Complexity: The Haven of the Status Quo


The sophistication of simplicity.

Currently, my team and I are analyzing and evaluating all of the visual applications in the industry. We are beginning to question the plethora of “features” and asking are these elementals or molecules composed of elementals that we are dealing with? If they are molecules, we are breaking the bonds and looking at the atoms that compose them. We are throwing out all of the molecules from our interaction designs and only offering the atoms. If you want a molecule, you build it.

We are asking the same questions about media. What is fundamental to media what are the nodes and what are the links? How do we break the links (rules) that compose them?

The result is simplicity. We are learning what the elemental atoms are and the fundamental bonds between them. We are exploring what digital technology is making possible and questioning all our premises. Do we need these nodes? Do we need these lines? Do we need these tables? Do we need these networks?

We are finding that complexity is the haven of those that want to conceal the fundamentals and profit from our ignorance. Complexity is an obstacle to the change we need to implement to escape the trap of the banking institutions, the lending institutions, the credit institutions, the existing infrastructures and resource companies who profit off of what we think we need. Complexity is only a necessity to those who want to entrench the status quo through mental red tape we neither need or want.

Destroy the rule systems that exist throughout society. We don’t need to streamline. We need to disintegrate the existing power structures.

The bonus monies disbursed to bank executives was payment by the powers that be to those who succeeded in generating massive profits at the expense of the American people and the world. It was payment for creating a system so complex we could not let them topple for fear of bringing down everything with it. But the secret is to let them topple by destroying their nodes and links, hubs and networks. Such freedom and responsibility is a scary prospect, but “You will miss us when we are gone!” is not a business model. Complexity is fat and American capitalism is gluttony.

Put down the plate and lose the weight.

Rediscover the freedom and responsibility of simplicity.

Use Visualization to identify and destroy complexity.


Relationary Browser

What I am finding in my current work is that there are a set of symmetrical, semi-symmetrical and asymmetrical polyhedrons that can be used to describe an individual’s network with the the individual as the focus and direct links as radii to individuals represented as polytopes and the reporting groups (circles) represented as polygons formed from connecting the vertexes for the individuals in the reporting groups with edges.

Suddenly, “spheres of influence” can be modeled and utilized to the benefit of the communities of the individuals.

Prezi could be used to navigate the vertexes on the surfaces of these spheres of influence as a giant two dimensional map of linked pages that you could “dive” into or “surface” out of through the links instead of forwarding or backwarding.

All you would have to do is have a “map” button that you click on and all the child pages for the current page are displayed as a Prezi map.  As a line or table of pages,  as a sphere with the pages displayed on the surface or flat one degree daisywheel with the tops of the pages pointing to the center where an icon for the current page resides.  Rotate the daisy to look at the pages right side up.  Or navigate freely Prezi style.

This could be applied to webpage networks, citation networks, social networks, location networks, date networks, time networks or state networks, career networks, image networks or any other form of network you can dream up.

If you have a company capable of developing this, I am looking for work and this would be a great project to get paid for.

Icons: Systema Iconic Language: Part IV


I have been thinking about all I have read to this point and something occurred to me this evening.  There are no such thing as nodes and links.  There are only equilibrium and non-equilibrium states respectively.  Newtonian Thermodynamics only describes equilibrium states.  It does not account for the transition between states when equilibrium does not exist.  So it is with all networks.

When you navigate the web, you are actually moving from one HTML equilibrium state to another HTML equilibrium state.  The page metaphor is concealing the conceptual character of the process.

Back to Basics

The web navigation buttons on a browser are also deceptive.  They do not reveal the logical consistency between the navigation of hypertext networks and goal networks, contact networks, service networks, product networks, location networks, event networks and unit networks.  The consistency between the many forms of media is also concealed by not recognizing that all forms of media are networks transitioning between equilibrium and non-equilibrium states.  It is important to recognize that any form of process or data structure is really a network, even relational databases are simply lattice networks.


The above Icons are the only ones you need to deal with “step” and “loop”, two of the three “linear” processes for navigating any network.  In reality there is no such thing as a linear network.  There is only a path through a set of equilibrium states connected by these non-equilibrium states.  The remaining “decision” is not a binary decision, but a case or switch which is represented by hyperlink icons.

In reality, with the option to back track and break continuity by creating new browser windows, navigation of the web is much more like Prolog than say Basic or C.

It is that simple.  The above icons are the universal icons for navigation of any network, the rest irregardless of conceptual and physical meaning are hyperlinks.

I think it is significant to indicate the target state for hyperlinks through use of icon background shape and color, and to indicate target context through the use of icon foreground content.  This would make hyperlink icons much more communicative and universal.  As also discussed, hyperlink content could be presented as picticons (picture icons), graphicons, (graphic icons), liticons (text icons), sonicons (sound icons), anicons (animated icons) or vidicons (video icons) that exhibit proscribed behavior when rolled over.