Get Involved: Enter the Virtual (pre-)Incubator
This webpage relates to new business models in advanced automated network Sociometry. No promises or guarantees are expressed or implied. Only assessments and goals. All statements made here in must stand or fall on their own merits, and are presented to aid in the formulation, for each reader, of an opinion of their own, freely expressible.
In so far as this document expresses desirable objectives, it still, however, represents no binding commitments to anyone else. Any existent or future contracts and guarantees what so ever are simply not dealt with here in, and are or will be a matter for entirely separate documentation.
In so far as this document constitutes any part of a prediction or prognosis, it is a best effort. But this document is not a promise by anyone to anyone else. Only the prospect in and of it self may be deemed promising. Such may be hoped.
How can even the deeply ambivalent be compatible with anyone, any match, when the ambivalent, by definition, are not even compatible with themselves? Indeed, such is where their problems truly arise, much as they may entrench themselves in denial on that very score. nevertheless, even the ambivalent need love too, much as they also fear it! And so, the deeper the ambivalence, the greater the insight, care and finesse called for in Psychotherapy.
But what is Psychotherapy, except a contrived relationship under controlled conditions? If Psychotherapy, then, seeks to simulate an ideal relationship, then why not instead seek the real thing, just like everybody else? Why not seek one single flexible embracing solution for anyone and everyone? Because there may still really be special cases. Indeed, the particular needs of ambivalence are a contradiction, an unreal and impossibly inconsiderate Narcissistic fantasy, that's why! It may be fashionable to compare shrinks to whores, but, indeed, either tend to be accorded the least sympathy or respect from those who need them the worst! nevertheless, sophisticated personality profiling and matching even at it's height would most likely also serve for better matching patients to the right Psychotherapists, rather than actually putting them out of business.
And so, the very notion is, quite literally insane! Through out history, the failure of great ideas and mass movements, much less forgotten individuals, has been in the denial of manifest contradictions. And that applies to technological Research and Development no less than pure Science. Approaches so fraught with contradiction stall and are finally superseded.
In particular, Douglas Wilson’s notions of bringing together only those who are agreeable, while keeping incompatible individuals apart, yet anonymously sharing their experiences via an interactive data base, amounts to human interaction only via agents, computer models of personality which, as yet, tend to be inaccurate, inflexible and insidiously controlling, and thereby may ultimately only amount to automation of the infamous Delphi Technique, risking all of the unsavory manipulations and abuses heir to, either intentionally or simply via the notorious insidious runaway Adductive Validation tendencies of Artificial Intelligence/Stupidity. "If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear." -to quote George Orwell. By contrast, Douglas Wilson’s prediction seems to be of an unprecedented therapeutic effect from near perfect compatibility, by which all self-deception and dysfunctionality is to melt away in due course, first, and only then the individual acceptance of difficult truth and responsibility, utterly painless, without any need of such interpersonal struggle even as often manifests from inner conflict.
The implicit assumption seems to be that conflict on any level, is merely friction, and just as in engineering, friction is imperfection, inefficiency exacerbating wear and tear, leading, in turn, only to systematic breakdown and failure. But that would make for a dangerously blithe assumption in Psychology, disregarding any other views of inner and social life, of personal growth, relationship, social evolution and interpersonal conflict resolution, such as may even been seen as akin to that of Scientific Method, wherein struggle and even conflict are at the very heart of all fruitful processes of Evolutionary Epistemology. So, perhaps such, being such an important yet beleaguered value, ought to actually be also considered an important matching criteria, beyond simply being only filtered out to eliminate incompatibility?
Indeed, can or even should interaction facilitated on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry ever actually draw a final curtain upon all human drama whatsoever? The idea may even seem offensive! Because such perfect harmony or “true love” is commonly the dream of conflict aversion, passive/covert aggression and depraved indifference, of the most pathologically self centered manipulatiive and exploitative psychiatric patients, resentful of adult societal expectations not only of practicality, sacrifice and deferred gratification yet also beyond timid conformity and oppressive peer pressure, but of assertive honest square dealing, caring and real and abiding empathy to relate to others even at the expense of one’s own immediate comfort and convenience. And all these things may be as much product of confrontation as of nurture.
