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Maxwell demon

noun, Physics.
1.
a hypothetical agent or device of arbitrarily small mass that is considered to admit or block selectively the passage of individual molecules from one compartment to another according to their speed, constituting a violation of the second law of thermodynamics.
Origin
1875-1880
1875-80; after J. C. Maxwell
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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