Jared Diamond: Societal Collapse

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If you listen carefully to what Jared Diamond is saying in the TED video above, he is describing not a five part, but a six part power curve into a systemic singularity. This has been one of the core themes of discussion of this blog.  We all seem to be too close to our problems to see the commonality.  The interrogatives come into play here:

  1. Goals
  2. People
  3. Functions
  4. Forms
  5. Times
  6. Distances

Times and Distances being the basis on which the higher orders are built.

When we look at the recent economic “crisis” we see 300 trillion in currency circulating and roughly 1 trillion to 2 trillion shifting suddenly and unexpectedly.  We witnessed a systemic collapse, a singularity, a tipping point, a power curve, an exponential change, a phase transition or whatever label you want to call it.  These have been happening everywhere since Time and Distance began in different contexts and orders both in human and non-human systems.

What Jared Diamond and other alarmists are implying is that human society is now a system approaching its final singularity in this century on this planet.  We are implying that today we are experiencing a less than one percent crisis on a power curve into a singularity.  How many more iterations will the global system withstand?  Will humanity make the step into space successfully before we experience a global dark age?  How will the six or more factors in the power curve play out?

The truth to me appears to be that power curves whether they play out or not result in either a systemic climax or anti-climax followed by a systemic collapse.  Would it not be better if we experienced a systemic climax that led to us expanding into the solar system?

Systemic collapse seems to be the fashion of this generation.  Every generation looks with fascination at its own youth, maturition, reproduction and acceleration into mortality.  Some die early, some die late, but all die.  It is an irrevocable law of nature.  It is not about self-interest.  It is about what self-interest is defined as.

Related Posts:

Beyond the Singularity

Servitas and Libertas

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If You Don’t Like the Speed, Get Off the Ride

We have lived in “exponential times” since the big bang (if there was one)

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150: A Network Threshold

I was thinking about Malcolm Gladwell’s interesting book Tipping Point and it occurred to me that there is a network that is similar to his “The Magic Number 150” chapter that says communities break down when the membership reaches 150.

It is the C60 Buckminsterfullerine or a truncated icosahedron.

Truncated icosahedron

This interesting little geodesate has 60 vertexes and 90 edges.

In the context of an associative database that is 60 entities and 90 associations or 150 Entity Types.

It is interesting that the most symmetrical of shapes might as a network correspond to the threshold he describes in communities.

Systema: Geodesates as Singularities

“No one untrained in geometry may enter my house” — Plato

Over the past year I have been working with associative and relational databases attempting to find out more about how to develop a better database architecture.  This has taken me into many realms including network theory, chaos theory, state transition theory, geometry, logic, chemistry, biochemistry and physics.  Recently, I began to put these things together and I think I have had a valuable insight.  I call this insight “Geodesate Singularities”.

Geodesate Singularities regard networks as transitions between geodesates which are a group of convex polyhedrons.  Convex polyhedron networks have vertexes as nodes and edges as links.

What is of primary importance to this concept is the vertex enumeration (number of vertexes) and the polytope (number of edges per vertice) in these convex polyhedrons as geodesates are regarded as the most stable states.

First frequency Geodesates are a subset of the Platonic Solids and the Archimedean Solids:

  1. 3 edges per 4 vertices – 6 edges  – Tetrahedron
  2. 4 edges per 6 vertices – 12 edges  – Octahedron
  3. 3 edges per 12 vertices – 18 edges – Truncated Tetrahedron
  4. 5 edges per 12 vertices  – 30 edges – Icosahedron
  5. 3 edges per 20 vertices  – 30 edges – Dodecahedron
  6. 3 edges per 24 vertices – 36 edges – Truncated Cube
  7. 4 edges per 30 vertices – 60 edges – Icosadodecahedron
  8. 3 edges per 60 vertices – 90 edges – Truncated Icosahedron
  9. 3 edges per 60 vertices – 90 edges – Truncated Dodecahedron
  10. 5 edges per 60 vertices – 150 edges – Snub Dodecahedron
  11. 3 edges per 120 vertices – 180 edges – Great Rhombicosidodecahedron

Higher frequency Geodesates are triagulations of the above solids.  I recommend downloading the Mathematica Player and the Mathematica Demonstrations Project Geodesate Demonstration to view the polygons for each frequency.

