Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
History as a giant data set: how analysing the past could help save the future
Goldstone recognised that the different components of a society - state, elites, masses - would respond differently to strain, but that they would also interact. In other words, he was dealing with a complex system whose behaviour was best captured mathematically. His model of why revolutions occur consists of a set of equations, but a crude verbal description goes something like this: as the population grows there comes a point where it outstrips the ability of the land to support it. The standard of living of the masses falls, increasing their potential for violent mobilisation. The state tries to counteract this - for example, by capping rents - but such measures alienate the elite whose financial interests they hurt. Since the elite has also been expanding, and competing ever more fiercely for a finite pool of high-status jobs and trappings, the class as a whole is less willing to accept further losses. So the state must tap its own coffers to quell the masses, driving up national debt. The more indebted it becomes, the less flexibility it has to respond to further strains. Eventually, marginalised members of the elite side with the masses against the state, violence breaks out and the government is too weak to contain it.
Educated, middle class progressives are invariably the last to notice that the society is swimming in a Malthusian-Darwinian phase. There can always be yet more institutional care, stimulation and justice, right?
by das monde on Wed Nov 13th, 2019 at 08:39:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Dude runs straight into the Law of Medium Numbers:

For medium number systems, we can expect that large fluctuations, irregularities, and discrepancy with any theory will occur more or less regularly.

Medium number systems are those smaller than infinity and greater than systems reducible to one independent and one dependent variable.  

Medium Number systems are inherently unpredictable.

See:  Weinberg, Gerald M. An introduction to general systems thinking. Vol. 304. New York: Wiley, 1975.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Nov 13th, 2019 at 06:01:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At what sample size does analyzed past guarantee future conditions?

Organisms have to learn and decide their behaviour and strategies based on very Medium Numbers. Does that mean they have large freedom for fictitious presumptions? Surviving organisms may have to take Pascal's Wagger more seriously than Ockham's razour.

by das monde on Thu Nov 14th, 2019 at 11:51:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Organisms don't use mathematics, for the very reasons I outlined. Each organism continually constructs its Umwelt* using its genotypic heritage as modified by its particular phenotype plus learned experience plus memory of specific conditions of its ecological niche within its environment and communicating genotypically defined Information** to other members of its species and other species capable of 'listening in.'

  •   the world as it is experienced, at a specific instance, by a particular organism

  • using Bateson's definition: a difference that makes a difference


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Thu Nov 14th, 2019 at 05:57:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is human Umwelt determined mathematically rather than genetically? What will make more differences: IPCC or tribal prejudices?
by das monde on Thu Nov 14th, 2019 at 07:05:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Umwelt


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Fri Nov 15th, 2019 at 03:48:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series