The global influence of former states of a system on its present and future states.
This is not Marxian historical determinism.
Neither is it the rigorous monocausal determinism of classical mechanics, nor statistical determinism. It corresponds to BOLTZMANN's after-effects ("Nachwirkunge"), i.e. the effects of the accumulated and registered or recorded events in the past of the system.
However, in complex systems this kind of "memory" does not lead to strict determinism, but merely to sensibility to initial conditions. This in turn endows the system either with ergodic behavior, or with chaotic characteristics.
D. RUELLE writes: "I think that history systematically generates events that cannot be predicted and have important long-term consequences" (1981).
V. VOLTERRA, starting from BOLTZMANN's equations, showed that they implied "the initial conditions of the system, under the form of an integral (or more generally a function) which represented the whole information related to the past of the system, unlike the classical vectorial form that represented only the present state. In this way, the system was not anymore deterministic in a strict Laplacian sense: its present is not anymore sufficient to determine its evolution; which is determined by its past as a whole" (G. ISRAEL, 1992, p.268).
We thus have a historical systemic determinism, with precise and specific characteristics.
J. HOLLAND in turn, observes that: "… future populations can only develop via reproduction of individuals of the current population. In particular, the population must serve as a summary of observed sample values (performances)" (1992, p.13).
Of course, "populations" can be of very different types: biological individuals, genes, techniques, bits of information, memes, etc…
Thus, while innovations open new possible futures, they are possible only on the base of the "presently remembered" (or registered) past.
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Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science (2020). Title of the entry. In Charles François (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics (2). Retrieved from www.systemspedia.org/[full/url]
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