Joined: Sep. 2005
|Sure, messy, but yet sunspots and things like the Jupiter red spot are kind of like bits of order in chaos, arent they?|
Chaos doesn't mean disorder. It basically implies unpredictability in it's dynamics. There are dynamical systems that are well understood (a single planet orbiting a star) but most things out there are quite complex. Chaos is not a well defined idea, but from what I know chaotic systems are heavily dependant on initial conditions. For example, if you put a drop of water on the back of your hand it will roll off. But, at some angle of your hand the drop will have a tough time "deciding" which way to fall. At this point tiny imperfections (the shaking of your hand from blood flow) may have a large impact on the outcome. This is considered chaotic. It really has nothing to do with disorder or information. Just unpredictability. Gleick's Chaos is a fabulous read for the inclined. Lots of pretty fractal pictures and interesting topics. It's aimed at the learned layman.