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Statistical anentropy?

  1. Apr 26, 2004 #1
    I would just like to know what exactly is the basis of the Chaos Theory; has it anything to do with the idea of statistical anentropy? Could someone give me an introduction to these topics? (I am a 15 year old going into a Honors Physics course in high school, thinking maybe I would like to grasp these things prior to enveloping myself in them). I apologize if I am overlooking a previous topic, and if so, please redirect me to it.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 26, 2004 #2
    If you're doing chaos theory as a 15-year-old in Honors Physics, you're in one weird school.

  4. Apr 27, 2004 #3
    Thanks, A lot.
  5. Apr 28, 2004 #4


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    I would suggest you pick up a textbook on differential equations/dynamical systems.
    They usually include a chapter at least about the chaotic behaviour of certain systems of differential equations.
    While you seem ready to move beyond a mere chapter or so, a good textbook would include references to that particular topic which might be of greater interest to you.
  6. May 1, 2004 #5
    Chaos theory in broad strokes is the study of systems that evolve deterministically, but are very sensitive to initial conditions. In other words two very similar sets of initial conditions can lead to solutions that diverge rapidly. There is a good introduction by Glick (sp?) and Goldstein treats it in his Mechanics book at the graduate level.
  7. May 1, 2004 #6


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    Actually the defintion of a chaotic system is not well-defined and Allday's description is just about as good as your going to get.

    Chaos theory is an abstract idea in the domain of maths rather than physics (though of course having application in physics it is usually taught on u-g physics courses).
  8. May 2, 2004 #7


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    I might also point out that "Chaos" is not so much a physics theory as a mathematical theory that can be applied to physics.
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