Cybernetics and Development

Cybernetics and Development

International Series of Monographs in Pure and Applied Biology: Zoology

1st Edition - January 1, 1966

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  • Author: Michael J. Apter,
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483155111

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Cybernetics and Development deals with the ways in which growing and developing biological systems control themselves during development. It is a preliminary attempt to apply some of the insights and techniques of cybernetics to the problem of understanding such development and its control. The book begins with a discussion of the nature of cybernetics and its methods. Separate chapters cover the use of cybernetics in the field of biological development; previous work in the area of cybernetics related to automata theory; and the application of information theory to development. Subsequent chapters present models of development. These include computer programs which continually replicate themselves and control the resulting development; growing automata nets as models of development; and a method that allows a system to control the relative sizes of its parts during development and afterwards during regeneration. This book provides enough background material to make it understandable both to the biologist with little knowledge of cybernetics and the cybernetician with no great knowledge of developmental biology.

Table of Contents

  • Preface

    1. The Cybernetic Approach


    The Nature of Cybernetics

    Criticisms of Cybernetics


    2. The Problems of Development

    The Relevance of Cybernetics

    Background in Biology

    An Axiomatization of Development

    Some Basic Problems


    3. Cybernetics and Development

    Cybernetic Models of Development

    Models of Self-Reproduction

    Evolution, Learning, and Development


    4. Information Theory and Development

    Amount of Information in the Organism

    Changes in Information Content during Development

    Preformation and Epigenesis

    General Discussion


    5. Development on the Computer

    Programming Development

    Some Basic Models

    Towards Greater Complexity


    6. Growing Automata Nets

    Design for a Zygote

    Some Algorithms for Development

    The Nucleus and Its Environments


    7. The Control of Pattern

    A Model of Pattern Control

    A Genetic Interpretation of the Model


    8. Discussion

    Self-Reference in Development

    Development into Complexity

    Possibilities for Further Research

    Concluding Remarks



    1. National-Elliott 803 Instruction Code

    2. Information Theory


    3. Turing Machines


    4. The Jacob and Monod Work



Product details

  • No. of pages: 200
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Pergamon 1966
  • Published: January 1, 1966
  • Imprint: Pergamon
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483155111

About the Author

Michael J. Apter,

About the Editor

G. A. Kerkut

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