The systems They are sets formed by a series of interrelated components, and whose union serves to fulfill one or more functions.
This extremely comprehensive definition applies to both natural systems as for the artificial, both for biological and social systems that are related to the human sciences.
They are usually classified between open systems and closed systems, that is to say, those that have strong ties with the outside of those that are characterized by functioning regardless of the environment that surrounds it: although the formal definition of a closed system requires that the tie with the outside be null, in general the division is made with respect to whether the exchange is large or rather insignificant.
The open systems, on the contrary, they are those that exchange a large amount of matter and energy with the outside. In most of these cases, this exchange is even responsible for the normal functioning of the system, and it would be impossible for it to continue working without the possibility of exchanging matter or energy with the environment.
The properties The physics and chemistry of open systems, compared to closed systems, are often more complex and difficult to explain.
This is because, unlike in the case of inbred systems, open systems have equations of motion involving factors that are not contained in the system itself. Elements such as temperature or atmospheric pressure, for example, come into play only when the condition of the system is assumed to be influenced by external factors.
In the field of computing, the notion of systems has been treated in a very similar way to the case of biology and physics. When computer systems are configured in such a way that they allow interoperability and the use of open standards (that is, available by the whole community) they are called open systems, whereas when they are restricted to licensees, they are called closed systems.
In fact, systems that allow modifications by any user are considered open, while those that do not allow it, since all changes in the system must be made by those who are already in it (the creator company) are called closed.
Examples of open systems
As in the technology, many disciplines transferred the use of the notion of the open and the closed as in the theory of physical systems. Some open systems will be listed below, in all cases:
- The cell, as it has a semi-permeable membrane that produces the exchange with the outside.
- A bacterium.
- A plant, which in the process of photosynthesis undergoes a notorious exchange of energy.
- A watercourse like a river, which receives tributaries and sends other courses.
- Each of the organs or systems of the human body can be interpreted as an open system
- The environment, since it cannot be thought of as a closed system if it permanently undergoes modifications.
- All animals, since they exchange matter with the outside.
- In computing, an operating system like Linux, competition from Windows.
- A city can be interpreted as an open system, since it necessarily exchanges with the outside world.
- Economies whose fundamental premise is exchange with other countries are recognized as open, while the most protectionist ones are recognized as closed.