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General Concepts

Attractor-Repeller informs about the final state of the system. In a sense attractor is a state, shape, configuration, towards which the system is destined to evolve. Repeller is a state from which the system tends to escape and moves toward the attractor.

Context dependence informs about the conditions within which the system evolves or persists….component’s properties, coupling (strength and type) depends on components properties, environment… control parameters

Energy  informs about the system’s state of motion or about the ability/capacity to put the system into motion.

Entropy-Information informs about the breadth and availability of possible states to the system.

Fields (scalar-vector) informs about the state and interactions within the system or between the system and the environment (locality – nearest neighbour interaction)

Fluctuations – Perturbations inform about the unpredictable disturbances and stability of system’s states and the spatio-temporal interactions within the system;

Gradients inform about the strength of  forces and flows between two states within the system;

Interactions/couplings inform about relations between the system’s components. The interactions can create collective states (of n ≥ 2 components) that form the system; Short range-Long range interactions.

Networks inform on how interactions are structured between system components;

Phase transition/Bifurcation/ Critical point informs about the qualitative changes (change of functional dependence between the behavior and the context) within the system

Self-Organization/Self-Assembly/Soft-Assembly  informs about the capacity of the system’s components to form organized patterns  within some context without the patterns being explicitelly imposed by and external agency.(positive feedback)

Space-time scales  Informs about the order of magntude of the spatial and temporal properties of the system’s behavior. The minimum physically sensible spatial scale is of the order of 10-35 meters. In similar vein the minimal time scale is of the order of 10-43 seconds. On the other hand the currently maximal spatial extent is of the order of 1027 meters and the current time extent is of the order of 1017 seconds, the spatio-temporal extent of the observable Universe. This is a vast extent between what we call micro and macro spatial and time scales. Human beings with the spatial extent of their bodies of the order of 1meter and life span of the order of 109 seconds (tens of years) lies in between these extremes…

Stability-Instability-Metastability (State transitions) = inform about the propensity of the system to return to the previous state (negative feedback) or to attain the new one or switch from one to another state sequentially;


State/Collective/Reaction-coordinates-modes-variables-Order-parameters  inform about how the system is collectively ordered (n ≥ 2 components –it is a relational variable);

Symmetry-Symmetry breaking (rearangement) informs about the state, emergence or the chage of the ordered behavior of the system

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