Leveraging Environmental Correlations: The Thermodynamics of Requisite Variety

17 Sep 2016Alexander B. BoydDibyendu MandalJames P. Crutchfield

Key to biological success, the requisite variety that confronts an adaptive organism is the set of detectable, accessible, and controllable states in its environment. We analyze its role in the thermodynamic functioning of information ratchets---a form of autonomous Maxwellian Demon capable of exploiting fluctuations in an external information reservoir to harvest useful work from a thermal bath... (read more)

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