All about Negentropy – the opposite of entropy

opposite of entropy

In this blog post, we will talk about entropy, what it means and why it is important. We also talk about negentropy, the opposite of entropy. Keep reading to read about an interesting link between entropy and human consciousness. 

What is Entropy?

There are several definitions of the term entropy:

  • Thermal state quantity of a closed physical system, which indicates its sense of macroscopic evolution. 
  • Amount of information related to an element of the transmitted message.
  • A measure that indicates the degree of organization of a system. 
  • A state in which all the symbols of a communicated sequence have an equal probability of being transmitted according to information theory. 
  • A state of disorder, of random distribution of the elements from which the work of art arises through the creative intervention of the artist (aesthetics). 

An example that demonstrates entropy is the melting of an ice cube. At first, the cube is in a state of low entropy, characterized by the solid-state, but as the degree of disorder melts it increases and thus the entropy increases.

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

Many physicists believe that the entropy of the Universe is constantly increasing. Thus, the Universe would have been in the state with the lowest entropy at the time of the Big Bang, which marked its appearance, so that later the entropy would increase as the Universe expanded.

In general, entropy is the process of degradation of the energy of a certain system of the universe. In economics, entropy expresses the process of degradation of material and energy resources, a process that takes place both through economic and social activity and outside it. 

Entropy means the transformation of free energy into used energy in the economic process. As a result, low entropy becomes high entropy with negative effects for humanity and the universe. Low entropy has a structure orderly and is (can be) used by people in economic processes.

High entropy represents a total or majority energy structure linked by character

messy, unavailable. In the universe, there is a continuous qualitative degradation,

general and irreversible free energy, ordered by nature itself, which becomes

energy bound, disordered by human action.

Because economic processes have, by their very content, an entropic character, humans must (should) act in accordance with the laws of nature, to give their activities an anti-entropic character.

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

What is the opposite of entropy? 

Negentropy is the opposite of entropy. It is a negative entropy that designates either the presence of undegraded energy, capable of doing something, or the potential energy contained in compounds with low entropy, or what leads to an increase in the state of organization of a system through the acquisition of information.

The term itself is negative, and by adding another negation it becomes positive. As in mathematics, minus and minus results in plus. For example, probability, disorder, corruption of a certain thing indicates entropy. The information, indicating order and organization, is non-entropic.

The concept of negentropy was introduced in 1943 by Erwin Schrödinger, as “negative entropy”.  Schrödinger theorized that a living framework sends out entropy so as to keep up its own entropy at a low level. By utilizing the word “Negentropy”, he could communicate this reality in a progressively “positive” way: A living framework imports negentropy and stores it.

In 1974, Albert Szent-Györgyi proposed replacing the term negentropy with syntropy.

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

Negentropy is the loss of entropy in a framework by having more entropy streaming out than in. A model in thermodynamics, where entropy is heat partitioned by temperature, is the progression of vitality from hot to cold through another medium. This medium will be in a lively harmony, that is, transmit as much vitality as it gets. 

However, outflow happens at a lower temperature than immission. That implies, that MORE entropy is radiated than is gotten, bringing about an overall deficit of entropy in the transiting medium. Notwithstanding, the net aggregate sum of entropy rises. (As the temperature by which the warmth is led is currently lower than previously.)

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

Syntropy

Syntropy is a term advanced by Buckminster Fuller yet in addition created by others to allude to an “against entropy” or “negentropy”. 

Definition of syntropy: “A tendency towards order and symmetrical combinations, designs of ever more advantageous and orderly patterns. Evolutionary cooperation. Anti-entropy.” 

Nobel Prize winner Albert Szent-Györgyi, was the one who proposed to replace the term negentropy with syntropy. 

In 1988, Mario Ludovico gave a conventional meaning of syntropy as an estimation of the level of request/association interior to any framework shaped by cooperating parts. 

As indicated by that definition, syntropy is an amount correlative to entropy: The entirety of these two amounts is consistent for the system thought of and characterizes the change capability of the framework. On this premise, the hypothesis creates conditions adept to depict any conceivable development of complex systems, especially concerning organic/social systems.

