butterfly effect(redirected from Butterfly metaphor)
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butterfly effect[′bəd·ər‚flī i‚fekt]
In a chaotic system, the ability of miniscule changes in initial conditions (such as the flap of a butterfly's wings) to have far-reaching, large-scale effects on the development of the system (such as the course of weather a continent away).
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.