Re: meme as catalytic indexical

From: derek gatherer (
Date: Sat 24 Jan 2004 - 18:17:35 GMT

  • Next message: M Lissack: "RE: meme as catalytic indexical"

    Keith: The math behind both genetics and memetics generates S curves where the early part of the S curve is exponential. The exact same math describes epidemics.

    Derek: Yes, but only in the most extreme situations, requiring either strong cultural selection or natural selection, consistently for a fair period of time. Otherwise, you get something much more like a random walk. See:

    Keith: Memetic models predict that potato washing by monkeys would be adopted on an S curve.

    Derek: This I doubt, since it is probably not sufficiently selected either culturally or in terms of biological fitness.

    Keith: We do have historical records for the adoption of life insurance. I researched this while looking into the adoption of cryonics before I started writing on memetics and found that the curves for England, France and the US were parallel on semi-log paper with the US following England by about 20 years and France trailing England by almost 70 years.

    Derek: You should really publish this. It's a much better example than the monkeys, and might even address Bruce's challenge number 1 fairly convincingly.

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