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UCD-STAFFORDBEER  October 2008

UCD-STAFFORDBEER October 2008

Subject:

Re: Snowden & Cybermen

From:

allenna leonard <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Fri, 31 Oct 2008 14:38:30 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (2452 lines)

Dear All,

Still in Rochester...but...

Check out Stafford's paper "May the Whole Earth Be Happy" on this subject.

Best,
Allenna

--- On Fri, 10/31/08, Stefan Wasilewski <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> From: Stefan Wasilewski <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 2:40 PM
> Whilst I understand the theory behind the chakras and think
> I know a  
> little of the VSM my joining of the two is flimsy because I
> put faith  
> in what I can see and my memory etc. Having see a
> reasonable amount  
> I've also seen the emergence of a VSM like function and
> can  
> rationalise much.
> 
> Equally I'm told I've a reasonable
> 'pyschic' ability which means a lot  
> but explains little.
> 
> Don't know your point I'm afrain.
> 
> Stefan
> 
> 
> 
> On 31 Oct 2008, at 17:05, Enrique Rivera wrote:
> 
> > so you don't think that there is any relation
> between chakras and vsm?
> >
> >
> > El 31-10-2008, a las 13:14, Frank escribió:
> >
> >> Dear Stefan,
> >> I look forward to your paper. I don't think
> VSM is that difficult  
> >> to understand, the only problem is people who
> surround it with  
> >> mystique like the high priests of ancient
> societies :-)
> >>
> >> I guess it's simplicityt/complicatedness
> depends on how far people  
> >> want to go with it.
> >>
> >> Regards
> >>
> >> Frank Wood
> >> ----- Original Message -----
> >> From: Stefan Wasilewski
> >> To: [log in to unmask]
> >> Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 10:10 AM
> >> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>
> >> Can't do that until December I'm afraid
> Harold (don't ask)
> >>
> >> After then I'll forward a paper on
> implementing the VSM in a startup.
> >>
> >> Stefan
> >>
> >> On 31 Oct 2008, at 09:47, Garderen, Harold van
> wrote:
> >>
> >>> So happy to hear and see this conversion
> doesn't die :-)
> >>>
> >>> I'm afraid I am a Senser too. Maybe that
> is why I still don't get  
> >>> it after almost 10 years.
> >>>
> >>> Also, I'm not a manager, certainly not a
> senior one.
> >>>
> >>> Maybe that is also why I have been able to
> transform Dave's  
> >>> suggestions onto some practical form after a
> few years while I  
> >>> still struggle to do the same with the VSM.
> >>>
> >>> And I would LOVE to do that too with the VSM.
> I sense that it has  
> >>> value, but .....
> >>>
> >>> Small suggestion: I would really help me to
> have real-life  
> >>> examples of applying the VSM stuff to SMALL
> organizations. Not  
> >>> global problems, not huge organizations, not
> societal  
> >>> institutions, but local retail stores, 3-FTE
> consultancy firms, 10- 
> >>> membered creative design networks, a medium
> sized construction  
> >>> firm, etc.
> >>>
> >>> I guess that would attract attention from the
> Sensers. At least it  
> >>> would attract me.
> >>>
> >>> Harold
> >>>
> >>> From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford
> Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask] 
> >>> ] On Behalf Of Patrick Hoverstadt
> >>> Sent: vrijdag 31 oktober 2008 10:29
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>>
> >>> At the risk of stating the totally bleeding
> obvious:
> >>> 1.       most of the people in the VSM
> community are extremely  
> >>> high end conceptual thinkers, express
> themselves in those terms  
> >>> and write about VSM in the same way. Most
> people in management  
> >>> aren’t. They don’t work from theory to
> practice, they either work  
> >>> from practice to practice, or if you’re
> lucky from practice to  
> >>> theory. If you state it in conceptual terms,
> most people simply  
> >>> don’t stand a chance of getting it.
> >>> 2.       When Doug did a “quick n dirty”
> MBTI evaluation of the  
> >>> members of SCiO, I don’t think there was
> anyone who was “S”  
> >>> sensing, everyone was an “I” Intuitive. We
> intuit that VSM is  
> >>> right and works. There actually isn’t much
> hard evidence. We’re  
> >>> comfortable with that because we’re
> intuitives and we “know” its  
> >>> right. Majority of senior managers are
> Sensing, in a firm a mate  
> >>> of mine worked for 9 out of 10 of he board
> were ESTJ (ie in one  
> >>> single profile of the 16 possible
> combinations). “Pragmatic”  
> >>> managers to use Chasm language (presume
> you’ve all forgotten that  
> >>> from the conference in L’pool) are Sensing
> and need data to  
> >>> support their decisions – even when they
> work on a hunch, they  
> >>> still rationalise the hunch using data. With
> no hard evidence to  
> >>> prove VSM works, how are they going to accept
> it? They aren’t even  
> >>> going to bother engaging with it.
> >>> So to Franks comment – yes + grounding it
> practice + collecting &  
> >>> presenting data of what it can do.
> >>>
> >>> From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford
> Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask] 
> >>> ] On Behalf Of Stefan Wasilewski
> >>> Sent: 31 October 2008 09:05
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>> Absolutely !
> >>> On 30 Oct 2008, at 23:04, Frank wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Barry,
> >>> SNIP
> >>> >If we could figure out why some think it
> is intuitively obvious  
> >>> and others can't get it at all, we would
> be better able to sell it  
> >>> to the world ...
> >>> Perhaps people should write in an intuitive
> manner? In other words  
> >>> intuitively choose the right words that
> connect with their  
> >>> audience instead of indulging in the
> obfuscating academic jargon  
> >>> so beloved by many on this list?
> >>> The end user is (or imo should be) the
> businessman who needs to  
> >>> apply the principles of VSM etc to his
> business in order to  
> >>> improve its efficaciousness.
> >>> Regards
> >>> Frank Wood
> >>> ----- Original Message -----
> >>> From: BARRY A CLEMSON
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Sent: Thursday, October 30, 2008 1:49 PM
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>> Joe,
> >>> Some years ago I had lunch with a lady who was
> doing very  
> >>> interesting applications of the VSM.
> Eventually I asked her which  
> >>> of the books she had read. She looked a little
> embarrassed and  
> >>> finally said approximately this; "Well -
> actually I haven't read  
> >>> any of them -- I just looked at the diagrams.
