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Meaning of Maxwell demon

Max'well de"mon

Pronunciation: [key]
  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.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.