Chemistry was my science of choice in college, but I hadn't really kept up in the interim, I found the more recent advances in our understanding of how early single-celled life developed and evolved and created the conditions for more complex life by modifying the atmosphere engrossing. I loved the highlights he drew from literary history to make his points more poignant. Princeton Univ. I found this book listed as a top volume to read about the history of the beginning of the earth / life on our planet. This book gives me more hope for earths future. It's an exceptional guide to the current state of thinking about the three billion years of the evolution of life leading up to the Cambrian Explosion. I very rarely give 5/5 reviews, and then only to classics, but this is too good to receive four stars. Very well researched and presented. There is always a charm to investigating origins, and the paleontologist and geologist Andrew Knoll does not disappoint in his survey of the early prehistory of the earth, from the Hadean epoch four billion years ago, when the planet had just formed and emerged from the late heavy bombardment, up to the Cambrian, thus embracing an unimaginable expanse of time of over three billion years. I was very pleased. In this cryptically titled book, earth is the little-known planet, for we know so very little of the insect creatures which dominate it in sheer number and variety. A good read, especially if you've heard of snowball earth and want some more background. All phases of life are covered, from the very earliest up to the Cambrian Explosion itself at 541 million years ago. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Ransom looks for a place to stay for the night, eventually coming to a large estate. The majority of the time life was on planet Earth (~3 billion years), it existed predominantly as single-celled organisms. But in the full history of life, ancient animals, even the trilobites, form only the half-billion-year tip of a nearly four-billion-year iceberg. Australopithecines, dinosaurs, trilobites--such fossils conjure up images of lost worlds filled with vanished organisms. The study of the history of life on this planet has come a long way. In a new preface, Knoll describes how the field has broadened and deepened in the decade since the book's original publication. Andrew H. Knoll is a paleontologist who is particularly conversant with the integrative approaches of modern day evolutionary science. Evidence indicates that it first arose out of simple organic precursors within a billion years of the planet’s formation, but it would be another three billion before the Cambrian era ushered in the astonishing diversity of multicellular forms whose descendants populate the earth today. At 93, Sir David Attenborough has spent a lifetime studying the natural world, and been knighted for his efforts. The original text of classic works side-by-side with an easy-to-understand translation. Innovations in biology have helped shape our air and oceans, and, just as surely, environmental change has influenced the course of evolution, repeatedly closing off opportunities for some species while opening avenues for others. And this, my friends, is the stuff of life. Summary : ' Life On Another Planet ' 849 Words | 4 Pages. Christopher Collier & James Lincoln Collier. Thorough summaries and insightful critical analyses of classic and contemporary literature. We are made by history.” So, this January, as we celebrate Martin Luther King... To see what your friends thought of this book, Life on a Young Planet: The First Three Billion Years of Evolution on Earth, This is an appealing combination of a natural history of the first three billion years of life on Earth, which is (roughly) the author’s professional specialty, along with a scientific memoir of his pertinent field work. The author is fair-handed, giving alternative evaluations where appropriate and mentioning all the main players in the field. A fascinating book about the first three billion years of life on Planet Earth. This book could be going straight for the deep end, requiring a background in paleontology, molecular biology, and geology. mostly precambrian). This book is all about discovering what life was like on the early earth - the first three billion years of evolution on earth (i.e. The book goes into sediments, metamorphic rocks, fossils, ocean chemistry and atmospheric processes. An absolute joy to read. As other reviewers have noted, be aware this is about life on the planet when it was just bacteria--there isn't much talk of animals, but that was fine with me--I wanted to know about the earliest of origins, befre humanoids. Highly recommended. Life on a Young Planet: The First Three Billion Years of Evolution on Earth, Andrew H. Knoll, Princeton University Press, 2003, 0691120293, 9780691120294, 277 pages. But the history of guilds—of fundamentally distinct morphological and physiological ways of making a biological living—is one of accrual. Life finds a way. This is a beautifully written, well argued account of the history of life on Earth from earliest signs of biochemical evolution 3.8 Bya to the Cambrian explosion of multicellular organisms 550Mya, by one of the leading experts in this field. Finally, Knoll's conclusion attempts to reconcile the seemingly ever-opposed science and religion and is reminiscent of Stephen J. Gould's "twin magisteria" argument. Australopithecines, dinosaurs, trilobites--such fossils conjure up images of lost worlds filled with vanished organisms. This book focuses mostly on single-celled organisms. This was a good, readable (occasionally a little technical) popular science book on the early years of life on Earth, before abundant animal fossils started appearing it the fossil record, well before dinosaurs, before even trilobites, the most famous of Paleozoic marine fauna. For somebody with none of these things, beyond fuzzy memories of grade school science and some popular science reading, you will understand most everything that is happening here and find quite a bit of it compelling. This is a great book for students with a background in biology (you will need to be familiar with some biological terms), and specialists in the field. Moving from Siberia to Namibia to the Bahamas, Knoll shows how life and environment have evolved together through Earth's history. Life thrived on young Earth: scientists discover 3.7-billion-year-old fossils: Remarkable find by team of Australian researchers points to earliest existence of diverse life on Earth. What turned our planet from a hostile place without any oxygen, gradually, into a place. An outstanding book, probably the best science book I have read in years!! An example of a planet that has gas giants would be Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. If I hadn't recently read several other books on both bacteria and the origins of multicellular life, I probably wouldn't have managed to finish it. May 19 (UPI) --Scientists have used a statistical method known as Bayesian inference to determine the odds of complex extraterrestrial life evolving on alien planets, according to … He has his own theories, and is careful to present them as such. $29.95 (277p) ISBN 978-0-691-00978-0. … David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planetis a 2020 British documentaryfilmnarrated by David Attenborough. A fascinating grounding in what we know about the earliest life on Earth and how we know what we know. It covers all the major innovations of life in. The book doesn't shy away from explaining controversies in detail, and gives a solid idea of where the boundaries of this field lie, both in terms of what was known when it was published, and what is likely to be forever unknown. Needs a little basic understanding of middle school science to get through. 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