> The diagrams make it  
> >>> all intuitively obvious." My sister had
> the same reaction to my  
> >>> book about Stafford's work. She said
> "After you read it, you  
> >>> realize it is all intuitively obvious." 
> And then of course there  
> >>> were those of my students who just found the
> entire thing  
> >>> incomprehensible (I like to think they were a
> small minority, but  
> >>> one can never be sure how many of the students
> are simply trying  
> >>> to tell teacher what he wants to hear...).
> >>> If we could figure out why some think it is
> intuitively obvious  
> >>> and others can't get it at all, we would
> be better able to sell it  
> >>> to the world ...
> >>> In a previous post I suggested that Gordon
> Pask's distinction  
> >>> between holist learners and serialist learners
> might be relevant  
> >>> to this question. No one responded to that
> suggestion and I took  
> >>> that to mean that no one found it helpful???
> If not holist vs  
> >>> serialist, then what?
> >>> Barry
> >>> On Oct 30, 2008, at 4:01 AM, Joseph Truss
> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Hi Russell et al,
> >>> rc writes: "…there seems to be
> something at work in the brain/mind  
> >>> which makes the VSM appear as an Egyptian
> hieroglyph to some --  
> >>> and yet afford deep insight to others. What is
> this thing…"   
> >>> Recursivity in 2 dimensions is an impossible
> construct,  I think  
> >>> that what recursivity meant  to Stafford could
> probably be most  
> >>> closely modeled using fractal geometry. 
> Before Mandelbrot,  
> >>> smoothness reigned in mathematics, only by
> iterating roughness did  
> >>> we come to better understand and model
> 'real nature'.  The  
> >>> complexity leaks between and among recursive
> systems are part of  
> >>> the make-up of roughness that defines their
> own  boundary  
> >>> conditions - in essence all boundaries are
> fractal in nature.  
> >>> Recursivity has no need to describe embedments
> that run any deeper  
> >>> than the largest organizational form which
> contains them.  
> >>> Recursivity is a 'smoothed' version of
> the underlying fractal  
> >>> which even when iterated to infinity will not
> completely fill its  
> >>> dimensional space (ie be completely smooth).
> >>> I can only speak from my direct experience
> (the non-mystical kind)  
> >>> of Stafford's coherence as a viable system
> and why I believe his  
> >>> corpus of work will become the bedrock of
> viable society (however  
> >>> it might take much longer than our own
> lifetimes - but this is our  
> >>> challenge, not his).  S was not only a great
> thinker and scientist  
> >>> - he was wise (the farthest reaches of the
> data / information /  
> >>> knowledge / wisdom continuum).  He never
> compromised his own  
> >>> intellectual and ethical nature and was always
> therefore able to  
> >>> find, in his very literary way, the best way
> to express what he  
> >>> thought was true.  Not to invoke mystical,
> psychic or 'out-there'  
> >>> impressions, but in a rational sense I believe
> we have a  
> >>> manifestation of transduction of pure cosmic
> architecture through  
> >>> the fractal cns structure and continuous
> iterations of self  
> >>> actualizing of one of the world's greatest
> thinkers. The challenge  
> >>> for those of us who share the belief that this
> is needed now, is  
> >>> that we have to transduce S.  This doesn't
> mean to me that we  
> >>> don't continue to seek better ways, but it
> does mean we must first  
> >>> better understand the invariant architectural
> forms that lead to   
> >>> structures that promote viability.  We see the
> effect of the  
> >>> Fibonnacci spiral in the Nautilus shell and in
> a pea plant's  
> >>> ability to maximize surface area to sunlight. 
> Any structure that  
> >>> exists in nature today contains design
> geometry iterated not by a  
> >>> computer, but by millions of years of
> evolution.  The transduction  
> >>> of pure cosmic architecture into viable
> structures.
> >>> Geometry is the bridge between Art and Science
> and SB, the  
> >>> polymath, was an astonishing artist and poet. 
> We shared some  
> >>> common iconography as in the enneagram and of
> course the  
> >>> icosahedron, and had arrived at some similar
> places through our  
> >>> separate esoteric and other life journeys, but
> I cannot account  
> >>> for how I understood Stafford except through a
> resonant coherent  
> >>> architecture that I miraculously grokked. 
> Geometry was the   
> >>> bridge between Stafford's genius and my
> cockiness.  My broken  
> >>> record refrain for modeling and designing
> using particular  
> >>> tangible structures reflects my belief that
> the architecture that  
> >>> defines all things, living, inanimate,
> mechanical, etc.  has  
> >>> invariants that govern all structure, are
> scale independent to the  
> >>> quantum level, and are manifest in every thing
> that has structure.
> >>> I saw on NOVA recently that scientists are
> using fractal geometry  
> >>> to measure the carbon uptake of forests.  They
> cut down a tree and  
> >>> document the numbers, sizes and spacing of the
> branches and graph  
> >>> the results.  They then measure the girth of
> tree trunks and their  
> >>> relative distribution around the felled tree
> and graph these  
> >>> results. Yep - the graphs are self similar. 
> What this means is  
> >>> that they can now very accurately calculate,
> using fractal  
> >>> geometry, the uptake of a single tree and
> apply it to scale to the  
> >>> entire forest.  Notice from where the fractal
> similarities came.   
> >>> The branching of a single tree compared to the
> girth distribution  
> >>> of seemingly random growth around it.  This is
> the sense in which  
> >>> I mean recursive levels are fractal.  The
> complexity ‘uptake’ of a  
> >>> single level of recursion is fractal to the
> entire organization!
> >>> We have experienced the same phenomenon you
> describe above with  
> >>> the icosahedron. It led the many great
> thinkers who pondered it to  
> >>> deep insight and yet there are many more who
> only see  the Star of  
> >>> David and with the currency this symbol holds
> in some social  
> >>> contexts, it might as well be an Egyptian
> hieroglyph.
> >>> Re the word cybernetics, S fought to not have
> the meaning of the  
> >>> word de-legitimized.  So much so that he
> argued against the term  
> >>> 'second order cybernetics' as he felt
> the concept had been  
> >>> included in the original term cybernetics and
> was therefore  
> >>> redundant.
> >>> On the other hand, the name of the fish is not
> the fish.
> >>> However, since the Creationists co-opted the
> term 'intelligent  
> >>> design' it has made use of this term even
> by the evolutionists who  
> >>> coined it, meaningless.
