- (ethics, religion, uncountable) The doctrine that all human actions are not so much determined by the preceding events, conditions, causes or karma as by deliberate choice or free will.
- (countable, physics) A case in which the uncertainty principle applies; a case in which certain pairs of physical properties such as the position and momentum of a particle cannot be known simultaneously.
- 1975, Carleton Mathematical Lecture Notes:
- The classic examples in physics involve relativity theory and quantum theory and the recognition of the indeterminisms underlying those required the genius of Einstein and of Heisenberg.
- (countable) Any situation in which the outcome cannot be completely predicted in advance.
- 1937, Pitirim Aleksandrovich Sorokin, Social and Cultural Dynamics:
- There is a whole gradation of more or less rigid determinisms and more or less free indeterminisms, as they have been given in various theories.
- (countable, computing) A situation in which there are multiple valid options for next step in a process.
- 2003, Robert Nieuwenhuis & Andrei Voronkov, Logic for Programming, Artificial Intelligence, and Reasoning:
- In detail, an inference strategy has to deal with the following three kinds of indeterminisms: 1. the selection of the initial path, 2. the selection of the next branch B to be expanded, 3. the selection of the next linking step to be performed on B.
- 2008, Hamid Sarbazi-Azad, Behrooz Parhami, & Seyed-Ghasem Miremadi, Advances in Computer Science and Engineering:
- These indeterminisms confuse a regular bus arbiter in deciding whether a transaction should be aborted or resumed.
- 2014, M.B. Zaremba, Information Control Problems in Manufacturing Technology:
- This parallelism brings in conflicts and directional indeterminisms which cannot be solved by the CU.