The “slides” supporting my talk on Requisite Inefficiency a couple of months ago have been on Slideshare since then, but I haven’t had the time to share them here. Which I do now.
The various manifestations of Requisite Inefficiency in both organisms and organisations can be understood by observing the maintenance of balances between homeostasis and heterostasis (as in the adaptive immune systems), exploration and exploitation (foraging of ants or curiosity-driven vs market-driver research) as well as various types of redundancy or shift of function. The latter can be elastic, as it is in degeneracy, or plastic, as it is in exaptation.
Having an underutilised structure/function that is capable of providing the deficit of variety to the utilised structures of a system in order to match the complexity of an external stimulus, or that can be adapted in a sufficiently short time to do so, is a prerequisite for survival.