> >>> Joseph Truss
> >>> Abbey North Drummers
> >>> Open Futures
> >>> Team Syntegrity AG
> >>> From: R Clemens <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Sent: Wednesday, October 29, 2008 7:09:51 PM
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>> I am struggling to see the issue(s) DS brings
> up about systems  
> >>> thinking, cybernetics and information as being
> pragmatically  
> >>> relevant to better management and governance
> in general.
> >>>
> >>> I assume in some 10-15 years some smart new
> idea will be in full  
> >>> flower that will place DS (i.e cognitive
> sciences) in much the  
> >>> same position as he now feels SB & VSM are
> -- i.e. left behind.
> >>>
> >>> However, it is useful, I think, to try and
> delve deeper into what  
> >>> he is saying -- I get the sense here that DS
> is to SB/VSM  
> >>> (community) as the Development Directorate is
> to the Operations  
> >>> Directorate (S$-S3) -- albeit we are talking
> theory systems.  
> >>> Certainly the dynamic and tone reflects Chap9
> in Heart.
> >>>
> >>> I am reading through Cognitive science in
> Wikipedia (I have not  
> >>> the time or means to find a more academic
> sources at this time) --  
> >>> e.g.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_science. I note there
>  
> >>> are ample references to systems and computer
> sciences. e.g.
> >>> Cognitive science is an interdisciplinary
> field with contributors  
> >>> from various fields, including psychology,
> neuroscience,  
> >>> linguistics, philosophy of mind, computer
> science, anthropology,  
> >>> biology, and physics. Cognitive science tends
> to view the world  
> >>> outside the mind much as other sciences do.
> Thus it too has an  
> >>> objective, observer-independent existence. The
> field is usually  
> >>> seen as compatible with the physical sciences,
> and uses the  
> >>> scientific method as well as simulation or
> modeling, often  
> >>> comparing the output of models with aspects of
> human behavior.  
> >>> Still, there is much disagreement about the
> exact relationship  
> >>> between cognitive science and other fields,
> and the  
> >>> interdisciplinary nature of cognitive science
> is largely both  
> >>> unrealized and circumscribed.
> >>>
> >>> I note that there is some reference to
> Functionalism that may be  
> >>> somewhat relevant
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Functionalism_(psychology)
> >>>
> >>> I will have to read more but I sense that
> Snowden may be taking  
> >>> one stream (amongst many) of the cognitive
> sciences field.  I  
> >>> still have yet to see or understand what his
> issue with systems  
> >>> thinking etc is based on -- apart from perhaps
> limited  
> >>> understanding or practice of it. As someone
> once said in past  
> >>> exchanges, wisely I thought, "... he will
> better appreciate the  
> >>> VSM when his company grows and he has to deal
> with operational  
> >>> reality -- e.g. invoices and pay cheques
> ..."(or words to that  
> >>> effect, Dear Luc) .
> >>>
> >>> I certainly do not want to offend Dave or
> anyone else here, there  
> >>> are many with much to say of merit, but there
> seems to be  
> >>> something at work in the brain/mind which
> makes the VSM appear as  
> >>> an Egyptian hieroglyph to some -- and yet
> afford deep insight to  
> >>> others. What is this thing? It must be more
> than business -- DS's  
> >>> reactions to VSM and systems thinking etc are
> commonly found in  
> >>> management cohorts I work with. Hence perhaps
> why we are in the  
> >>> mess we find today.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- On Thu, 30/10/08, Patrick Hoverstadt
> <[log in to unmask] 
> >>> > wrote:
> >>> From: Patrick Hoverstadt
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Thursday, 30 October, 2008, 9:19 AM
> >>> I suspect that one area of confusion /
> miscommunication between  
> >>> two disciplines (if I can use that term pretty
> loosely) is that  
> >>> “information” is being mixed up with
> “data”. Information implies  
> >>> (actually it states it) the construction /
> maintenance of form, so  
> >>> patterns. Data in debased modern usage means
> just “things” often  
> >>> numbers. Its proper meaning is a fixed
> reference point, but since  
> >>> in organisations, its rarely connected to any
> structural reference  
> >>> point, most “data” is just free-floating
> in a sort of managerial  
> >>> space, waiting to be plucked out of the air
> and used for any  
> >>> purpose that seems helpful, even if the data
> has no real relevance.
> >>> I suspect that when Dave Snowden is talking
> about information  
> >>> processing, he doesn’t mean information
> processing (which is the  
> >>> building and maintenance / re-creation of
> patterns) I suspect he’s  
> >>> actually thinking of shoving chunks of
> “data” down tubes, wires or  
> >>> synapses. Which of course we aren’t – big
> assumption there, at  
> >>> least I’m not. Same words, totally different
> meaning.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford
> Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask] 
> >>> ] On Behalf Of Joseph Truss
> >>> Sent: 29 October 2008 21:57
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Stefan, thank you.  This is helpful.
> >>> In terms of my own narrative (and limited
> understanding), when  
> >>> Einstein realized that 3 Dimensions did not
> meet the requirements  
> >>> of relativity the 4th Dimension of Time was
> added to the 3  
> >>> 'existing' Spatial Dimensions.  The
> science of the day didn't need  
> >>> 4-Dimensional math to calculate its perceived
> reality.  Time has  
> >>> no physical existence and Space without Time
> is meaningless. Enter  
> >>> Spacetime.   In the Standard Model time has no
> enforced or  
> >>> required direction. The equations all work
> whether you run time  
> >>> forward or backward.  Information as
> statistical expression, or as  
> >>> 'that which changes us', takes on a
> different physical attribution  
> >>> in quantum physics.
> (http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/print/ 
> >>> 1658).  In the trinity of inter-transformable
> Energy / Matter /  
> >>> Information, it is not only that one can
> convert the entire  
> >>> universe into bit-carrying chunks and thus
> have a quantifiable  
> >>> 'information space' with an
> information limit based on the  
> >>> capacity of the cosmic hard-drive. From the
> attached article:   
> >>> "The important new observation is that
> information is not  
> >>> independent of the physical laws used to store
> and process it (see  
> >>> Landauer in further reading)".
