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GLOSSARY
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Neocortex

The most recent evolutionary addition to the brain’s cerebral cortex.

Neural Network

An interconnected, variable mesh of sensitive neurons in the brain or an information processing circuit in computer. These can be self-organizing and self-learning by means of giving “weights” to processed information whereby stronger or more prevalent inputs are reinforced.

Neuron

A basic nerve cell in brains with an emitter extension and a receiving dendrite.

Niche

An environmental habitat to which an organism is adapted and within which it evolves.

NK Landscapes

A term from Stuart Kauffman whereby the fitness of N genes depends on the state of K other genes. Altogether their interaction gnerates an evolving fitness landscape.

Nonequilibrium Thermodynamics

A theoretical basis for the movement and transfer of energy in open systems and environments such as organisms and societies that are maintained in a state far from thermal equilibrium.

Nonlinear

A property of complex activities whereby the output is not directly proportional to the input such as linear cause and effect and can give rise to unexpected results.

Nonlocality

The quantum mechanical property whereby elements separated over any distance are instantaneously interrelated. The phenomenon is also known as entanglement.

Noosphere

A term for an emerging brain-like envelope over the earth due to the increased composite contributions of all peoples. Mainly derived from Vladimir Vernadsky and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.