Re: Words and memes

From: Grant Callaghan (
Date: Tue Feb 12 2002 - 03:10:46 GMT

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    From: "Grant Callaghan" <>
    Subject: Re: Words and memes
    Date: Mon, 11 Feb 2002 19:10:46 -0800
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    >On Monday, February 11, 2002, at 10:36 , Lawrence DeBivort wrote:
    >>Meanwhile, I am working on modeling the dynamics of multi-party
    >>conflict and
    >>think I have a pretty nifty approach. I hope to put it up on
    >>Stella, the
    >>systems dynamics program and see how it works.
    >I'm not a mathematician, and I don't play one on TV, but, I know
    >that fluid mechanics tugs at me sometimes, and I know I've seen
    >something recently that applied it to trends in culture, and had
    >predictive models.
    >And then, the sheer complexity of human social interaction would
    >seem to require some sort of pan-dimensional Deep Thought
    >running many matrixed universes in a probability program using
    >fractal cores....
    >And, while that all seems like technobabble, maybe it ain't.
    >It all does harken back to Hari Seldon, and I know we've
    >discussed Asimov's social science innovator here before. I've
    >often thought Scientology owed a good debt to Seldon, in that
    >the followers all wanted to be part of the Foundation.
    >- Wade
    You can see why Scientology owed a debt to Asimov if you remember that L.
    Ron was a science fiction writer at the same time Asimove was publishing his
    Hari Seldon stories. SF writers borrowed a lot from each other in those
    days and palled around at SF conventions in L.A., San Francisco, and New

    I ran across a book by some guys connected with the Santa Fe Institute a
    while back called THE PREDICTORS. I can't think of the author right now,
    but the book documented an attempt to predict market behavior in the stock
    markets and money markets all over the world. They got some good financing
    and spent about three years perfecting the math, based on complexity theory,
    and then went to work predicting. The last I heard, they had made enough
    money to buy a Swiss bank. Anyway, the math they used was based on curves
    of some sort. I can't remeber what they said, exactly, but they didn't go
    into enough detail to tell the rest of the world how to do it anyway. The
    company was still in business on the web the last time I checked. I don't
    know how they fared in this global downturn, but their model included
    knowing when to sell as well as when to buy.

    I think the stock market and money market are good models of human
    complexity in action and if it can be used to beat or keep up with these
    markets it should be able to handle memetic complexity as well. I'm mot a
    math major myself, or I'd have tried to get more information. Maybe it's
    covered in the papers published by the Santa Fe Institute.

    Cheers, Grant

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