> >>> Even if the brain processes 'blends and
> patterns' are these not  
> >>> just aggregates of information?  Is
> information not a fractal  
> >>> phenomenon?  Information is surely requisite
> for pattern  
> >>> recognition, isn't it?  Anyway my
> geometric intuition keeps me  
> >>> from accepting triadic wholes and I would add
> Time to the above  
> >>> trinity and have four inter-transformable
> aspects: E/M/I/T.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Joseph Truss
> >>> Abbey North Drummers
> >>> Open Futures
> >>> Team Syntegrity AG
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> From: Stefan Wasilewski
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Sent: Wednesday, October 29, 2008 11:32:01 AM
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>>
> >>> Harold
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I'm reminded of 'does the tree exist
> if there's no-one to there to  
> >>> hear it fall?'. I'm closer to Shannon
> and Weaver than MacKay  
> >>> because whilst I agree it is the impact that
> proves information  
> >>> definitely existed it doesn't mean it
> doesn't exist or that  
> >>> subsequent impacts weren't biased by the
> availability of the  
> >>> information as a context when another more key
> decision needs to  
> >>> be made (am open to debate on the philosphy of
> the original  
> >>> information).
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Equally if you take the meme approach it is
> the order of and the  
> >>> presence of elements in a process that is
> important (3-D and Time)  
> >>> and therefore if a gene is information it too
> relies on presence  
> >>> and order in time to make an impact.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I've been steadily going through
> Dave's C-E website, papers,  
> >>> listening to his podcasts, and slowly coming
> to the conclusion  
> >>> that the VSM has a key role to play and has
> not 'moved on' because  
> >>> it didn't need to nor did Newton as he
> adequately explains things  
> >>> to the average man's frame of reference 
> to all practical purposes.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> All who can bring light onto raw data
> (disintermediation is good  
> >>> here) and proper reporting (disintermediation
> is good here) have a  
> >>> role to play in getting a better understanding
> of the role System  
> >>> Theory (whatever name you want) has to play in
> governing the world  
> >>> we see and the way we want to see it going
> forward.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> The VSM doesn't need to worry about
> emergence to my view as it is  
> >>> a map not the real thing and a guide to
> what's needed, that things  
> >>> emerge and are sustainable over time should be
> a shock what is  
> >>> curious is that the all have consistent
> functional structures that  
> >>> look like the VSM (avec autopoesis) . Equally
> the role of the  
> >>> communication network within the VSM, with its
> own meta-level  
> >>> decision requirement, leaves a lot to be
> explored especially when  
> >>> considering cellular automata and quantum
> resonance.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Regards
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Stefan
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On 29 Oct 2008, at 11:28, Garderen, Harold van
> wrote:
> >>> Interesting perspective Dave gives on
> Cybernetics. In my view the  
> >>> post WW-II Macy conferences have ended in the
> split between the  
> >>> "AI" people that believed that
> information had value on its own  
> >>> and that also popularized the idea that human
> can be augmented as  
> >>> is/was often popularized in SciFi.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> To illustrate the OTHER view I copy here two
> para's of a  
> >>> forthcoming publication that I'm currently
> writing:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Where Shannon and Weaver [7] in their famous
> Information Theory  
> >>> defined information as a statistical entity,
> in terms of what it  
> >>> is, Donald Mackay [8] argued during the early
> stages of the Macy  
> >>> Conferences that only signals that brought
> about a change in the  
> >>> recipient contained information. Thus Mackay
> defined information  
> >>> in terms of what is does. It is clear that
> Shannon and Weaver have  
> >>> fully convinced the technological audience
> while, with hindsight,  
> >>> Mackay can be placed as belonging to the realm
> of social studies  
> >>> where this view on information had been
> commonly accepted already  
> >>> since the 19th century.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> We, the beneficiaries of the latest
> "information technology  
> >>> blessings", again start to realize that
> Mackay was right. In a  
> >>> world where one is flooded with meaningless
> bits and pieces, it is  
> >>> not so hard anymore to reverse ones’ opinion
> and embrace the view  
> >>> that that whole kluge [9] of air- controlled
> basements, servers,  
> >>> mainframes, storage racks, cabling, switches,
> connections,  
> >>> protocols, filters, streams, files,
> applications and screens are  
> >>> just holders, carriers and presenters of
> endless tides of  
> >>> meaningless data that convey no significance
> unless we, humans,  
> >>> enact it, construct and attach meaning and
> find ourselves changed  
> >>> in the process. Then, and only then,
> communication has been  
> >>> accomplished.
> >>>
> >>> I still hold some form of hope that
> Mackay's view will become so  
> >>> popular that it really will get some impact.
> If that happens the  
> >>> word Cybernetics will get a whole new meaning.
> IF HOWEVER we  
> >>> should forget about the word and adopt a new
> one to make it happen  
> >>> I suggest that we drop the word :-)
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Finally, I find it quite hard to point down
> where in the VSM way  
> >>> of thinking the concept of 
> "emergence" that Dave is often  
> >>> referring to can come forward when working
> with the VSM. In that  
> >>> sense I think Dave is right when he says the
> world has moved on.  
> >>> Another view could be that
> "emergence" was/is such in integral  
> >>> property of VSM inspired work that I missed
> it. Anyway making that  
> >>> property (if it is included) more prominent
> again might help  
> >>> bridging the "good old work" to
> "todays interests".
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> So far my 2 cents.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Harold
> >>> From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford
> Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask] 
> >>> ] On Behalf Of R Clemens
> >>> Sent: woensdag 29 oktober 2008 11:46
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>> FYI -- see below
> >>>
> >>> --- On Wed, 29/10/08, Snowden Dave
> <dave.snowden@cognitive- 
> >>> edge.com> wrote:
> >>> From: Snowden Dave
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden & Cybermen
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Cc: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Wednesday, 29 October, 2008, 6:47 PM
> >>> The problem with the word is that stems back
> to information  
> >>> processing models of the human brain,
> something common to a long  
> >>> of systems dynamics (and more generally
> systems thinking).    
> >>> Cognitive science has moved on from that time
> and we now know the  
> >>> brain does not process information, but
> instead blends and  
> >>> activates patterns (that is a gross
> simplification but you get the  
> >>> point).  The irony is that this allows for
> humans to be augmented  
> >>> by technology, but points to natural limits in
> that technology.    
> >>> As I have said in several of our
> conversations, the agenda have  
> >>> moved on.  We all owe a great debt to Beer et
> al, as quantum  
> >>> mechanics owes a debt to Newton .
