907Re: [biopoet] Re: Revolution - and: a Science of Memetic Culturology
- Dec 13, 2013Hi Mike,
Always great to chat with you about this stuff...
Replies below -- (Hope they're not too cheeky!)
On 13/12/2013 11:24 PM, tintner michael wrote:Oh jeez, JT, your heart is in a good place here, but your mind is confused.'
Well - I agree with the middle part of the sentence; but totally disagree with the last part.
And - I see you're confused, and, I raise your `confused' to a: bumfuzzled.
ie - I think your mind is all *bumfuzzled* about all this.
(And Yes - that is a real word. It went out of `mainstream circulation' years ago, but - I am trying to bring it back, as a meme)
I also dig how, it sort of rhymes with `bamboozled.'
And - to be honest, I tend to think you are: that, too.
Ideas are indeed incredibly important, but they are fundamentally different from, and the OPPOSITE of programs/algos AND memes as defined by memetics.
Ok -so: first of all:
Almost nothing in Memetics so far (ie for the last 30 years) is worth trusting, as: true, reliable, and real.
Sadly - It almost-all has to be thrown out...
To see why - please read: (in full, and in this order)
- Koestler, The Act of Creation (1964)
- Csikzentmihalyi Creativity (1996),
- Simonton Creativity in Science (2004)
- Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (1962)
What has been the case, in Memetics - for over 30 years - since Dawkins (1976) proposed the idea - is that:
...Nobody has yet defined/identified - the structure of the meme. (The unit of: Culture)...
Therefore, before now - nobody has known (precisely, scientifically, empirically, objectively) what `Culture' actually, is.
I also know how ridiculous that sounds - but: it's true.
- Here we all are for millennia - all `swimming' in Culture:
in - Bibles, and Films, Novels, Songs, Words, Gestures, funny slogans on bumper stickers, inventions, scientific theories
and it was all just: Noise...
ie We were like fishes in water. We can;t see the structure of the water. (Also as a fish - we don't have a microscope to look at the structure of the water, eg H2o)
But - if this *new* (and improved, and very very different) theory of Memetics is correct - that's now changed.
ie - We may now finally have: the Structure of the meme.
(The unit of culture; the units of - all Culture. Science and the Arts. All ideas, processes, products.)
We now - therefore - can: Create a proper Scientific paradigm... for Memetics-!
(and -- for the definition/specifications of those (Scientific Paradigms) -- pls see:
Chalmers 2000, What Is This Thing Called Science?)
(as per: Popper, Kuhn, Lakatos, etc)
So - Mike, I guess, what you are not realizing is --
We really do have to `throw out' almost everything that has been done in the Domain of Memetics so far.
Sorry - but - that is what always happens, in these exact situations.
When: a new scientific discovery comes along that: changes things.
Nobody before, knew exactly what the meme was. (Seriously.)
So - everyone was fumbling around in the dark -
Much like - those 3 crazy blind-guys with the elephant. "It's like a rope, it's like a wall, it's like a snake"
(eg "What is a meme?" "Er - It's like - a song..." "No, it's a word..." "A song-word!" "um - It's sort of like a virus, or - something, vaguely...? ")
Note - even those `3 blind guys and the elephant' is itself a meme... A viral idea (and: phrase) in culture.
So, I reckon - what you need to realize, is:
I have probably just: `wiped the slate clean' in Memetics.
It's: a reboot.
- It all `starts afresh' now - with those 2 x posts.
(1) Scientific Definition of the Meme - the unit of culture
(2) A Proper Scientific Paradigm for Memetics.
Now, we all (ie - anyone) can go back - and can sift through, all the last 30 years of `findings'/ `writings' in Memetics,
And we can check - which exact bits - are actually still correct/fit with this new reality. (this new: scientific paradigm)
So - please - don't talk to me about "How Memetics is defined"... :)
As - anything that has so far happened in Memetics... (eg about 100 x prior `definitions' of memes) before now was just: random guesses.
It probably: mostly, all no longer applies.
And - if any of it was, actually *right* after all, that's because mainly it was a lucky guess, or was just sort of based on good hunches/intuition.
- Don't get me wrong, Dawkins, Dennett and Blackmore (etc) have all done a lot of truly amazing work. I love what they did.
But for example - at least half of Blackmore's book `The Meme Machine' is totally wrong. Empirically.
(I am going to blog on why, soon.)