Still, none of this logically rules out even very such sad, angry, passive and lonely fantasy of effortless conflict free perfect harmony as uniquely prognosticated, and constructed towards actual feasibility in the proposals of Douglas Wilson, as a better lifestyle for everyone in a real Utopian future. Surely our species owes no less of our success to adapting our environment than from adapting to our environment. Why compromise if one does not need to? The extra effort of refusing to settle may pay off. Social and technological evolution implies the emphasis and priority of desired traits at the expense of less desired traits. A more human society, then, paradoxically, may also be less human. But what’s wrong with that?
The line between genius and madness is often not thin, but blurred. Madness of one kind or another is often observed to be the only font of certain insights beyond the censorship of common sense. The old notion that all human problems are actually communications problems has been dusted off and updated by Douglas Wilson, into the bold idea that all human problems are not communication problems, exactly, but, rather, to be more precise, compatibility issues resolvable by better profiling and matching. Of course, the technology which does not yet exist is therefore untested and still needs actually to be tested. There can be little disagreement on that point, no matter what great merit seen in the concept.
nevertheless, the only possibility of failure that Douglas Wilson, the programmer and researcher who has coined the acronym CASA for Computer Assisted Social Activity, is to give any other consideration in the mean time, is that of matches that fail to actually come about due to incidental mishaps (but never deliberate Relational Bullying, because such, as he puts it, simply is no part of his world-view!) and people with genetic congenital Neurological pathologies who need medication.
Any other issues or problems foreseeable he dismisses as speculative, and demands the most rigorous conclusive peer reviewed data evidence!
And this rather seems like one standard for Optimism and another for caution. So how can that be honest or responsible? Where as the opportunity has been presented, now should come, in turn, also, legitimate misgivings, one at a time, so that the reader may evaluate the entire prospect:
In Transactional Analysis, Complementary Transactions are fairly straightforwardly such as wherein the ego state responding is complimentary to the ego state offering the stimulus, indeed wherein the transaction are parallel. Communication will continue if the transactions are complementary. Whereas, Crossed Transactions are such as wherein the ego state addressed is different from the ego state which responds and dialogue does not merely bypass, but precedes entirely at cross-purposes. If the transaction is crossed communication will grind to a halt unless successfully shifted back to a productive adult complementary level. That is why the deliberate crossing of transaction called: the Antithesis, is enacted and employed to thwart whatever Existential Validation that is sought as the payoff of any reoccurring Ulterior Transactions or: headgames drawing in the unwary, that are such as wherein socially accepted overt transaction belies the lasting impression from subtext of hidden agenda in even subconscious interaction driven by ulterior motive and content in manipulative bad faith. But of course, ulterior subtext can also include uplifting and playful sexual flirtation or other generally benign games.
And there may be application for advanced automated network Sociometry, also, to Transactional Analysis, at least within the limits thereof. Or can advanced automated network Sociometry ever even help overcome precisely those limitations'?
There are, after all, those extreme headgamers who's every conversation and interaction is designed only to illicit the ongoing self justification, however deranged and hypocritical, that is called: Existential Validation, meaningful but fraudulent, in bad faith and even hostility of cognitive dissonance, to irresponsibly "vindicate" and to justify as blameless the learned helplessness, self destruction, and defeat of the poisonously conditioned behavioral rut, learned self image defense or coping routine that may be referred to as their script. Ulterior Transactions or headgames are such generally compulsive manipulation that has one false deceptive and/or self deceptive purpose on the surface, but another real dysfunctional, destructive and/or self destructive one beneath, in the drive for Existential Validation to irresponsibly "vindicate" and to justify as blameless the learned helplessness, self destruction, and defeat of the poisonously conditioned behavioral rut or leaned self image defense and coping routine that may be referred to as their script.
To help one another break free of headgames, Transactional Analysis offers, among other things, the Transactional Analysis, the script Antithesis is a repertoire of curve ball responses and come backs design fitted to each of the known and catalogued types of headgames, to frustrate fraudulently self justifying Existential Validation and offer, instead, an Existential reality check in the strategy of quick disentitlement from each particular categorized Ulterior Transaction or headgames by thwarting and escaping whatever the real payoff and moving away from any of the established roles and simply refusing to play headgames.
And beyond matching one to one, a key hoped for benefit of interaction on the frontiers of advanced automates network Sociometry is to be optimal social embedment for all manner of practical, social and even deep emotional needs, even therapeutically, Psychodynamically and Transitionally.
