as i see it the problem of increasing complexity
through exponentially increasing reltions - that might
or might not matter - is not the real problem in
The real problem is that of getting qualitative change
into the model, and qualitative change in a fashion
that goes beyond the phase transition type of change.
This week there is short interview with Frank
Schweitzer in c't a german computer magazine.
He implicitly argues that one could get from
quantitaive changes - the collective state a la pahse
transition which emerged form the interactions among
agents - via co-evolution to qualitative change, i.e.
"second-order emergence" (I am not quite sure whether
he really means the same as von Foerster).
He concludes - as far as he knows - that nobody has
managed to reach self-organisation models of
hierarchical social structures.
a) Is he right?
And now comes some marketing ;) theres an article of
mine in JASSS 4/4/8 from 2001 that touches upon some
of the problems.
There is also the work of R.A. Watson at Brandeis how
is working on a computational implementation.
The basic problem is that of emergence and how it is
possibly brought about by compartmentalization - that
is actually sth that Herber Spencer - despite other
misgivings - got right in his trial to identify
evolutionary principles in/from biology and sociology.
Similarly Margulis theory of increasing complexity in
cell-evolution works with fusion and
Szathmary and Maynard Smith also present some
mechanisms to overcome this problem in their 1995
article (Nature it was I think).
Therefore the way to succes might be to defocus from
interaction and get the fusion/compartmentalization
into the model since it could deliver the system
transition that seems necessary for qualitative change
/ emergence. This is not necessarily a problem of
computing power and computability, but of model /
Comments? Am I right or did i oversee sth?
Carl Henning Reschke
--- "Bayer, Steffen" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> as far as I can see Loet's argument about the
> enormous increase in the
> computational space for social systems is even
> stronger than he makes it.
> If we allowed persons to have multiple relations,
> there could be many more
> than 10^10 configurations of relations between 10
> If I am not mistaken there would be (2^9)^10 = 2^90
> configurations if
> relations could be uni-directional and (2^9 + 2^8 +
> 2^7 + 2^6 + 2^5 + 2^4 +
> 2^3 + 2^2 + 2^1 = 2^45) if relations were
> Dr Steffen Bayer
> Innovation Studies Centre
> The Business School
> Imperial College London
> South Kensington Campus
> London, SW7 2AZ, UK
> ph.: +44-(0)20 759 45935
> fax: +44-(0)20 7823 7685
> office: Rm 101, Civil Engineering bldg
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Loet Leydesdorff [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: 08 April 2003 18:37
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: computability ... Re: Bit-flipping
> model of culture
> Dear Andreas and colleagues,
> I thought that non-computability is particularly
> relevant to social
> systems because the N of cases is part of the
> exponent. The
> computational space then rapidly explodes.
> For example, if one throws two dice there are 6^2
> possibilities. If one
> throws three dice, there are 6^3 possibilities, etc.
> In general: 6^N,
> where N is the number of dice.
> Analogously: If we have a group of 10 persons who
> can all maintain
> relations with each other, this system has 10^10
> possible states if each
> configuration of relations is counted as one
> possible state. The
> specification of mechanisms (hypotheses) selects on
> this phase space and
> makes the system computable.
> With kind regards,
> Loet Leydesdorff
> Science & Technology Dynamics, University of
> [log in to unmask] ; http://www.leydesdorff.net/
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: News and discussion about computer
> simulation in the
> > social sciences [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
> Behalf Of
> > Andreas Schamanek
> > Sent: Sunday, April 06, 2003 12:31 AM
> > To: [log in to unmask]
> > Subject: computability ... Re: Bit-flipping model
> of culture
> > Hi SIMSOC,
> > On Tue, 1 Apr 2003, Alan Penn wrote:
> > > This brings a question to mind: are there any
> > properties
> > > of systems that are provably _not_ representable
> in terms of bits?
> > >
> > > The theory of computation says that anything
> computable can be
> > > computed using a finite state machine (if I
> understand it
> > right) so I
> > > suppose such properties - if they exist - must
> not be
> > computable. If
> > > so what are they, and are they socially
> > From a social sciences' point of view (and quite
> some more),
> > I'd say that I do not like the notion of
> 'computability'. Is
> > there a property that is not represented in any
> way? Is there
> > a property that cannot be represented in some way?
> > computation is some form of representation (that
> we generally
> > call model). It depends solely on yourself (and
> > colleagues) whether a property is computable or
> > Of course, the notion of 'representation' is also
> > representation. But, that's a different story.
> > Another story, since we have already discussed
> lots of chaos
> > theory, here, goes like this: As most of you know,
> one of the
> > properties of a deterministic chaotic time series
> is the fact
> > that values do not repeat. No matter how often you
> > e.g., the logistic equation
> > X(n+1) = 4 * X(n) * ( 1- X(n) ) ; X(0) out of [
> 0 ... 1 ]
> > there will never be a value of X(n) that equals
> any other
> > X(m) except for m = n.
> > A computer is only a finite state machine. It can
> > everything, but only given enough time and enough
> > states :) Our everyday computers are _very_ finite
> > machines. So, if you compute the logistic equation
> with a
> > computer (using some computer language, say
> FORTRAN or C),
> > you will observe that already after only a few
> iterations of
> > the logistic equation you will get a X(n) that you
> have seen
> > before. Once you have found this X(n), say after p
> > iterations, every X(m+p) will equal X(m) for m =
> n, n+1, n+2,
> > ... You have found a cycle, a period of length p.
> (p, by the
> > way, is astonishingly small: often only a few
> > iterations if you declare/define X as a single
> precision variable).
> > So, here is a property that is (generally) not
> > Deterministic chaos.
> > Besides non-periodicity there is also the Lyapunov
> > which shall be above 1 for chaotic time series.
> The Lyapunov
> > exponent, by the way, is a measure for how much or
> how fast 2
> > time series that describe the same system will
> > diverge if computed with slightly different
> > The strange part of this story is that when you
> compute the
> > Lyapunov exponent for a time series generated by a
> > computation of the logistic equation, i.e, a
> periodic time
> > series, you still get values above 1.
> > Does that mean that when we look at computed
> > properties by means of computation that we see the
> world just
> > like it is?
=== message truncated ===
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