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  1. Oct 27, 2014 #1
    So I'm relatively new here I saw a post on chaos theory and had to chime in.
    I'll introduce myself first, I'm currently living in Wyoming and studying Psychology and Economics. I do have an interest in science no matter how depressing it is sometimes LOL
    Currently my favorites are Psychology and Economics, but I do like Physics, though I have little background in it.

    So... here is my question...

    So I get the gist of Chaos Theory, and I read through another thread on this forum stating that Chaos does exist, which quotes Chaos Theory.

    Does this not seem to be a tad counter intuitive ?

    Chaos theory simply states not knowing the starting attributes of a mathematical system that you can't really predict the outcome.

    Thing is, Chaos doesn't seem to be a fitting adjective, it just sort of reasserts that we have no real clue LOL

    Correct if I'm misunderstanding but there are ALOT of things we don't know, however what we do know seems to be rather provable and reproducible mathematical systems of describing behavior under certain conditions.

    Of course we can write a system of equations to describe how a feather would fall in IDEAL conditions, but real conditions are never ideal.

    But lets say we did have the ability to measure and predict every aspect of air flow and the initial starting point of the feather etc.

    It could be said that in that case we could predict its landing spot from a certain height, at a certain gravity, given its mass, volume, shape and initial displacement above the ground, and any other factor that would even affect it, like the sun shining more or less, no matter how small of an effect that would have.

    Point is, I don't feel in an ordered universe that Chaos really exists, its just a concept that is thoroughly human relating to our lack of ultimate knowledge causing something to go other than expected. So I suppose my question is, does any branch of science really have any way of proving the existence of randomness ?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 27, 2014 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Welcome to PF;
    Well of course, in a completely ordered Universe, chaos (in the common-use sense) cannot exist. That is one of the fundamental question though: is this Universe a completely ordered Universe? Perhaps what we percieve as order is, in fact, only some kind of emergent behavior set against an underlying disorder?

    Randomness is an active field in information theory and random number generation is difficult enough to be something of a business. Currently, afaict, there is no way to confirm that, say, a particular series of numbers is random; although there are ways to demonstrate that a particular sequence is not.

    However: chaos theory, where you started, is not based in randomness.
    http://www.yiin.ca/chaos/content.htm [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  4. Oct 27, 2014 #3


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