But, while many may indeed begin to awaken from their scripts and respond positively in Transactional Analysis, there have been found to be entrenched headgamers who are most likely only panic and actually seek out others more amenable with whom to actually raise whatever the stakes and escalate their headgames all the more. Besides, as with anything else, in the first place, one must have the desire and the dedication to follow through and complete Transactional Analysis. Indeed, another hoped for benefit interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry might also be well matched group and network for authenticity to help break one another's headgames, and reach new levels of refreshing honesty, genuineness and true spontaneous intimacy. -perhaps even more subtle matches to help people without frightening them away instead.
But are their people who are intrinsically sociometrucally unmatchable
for any helpful purpose? After all, from results in
Transactional Analysis that should not simply be
ignored, there appear to be certain
character types who
will most likely not be interested, and even refuse to put up with that.
People who appear to be adamantly disinterested in anything but
is conceived as guerilla Transactional Analysis to thwart entrenched
serial bullies, very much against their will.
Currently, sophisticated personality tests such as the MMPI are actually considered very good at diagnosing personality disorders/personality issues. However, there remain two problems with such personality tests. That they are tediously long, and that their utility declines as a person becomes more and more normal, indeed, normal, by most definitions denotative of some sort of equilibrium in balanced personality ruling out certain extremes. Crazy people are in a rut. Hence, as pathology decreases, so does predictability and perhaps freedom and responsibility may be thought to increase even inversely.
Hence, in some degree any hoped for efficacy of interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry might indeed be contingent, by whatever means, human or computational, upon the promise of ever finer discrimination facilitating scientific testability and refutability.
The limits of future interaction on the
frontiers of advanced automated
Intrinsically unmatchable and beyond help by the assistance of advanced automated network Sociometry alone?
Future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry might conceivably identify problem character types, entrenched headgamers, abusers, Masochists, and also Pathological Liars. and profile for jealous rage, abandonment fear, empathy versus empathic failure, attachment disorders, grounding in reality, honesty versus dishonesty, and so on.
And, again, pathology tends towards one dimensionally predictable behavior, for the most part consistently destructive, but also possibly positive responses under the right circumstances. But are there always such openings?
Indeed, there are those who just don't relate. It's hard enough to help such. But, worse, whatever such people may have going for them, it may prove challenging to find what they may have to offer others. And that would be crucial to combinatorial optimization.
More over, there are those who consistently bite the hand that feeds them, and even kill the goose that lays the golden egg. And others, generally harmless except to themselves, who quite consistently tend continually to shy away from their own best interests. Indeed, the most blatant among the entrenched headgamers are exploitative abusers and self destructive Masochists.
There appear to be those individuals, amoral sociopaths, who have no interest in any social interaction, or any other person, whatsoever, save either as unwitting and/or vulnerable prospective victims to manipulatively and/or forcibly abuse/ terrorize and to exploit, or cohorts to assist and co-validate in such abuse. Confirmed abusers encountering and recognizing any such others showing no potential either as victims or cohorts, mutually threatened and repulsed, only tend simply to shun one another. The Existential Validation of the abuser's jealous rage is simply to get away with harming others deliberately, and nothing else is of much interest. Nor, likewise, would the abuser in all likelihood tend to be very appealing to anyone not deceived or otherwise sucked into whatever the headgame!
And there are also those most extreme and confirmed Masochists. These are individuals who are a) observed to relish and eagerly seek to be abused, and b) appear to display a phobic avoidance response to the prospect of kindness and kindly people. Such an individual really will typically insist upon accepting any positive benefits to them only within some context of abuse, in order to existentially validate, to "prove" that abuse pays off.
Indeed, for the Masochist's Existential Validation is their self-styled martyrdom and an undying hope that their abusing parents, or similar villains, will one day be redeemed, and that a good person underneath the vile exterior will emerge and love them. By paying for attention by enduring abuse, the Masochist, in classic denial, evades a deep phobia of genuine trust and and confrontation with their own trauma, inferiority and jealous rage.
While all manner of behaviors, saintly, monstrous, and otherwise, are often demonstrably, profoundly, and radically environmentally influenced in ordinary people, there also are those severe cases who appear to be nonresponsive, or who's repertoire of observable responses are severely limited, and do not appear to vary regardless of how social stimuli are changed. Perhaps even far milder pathological patterns, yet with the same complete exclusion of any other context for interaction.
