|Intelligent Systems And Their Societies||Walter Fritz|
A set of three portable radio links (walky - talkies)
Lets observe a set of three radio links. When all are active, there is no flow of matter. When one set sends, the others receive only a very small amount of the radiated energy. Nevertheless each set, in turn, effects the others. Most people would say that they form a system.
A number of telephones in the neighborhood are not part of the system. The same amount of irradiated energy falls on them, but that energy has no effect. Also, if we shut down one of the sets, it does not respond any more to the irradiated energy. It is not anymore part of the system.
A bus full of people
Let's observe the people in a bus. There are many interactions. A sudden braking by the bus driver affects all within the bus. It seems that we can say that all these persons form a system. There is a person reading a newspaper. The person and his newspaper form a system: The newspaper affects the person mentally and the person affects the newspaper physically by holding it. But what about a second person who reads the same newspaper, looking over the shoulder of the first person? Apparently, he forms a system with the newspaper, but not with the first person. This is true until the first person gets annoyed, looks at the second, and talks to him. At this instant the two persons form a system. Better said, there is a system composed of the second person and by a subsystem, which in turn, is composed by the first person and his newspaper. Only when the first person drops his paper and starts a discussion with the second person, the system is only made up of the two persons. The newspaper does not belong to the system anymore.
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