This result differs from the finding obtained in systems that exhibit self-organized criticality
(such as in Jensen ); the result is directly attributable to differences in the underlying relaxation process that set the simple payments system apart from systems that display self-organized criticality
The concept of self-organized criticality
requires a system to be in a constant flux.
Now, researchers have developed an extremely simple mathematical model that displays self-organized criticality
and appears to capture the way in which biological evolution proceeds via intermittent bursts of activity separated by long periods of quiescence.
Bak argues that self-organized criticality, as exemplified in the sandpile model, looks like a plausible general-purpose hammer for understanding complex systems because a wide range of them possess properties which can be derived from sandpile-type models.
Bak uses the universality of these properties to argue that some general, underlying theory must be applicable to all the systems that display them: Self-organized criticality as seen in a sandpile must also be responsible for earthquakes, solar flares, river branching structures, urban population distributions, biological extinction waves, macroeconomic fluctuations, and a whole lot more.
Bak's analogy between sandpile avalanches and self-organized criticality has prompted several researchers to take a closer look at the behavior of real sandpiles.
Institute are studying the possibility of applying the concept of self-organized criticality to economic systems.
Applying the concept of self-organized criticality to an economic system adds a new dimension.
Two central questions about the theory of self-organized criticality remain unresolved.
Bak argues that his concept of self-organized criticality provides a possible explanation for "1/f" noise, which has been detected in electronic devices and fits the kind of irregular fluctuations also seen in the luminosity of certain stars and in river flows measured over long periods of time (SN: 3/22/80, p.
Bak suggests that self-organized criticality is the common underlying mechanism accounting for phenomena that show a fractal structure in either time or space.