background preloader

Complex Systems

Facebook Twitter


Fractal. Figure 1a.


The Mandelbrot set illustrates self-similarity. As the image is enlarged, the same pattern re-appears so that it is virtually impossible to determine the scale being examined. Figure 1b. The same fractal magnified six times. Figure 1c. Emergence. In philosophy, systems theory, science, and art, emergence is a process whereby larger entities, patterns, and regularities arise through interactions among smaller or simpler entities that themselves do not exhibit such properties.


Emergence is central in theories of integrative levels and of complex systems. For instance, the phenomenon life as studied in biology is commonly perceived as an emergent property of interacting molecules as studied in chemistry, whose phenomena reflect interactions among elementary particles, modeled in particle physics, that at such higher mass—via substantial conglomeration—exhibit motion as modeled in gravitational physics. Intelligent Complex Adaptive Systems. I don’t believe in the existence of a complex systems theory as such and, so far, I’m still referring to complex systems science (CSS) in order to describe my research endeavours.

Intelligent Complex Adaptive Systems

In my view, the latter is constituted, up until now, by a bundle of loosely connected methods and theories aiming to observe— from contrasted standpoints—these fascinating objects of research called complex adaptive systems. Nearly 40 years after Von Bertalanffy’s General System Theory (1968) and Jacques Monod’s Chance and Necessity (1971), it is fair to look back and to try to assess how much remains to be said about these complex adaptive systems. After all, Prigogine’s Order out of Chaos (1984) already demonstrated that future wasn’t entirely predictable in a history- contingent world. The universe is a massive system of systems -- for example, ecological systems, social systems, commodity and stock markets.


The human microbiome: Me, myself, us. WHAT’S a man?

The human microbiome: Me, myself, us

Or, indeed, a woman? Biologically, the answer might seem obvious. A human being is an individual who has grown from a fertilised egg which contained genes from both father and mother. A growing band of biologists, however, think this definition incomplete. They see people not just as individuals, but also as ecosystems. The Human Genome Is Far More Complex Than Scientists Thought. 100 Very Cool Facts About The Human Body. The Brain The human brain is the most complex and least understood part of the human anatomy.

100 Very Cool Facts About The Human Body

There may be a lot we don’t know, but here are a few interesting facts that we’ve got covered. Nerve impulses to and from the brain travel as fast as 170 miles per hour. Ever wonder how you can react so fast to things around you or why that stubbed toe hurts right away?


Complexity: It’s Not That Simple. Complexity theory has been around for a generation now, but most people don’t understand it.

Complexity: It’s Not That Simple

I often read or listen to consultants, ‘experts’ and media people who proffer ludicrously simplistic ‘solutions’ to complex predicaments. Since it seems most people would prefer things to be simple, these ‘experts’ always seem to have an uncritical audience. Simplexity. Simplexity is an emerging theory that proposes a possible complementary relationship between complexity and simplicity.


The term draws from General Systems Theory, Dialectics (philosophy) and Design. Jeffrey Kluger wrote a book about this phenomenon that describes how house plants can be more complicated than industrial plants, how a truck driver's job can be as difficult as a CEO's and why 90% of the money donated to help cure diseases are given only to the research of 10% of them (and vice versa). The term has been adopted in advertising, marketing and the manufacture of left-handed screwdrivers. Design aspects[edit] Complexity tends to rise as system elements specialize and diversify to solve specific challenges.Simple interfaces tend to improve the usability of complex systems. ParadigmOfComplexity. The last few decades have seen the emergence of a growing body of literature devoted to a critique of the so-called “old” or “Cartesian-Newtonian” paradigm which, in the wake of the prodigious successes of modern natural science, came to dominate the full range of authoritative intellectual discourse and its associated worldviews.


Often coupled with a materialistic, and indeed atomistic, metaphysics, this paradigm has been guided by the methodological principle of reductionism. The critics of reductionism have tended to promote various forms of holism, a term which, perhaps more than any other, has served as the rallying cry for those who see themselves as creators of a “new paradigm.” Why we hate Complexity. Natural and social systems are complex — that is, not entirely knowable, unpredictable, resistant to cause-and-effect analysis, in a word, mysterious.

