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1615Re: Memes vs. miruses

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  • Ed Minchau
    Jan 1, 2001
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      --- In nanotech@egroups.com, Mark Gubrud <mgubrud@s...> wrote:
      > On Mon, 1 Jan 2001, Andrew Martin wrote:
      >
      > > > > > How can we package our ideas so they will spread and be
      influential?
      >
      > > There's a distinct analogy here of creating mental virii, memes,
      that
      > > operate like computer virii.
      >
      > So maybe we should be talking about mirii.
      >
      > > > > > What useful insight do you gain from the genetics
      analogy...?
      >
      > I still haven't gotten an answer.
      >
      > > My analogy is more towards packaged memes/ideas being like
      viruses/virii.
      > > They are typically infectious, like genes packaged in virus
      shells.
      >
      > Yeah, but this analogy has its limits, too. Ideas aren't little
      machines.
      >

      Aren't they? A cell, ie a neuron, can be viewed as a little machine;
      so can a group of neurons and the connections between them. An idea
      is the physical manifestation of a meme in a human brain, formed as
      connections are made or lost.

      :) ed

      > > Studies of the history of religion and cults should be able derive
      > > equivalents to Mendel's laws, show something of mutations, and
      comparing the
      > > historical courses of several of them should show details of
      recombination
      > > and manipulation.
      >
      > Why would anything analogous to Mendel's laws show up? You don't
      have
      > homologous pairs. Mutuations, recombinations, and deliberate
      manipulation
      > can all be said to occur in ideological systems, but in a completely
      > unstructured and unrestricted way, subject only to the particulars
      of
      > fact, logic, and psychology. I still see no abstract science of
      > "memetics" that would impose any restrictions on the type of
      changes that
      > occur or make any specific predictions about what changes will
      occur.
      >
      > > That's correct. Neither does the book I'm mentioned. But then
      again, Mendel
      > > discovered his laws by observation and experimentation. By
      observing
      > > history, it should be possible to induce memetic laws for society
      as well.
      >
      > Perhaps, but until someone actually succeeds in doing this, you
      have no
      > science, merely babble about a hypothetical future science.
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