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What Are the New Implications of Chaos for Unpredictability?

Werndl, Charlotte (2008) What Are the New Implications of Chaos for Unpredictability? [Preprint]

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Abstract

From the beginning of chaos research until today, the unpredictability of chaos has been a central theme. It is widely believed and claimed by philosophers, mathematicians and physicists alike that chaos has a new implication for unpredictability, meaning that chaotic systems are unpredictable in a way that other deterministic systems are not. Hence one might expect that the question 'What are the new implications of chaos for unpredictability?' has already been answered in a satisfactory way. However, this is not the case. I will critically evaluate the existing answers and argue that they do not fit the bill. Then I will approach this question by showing that chaos can be defined via mixing, which has never before been explicitly argued for. Based on this insight, I will propose that the sought-after new implication of chaos for unpredictability is the following: for predicting any event all sufficiently past events are approximately probabilistically irrelevant.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
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Werndl, Charlotte
Additional Information: This paper is forthcoming in The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science.
Keywords: Chaos, Predictability, Unpredictability, Dynamical Systems, Ergodic Theory.
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Classical Physics
Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
Depositing User: Charlotte Werndl
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2008
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 15:16
Item ID: 3914
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/3914

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