Why we hate Complexity

For our first three million years on Earth we humans, like every other species on the planet, accepted that mystery. We adapted rather than trying to change our environment. We evolved by learning to accommodate ourselves to our environment. Morphological analysis (problem-solving) Morphological Analysis or General Morphological Analysis is a method developed by Fritz Zwicky (1967, 1969) for exploring all the possible solutions to a multi-dimensional, non-quantified complex problem.[1] General Morphology was developed by Fritz Zwicky, the Bulgarian-born, Swiss-national astrophysicist based at the California Institute of Technology.

Morphological analysis (problem-solving)

Among others, Zwicky applied Morphological Analysis (MA) to astronomical studies and the development of jet and rocket propulsion systems. As a problem-structuring and problem-solving technique, MA was designed for multi-dimensional, non-quantifiable problems where causal modeling and simulation do not function well, or at all. Consider a complex, real-world problem, like those of marketing or making policies for a nation, where there are many governing factors, and most of them cannot be expressed as numerical time series data, as one would like to have for building mathematical models.

The Art of Complex Problem Solving. Six degrees of separation. Six degrees of separation. Early conceptions[edit] Shrinking world[edit] Theories on optimal design of cities, city traffic flows, neighborhoods and demographics were in vogue after World War I. Complex systems made simple. Albert-László Barabási and Yang-Yu Liu, together with their collaborator Jean-Jacques Slotine at M.I.T., have developed a method for observing large, complex systems.

In the image above, red dots represent sensor nodes, which are required to reconstruct the entire internal state of one such system. Image by Mauro Martino. Just as the name implies, com­plex sys­tems are dif­fi­cult to tease apart. An organism’s genome, a bio­chem­ical reac­tion, or even a social net­work all con­tain many inter­de­pen­dent components—and changing any one of them can have per­va­sive effects on all the others. In the case of a very large system, like the human genome, which con­tains 20,000 inter­con­nected genes, it’s impos­sible to mon­itor the whole system at once. But that may not matter any­more. The approach takes advan­tage of the inter­de­pen­dent nature of com­plexity to devise a method for observing sys­tems that are oth­er­wise beyond quan­ti­ta­tive scrutiny. Observability of complex systems. Author Affiliations.

Système complexe

Complex Adaptive Systems. Chardin & The NooSphere. Unification of Science and Spirit: Chapter 6 - MIND AS A COMPLEX SYSETM. Chapter 6 Among my many memories of early childhood, a few stand out with particular vigor. First and foremost, there is Neil Armstrong walking on the moon -- this was around the time of my second birthday, but I remember it as well as anything I've watched on TV since. I understood where the moon was -- way up in the sky -- and that this man, dressed in a funny suit, was walking on it, having just flown there in something faster than an airplane. Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos - Steven Strogatz, Cornell University. This course of 25 lectures, filmed at Cornell University in Spring 2014, is intended for newcomers to nonlinear dynamics and chaos.

It closely follows Prof. The Discovery of Complex Organic Matter in the Universe.

Human Complexes

Network Science. Manuel Lima on the Power of Knowledge Networks in the Age of Infinite Connectivity. Wikipedia_as_a_complex_system.pdf. [1303.3891] Quantum Google in a Complex Network. CS edu & refs... Global Dynamics Processes: the Pattern which Connects from KaliYuga to Tao. Complexity and the philosophy of becoming.

Unification of Science and Spirit: Chapter 5 - THE COMPLEX, CHAOTIC WORLD. Chapter 5. CS publications. Think Complexity. By Allen B. Downey Buy this book from Download this book in PDF. Think Complexity. Ecologyfj. Complexity. ComplexSystems. COMPLEXITY GRAPHICS. Links - ISC CNR. How the Downs-Thomson Paradox will ruin your commute. Eric Berlow: How complexity leads to simplicity. George Whitesides: Toward a science of simplicity.

  1. christinecochran Nov 13 2013
    Dude! This is INSANE! Love it!!! Am new to PTs and it just said we share "emergence" lol. :)