of market volatilities. In regard, might a wider palliative discovery at last accrue by which to realize a single, infinitely iterative, genesis, a natural guidance for peoples to move beyond the guns of 2014 and become planetary patriots?
This paper is an attempt at understanding the quantum-like dynamics of financial markets in terms of non-differentiable price–time continuum having fractal properties. The main steps of this development are the statistical scaling, the non-differentiability hypothesis, and the equations of motion entailed by this hypothesis. From perspective of the proposed theory the dynamics of S&P500 index are analyzed. (Abstract)
Needleman, Daniel and Zvonimir Dogic. Active Matter at the Interface between Materials Science and Cell Biology. Nature Reviews Materials. 2/17048, 2017. We cite this entry by Harvard and Brandeis University physicists as a latest iconic case of human endeavors to learn and express what innate essence that extant nature might actually have. In regard, the paper opens with a quote by Gottfried Leibniz from Jessica Riskin’s fine history The Restless Clock (2016 herein) that intertwines machine and organism aspects. We add three quotes which reflect the conflation. The consideration is that this novel 2010s perception of intrinsic, non-equilibrium, self-organized vitalities may finally achieve a quantified meld of physical matter and animate biology.
The remarkable processes that characterize living organisms, such as motility, self-healing and reproduction, are fuelled by a continuous injection of energy at the microscale. The field of active matter focuses on understanding how the collective behaviours of internally driven components can give rise to these biological phenomena, while also striving to produce synthetic materials composed of active energy-consuming components. The synergistic approach of studying active matter in both living cells and reconstituted systems assembled from biochemical building blocks has the potential to transform our understanding of both cell biology and materials science. This methodology can provide insight into the fundamental principles that govern the dynamical behaviours of self-organizing subcellular structures, and can lead to the design of artificial materials and machines that operate away from equilibrium and can thus attain life-like properties. In this Review, we focus on active materials made of cytoskeletal components, highlighting the role of active stresses and how they drive self-organization of both cellular structures and macroscale materials, which are machines powered by nanomachines. (Abstract)
Nourmohammad, Armita, et al. Universality and Predictability in Molecular Quantitative Genetics. arXiv:1309.3312. Posted November 2013, Nourmohammad, and Torsten Held, Princeton University integrative geneticists, and Michael Lassig, University of Colonge biophysicist, convey the present merger of statistical, condensed matter physics with all aspects of life’s evolution, along with the popular trend to report and affirm a universal recurrence of the same phenomena across every domain and instance. The paper is forthcoming in Current Opinion in Genetics and Development. See also among Lassig’s prior papers “From Fitness Landscapes to Seascapes: Non-Equilibrium Dynamics of Selection and Adaptation” with Ville Mustonen in Trends in Genetics (25/3, 2009).
Nussinov, Zohar, et al. Inference of Hidden Structures in Complex Physical Systems by Multi-Scale Clustering. arXiv:1503.01626. American and Indian physicists contend that condensed matter/statistical mechanic studies, which are lately coming to assume an intricately networked nature, have found a persistent tendency to form modular communities. Such whole units, with their own integrity while immersed in multiple layers, are a prime, natural feature. And if we might avail, a much better society could be conceived as many, interlinked communal villages in a local and global organic, physiological milieu.
We survey the application of a relatively new branch of statistical physics--"community detection"-- to data mining. In particular, we focus on the diagnosis of materials and automated image segmentation. Community detection describes the quest of partitioning a complex system involving many elements into optimally decoupled subsets or communities of such elements. We review a multiresolution variant which is used to ascertain structures at different spatial and temporal scales. Significant patterns are obtained by examining the correlations between different independent solvers. Similar to other combinatorial optimization problems in the NP complexity class, community detection exhibits several phases. (Abstract)
Pauls, James, et al. Quantum Coherence and Entanglement in the Avian Compass. Physical Review E. 87/062704, 2013. Reviewed more in Cooperative Societies, Purdue University and LANL physicists including Sabre Kais advance the reconception and unity of physics and life as they find deep similarities and explanations. The artificial quantum-classical barrier is being removed to reveal a creative reiteration in kind and time from universe to human.
Perunov, Nikolai, et al. Statistical Physics of Adaption. arXiv.1412.1875. As the Abstract notes, MIT Physics of Living Systems Group researchers including Jeremy England contribute to the ongoing synthesis of these fields of study which serve to integrate and root life’s evolution, and our collaborative comprehension, within a fertile cosmic ground.
