HAPP One-day Conference: Order and Chaos

Please note: booking for both in-person and online attendance closes at midday (BST) on Friday 2 June. Conference dinner booking closes at midday (BST) on Monday 22 May

Order and chaos have been fundamental concepts in human thought from the earliest times. The ancient astronomers devised systems to explain the ostensibly chaotic motions of the stars and planets, later culminating in the apparently deterministic laws of Newton’ theory of gravity. However, Poincaré’s study of the three-body problem showed that chaos would invariably result from the inevitable uncertainty of the initial conditions. Building on this, Lorenz derived the Butterfly Effect whereby seemingly trivial, remote occurrences can result in huge chaotic outcomes.

The expression of the Second Law of Thermodynamics, most notably by Clausius and Kelvin, with the concept of entropy as well as Boltzmann’s work in statistical mechanics demonstrated the inevitable increase in the disorder in physical systems. Most recently work on the quantum theory of chaos, in between order and disorder, promises to impact the development of quantum technologies including computing. This conference will examine the evolution of the theories of order and chaos across the centuries and their prospects for future advances.

Registration to attend this conference is free, except for the Conference Dinner, and booking is required for both in-person and online attendance. Please see website for more details and booking links: www.stx.ox.ac.uk/event/happ-one-day-conference-order-and-chaos