Thursday, May 19, 2011

Complex Systems and Prime Numbers

Sometimes I feel that the lives that we live, as complex systems, are very analogous to the prime number sequence. Every prime is a source of a very simple arithmetic sequence but the problem with prime number is that they never end and therefore there is an infinite number of pattern sources out there. Just like there is in real life.

The theory of complex systems state that simple actions could result in great and sometimes unexpected consequences. That’s because there are lots of other factors that inevitably affect the environment of an action and that environment only appears to be isolated from external events.

Maybe the analogy is subtle but an unexpected event is like a really huge semi prime. It would take us really long to realize that the number isn’t a prime, but a semi prime. And it would take us really long to realize that an unexpected sequence or result is actually related to that other hidden factor that we didn’t see before.