I'm looking for scientific or mathematical examples, ideas, which could rightly refer to the
of dynamic systems I'm trying to describe.
(Preventing me from naming
this imagined class is I only have an impression of difference in dynamic systems and a few generally grouped examples).
A recent post here, Failure,
reminded me of a book by Dietrich Dorner titled The Logic of Failure
. (Basic Books, 1997). One of the takeaways from this book was the difficulty for human cognition to comprehend dynamic processes.
From this and some other research on dynamic systems, I've been working to better describe these systems and divide them into sub-classes by investigating how other scientific domains refer to dynamic processes which have a particularly difficult quality--they don't "stop" or are generally not subjected to human intervention.
In this imagined class of dynamic systems I thought to put astrophysics, and that part of the physics of the very small that says "we can't know both the speed and position of electrons", and global economics, and environmental biology, and global weather to name a few examples. For better understanding I've tried to contrast this imagined class
of dynamic processes to human-scale sciences and their Earth-based events. For example, while the travel of a bullet is a dynamic event, it has a beginning and end--when its fired and when it stops. On the other hand the astronomical observations of planetary orbits are not discrete (in my relative argument)--there is no event in the orbit marking its end or beginning. The global economy, business, commerce is constantly "happening" and doesn't "stop" so that an economist might wish to ask some fundamental question, like how much money is there in circulation right now? (and certainly I'm aware that at some level even if you could stop all economy, the count would be prone to error as much as any election is prone to counting error--but these are different problems).
Such distinctions are arbitrarily convenient for me too. (Its a useful example if its useful. If your first reaction is, "That's just not right! They're not bullets. They're projectiles." That's certainly true, but not relevant. ) I'm the first to admit my use of terms may be unorthodox (maybe even heretical) and cause some confusion (aggravation), thus it is more useful to interpret my question in relative terms. Don't think of the canon, just consider how you might describe dynamic processes better.
I like to follow the "multi-model" approach, so I'm not married to any particular perspective. Since I've been thinking about this, its not a topic I hear referred to commonly. I suspect it rarely comes up (I'm sure for good reasons). Nevertheless, I'm interested in what posters might suggest I investigate. And, MeFier's have such broad experience and knowledge and interests, I think in some way I'm asking people who might also be interested in the answer.
// PS. I was admonished for 'thread sitting'--I'm new to askmetafilter, so I'll avoid this practice.