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Dave Snowden
> >>> Founder & Chief Scientific Officer
> >>> Cognitive Edge Pte Ltd
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Now blogging at www.cognitive-edge.com
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On 28 Oct 2008, at 12:49, R Clemens wrote:
> >>> Dr Snowden
> >>>
> >>> The BBC series Dr Who has played an important
> part in forming the  
> >>> public mind over the last 40 years.
> >>>
> >>> You mention not liking the word
> "cybernetics", and I note that one  
> >>> of the evil archetypal characters in the
> series is known as  
> >>> 'Cybermen'.
> >>>
> >>> It has been suggested the head dress of these
> BBC characters looks  
> >>> similar to Stafford Beer's VSM diagram. 
> In checking the Wikipedia  
> >>> site I note specific mention to Norbert Weiner
> and also,  
> >>> interestingly, to a negative St Pancras crowd
> reaction to a public  
> >>> presentation of the character in the streets.
> (* see below)
> >>>
> >>> Given your comment below "...and
> cybernetics (which I don't like  
> >>> as a word)..." do you think there is a
> hurdle here in expecting a  
> >>> neutral response from (a) people/public; (b)
> management; and (c)  
> >>> other professionals, who, like yourself may
> become exposed to the  
> >>> management cybernetics of Stafford Beer?
> >>>
> >>> If so, do have any free advice to give on what
> might enhance  
> >>> contemporary 'coupling capacity' with
> Stafford Beer's VSM?
> >>>
> >>> regards
> >>> Russell
> >>>
> >>> (p.s. if you wish to respond, please email me
> & I will post it to  
> >>> the Listserv for others to read -- as we seem
> to have certain  
> >>> technical considerations in place stopping
> non-members submitting  
> >>> responses directly at this time.)
> >>> History
> >>>
> >>> Conceptual history
> >>>
> >>> The name "Cyberman" comes from
> cybernetics, a term coined in  
> >>> Norbert Wiener's book Cybernetics or
> Control and Communication in  
> >>> the Animal and the Machine (MIT Press, 1948).
> Wiener used the term  
> >>> in reference to the control of complex systems
> in the animal world  
> >>> and in mechanical networks, in particular
> self-regulating control  
> >>> systems. By 1960, doctors were performing
> research into surgically  
> >>> or mechanically augmenting humans or animals
> to operate machinery  
> >>> in space, leading to the coining of the term
> "cyborg", for  
> >>> "cybernetic organism".
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> In the 1960s, "spare-part" surgery
> was starting out, with the  
> >>> first, gigantic heart-lung machines being
> developed. There were  
> >>> also serious suggestions of wiring the nerve
> endings of amputees  
> >>> directly into machines for quicker
> response.[5] In 1963, Kit  
> >>> Pedler had a conversation with his wife (who
> was also a doctor)  
> >>> about what would happen if a person had so
> many prostheses that  
> >>> they could no longer distinguish themselves
> between man and  
> >>> machine. He got the opportunity to develop
> this idea when, in  
> >>> 1966, after an appearance on the BBC science
> programmes Tomorrow's  
> >>> World and Horizon, the BBC hired him to help
> on the Doctor Who  
> >>> serial The War Machines. That eventually led
> to him writing, with  
> >>> Gerry Davis's help, The Tenth Planet for
> Doctor Who.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Pedler, influenced by the logic-driven Treens
> from the Dan Dare  
> >>> comic strip, originally envisaged the Cybermen
> as "space monks",  
> >>> but was persuaded by Davis to concentrate on
> his fears about the  
> >>> direction of spare-part surgery. The original
> Cybermen were  
> >>> imagined as human, but with plastic and metal
> prostheses. The  
> >>> Cybermen of The Tenth Planet still have human
> hands, and their  
> >>> facial structures are visible beneath the
> masks they wear.  
> >>> However, over time, they evolved into
> metallic, more robot-like  
> >>> designs.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> The Cybermen attracted controversy when
> parents complained after a  
> >>> scene in The Tomb of the Cybermen in which a
> dying Cyberman  
> >>> spurted white foam from its innards. Another
> incident was  
> >>> initiated by Pedler himself, who took a man in
> a Cyberman costume  
> >>> into a busy shopping area of St. Pancras. The
> reaction of the  
> >>> public was predictable, and the crowd almost
> blocked the street  
> >>> and the police were called in. Pedler said
> that he "wanted to know  
> >>> how people would react to something quite
> unusual," but also  
> >>> admitted that he "wanted to be a
> nuisance."[6] Pedler wrote his  
> >>> last Cyberman story, The Invasion, in 1968,
> and left Doctor Who  
> >>> with Gerry Davis to develop the scientific
> thriller series  
> >>> Doomwatch.
> >>>
> >>> (Source:
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyberman)
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- On Mon, 27/10/08, Snowden Dave
> <dave.snowden@cognitive- 
> >>> edge.com> wrote:
> >>> From: Snowden Dave
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden
> >>> To: "Garderen, Harold van"
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Cc: [log in to unmask],
> [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Monday, 27 October, 2008, 8:49 PM
> >>> Thanks Harold and nice to see you engaged.  I
> haven't got time to  
> >>> write an essay but a couple of points:
> >>> - I think aspects of Beer apply to the
> complicated domain of cynefin
> >>> - I think the complex space needs managing,
> its not just leaving  
> >>> it alone or assuming that a community of
> interest (more  
> >>> complicated) will solve it.  More techniques
> like SNS, but also  
> >>> specific actions to vary constraints and
> connectivity.  The  
> >>> difference is a solution will be emergent and
> unique and will not  
> >>> fit in a model
> >>> - Stuart (had dinner with him a few months
> ago) more important the  
> >>> V/M I think, his latest badly written book has
> some real insights  
> >>> in it.
> >>> - If Beer was around today he would be into
> (and would understand)  
> >>> complexity and cybernetics (which I don't
> like as a word) would be  
> >>> a different place
> >>> And yes, we need to do some very different
> things if the world is  
> >>> to survive in any humane form - just blogging
> that
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Dave Snowden
> >>> Founder & Chief Scientific Officer
> >>> Cognitive Edge Pte Ltd
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Now blogging at www.cognitive-edge.com
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On 27 Oct 2008, at 08:40, Garderen, Harold van
> wrote:
> >>> Hi Russell,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> First of all "yes" I meant "his
> work".
