Fast Entropy, PHE And Psychohistory

PHE - Physical History and Economics - is an attempt to derive social science from physics. Researcher Mark Ciotola hopes that, just as the laws of physics are invariant, a unified science of society would allow the analysis of any society across human experience.

PHE is enabled by the thermodynamic Fast Entropy approach. Simply put, fast entropy states that systems tend to configure themselves to maximixe the RATE of entropy production. Mathematically-speaking, Fast Entropy states that entropy production is subject to the Principle of Least Time. Life, intelligence and civilization are viewed as faster paths to a higher level of entropy. Fast Entropy can also be called the e th Law of Thermodynamics due to its strengthening of the Second Law and because it drives exponential growth.

This means that fast entropy can be utilized as Astronomers have gravity to hold together their universe. Fast entropy provides the social sciences with a unifying tendancy for social phenomena, or literally a social "gravity". Just as there is more to the universe than gravity, many other field such as psychology, economics, sociology, history, chemistry and biology bear upon PHE as well. PHE does not replace traditional social sciences, but rather provides a unifying framework.

If you're thinking that this idea sounds like Isaac Asimov's psychohistory from his 1951 novel Foundation, you're not the only one. The creative force behind PHE, American physical economist and professor of law Mark Ciotola, wrote this about Asimov's Foundation series:

Perhaps the greatest similarity is that both psychohistory and PHE invoke a statistical approach. Both approaches are much better at modeling the actions of very large groups of people rather than the actions of small groups or individuals. Hence, the actions of individuals cannot reliably be forecast, but the path of large societies can be more reliably forecast. Forecasts in both approaches are more properly expressed in probabilities than deterministically. PHE has not yet advanced to the accuracy attributed to psychohistory in the Foundation series.

There are several tremendous differences, most of which are because psychohistory focuses on mathematics and psychology, while PHE focuses on thermodynamics.

Psychohistory is constrained by the assumption that the response of populations to certain stimuli remains constant. Although this is a factor that PHE needs to account for, it is not PHE’s chief constraint. PHE assumes that the behavior of entire populations is constrained by laws of thermodynamics and related physical principles. In PHE, it is assumed that populations will tend to respond to thermodynamic opportunities and limitations in a roughly similar manner. PHE can be further constrained in terms of critical resources.

To learn more about Fast Entropy and PHE, take a look at Physical History and Economics (pdf) and the PHE and Fast Entropy research site. Other approaches to the topic are provided at these previous articles, Asimov's Psychohistory May Be Possible, Cliodynamics: Modeling Complex Societies Mathematically and TASC - DARPA's Psychohistory.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/2/2011)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Culture ")

Personalized Masks Appear
'The tiger stripes on Jim's mask... made the young people easy to identify.' - Robert Heinlein, 1949.

Science Fiction Helps Young Readers Build Resiliency
'Reading science fiction and fantasy can help readers make sense of the world.'

Unwanted Cruise Ships Huddle Together Out At Sea
'On the screen they passed in an endless, boundaryless flood of green specks...' - James Blish, 1957.

News Mood Filter Web Extension
'He adjusted the n, the r and b knobs, and hopefully anticipated a turn for the better...'

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Habitability Of Galactic Bulge - Good News For Foundation Fans
'Toran resigned himself to days of careful plotting between Jumps.'

Lava Tubes On Mars And Moon May Be Huge
'Most of the stuff written about Bats' Cave gives a wrong impression.'

Olfactory User Interfaces - Judith Amores Dissertation
Awakened with a whiff of lemon.

Personalized Masks Appear
'The tiger stripes on Jim's mask... made the young people easy to identify.'

Foiling Facial Recognition, Fighting Coaster Viruses, Harlan Ellison-Style
I have no mouth and I must scream.

Ford Uses Obedient Robot Dogs To Update Facilities Maps
'If he sent out two or three of the small tele-operated devices... [he] could see machinery and construction details in real time from both above and below.'

AirTouch Panels Means No More Dirty Touchscreens!
Useful interfaces now appear in thin air.

EllipticaRunner Robot Is Fast, Amazing, Slightly Worrisome
'THEY sent A SLAMHOUND on Turner's trail in New Delhi...'

SPECTER Electroshock Round Fireable From Shotgun
'...the balls sent by this gun are not ordinary balls, but little cases of glass.'

100 Terabyte Exadrive SSD Also Has Biggest Price
'A man could carry AIs or complete planetary dataspheres in a Schrön loop.'

Mechanical Milking Of Microalgae For Fuel Production
'They call 'em culture tanks. They have bugs -- germs -- growing in them.'

Feel Virtual Reality In Mid-Air!
'...a pressure on the lips - warm and soft, moist and sweet.'

Electric Lasso Gives Police Options
'The blast of silver threads enveloped her...'

TytoCare Offers Futuristic Home Care
'Immediately an enormous apparatus fell on to her out of the ceiling...'

Powdered Regolith Propulsion
'... filling their great tanks with the finely divided dust which the ionic rockets would spit out in electrified jets.'

Ford's SafeCap, Opposite Of Niven and Barnes' Napcap
'In the napcap a client became an instant yoga master...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.