Chaos

Copyright 2001 David A. Wheeler, Ph.D., PHR, CMT  NoStress@mail.com   Last updated 10/11/05 04:09 PM

Chaos Theory

Nonlinear differential equations

(linear equation) y=mx+b
(nonlinear equation) y=mx^2+b
(differential equation) dx/dy=z
(nonlinear differential equation) dx^2/dy^2=z

chaos theory: systems behave according to nonlinear differential equations.  They are highly dependent upon initial conditions.

Butterfly effect: the flapping of one butterfly's wing will have an impact on the climate in the future.

To predict the future you have to know exactly where things stand now.

You can never have enough information to predict the future.

The more information you have about the current state of the world, the farther into the future you can predict.

Catastrophe Theory
catastrophe is a sudden change in the world either positive or negative

Catastrophe theory:   when a system is stressed, there can be a sudden change either positive or negative

Chaos Theory

Can use for prediction using a graph of t vs t+delta t
Attractor: point around which this graph revolves

useful for making general predictions

Strange attractor: an attractor that moves with time (behavioral change attempts to push the strange attractor)

Laws of Thermodynamics

First Law: You can't win
Second Law: You always lose (order)
Third Law: The best you can do is break even

Second Law of Thermodynamics

entropy is the amount of disorder

Entropy of the universe is increasing

the purpose of life is to put order into a little piece of the universe

therefore, there has to be more disorder someplace else in the universe to make up for it

pollution
population control
eat lower on the food chain
move the disorder off the Earth

Second Law of Thermodynamics
every time you measure a system, you change it