[p2p-research] Building Alliances (basic income and entrepreneurship)

Michel Bauwens michelsub2004 at gmail.com
Sat Nov 7 17:07:38 CET 2009

On Sat, Nov 7, 2009 at 3:27 PM, J. Andrew Rogers <reality.miner at gmail.com>wrote:

> On Fri, Nov 6, 2009 at 11:52 PM, Michel Bauwens <michelsub2004 at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > There is both a dynamic in terms of individual adult development, with
> > increased capacities to handle cognitive complexity, there's a whole
> field
> > of psychology dedicated to this, and collective intelligence, which is
> the
> > capacity to cooperate as intelligent beings.
> Okay, that is sloppier terminology than I am used to. In this context
> "collective intelligence" is not literally intelligence in a rigorous
> sense, but a collection of different inductive models (intelligent
> people), got it. Plenty of literature on that. The "increased
> cognitive complexity" maps to a specific dynamic in the mathematics,
> but I can't think of a simple way of describing that off-hand.
> > Both are not given fixed amounts, but amenable to change, and there is a
> > case to be made that they have been growing.
> There *is* a fixed upper bound on true intelligence. Or at least there
> better be; an awful lot of modern technology depends on that theorem.

I'm ready to believe that, though I'm sceptical, any literature that's not
full of math on this?

> Google doesn't actually make us smarter it just..."refines"...the
> inductive model of an intelligent agent. You'll be smarter due to the
> increase in entropy, but that improvement is an exponentially
> diminishing return.  Not much more to be had there, nor can there be.
> In increases in "collective intelligence" mirror that of the refinement.
> > I gather you are not aware that there are other modalities of knowing
> than
> > math? and that being good at math is a free pass to pass on judgments on
> all
> > matters in the universe?
> There are two basic mechanisms for "knowing".
> There is mathematics, which is axiomatic and deductive. There is
> science, which is non-axiomatic and inductive, with the caveat that
> the correctness of this model is predicated entirely on the axioms of
> mathematics.
> What am I missing?  Divine revelation? Astrology?

Yes indeed: emotion, myth, empathy, meditative witnessing ... Do you
seriously think people didn't 'know" anything before the advent of math and
science?? If you have a life partner, does she expect you to 'know' you love
her/him by reference to math and science ???

Wow, I know such 19th century scientism still existed, but hadn't
encountered such reductionism of human complexity recently

> > For a good case of mathematical madness, take
> > neoclassical economics. It's pretty clear where that got us.
> But this isn't even a failure of math. It is the failure of a model
> someone concocted. In what way does this support your argument?  If
> someone tells you 2+2=5, is that a failure of the math?
> > I think that
> > applying math to social change is a serious category error, and not
> > 'rigorous' at all. Social change can only be examined in a
> interdisciplinary
> > and participatory way.
> Societies are systems, and subject to the mathematics that governs
> system dynamics. Just make sure you ground your model and don't ignore
> or simplify important parameters.  (Recent work on this gives very
> impressive results, scarily predictive.)

No, human beings, both individual and as societies are 'intentional', and
have subjectivity and intersubjectivity, and plain material redutionism, or
subtle systemic reductionism, is poor science. We are not planes and dots.
This is not to say that reductionism is not useful and productive, as long
as it is recontextualized and part of interdisciplinary approaches that take
into account human depth. Math and models can help explain human and social
dynamics, but the map is never territory.

> > Last, social change must not be proven in theory, but experimented in
> > practice. Lots of things were impossible in theory, like the Wikipedia
> and
> > the Arduino, but happened in practice. In that case, theory must be
> revised,
> > but above all, one must be aware of the relativity of theory at all
> times.
> Huh? Neither Wikipedia or Arduino are impossible in theory. It is
> silly to assert as much. Indeed, they are *expected* in theory.

Not the people I've read. Wikipedia was widely ridiculed in its early days,
and still is in countries like France; and we had a long conversation on the
list a few years back about the impossibility of doing open hardware circuit
boards ..

Glad that you thought different.


> --
>  J. Andrew Rogers
> realityminer.blogspot.com

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