Jump to content United States-English
HP.com Home Products and Services Support and Drivers Solutions How to Buy
» Contact HP

HP.com home

Technical Reports


HP Labs

» Research
» News and events
» Technical reports
» About HP Labs
» Careers @ HP Labs
» People
» Worldwide sites
» Downloads
Content starts here

Click here for full text: PDF

Complexity and Emergent Behaviour in ICT Systems

Bullock, Seth; Cliff, Dave


Keyword(s): complex systems; emergent behaviour; ICT; DTI; foresight

Abstract: Information and Communication Technology (ICT) practitioners are now readily able to create systems of such interconnected complexity that predicting the effects that small changes (such as minor component failures) will have on overall system performance may become very difficult or perhaps impossible. The notion that system-level behaviour "emerges" from parallel nonlinear interaction of multiple components in ways that are difficult or impossible to predict is explored in this document with reference to the UK's ICT investments and assets. We conclude that while it is true that there are currently limits to our ability to understand the ICT systems that we are capable of creating, nevertheless there are ways forward, including new ways of structuring and approaching software engineering, and teaching IT. This 25, 000- word report is a briefing document commissioned by the Foresight Programme within the Office of Science and Technology of the UK Government's Department of Trade and Industry. Its findings are independent of government and do not constitute UK Government policy. Notes: Seth Bullock, School of Computing, University of Leeds, UK

35 Pages

Back to Index

»Technical Reports

» 2009
» 2008
» 2007
» 2006
» 2005
» 2004
» 2003
» 2002
» 2001
» 2000
» 1990 - 1999

Heritage Technical Reports

» Compaq & DEC Technical Reports
» Tandem Technical Reports
Printable version
Privacy statement Using this site means you accept its terms Feedback to HP Labs
© 2009 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.