All living things exhibit adaptations that enable them to survive and reproduce in the natural environment that they inhabit. From a biological standpoint, it has long been understood that adaptation comes from natural selection, whereby maladapted individuals do not pass their traits effectively to future generations. However, we may also consider the phenomenon of adaptation from the standpoint of physics, and ask whether it is possible to delineate what the difference is in terms of physical properties between something that is well-adapted to its surrounding environment, and something that is not. In this work, we undertake to address this question from a theoretical standpoint. Building on past fundamental results in far-from-equilibrium statistical mechanics, we demonstrate a generalization of the Helmholtz free energy for the finite-time stochastic evolution of driven Newtonian matter. By analyzing this expression term by term, we are able to argue for a general tendency in driven many-particle systems towards self-organization into states formed through exceptionally reliable absorption and dissipation of work energy from the surrounding environment. (Abstract)
Picoli, Sergio, et al. Universal Bursty Behavior in Human Violent Conflicts. Nature Scientific Reports. 4/4773, 2014. Universidade Estadual de Maringa, Brazil, and Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, systems physicists quantify that even the most chaotic carnage can yet be seen to exhibit a common structure and activity. However and whenever might we finally altogether come to realize and understand, as so implied, that an independent mathematical source is in formative effect everywhere? Then as so edified be able to at last to declare a truce and break free from this obsession?
Understanding the mechanisms and processes underlying the dynamics of collective violence is of considerable current interest. Recent studies indicated the presence of robust patterns characterizing the size and timing of violent events in human conflicts. Since the size and timing of violent events arises as the result of a dynamical process, we explore the possibility of unifying these observations. By analyzing available catalogs on violent events in Iraq (2003–2005), Afghanistan (2008–2010) and Northern Ireland (1969–2001), we show that the inter-event time distributions (calculated for a range of minimum sizes) obeys approximately a simple scaling law which holds for more than three orders of magnitude. This robust pattern suggests a hierarchical organization in size and time providing a unified picture of the dynamics of violent conflicts. (Abstract)
Popkin, Gabriel. The Physics of Life. Nature. 529/16, 2016. A report on the growing realization of inherent material propensities, via the new field of “active matter” research, to organize and arrange into similar biological forms and motions from proteins to people.
From flocking birds to swarming molecules, physicists are seeking to understand ‘active matter’ – and looking for a fundamental theory of the living world.
Provata, Astero, et al. DNA Viewed as an Out-of-Equilibrium Structure. Physical Review E. 89/052105, 2014. Reviewed more in Genome Complex Systems as a good example of an integral synthesis of life and law.
Pruessner, Gunnar. Complex Systems, Non-Equilibrium Dynamics and Self-Organization. Entropy. Online January, 2017. The Imperial College London mathematician invites papers for a Special mid 2017 Issue on this subject phenomena. We record because its description note Active Matter as an exemplary instance.
Over the last two decades or so, the notion of complex systems has found its way into many different areas of science and humanities, allowing for a quantitative understanding of phenomena that were traditionally studied in a more qualitative fashion. A particularly attractive aspect of complex systems is the emergence of co-operative phenomena, or self-organisation, often driven by non-equilibrium dynamics that relies on an external (energy) source. Such systems seem to be all around us, and govern and represent all that we do and are. Particular interest in self-organisation and non-equilibrium systems in the form of "active matter" has been generated within the biological sciences with the continued emphasis of more quantitative methods. Pattern or tissue formation may be a particularly good example of a phenomenon suitable for the present issue. Other good examples may be entropy production in sociological and financial systems or recent developments in self-organised criticality.
Ramaswamy, Sriram. The Mechanics and Statistics of Active Matter. Annual Review of Condensed Matter Physics. 1/323, 2010. The Centre for Condensed Matter Theory, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, biophysicist introduces the concept of “active matter” to represent novel appreciations, as the quotes say, of a natural materiality suffused by its own internal agency and dynamic motion. The phrase has gained currency in such 2013 writings by Cristina Marchetti, et al and Mark Buchanan (search each).
Active particles contain internal degrees of freedom with the ability to take in and dissipate energy and, in the process, execute systematic movement. Examples include all living organisms and their motile constituents such as molecular motors. This article reviews recent progress in applying the principles of nonequilibrium statistical mechanics and hydrodynamics to form a systematic theory of the behaviour of collections of active particles -- active matter -- with only minimal regard to microscopic details. A unified view of the many kinds of active matter is presented, encompassing not only living systems but inanimate analogues. (Abstract)