A random non-rhythmic disturbance in a communication channel" (J.Z. YOUNG, 1978, p. 296)
"The perturbing part in a temporal signal" (R. VALLÉE, 1992).
or, with more detail: An environmental disturbance which reduces the reliability of the message transmitted through the communication channel.
VALLÉE's definition gives the general sense of the term, not merely the technical one.
The noise is the part of the signal which is not understood, or seems still senseless. VALLÉE states that the complete signal is the sum of its significant and non-significant parts.
About the concept of "order from noise", he writes: "Noise does not create order, but it is an excellent developer (in the photographic sense) of structure… It can also, through the fluctuations that it provokes, become a "structure trigger" (Ibid).
This is nucleation in conditions of dissipative structuration.
Other interesting comments about noise are:
"All that is not information, not redundancy, not form and not restraint – is noise, the only possible source of new patterns" (G. BATESON, 1973, p.386)
"… in my restaurant, self-organizing systems do not only feed upon order: they will also find noise on the menu" (H.von FOERSTER, 1981, p.15).
"It is not bad to have noise in the system. If a system freezes in a specific state, it cannot anymore adapt, while this final state may easily be faulty and it will not be able to adapt to anything that would be an inadequate situation" (H. ATLAN, 1972, p.24, quoting von FOERSTER, 1960, p. 31-50)
According to C. ZIMMER (1999, p. 86) "nonlinear dynamics seems to amplify noise" Apparently, the significance of noise is deeply modified in deterministic chaos.
It becomes either enhancing and constructive, or on the contrary destructive, in particular in relation to some peculiar conjunction of environmental conditions acting as amplificator or constraints.
- 1) General information
- 2) Methodology or model
- 3) Epistemology, ontology and semantics
- 4) Human sciences
- 5) Discipline oriented
To cite this page, please use the following information:
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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