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> What I meant to say about
> "nestedness" is that the Cynefin model  
> >>> suggests that the "hard/intractible
> problems" are situated in the  
> >>> complexity domain (upper left corner, forgive
> me Dave :-) ) and  
> >>> can be treated (or at least tried to) by a
> group of "interested"  
> >>> people, a community of interest so to say.
> Ofcourse these people  
> >>> come from their respective parts/departments
> or groups in- or  
> >>> outside the organization and a such they are
> from different  
> >>> "nests", but not on the sense of
> "nestedness".
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> What I meant with prescribing is that Dave
> never/hardly?  
> >>> prescribes while Beer explicitely models
> organizations in a nested  
> >>> way with the resource bargain as part of the
> disussion while  
> >>> forming a lower recursion. I'm not sure it
> will help, as Dave  
> >>> seems to assume that once such a CoInterest is
> formed they are  
> >>> given the resources (f.e. time) to work on the
> problem.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Knowing the Dave is regularly involved in
> treating (or at least  
> >>> consulting for) problem that have to do with
> improving humanity, I  
> >>> have copied him in with this email. As far as
> I know, Dave knows  
> >>> about the Varela/Maturana work and about
> Stuart Kaufmann's work  
> >>> too. The latter might be as important as the
> last.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Harold
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford
> Beer [mailto:] On  
> >>> Behalf Of R Clemens
> >>> Sent: zondag 26 oktober 2008 23:54
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden
> >>> Dear Harold,
> >>>
> >>> Thank you for this positive view. I think you
> are right about the  
> >>> potential here -- for both sides of the coin
> (and for humanity as  
> >>> well, without trying to save the world!). I
> will pass on the very  
> >>> nice term "Beer proof" (with
> attribution) to Dave --  I'm sure it  
> >>> will enter the lexicon down the track.  ;-)
> >>>
> >>> With Dave, on this matter, I have used the
> idea of "conceptual  
> >>> coupling" (as per Maturana & Varela)
> as a reconciling of certain  
> >>> S5 issues in operation -- and I hypothesis, if
> both models/ 
> >>> approaches are real, from real identities,
> then it is accord with  
> >>> the VSM , and polite society, to follow this
> route.
> >>>
> >>> Question: how do you think "prescribing
> nested forms of  
> >>> organization" in Dave's work would
> help (a) his work; and (b)  
> >>> coupling?  I'm thinking of how to broach
> the topic with him. At  
> >>> the moment I've just used the term
> "Black box" to describe my  
> >>> interpretation of his way of dealing with the
> issue.
> >>>
> >>> regards
> >>> Russell
> >>>
> >>> p.s. I assume your "I would really
> encourage he work to be  
> >>> integrated in these discussions." should
> read "I would really  
> >>> encourage his work to be integrated in these
> discussions."-- is  
> >>> this correct?
> >>>
> >>> --- On Mon, 27/10/08, Garderen, Harold van
> <[log in to unmask] 
> >>> > wrote:
> >>> From: Garderen, Harold van
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Monday, 27 October, 2008, 6:45 AM
> >>> Friends,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> That is right, Dave's view is in no aspect
> at odds with  
> >>> Staffords'. That is a rare thing today. I
> think Dave is one of the  
> >>> few contemporary management thinkers that can
> be regarded as "Beer- 
> >>> proof" today. In particular his Cynefin
> model (see paper section  
> >>> of mentioned website) can be seen as covering
> most of the dynamic  
> >>> features Beer has put into the VSM.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On the other hand Dave's work is not so
> structured as Beers' VSM.  
> >>> Cynefin isn't prescribing nested forms of
> organization. In fact is  
> >>> doesn't say anything about organizational
> form whatsoever.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I would really encourage he work to be
> integrated in these  
> >>> discussions. Not only contentwise, but also
> because Dave is  
> >>> succesful and booming. An
> "integration" (hope the word doesn't  
> >>> convey to many wrong meanings here) could
> speed up the broadening  
> >>> of interest for the VSM in my view.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> With kind regards,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Harold
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford
> Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask] 
> >>> ] On Behalf Of R Clemens
> >>> Sent: zondag 26 oktober 2008 14:17
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden
> >>> Roger
> >>>
> >>> If you are interested this link is Snowden
> speaking in Melbourne  
> >>> before he came through Perth recently. Careful
> listening will show  
> >>> that he covers many of the VSM aspects -- at
> least I cannot find  
> >>> any conflict with it.
> >>>
> >>>
> http://www.cognitive-edge.com/podcasts/WS330063.mp3
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- On Sat, 25/10/08, R Clemens
> <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >>> From: R Clemens <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Snowden
> >>> To: " Forum dedicated to the work of
> Stafford Beer " <[log in to unmask]
> 
> >>> >
> >>> Received: Saturday, 25 October, 2008, 10:00 AM
> >>> Roger:
> >>>
> >>> It is discursive and digressive and as the
> Irish would say (I  
> >>> assume): to be sure to be sure, I'd have
> to tell a longish story  
> >>> about the truth as I see it myself.
> >>>
> >>> However, in summary:
> >>>
> >>> Dave Snowden is a very well informed Welshman
> I came across in my  
> >>> studies of scenarios etc some years ago
> because of his writings on  
> >>> the use of narrative while he worked in IBM
> (through a company  
> >>> merger).
> >>>
> >>> He is now one of the originators of the new
> field of Knowledge  
> >>> Management. He is an expert in complexity
> science and its  
> >>> application to management practice. We are
> trialling his approach  
> >>> Cynefin framework
> (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cynefin) and  
> >>> software called SenseMaker at my department.
> (see http://www.sensemaker-suite.com/) 
> >>>  -- e.g.
> >>> "It is a pre-hypothesis based research
> tool, a knowledge  
> >>> repository and a decision support system in
> one coherent package."
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> The approach emerges from a foundation in
> complex adaptive systems  
> >>> theory, cognitive sciences and narrative &
> anthropology. (http://www.sensemaker-suite.com/concept.htm 
> >>> )
> >>>
> >>> He was in Perth for a day en-route
> Melbourne-Singapore, and I was  
> >>> host.
> >>>
> >>> He appears both as academic and businessman.
> He has strong  
> >>> opinions on many things -- one of which is
> that Stafford Beer's  
> >>> model of the brain and the VSM are wrong -- or
> at least out of  
> >>> date. [There are strong S5 issues at work
> here]
> >>>
> >>> He does not have a cybernetic or systems
> orientation although I  
> >>> need to be careful here. Ralph D Stacey
> (Complexity & Creativity  
> >>> in Organizations) would appear to be someone
> Snowden is aligned  
> >>> with. He did degrees in Philosophy &
> Physics.
