From: Douglas Brooker (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu 04 May 2006 - 19:59:12 GMT
Robin Faichney wrote:
>Thursday, May 4, 2006, 5:59:25 PM, Wade wrote:
>>The way I see it, the fundamental concept is that of "pattern".
>Information is more fundamental. A sequence of bits might be random or
>patterned, but a pattern is always information. A genuine
>understanding of the fundamentals of memetics will require a full
>understanding of the relationships between mind, matter, information,
>causation and other such phenomena. That's what I'm working on. Of
>course I might be hopelessly over-ambitious, but the way I see it,
>somebody has to do it!
have you thought of including the idea of "attribution" alongside
'causation', if only for quality control purposes? I know the distinction from Niklas Luhmann' Sociological Theory of Law - confusing attribution and causation is a pretty endemic phenomena in legal theory. It's what divides Law-as-a-Humanity and Law-as-a-Social-Science.
Chris' earlier comment made me think of the distinction. He wrote, "So,
to the point: It is a priori impossible to 'replicate' _any_ 'meme'.
There is no such thing as a meme per se, it is just a useful
approximation for (the result of) a patterning process."
Also, the comments about what is the unit of 'information' raise the
attribution issue - cf comments on the boundaries of the "baseball"
meme. Can a definition of the unit of information being studied be
anything more than an author's attribution? Either you have some kind
of 'real' documented chain of causation - which involves objectively
identifiable phenomena/data, or you don't. If you don't, then the
discourse begins with interpretation, something deemed for the purposes
of a study to be the object of study.
Is memetics through this necessary attribution a "Humanity" rather than
a Science, or a "Social Science"? (at least at this time?)
Can't say I have an answer, but it might be a point that gets close to
the difficulty of defining memetics as a discipline.
University of London
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