Re: virus: Level 3 and more on Autocatalytic sets.

Chitren Nursinghdass (
Mon, 02 Jun 1997 19:31:36 +0200

>What do you mean by a "one-way meme"? I always think about ideas in terms of
>associative connections between them, which are kind of two-way. Are you
>thinking in terms of propositional logic here, whereby
> a -> b doesn't imply b -> a ?

Yeah, a kind of propositional logic, where in fact a<=> is divided
into a=>b and a<=b.

>Now I agree with an associative reading of this... in that, if you reject
>lots of little memes, you'll end up rejecting a metameme which emerges from
>their ecological relationship.

Yep, you reject a possible symbiotic relationship.

>Mind you, what's this word "reject"? I'd argue that when you "reject" an
>argument, the memes coding for that argument are still in your
>mind/memory... they're just outcompeted by encumbent memes in your memecology.

Maybe in the sense of having its potential to bring action diminish
rapidly with time.

>>However, if somebody can accept a partial linking, say he can
>>enable his set to fuse with fmeme1, then if he doesn't know
>>about fmeme2 and fmeme3, there is no cylic path in his meme set,
>>the fmeme is rejected.
>This is... suspension of disbelief? I can see this working... your memes
>don't go into savage conflict with new sub-meme arrivals... and thus the way
>is paved for the metameme coded for by interactions of the new submemes.

Or just belief in the ulterior or other-location utility of a meme.

>Well... I'd rather rephrase this in less on/off, black&white terms... I'd
>say that your memes not immediately and heavily inhibiting new memetic
>arrivals would increase the chances that combinations of those new arrivals
>(metamemes) get a foothold in your memetic ecology...

Yep, it you want real analogy, it's like culture when a stranger or group
of strangers come to a land. there's an exchange of memes, and hence
a new, vaster culture emerges. Memesets are like memes.

Everything is self-referential in a way.

>Now then... evolution proceeds at different speeds under different
>conditions, and in some conditions (eg Galapagos finches) it seems to happen
>over just a few generations... I've heard (accepting science on faith,
>module 2.3). I'd argue that, if you analyse even a large pardigm shift
>(atoms are not the fundamental particle, eg) that the memetic processes
>underlying the Shift can be made to look gradual, on some time scale. Rather
>like Dennett argues that Gouldian evolution looks gradual on a shorter time

Let say then that there is no JUMP as Gould and Eldridge understand it,
it's just an illusion caused by lack of data. It's gradual, and gradual
doesn't mean it's slow. Adaptation is but a very rapid evolutionary

>Evolution isn't perfectly gradual and cock-up-free. It chases down blind
>alleys, there's mass extinctions and so on... maybe you can view paradigm

The mass extinction is probably to be viewer thus :

the environment is not stable, the population settling in this environment
hasn't be able to 1. find this out 2. act on their immediate surroundings
to reduce the environmental disaster

And hence the sytem made up of this localised to-be-perturbed environment
and its population will be extinct, that is selected against.

Another population might have succeed in predicting the coming upheaval and
would have prepared in such a way as to prevent it or migrate away.
This type of population would be "selected".

Better spatio-temporal stability.