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(l) Characterizing a system in which the internal parameters can be changed when necessary through feedback. (2) A heuristic idea serves as a guide for discovery. It serves as a valuable aid for empirical research but may be unproved or incapable of proof. (Umpleby)

An aid to discovery, any device or procedure used to reduce problem-solving effort, a rule of thumb.

A procedure or algorithm to search for something by the incremental exploration of an unknown terrain according to some criterion. E.g., hill climbing optimisers, chess playing computers which cannot evaluate all possible moves (see satisficing). (Krippendorff)
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