C.1. Some general considerations

Few people are aware of the full implications of chaos science. Many people still believe that with enough data input (even a deluge of data), accurate long-term predictions are possible because it fits into their conventional thinking. As human beings, we are not at ease with the feeling that we are not in full control of our destiny. For some, this constraint questions our capability to exert our free will.

“Big data” is the notion that more information than ever can be collected about the world. It is the object of a lot of speculative ideas. The most controversial is that “big data” will result in algorithms that will know people better than they know themselves, and that this knowledge could be used by businesses or governments for manipulative ends, while undermining the very idea of individual freedom. The danger is certainly real. As more of the world may become tailored around individuals’ personality traits and interests, people will be subject to become passive recipients of AI decisions. However, in any case, accurate long-term forecasting will remain teemed with uncertainty.

The majority of the scientific community will come, sooner or later, to consider in one way or another that the scientific revolution brought about by the development of complexity and chaos science is to be compared with the upheaval brought about by the theories of relativity and quantum mechanics, but with a critical difference. Only theoretical ...

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