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Complexity Digest's Blog

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Cascading Failures as Continuous Phase-Space Transitions

December 16, 2017 Comments (0)

In network systems, a local perturbation can amplify as it propagates, potentially leading to a large-scale cascading failure. Here we derive a continuous model to advance our understanding of cascading failures in power-grid networks. The model accounts for both the failure of transmission lines and the desynchronization of power generators and incorporates the transient dynamics between successive steps of the cascade. In this framework, we show that a cascade event is a phase-space...

Unveiling The Structure Of Information: The Fundamental Scale

December 16, 2017 Comments (0)

Information has been a matter of intense study and discussion for the last century. The very nature of information, not a physical object, not an entirely abstract entity, has fostered this endless discussion which had some of its first episodes back in the 40’s with the arguments between Wiener and Shannon. Whether information is the effect produced by the received pattern of signals or the pattern of signals itself, the truth is that these patterns exist and we are devoted to deep into...

A (partially) interactive introduction to Systems Sciences

December 15, 2017 Comments (0)

This eTextbook contains the system-scientific contents taught at the Institute of Systems Sciences, Innovation and Sustainability Research (SIS) at the University of Graz   Organically farmed by Manfred Füllsack Source:

Correlations between human mobility and social interaction reveal general activity patterns

December 15, 2017 Comments (0)

A day in the life of a person involves a broad range of activities which are common across many people. Going beyond diurnal cycles, a central question is: to what extent do individuals act according to patterns shared across an entire population? Here we investigate the interplay between different activity types, namely communication, motion, and physical proximity by analyzing data collected from smartphones distributed among 638 individuals. We explore two central questions: Which underlying...

Simple spatial scaling rules behind complex cities

December 15, 2017 Comments (0)

Although most of wealth and innovation have been the result of human interaction and cooperation, we are not yet able to quantitatively predict the spatial distributions of three main elements of cities: population, roads, and socioeconomic interactions. By a simple model mainly based on spatial attraction and matching growth mechanisms, we reveal that the spatial scaling rules of these three elements are in a consistent framework, which allows us to use any single observation to infer the...

Mathematical Structures of Natural Intelligence | Yair Neuman

December 15, 2017 Comments (0)

This book uncovers mathematical structures underlying natural intelligence and applies category theory as a modeling language for understanding human cognition, giving readers new insights into the nature of human thought. In this context, the book explores various topics and questions, such as the human representation of the number system, why our counting ability is different from that which is evident among non-human organisms, and why the idea of zero is so difficult to grasp.The book is...

Opinion Diffusion on Multilayer Social Networks

December 15, 2017 Comments (0)

In this paper, to reveal the influence of multilayer network structure on opinion diffusion in social networks, we study an opinion dynamics model based on DeGroot model on multilayer networks. We find that if the influence matrix integrating the information of connectedness for each layer and correlation between layers is strongly connected and aperiodic, all agents’ opinions will reach a consensus. However, if there are stubborn agents in the networks, regular agents’ opinions...

Slime mould: the fundamental mechanisms of cognition

December 14, 2017 Comments (0)

The slime mould Physarum polycephalum has been used in developing unconventional computing devices for in which the slime mould played a role of a sensing, actuating, and computing device. These devices treated the slime mould rather as an active living substrate yet the slime mould is a self-consistent living creature which evolved for millions of years and occupied most part of the world, but in any case, that living entity did not own true cognition, just automated biochemical mechanisms. To...

CAPS 2018: Complexity And Policy Studies

December 14, 2017 Comments (0)

CAPS 2018 is the second International Conference on Complexity and Policy Studies. This is a cross-disciplinary conference for research in which the tools of Complex Systems are used to examine a wide range of policies and procedures that promote, emphasize, contribute to, improve, or otherwise positively affect society. This scope includes new definitions, measures, and methodologies for tracking, understanding, and predicting impacts and trends, data sets, analytical methods, actors and...

The Emergence of Consensus: A Primer

December 13, 2017 Comments (0)

The origin of population-scale coordination has puzzled philosophers and scientists for centuries. Recently, game theory, evolutionary approaches and complex systems science have provided quantitative insights on the mechanisms of social consensus. However, the literature is vast and scattered widely across fields, making it hard for the single researcher to navigate it. This short review aims to provide a compact overview of the main dimensions over which the debate has unfolded and to discuss...