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Review Article
Nature 278, 605 - 612 (12 April 1979); doi:10.1038/278605a0

The anthropic principle and the structure of the physical world

B. J. Carr* & M. J. Rees

Institute of Astronomy, Madingley Road, Cambridge, UK
*Present address: California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91109.

The basic features of galaxies, stars, planets and the everyday world are essentially determined by a few microphysical constants and by the effects of gravitation. Many interrelations between different scales that at first sight seem surprising are straightforward consequences of simple physical arguments. But several aspects of our Universe—some of which seem to be prerequisites for the evolution of any form of life—depend rather delicately on apparent ‘coincidences’ among the physical constants.

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