Ideas are general, soft and capable of infinite interpretations:
Er - so you just sent me a link with "ideas are what you make of them" ?
Er... yes, but also: "The nuns run naked in Capistrano."
ie You just threw a random meme at me.
So, there - have one back. :)
- You are giving me: random folk philosophy.
- I am giving you: Science.
- Here is another random proverb:
"A bird in the hand - is worth two - dissected, on the scientific operating table."
See what I did there.
I selected a meme (ie "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush") - and I then varied it (ie - combined it - as an idea - with another idea, ie: an idea from Science, eg dissecting dead animals) and then - I transmitted it (into, this email - and back over to you.)
That, my friend, is: the evolutionary algorithm at work.
That - is How All Culture Works.
Science - and the Arts.
The whole, darn, shootin-match.
(1) Selection (2) Variation (eg combination, and/or mutation) and (3) Transmission-with-heredity
(The `heredity' there, was, that: the new `child'-meme inherited `traits'/elements/content from the 2 x parent-memes.)
ie "A bird in the hand is worth -" ---- and ---- [insert that other science idea about the dissection]
That - is how: All Culture happens.
- That is all.
It's all just memes, and genes and: the evolutionary algorithm - ie (Selection, Variation, Transmission)
And - please don't tell me again, that this is wrong. (About: algorithms)
If you really think that - you are probably in denial...
whereas programs/algos/formulae and memes are specific, hard and meant to have only one "interpretation"/execution at any given point.
Yeah - but - I also reckon you have made a massive category-error here:
in - "programs/algos/formulae and memes are specific,"
(1) Yes, memes are indeed: specific.
(See my blog-post #100 - where I define them - incredibly specifically.)
(2) Memes can also be ambiguous.
eg Check my definition - on that Post #100.
ie - A letter is a meme. A word is a meme. A sentence is a meme. A paragraph is a meme. A chapter is a meme. A novel is a meme.
And a film is a meme. A scientific theory is a meme. (Memes are ideas, processes or products (or - various combinations, thereof). )
So - These things (words, letters, novels, films) are all memes -- and: memes are all holons and holarchies -
And - they (memes in culture) operate under: the 3 Laws of Holarchies.
(Read: Koestler 1964.)
But - I note: a word can be ambiguous. So can a sentence. So can a film. (ie - On purpose. Writers are tricky, like that.)
So - you have said: "memes are specific, hard and meant to have only one "interpretation"/execution at any given point."
But then - so - How would you explain words/sentences/paragraphs/films/novels with: double-meanings...? Or even triple-meanings? etc
ie They are clearly meant to have: more than one "interpretation"/execution at any given point."
So - Mike - I don't know where you are getting these ideas from but: I say, you need to go get your money back. :)
Also I don't know that you can really make this assertion - and, expect to get away with it:
"memes are specific, hard and meant to have only one "interpretation"/execution at any given point."
...How can you possibly know that?
That's a very bold conjecture/assumption - that: doesn't stand up to experiment in/observation of, Reality.
Also - before now - you didn't even know for sure, what a meme, was.
ie - Nobody did.
- It hadn't been properly (ie scientifically) defined.
And in fact - I still think you dont `get' exactly - and precisely - what they are. (Forgive me if that's wrong, but that's the impression that I get)
In Memetics - up to now - like any pre-paradigm Science, there were: about as many theories/definitions on `memes' - as there were, theorists.
Hundreds of 'em...
And all of them - pretty-random guesses.
(See: Kuhn 1962. That's `the pattern' in the history of: all Scientific Domains.
That's how: scientific/cultural evolution works...
ie - Until we get the right tools to measure things, its just like Aristotle making very random (and pretty inaccurate) guesses -
eg That everything's made of: earth wind and fire)
(ie Maybe try using an electron-microscope next time, Ari-baby. Good try though.)
So - The Domain of Memetics before now was: a complete mess.
- All sorts of crazy theories floating around - and - nothing that anyone could really `pin down'.
ie - Rafferty's Rules.
(Note - those last 3 also were 3 x memes.)
See what I did there...
