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 International Conference on Complex Systems (ICCS2007)

Time, Change and Self Organization

Thomas Ray

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     Last modified: December 17, 2007

Do things change in time, or does time change things? We explore the consequences of a theory that time—given a physical interpretation independent of space—drives system change, globally, identical to the way in which information drives subsystem change, locally. We conjecture that maximal unknowability in Chaitin's number (Omega) maps to maximal configuration efficiency in a complex physical system.

We support our conjecture in research sponsored by NECSI* that suggests that state change is an emergent property of asymmetric and dynamic node interaction, analysis of which depends on scale [Bar-Yam, 2004], and on length of time interval [Braha, Bar-Yam, 2006], and suggests that control system efficiency depends on the strength of coordinated, yet independently operating, subsystems.

Using Chaitin's number, and a physical definition of time (n-dimensional infinitely orientable metric on self-avoiding random walk), we argue that the randomness of the time metric, globally, guarantees unique geometric order locally--which suggests strongly polynomial time solutions to some complex problems (e.g., protein folding).


*Bar-Yam, Y. 2004. “Multiscale Variety in Complex Systems.” Complexity vol 9, no 4, pp 37-45; and, Braha, D. & Bar-Yam, Y. 2006. “From Centrality to Temporary Fame: Dynamic Centrality in Complex Networks.” Complexity vol 12, no 2, pp 59-63.

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