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

Could consciousness be a side effect of “entropy”?

The issue of understanding human consciousness has been debated for many centuries. Although consciousness is an essential part of humans, experts have not yet learned where it comes from and why only humans have it.

In a study led by researchers in France and Canada, a new hypothesis was presented: consciousness would be the natural result of the maximization of information in the brain. In other words, consciousness is a side effect of the brain advancing into a new state of entropy.

Entropy is a term used to describe the progression of a system from order to disorder. For example, an egg in which the egg white is perfectly separated from the yolk has low entropy, but when the two parts are mixed together, the egg has high entropy.

Experts believe that this phenomenon is present in our universe. After the Big Bang, the universe gradually shifted from a low entropy state to a high entropy state, and according to the second law of thermodynamics, entropy can only increase within a system, which may explain why time only moves into the future.

Researchers believe that the same laws can be applied to connections in the human brain to see if they have a specific pattern of how they are arranged when people are conscious.

To test the hypothesis, a team of researchers from the University of Toronto and Descartes University in Paris used a type of theory, called statistical mechanics, to make a model of the neural network in the brains of nine people, including seven people. sick with epilepsy.

In particular, they looked for synchronization of neurons to find out if brain cells are connected or not.

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

They analyzed two sets of information, first compared the connectivity pattern of patients when they were awake or asleep, and then analyzed the differences between five patients with epilepsy during seizures.

In both situations, the brain had the same behaviour, the participants’ brains showed an increased level of entropy in the state of consciousness.

Experts want to extend experiments to general cognitive behaviour, such as observing changes in the neural organization when people perform certain tasks that do not involve mental involvement.

Conclusions

In this blog post, we talked about entropy, what it means and why it is important. We also talked about negentropy, the opposite of entropy. 

Entropy is a term used to describe the progression of a system from order to disorder. 

Negentropy is the opposite of entropy. It is a negative entropy that designates either the presence of undegraded energy, capable of doing something, or the potential energy contained in compounds with low entropy, or what leads to an increase in the state of organization of a system through the acquisition of information.

If you have any questions or comments on the content, please feel free to leave them in the comments section.

FAQ about the opposite of entropy

What is the opposite of entropy?

The opposite of entropy is negentropy. It describes the potential energy contained in compounds with low entropy, or what leads to an increase in the state of organization of a system through the acquisition of information.

What is another word for entropy?

Another word for entropy would be randomness, information, data, disorder. 

What is the concept of entropy?

The concept of entropy means the process of degradation of the energy of a certain system of the universe. For example, in economics, entropy expresses the process of degradation of material and energy resources, a process that takes place both through economic and social activity and outside it. 

What is entropy used for?

Entropy is used in thermodynamics, as it expresses the proportion of a system’s warm vitality for every unit temperature that is inaccessible for accomplishing valuable work. Since work is obtained from requested atomic movement, the measure of entropy is additionally a proportion of the sub-atomic turmoil, or arbitrariness, of a system.

Why is entropy important?

Entropy is important because it is like a bookkeeping device, which informs us regarding the stream and appropriation of vitality. 

Further Reading

Entropy: A Guide for the Perplexed: What it is, how to use it, by Dwight Mix 

Energy and Entropy: A Dynamic Duo, by Harvey S. Leff

Information, Entropy, Life And The Universe: What We Know And What We Do Not Know, by Arieh Ben-Naim 

A Student’s Guide to Entropy (Student’s Guides), by Don S. Lemons

Entropy And Its Physical Meaning, 2nd Edition, by J. S. Dugdale 

References

Schrödinger, Erwin. (1967). What Is Life? & Mind and Matter. CAMBRIDGE: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 052109397

www.theology.edu website 

Psychology.wikia.org website

earthfuture.com website

Sciencealert.com website

All about Negentropy - the opposite of entropy

Juanita Agboola

Juanita Agboola is the editor in chief of HFNE and an expert in mental health online. She has been writing about online behaviour, mental health and psychology issues since 2012. All Guides are reviewed by our editorial team which constitutes various clinical psychologists, PhD and PsyD colleagues.