Redundancy is the existence of repetitive patterns or structures. In an important sense, redundancy refers to order in a complex system since order is defined as the existence of structures that maintain themselves over time. In information theory, redundancy refers to repetition in patterns of messages in a communication channel. If the message contains these redundancies, they can be compressed further; for example, a message containing a series of 250 ones, could be compressed into a command that effectively says "and then repeat one 250 times," instead of writing out all two hundred fifty 1's. Self-organizing processes demand some element of redundancy, which can be thought of as a fuel for the anacoluthian processes leading to emergence. In other words, novel patterns come from a recombination of redundant patterns.
Related category CHAOS, COMPLEXITY, AND DYNAMICAL SYSTEMS
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