Very bad suggestion. I am on fire with the theorizing right now. And also with the practice. So - I am not stopping while this is all working like a charm. That would be silly.What I suggest you need to do now is stop general theorising for a while
No - here is a better idea - You take my new paradigm for Memetics and you do that. Im busy with my 100,000 word thesis on all of this.and do some detailed studies of the transmission of particular kinds of ideas -take a particular concept - any word in the language - and look at how its meanings/scope of reference have changed over centuries
take a law of a society - and look how its interpretations have changed over time
No - again, here is a better idea - YOU go do that. And use my new scientific paradigm, to do it. Seriously.
take a classic story - like Romeo and Juliet - and look at how its interpretations by different authors have changed, and how the reinterpretations of just one particular interpretation like Shakespeare's Romeo & J, have changed. ,
No - you go do that. And use my new Theory. It's awesome (its the latest and greatest technology in Memetics, seriously) -
and it will work much better for you, than: just doing all of that -- with, no scientific theoretical paradigm behind/informing it all...
Do that and your ideas about ideas will change radically.
No they won't.
How d I know this?
- I have done all that stuff already.
Using my new (and: awesome) Scientific Paradigm of Mememtics.
So - Mike -
(Just to select and vary and re-transmit your own meme from above)
What I suggest you do now - is realize, that -- in those 2 posts, I have just suggested a Scientific way - of doing: all of the above.
And - also - note it provides the tools to do it. (Tools that were not there, before, in the previously-chaotic Domain of: Memetics.)
ie Note - Holons and holarchies - and their 3 Laws - were not ever in there before.
Note how - that changes things now. Seriously!
And - besides, I have also just done it all, with the 40 x films in my doctoral study.
(You seem to be: missing that...?)
And - in my "list of things for Memetics to now investigate" (in Post #101) I listed out many more examples than you just did, (eg like: look at Romeo and Juliet, and look at the history and evolution over time of certain words, etc)
but - mine (my suggestions for Memetics `research tasks'/experiments, like those) were all better.
Go check them, and compare.
(aw man I am so cheeky, I can never believe it myself)
But - thing is (and - this troubles me a little) - you clearly, have not really understood - at all - what you read, if you did indeed read, those 2 posts.
(ie -- Is it not super-clear, what I have said, in those 2 x posts? - I really thought that it was all super-clear.)
So - What I'd suggest you maybe do -- is - read both again:
(and, note how - They do exactly what you just suggested above, but: actually, with Science.)
#100 - Holonic Structure of the Meme: the unit of culture
#101 - A Science of Memetic Culturology
And if you can see any specific flaws - please, point them out.
So far, you are not providing any specific feedback,
You are just giving me general, and only very-vaguely-related, pretty non-useful ideas.
ie - You're suggesting that I: go and do what I just did, but - your suggestions are all much vaguer than -- What I just did, in those 2 posts..?.
That's all too vague and fluffy.
I am not going to be taking your suggestion. At all. I am going to keep pushing ahead what I just started to its logical end.
(Which by some coincidence - includes, over time - doing what you suggest, but doing it all in: a scientific way.)
Ideas (not algos) generate human actions both individually and socially - and creativity. But it is their *openness to interpretation* that makes them so powerful.
The evolutionary algorithm (selection, variation, transmission) generates: new ideas (memes) and new life (organisms).
Ideas can certainly generate actions. Sometimes.
eg "Why don't I go to the shop, and get some milk...?"
But the evolutionary algorithm drives people (all organisms) to have sex (and - to survive, and reproduce.)
So - that is clearly an algorithm - `generating' human (and animal) actions...?
Sure, ideas can sometimes generate some actions too. Why not.
But - many ideas don't generate any actions at all:
eg Here is an idea: "a big fat nothing."
What actions did it generate?
(Answer: a big fat nothing)
Look - so, here it is again:
Both Biology and Culture works via: gene - and meme -- selection, variation (e.g. combination) and transmission.
That is all.
That is: both Biological, and Cultural Evolution.
- If you want to truly understand it, then please read those 2 posts...
If not, that's fine, but from everything you say here - I don't think, you're understanding the potentially-far-reaching implications of all this.
ie - It is possible (even: probable, given the odds) that - we just had our `Watson & Crick 1953' moment - in Culture.
(ie If you have hundreds of people - over 30 years - all trying to crack a hard problem in a domain - eg "Define the meme" - then sooner or later, given probability - one of them will probably crack it.) Its just: the law of large numbers. Probability.
Then everyone congratulates that `one random guy' and suddenly he's: a genius.
(Side note - People have now started Congratulating me, on those 2 posts. It's all a bit scary frankly.)
And so - Mike - if you still can't come at these ideas, What I would suggest you really need to do - is read Koestler 1964 (The Act of Creation.)
That's all I can really suggest at this point...
- It will unconfuse you. (Just my own view... of course.)
