Re: Genes are Memes

From: salice (
Date: Sat Oct 06 2001 - 22:53:55 BST

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    Subject: Re: Genes are Memes
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    > > Nature shows behavior, when scientists observe how an animal hunts
    > > or how planets move around the sun they observe behavior of
    > > nature. In this way this behavior could also be called a meme, the
    > > only problem is, that is hard to say who created that behavior.
    > If everything is a meme, then the concept is useless. Fortunately,
    > that's not so. Replication of behaviour is required.

    Well, i gave the example of an animal hunting - that's obviously a
    behavior. The other example was how planets move around the sun. And
    this is a meme too, because humans already copied it in a way.
    Satellites for instance. Or a tv program about physics which shows
    an animation of how planets move around the sun. It is a meme found
    in nature replicated by humans. Perfectly valid meme.
    > > Humans already change and changed nature for decades. When you look
    > > at an avenue with trees at it's side, then the way these trees stand
    > > there is not the natural grown structural pattern but the way humans
    > > made it. So humans can find memes in nature, some they put into it,
    > > some which just exist and can be received.
    > That memes can affect nature through human behaviour is very obvious.

    Yep, memes can affect matter through human behavior. Memes can change
    a clean white sheet of paper into an architect's construction as
    memes can change the pattern of trees along an avenue. Both are
    memes, memes on the paper, memes in the pattern of trees.

    Why should one differentiate between different kinds of matter when
    people use it to transmit memes? I could also take a knife and draw a
    heart-shape into a tree. The tree would be a perfectly valid host for
    this meme as a piece of paper (which is made out of trees!) would.

    > > Whether a scientist actually "discovers" or "constructs" a meme is
    > > really interesting and could probably both be true.
    > Memes can only be discovered in the brains and behaviour of humans
    > and the other species in which individuals learn from each other.

    Not true. Memes can also be found in 'dead' matter.
    When i let a cup fall and i see how it bursts i observe a behavior,
    i receive a meme which i can tell other people and which i can use in
    the way that i don't let a cup fall again!

    Another example:
    Take the example of a computer game like Quake. Players or aspiring
    programmers can observe the behavior of the computer-opponents and
    learn from them, which helps them for their own play or programming
    of artificial intelligence.

    > > For example, some scientists observed the sun in the sky. They
    > > discovered the meme which describes the movement of the sun. But
    > Of course, memes can carry information about physics and astronomy, etc.
    > If that makes the "behaviour" of the sun memetic, then so is absolutely
    > everything else. But it's not.

    The behavior of the sun is memetic, because we are the ones who
    observe the sun and describe and explain it's behavior.

    We live in a memetic world. Reality is a collection of and
    a connection between memes.

    So memetics is not useless. It's a model which can explain why people
    see the world and universe so differently.

    This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

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