> >>>
> >>> Don't lose sleep over it. I find it
> interesting and useful to  
> >>> synergise both SB & DS views (and one or
> two others). I mentioned  
> >>> at Metaphoruim 2008 (last slide) that I/we
> were planning to trial  
> >>> SenseMaker as a follow-on from our scenario
> work.  After some  
> >>> extended email discussions (you think these
> are long!) - I  
> >>> tortured him enough to consider it
> theoretically possible to use  
> >>> his SenseMaker approach to verify the VSM
> hypothesis.
> >>>
> >>> To try this I now need to develop the right
> set of signifiers (a  
> >>> term he uses that is more than tagging) to
> show there are five  
> >>> interwoven systems and cultures at work (i.e.
> S1 thru S5). I would  
> >>> hope for some help from people here when the
> time comes (and it is  
> >>> coming very soon now). I have an organisation
> of N=1,000 approx.  
> >>> It is most likely to be chopped into three.
> >>>
> >>> p.s. I'm not selling his approach or
> methods or theory -- I'm  
> >>> testing it (a) in practice at work; and (b) in
> theory here with  
> >>> the VSM. Whereas VSM is a 'dead duck'
> in respect to local   
> >>> management interest Snowden's approach is
> rapidly gaining  
> >>> traction. I see his SenseMaker primarily as a
> S3* tool -- but it  
> >>> also has wider application I think. I have
> just had two university  
> >>> schools (one business management/leadership
> and the other  
> >>> Sustainability policy and practice) become
> quite interested in his  
> >>> SenseMaker as a research tool.
> >>>
> >>> Oh, I should add, he has a following as well!
> ... ;-)
> >>>
> >>> If you want some samples of him speaking then
> try here: http://www.cognitive-edge.com/podcasts.php
> >>>
> >>> --- end of discursive field notes -----
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- On Sat, 25/10/08, Roger Harnden
> <[log in to unmask]>  
> >>> wrote:
> >>> From: Roger Harnden
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Wikipedia and the Meaning of
> Truth
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Saturday, 25 October, 2008, 2:59 AM
> >>> Russell.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I'm missing out somewhere. What is the
> 'Dave Snowden' stuff??
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Roger
> >>> On 24 Oct 2008, at 14:24, R Clemens wrote:
> >>> Yes, I am still writing out my 10,000 lines on
> the blackboard:  
> >>> "Discursive is bad!" ... Not sure
> it's going to work though ... ;-)p
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> What Frank wrote, I responded to. What he
> meant, I can only  
> >>> surmise. Whether it reflects Bloor, I can only
> take his opinion.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- WARNING: Do Not Read Further If You Wish
> To Avoid  
> >>> Discursiveness ---
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Reliable Knowledge: “Statements about truth
> must be viewed  
> >>> skeptically. Rather than state something as
> "true," the following  
> >>> phrase should be used: "On the evidence
> available today the  
> >>> balance of probability favors the view
> that...".” ( V. Gordon  
> >>> Childe, Man Makes Himself, 1936)
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Religious meaning of knowledge: “The Old
> Testament's Tree of  
> >>> Knowledge of Good and Evil contained the
> knowledge that separated  
> >>> Man from God: "And the LORD God said,
> Behold, the man is become as  
> >>> one of us, to know good and evil… "
> (Genesis 3:22)”
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> (Source: both in
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knowledge)
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Why am I there in the Wiki? Well it’s a
> story for another time  
> >>> perhaps, but, in short, well medium-long,
> I’ve just spent a busy  
> >>> day studying a strange complex species called
> “Dave Snowden” at  
> >>> work in the field – hence arriving at
> “Knowledge Management” is  
> >>> the same Wiki-reference area to quotes above
> (while I read this  
> >>> email from Frank).
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> In my opinion, what Snowden is doing is 100%
> cybernetics (as per  
> >>> autopoietic definition explained to me by Luc)
> and his approach –  
> >>> including SenseMaker – is one very powerful
> tool to use. Watch  
> >>> this space!
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I believe it can cover audit/feedback,
> boundaries (or lack of  
> >>> them), algedonic links (which he calls
> disintermediation),  
> >>> homeostatic balance, and inter-recursive level
> communications  
> >>> issues. In fact, where as VSM gives an x-ray
> view, Snowden’s  
> >>> complexity approach is very much a
> ‘Blackbox’ paradigm – and  
> >>> management are getting very excited about it.
> Ultimately it is  
> >>> second order cybernetics applied to governance
> praxis. In short,  
> >>> he claims to synergise quantitative and
> qualitative methods and  
> >>> data – I think effectively.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> In a note to Angela I said: “There are some
> identity issues  
> >>> between SB [ Stafford ] & DS which are
> natural and expected (and  
> >>> explained in VSM and other models/frameworks).
>  But this should be  
> >>> celebrated, not seen as a problem. If SB was
> the "most viable  
> >>> system" someone knew -- then I'd say
> DS must be one of the most  
> >>> ‘SB’ characters I know (without actually
> knowing SB -- rather by  
> >>> sensing from reading and Metaphorum derived
> insight).
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> If, I’m wrong then shoot me. Now back to the
> blackboard….
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> -- End of Discursiveness --- 
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- On Fri, 24/10/08, Roger Harnden
> <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >>> From: Roger Harnden
> <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Wikipedia and the Meaning of
> Truth
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Friday, 24 October, 2008, 10:45 PM
> >>> Frank, take no notice of Russell - he lives 
> down under - probably  
> >>> in the outback  - so all he understands are  
> >>> 'walkabouts' (including those to the
> pub, if my memory is correct!).
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Serious point. If you look below, I don't
> think Frank actually  
> >>> said such an  absolute statement. IHe is
> summarising his  
> >>> understanding of a thesis - indeed, from the
> look of it (I don't  
> >>> know the book) quite a sensible one.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> It is interesting how many of these
> discussions circle round  
> >>> (without explicitly acknowledging that they do
>  the objectivist/ 
> >>> relativist debates.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> The thing I keep trying to say - albeit
> clumsily - is that I feel  
> >>> that insights of cybernetic thinking and
> analysis overcomes many  
> >>> of the problems that can dog so-called
> 'post-modernist' discourse.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Roger
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> PS Russell, in the light of one or two
> previous irritated  
> >>> comments, I have to say I feel we are both
> behaving quite well  
> >>> about keeping stuff  terse!