Then - read Creativity, 1996. (Csikszentmihalyi)
Then - all those other Science books, above.
And: ignore everything to date in - what was - The `pre-scientific-paradigm' Domain of Memetics...
All that was said/postulated about Memes, and Memetics in the past - It is now, all - shadows and dust.
...SHADOWS AND DUST!!!!
(Note: a Gladiator meme)
Their study - my first thought - really belongs to semiotics.
Sorry - but Semiotics is: ridiculous.
Just in my own view.
It solves nothing (solves: no problems) - and is just individual people interpreting stuff.
A novelist or screenwriter cannot use semiotics and then writer a better novel/film.
ie One that is more likely to go viral in culture.
- To my disgust, I note - It's also called "A Science of Signs" and yet - could hardly be further from: a Science.
It doesn't generate falsifiable hypotheses, nor: scientific predictions - about: anything.
So I note: a meme (like say: "A Science Of Signs") does not have to be true, to: spread in culture.
See also: Religion.
See also: Conspiracy theories,
And - all of Hitler's stupid/evil ideas about `race', etc
The dramatic and narrative arts OTOH, scientifically, are mainly complementary to the social sciences, incl. psychology and sociology. I have yet to see a serious argument that they have anything much to do with evolutionary science at all - their timespan is much too short.
Well - Then you clearly haven't read much literary Darwinism. (I reckon: you are missing out!)
...It's the only paradigm that really `explains' them.
(The dramatic - and narrative arts)
Just in my view, anyway.
Or, that means - that we can extract any Scientific info, from them...!
And - I also am not sure, what you mean by "their timespan is much too short."
- Can you maybe clarify?
Anyway - thanks, for the feedback and thoughts -- even though -- I'm pretty deeply frustrated that, you currently, don't seem to "get it"...
ie Maybe you could try and prove to me that: memes are NOT holons.
eg Pick any meme you like - and then, demonstrate that.
ie Go ahead and falsify that.
PS - Here is a good question for you --
So Mike - How do YOU define a meme, if not: exactly like that `post #100' above...?
ie - I still say - a meme - It's an idea, process or product. And - it's a holon. And a holarchy. And a memeplex.
And - also: Whatever your definition of the meme - Can you pls include a diagram?
(ie - Science just prefers: diagrams, wherever possible. See: Geometry, and, Feynman diagrams, etc).
It's just way clearer that way, than with: words.
(See: Koestler 1964 on - why words are so `loose'/fluffy)
One reason for that is - every word is a meme - and, their meaning evolves over time.
(I note - this is also something you were apparently trying to tell me, above, but I also note - you haven't read Koestler 1964 - and you don't really get `the details' of: Why words change over time, due to Cultural Evolution - which, as he shows, is due to - the evolutionary algorithm in: Culture)
And is also due to the fact: Everyone already has a memeplex in their head, so when you say: "dog" - everyone has a slightly-different memeplex relating to `dog' based on their own idiosyncratic: personal experience/knowledge/reading/TV viewing/what their parents, teachers and peers told them about dogs, etc
(eg Some people were bitten by a dog once; other people have never even seen a real dog; some cultures eat dogs and salivate when they hear the word, etc)
Koestler explains all this in The Act of Creation, (1964) BTW. (especially - using dogs as an example)
Including: holons and holarchies.
Which - is also - what memes/memeplexes are.
-- ----------------------- JT Velikovsky Film/Story/Screenplay/Transmedia Analyst http://storyality.wordpress.com/ and Transmedia Writer-Director-Producer: Movies, Games, TV, Theatre, Books, Comics Transmedia Writing Blog: http://on-writering.blogspot.com/ Free Screenwriting TextBook: http://www.lulu.com/shop/joe-velikovsky/feature-film-screenwriters-workbook/ebook/product-20376941.html Transmedia Comic-Fantasy Novel: http://am-so-as.webs.com/ Email: joetv@... Also: joetv@... Skype: joe.tee.vee Twitter: @joeteevee Imdb: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2853350/ Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Velikovsky YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/joeteevee aka: JT Velikovsky Research Student & Filmmaker Doctorate of Creative Arts - Feature Film / Screenwriting School of Humanities and Communication Arts University of Western Sydney http://uws.academia.edu/JTVelikovsky/ This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to whom they are addressed. If you have received this email in error please notify joetv@... This footnote also confirms that this email message has been checked for known viruses
- << Previous post in topic