Again, what is important in the Geodesates are the number of vertexes (nodes) and edges (links).

My hypothesis is when the growth of a network achieves the vertex enumeration and polytope of a geodesate at the first frequency or higher, a singularity state exists in the network order and results in a state transition of the network when exceeded.

Increasing a Geodesate’s frequency involves dividing the faces of the chosen polygon into sub-triangles:

The first frequecy subdivision is termed as 1V, second as 2V, third as 3V and fourth as 4V.

1V Icosahedron Geodesate

12 Vertexes – 12 5 Edge Polytopes

2V Icosahedron Geodesate

42 Vertexes – 12 5 Edge Polytopes – 30 6 Edge Polytopes

3V Icosahedron Geodesate

92 Vertexes – 12 5 Edge Polytopes – 80 6 Edge Polytopes

4V Icosahedron Geodesate

162 Vertexes – 12 5 Edge Polytopes – 150 6 Edge Polytopes

I think geodesate singularites have  implications for Telic, Organic, Chemic, Physic, Static and Gegonic networks.  This has implications for Ray Kurzweil’s Singularities, Malcolm Gladwell’s Tipping Points, Stuart Kauffman’s Self-Organization and Howard Rheingold’s Cooperation Theory.

Convex polyhedrons and geodesates could create and limit new organizational structures for enterprise goals, personnel, products, measures, spaces and schedules.

Related Links:

Icons: The Czerepak Framework

Beyond the Singularity

Physics: Observer as a State

Sociology: The Six Adopter Types

Icons: The Czerepak Framework

Tearing apart the Zachman Framework has yielded great results.  I have identified the core nodes and links (we won’t use the terms entities and associations any more).  The new Nodes of the Czerepak Framework are:

  1. Computers
  2. Machines
  3. Goals
  4. Observers
  5. Elements
  6. Particles
  7. Points
  8. Events

The new Links are:

  1. Operations
  2. Processes
  3. Rules
  4. Names
  5. Bonds
  6. Quanta
  7. Distances
  8. Durations

If you look at the link icons you can see what I am hypothesizing as the optimum cardinality for each.  I am thinking about this from the perspective of the Platonic solids, R. Buckminster Fuller’s work, Stuart Koffman’s work with chaos theory and Boolean networks and Albert Einstein’s own love for geometry.

The set of icons created to this point are below:

Singularity, Pluralarity and Lorentz Transformation

Working with Malcolm Gladwell’s Tipping point, Ray Kurzweil’s Singularity and the Pareto Principle lead me to begin thinking about a pattern that presented itself. In an earlier post here and here I discussed how there had been many Singularities in history. It also lead me to talk about Pluralarites. Then it struck me there is an oscillation between Singularity and Plurality, giving us the Singularity Pluralarity Plot above. And the implications are interesting.

Any innovation follows the Singularity Pluralarity Plot as a complete life cycle. Kurzweil’s singularity will be no exception. The first working AI will be the domain of specialists it will not be unleashed uncontrolled on humanity and it will have been accomplished after several incremental developments that will leave humanity more than prepared for it. The AI will then have to be molded into compatibility to a variety of purposes. After that it will have to be iterated until it is reliable. Once it is reliable then the true singularity happens: the cost benefit ratio is achieved and AI becomes accessible to the general public. The next step is availability on the global market. Finally, AI will have to be always on and pluralarity is achieved. AI will be ubiquitous and the next innovation will take place. The commoditized original AI will begin its descent and a new innovation in AI or a completely new technology will take its place and begin its ascent.

