A Note to the Reader
The capability of the Google search engine, along with content on the Internet, has grown to such an extent that these glossary terms and any other can be typed in this way: "define fractal," and so on. This will access the vast online online scientific and academic encyclopedias, dictionaries and web postings.
An agent such as an organism may both adapt to and alter its environment through bodily and behavioral means.
Another phrase for self-organizing complex adaptive systems which emphasizes the activity of independent agents such as people that are in constant creative dialogue with each other.
A set of defined mathematical rules which specify a sequence of steps to be carried out for a procedure such as solving a problem or performing an activity.
A sequence of DNA genetic material contained within chromosomes which is alleomorphic or structurally related to other sequences.
The quantatitive growth and size of one part of an organism in relation to the whole.
Unselfish behavior for someone else’s benefit, often at an expense to oneself, but which is of value to a larger social group.
One of the 20 molecular components of proteins. Each contains an amino group at one end and a carboxyl group at the other.
A theory that the presence of human beings constrains the numerical parameters the universe can have. It the comes in 2 levels: the weak anthropic principle holds that the universe is the way it is because we are here; the strong version asserts that the universe was made to evolve into humans.
In biology, a universal bodily form for organisms and in psychology, a psychic attractor state which shapes ones personality.
The study of and search for life elsewhere in the solar system and cosmos.
A region or state with fractal properties toward which a complex system moves and settles into.
The process whereby networks such as biochemical reactions sustain their own self-propagation without an external influence.
A term for the ability of living systems to recursively referr to their own internal description so as to organize and maintain themselves.
Fibrous connections in a brain that carry signals between neurons.
The common anatomical body plan of a related species of organisms.
Brain hemispheres which employ in their general performance either discrete or holistic modes of cognition.
A branching split of a complex, dynamical system under critical threshold conditions.
The sum total of earth life from geological strata to its crustal surface and stratosphere.
The composite plant flora and animal fauna of a certain region.