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On 24 Oct 2008, at 11:46, Frank wrote:
> >>> Ha ha point taken! Sloppy thinking on my part.
> Nonetheless Bloor  
> >>> makes some interesting points.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Regards
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Frank Wood
> >>> ----- Original Message -----
> >>> From: R Clemens
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Sent: Friday, October 24, 2008 11:34 AM
> >>> Subject: Re: Wikipedia and the Meaning of
> Truth
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Re: David Bloor
> >>>
> >>> The problem I have with these absolutist
> statements "... there is  
> >>> no such thing as absolute truth .. " is
> they are self contradictory.
> >>>
> >>> I once sat through 20 minutes of
> indoctrination (1:1) by a  
> >>> supposed policy expert who's thesis was
> "there are no facts" --  
> >>> when she'd finished I simple asked the
> obvious question -- "Is  
> >>> that a fact?" Session ended rather soon
> afterwards.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- On Fri, 24/10/08, Frank
> <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >>> From: Frank <[log in to unmask]>
> >>> Subject: Re: Wikipedia and the Meaning of
> Truth
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Received: Friday, 24 October, 2008, 8:58 PM
> >>> Just seen the error that Barry made so
> don't have to make the  
> >>> correction now :-)
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Kenneth Patchen said in his novel The Journal
> of Albion Moonlight  
> >>> "I do not choose my truths." I
> disagree. I think we choose our  
> >>> truths in the light of our culture and the
> paradigm of our times.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> This is the point David Bloor made in his book
> "Knowledge and  
> >>> Social Imagery". My interpretation of
> what he said is that there  
> >>> is no such thing as absolute truth and that
> truth is dependent on  
> >>> the ongoing paradigm and nothing changes until
> the paradigm is  
> >>> broken and then the paradigm breakers set up
> the new paradigm.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> His section The Popper-Kuhn Debate  is an
> interesting discussion  
> >>> on truth and the nature of facts.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> This is a good overview of Bloor's stance.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> http://www.iit.edu/~schmaus/Science_and_Values/notes/sociologists/social.pdf
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Regards
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Frank Wood
> >>> ----- Original Message -----
> >>> From: BARRY A CLEMSON
> >>> To: [log in to unmask]
> >>> Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2008 6:27 PM
> >>> Subject: Re: Wikipedia and the Meaning of
> Truth
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Stefan,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Thank  you. It is no wonder I was confused, I
> didn't see the  
> >>> article by Simson L Garfinkel and I thought
> you were talking about  
> >>> Frank.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Barry
> >>> On Oct 23, 2008, at 1:01 PM, Stefan Wasilewski
> wrote:
> >>> Barry (and Frank)
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I was addressing the article of Simson L.
> Garfinkel itself and not  
> >>> Frank at all, having read the whole thing and
> the result was my  
> >>> thoughts as below.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I believe Roger replied and I agree with him
> (and Frank) but to  
> >>> reply to your thought, we should always go
> into something with the  
> >>> idea of verifying what we read.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Garfinkel is Navy and framed by his
> environment and this was my  
> >>> thrust in your point 3. I'm old enough to
> remember being behind  
> >>> the 'Wall' for long periods and
> talking to those of my age that  
> >>> sought 'truth' but who were open
> enough to question what was said  
> >>> all along the way: This attitude stayed with
> me.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Of the times I've had discussion with
> Frank it was always clear,  
> >>> interesting and thought provoking, I seldom
> now respond to  
> >>> anything other.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Hope this helps
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Stefan
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On 23 Oct 2008, at 16:46, BARRY A CLEMSON
> wrote:
> >>> Stefan,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I find your comments puzzling and would like
> clarification.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> 1) It seems to me that you are saying that
> Frank has a grudge --  
> >>> is this correct? I found his piece to be a
> thoughtful critique  
> >>> that also was quite supportive of Wikipedia.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> 2) You say (and I agree) it is up to each of
> us to verify the  
> >>> facts we seek. What Frank pointed out very
> nicely is that we might  
> >>> be blindsided by our unexamined assumptions.
> And if we are not  
> >>> even aware of our assumptions (which is often
> the case) we are  
> >>> quite thoroughly trapped by them and unable to
> check our facts.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> 3) i saw no hint of a suggestion to prefer
> "the current filtering  
> >>> of information and the writing of history by
> the winners". Rather  
> >>> I saw support for Wikipedia. Where did this
> come from?
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> 4) Perhaps I am merely clueless but I
> don't see how his specific  
> >>> profession provides any clue to his viewpoint.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Please help me out here.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Barry
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On Oct 23, 2008, at 11:01 AM, Stefan
> Wasilewski wrote:
> >>> I generally find that people who criticise but
> don't offer an  
> >>> alternative have a grudge and therefore to be
> put in one box to be  
> >>> balanced as others are likewise accessed.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Surely it's up to each and every one of us
> to verify the facts we  
> >>> seek and in doing so learn accordingly:
> Nothing should be taken on  
> >>> face value.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Would he prefer the current filtering of
> information and the  
> >>> writing of history by the winners to remain as
> our only sources?
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> His profession should give a clue to
> viewpoint.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Stefan
> >>>
> >>> On 23 Oct 2008, at 13:24, Frank wrote:
> >>> Dear Listm
> >>>
> http://www.technologyreview.com/web/21558/?nlid=1452&a=f
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Any comments?
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Regards
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Frank Wood
> >>>
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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> >>> BARRY A CLEMSON
> >>> [log in to unmask]
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> >>> 757-692-6673
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> >>>
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> >>>
> ===================================================
> >>> BARRY A CLEMSON
> >>> [log in to unmask]
> >>> 757-692-6673
> >>> Cybernetica Press at www.cyberneticapress.com
> >>> "It's not how much you do - it's
> how much love you put in it....  
> >>> Do small things with great love."
> >>>             --- Mother Teresa ---
> >>> The true warrior may be killed, but he can not
> be defeated.
> >>>    --- my paraphrase of Sensei Hamada ---
> >>> And peace rolled down like a mighty river.
> >>>        -- Inspired by the prophet Amos 5:24--
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> avast! Antivirus: Inbound message clean.
> >>>
> >>> Virus Database (VPS): 081029-0, 29/10/2008
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> >>
> >>
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