There will be social upheaval, but I don’t think it will be as dramatic or as immediate as some think.  The anthropomorphization of AI will fade and it will just be considered another tool.

The first thing that occurred to me is that as there is a positive and negative infinity there is also a positive and negative zero. Whether the zero is positive or negative is determined by whether you approach it from positive values or negative values. The second thing that occurred to me is that a pluralarity to singularity transition is divisive while a pluralarity to singularity transition is multiplicative. The third thing that occurred to me is that it is possible to have a positive to negative transition. For example you could follow a positive singularity to positive pluralarity curve with a negative pluralarity to negative singularity curve which would ascend like a staircase. The fourth thing that became obvious is that on an exponential curve the Pareto Principle applies at both ends. It’s like applying Lorentz transformations. Fifth, I am currently reading Peter Drucker’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship and have discovered that seizing opportunity, Entrepreneurship, requires recognizing whether you are approaching a Singularity or a Pluralarity while creating opportunity, Innovation, is making a Singularity or Pluralarity. The final thought that occurred to me is what are the implications of this knowledge on network design, physics, chemistry, biology, databases, complexity, simplicity, organization, history, anthropology, evolution, commoditization? I’ll leave it there.

Om: The Perfection

hermanhess03.jpgsiddhartha.jpg

“Do you hear?” Vasudeva’s mute gaze asked. Siddhartha nodded.

“Listen better!” Vasudeva whispered.

Siddhartha made an effort to listen better. The image of his father, his own image, the image of his son merged, Kamala’s image also appeared and was dispersed, and the image of Govinda, and other images, and they merged with each other, turned all into the river, headed all, being the river, for the goal, longing, desiring, suffering, and the river’s voice sounded full of yearning, full of burning woe, full of unsatisfiable desire. For the goal, the river was heading, Siddhartha saw it hurrying, the river, which consisted of him and his loved ones and of all people, he had ever seen, all of these waves and waters were hurrying, suffering, towards goals, many goals, the waterfall, the lake, the rapids, the sea, and all goals were reached, and every goal was followed by a new one, and the water turned into vapour and rose to the sky, turned into rain and poured down from the sky, turned into a source, a stream, a river, headed forward once again, flowed on once again. But the longing voice had changed. It still resounded, full of suffering, searching, but other voices joined it, voices of joy and of suffering, good and bad voices, laughing and sad ones, a hundred voices, a thousand voices.

Siddhartha listened. He was now nothing but a listener, completely concentrated on listening, completely empty, he felt, that he had now finished learning to listen. Often before, he had heard all this, these many voices in the river, today it sounded new. Already, he could no longer tell the many voices apart, not the happy ones from the weeping ones, not the ones of children from those of men, they all belonged together, the lamentation of yearning and the laughter of the knowledgeable one, the scream of rage and the moaning of the dying ones, everything was one, everything was intertwined and connected, entangled a thousand times. And everything together, all voices, all goals, all yearning, all suffering, all pleasure, all that was good and evil, all of this together was the world. All of it together was the flow of events, was the music of life. And when Siddhartha was listening attentively to this river, this song of a thousand voices, when he neither listened to the suffering nor the laughter, when he did not tie his soul to any particular voice and submerged his self into it, but when he heard them all, perceived the whole, the oneness, then the great song of the thousand voices consisted of a single word, which was Om: the perfection.

“Do you hear,” Vasudeva’s gaze asked again.

Siddhartha

Herman Hess

When I read this passage, I am amazed at the parallels between Siddhartha’s river and the internet. And the more social networks propagate the more voices the listener hears until he hears only one voice, the perfect “Om” of the global web.

As far as the Six Hats, Six Coats Methodology goes I see six rivers I am gradually trying to merge into one. I have coined the term PerfectionRiver for this goal. And as an analyst and designer, Vasudeva’s whisper, “Listen better!” holds the key to success.

Related Posts:

Systema: Seven Hats, Seven Links