In short, it may be said that what we are dealing with are memes (hypothetical units of behavioral and cultural information that are defined as the metaphorical equivalent of genes), however parasitic and even debilitating, evolving for survival to guard their own integrity, not only by confirmation bias and other strong resistance both blatant and devious, against all contradicting memes (experiences or inputs of whatever variety, be they modifying "mutagenic", recombinant memplexing, or refutational and/or reconditioning "hunter-killer" memes), but, which is more directly pertinent to the projected or hoped for future functionality of even the most sophisticated automated Sociometry, also by immediate and ongoing selective social networking to close memetic access to the mind and the life of the memetically "infected" individual.
Memetically, the survival of the ever fitter might conceivably culminate in any fixed behavior pattern that will not so quickly completely disable or destroy the host as to prevent future transmission. Hence, possibly, a profound and unusual difficulty even for interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry in the inculcation and substitution of more desirable behaviors in such difficult cases.
Indeed, the poisonous conditioning of abusive childhood environment in which Mental Illness is very effectively transmitted indeed, may prove nigh indelible in someone who has never really been a whole adult, however highly they may function. For, just as with Psychotherapy or anything else, opportunity for voluntary change in response to new and different social stimuli, however improved, refined or better selected and targeted, is all that even interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry would really be able to offer.
Only the conjecture that some as yet unknown stimulus not only exists in principle but can be discovered and applied to relieve every problem whatsoever, at all contradicts the above truism. But the possibility at all in and of itself only constitutes so much support. And it also remains that not all conceivable stimuli are actually feasible in any possible real life match, but some are fantasy realizable only under delicately controlled and contrived therapeutic conditions if even so.
The most optimistic forecasts regarding interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry are depictions of decidedly nonconfrontational Utopian panacea. But, beyond the effort of critical thinking and rational questions, there is already simply venomous opposition to the very goal of universal embedment of each individual into an optimal immediate social network, linked to the larger social network and the needed and useful resources of society. And have been even since the dawn of man. Because anticompetitive dominance is a tried and true strategy in nature. And this should come as no surprise. After all, what is Fascism except the reaction against modern democracy?
And, in real life, even beyond the need for outreach to help others in trouble, there may be the need for intervention, and to actively resist cliques of bullies who engage not only in harassment, but Relational Bullying and ostracism which basically amounts to ongoing social network deoptimization. Despite the better life and temperament that interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may ever offer such unhappy and maladjusted individuals as behave this way. Indeed, it may well take more time and effort to reach bullies among others.
More over, considering that the more wide spread the
interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network
more common may also be eruptions of jealous rage in response, at least,
initially. Indeed, consider how Gaybashers have come out of the woodwork as Gays came
out of the closet, simply because the Gaybashers are triggered by what hither to
had been publicly repressed. And this is only one example of how new acceptance of others tends to anger
bullies who then act out against it. Why, one only need
rune into any tacky sensational daytime talk show for the most relentless mass
and glorification of jealous rage as a way of life! And so,
perhaps anything along the lines of the
proposal might make for a prudent backup.
Indeed, what can keep inflexibly destructive and self destructive people whom will not be tempted into anything benign, involved in a social context that would provide them with none of the evil they seek (which is bad for them and/or for others), blocked as they will be, from destructive and/or self destructive interaction, with opportunity only for that which they shun and avoid (however desirable from any sane and rationally Hedonistic perspective)? What can ever positively motivate them, and, in the mean time, keep'm coming while their dark compulsions are extinguished, frustrated and hopefully eroded away?
One answer may be in shameless manipulation by way of the very jealousy and the fear of abandonment which drives such destructive and self destructive impulses and compulsions to begin with. The provocation of jealousy by exposure to people who's expressiveness and activity will reliably incite them them to burn with jealousy. And the feeling of simply being left behind and abandoned by others whom they would plainly see progressing. In short, there are many who desperately need role models close to them, to be drawn out of their ruts.
The problem is, however, while there are some who need no more than the example of a peer they admire, envy and fear to loose, in order to progress, there are those for whom this is only part of the solution. Because the first impulse of jealousy and abandonment fear, especially for the worst cases, is ever more flagrant and/or devious increasingly destructive or self destructive behavior. Especially outside of any sort of controlled environment to hold the actingout of jealous rage in check.
And that brings us back to the need for Transactional safeguards for the dual purpose of a) protecting others and b) keeping dangerously entrenched headgamers, abuser, or Masochist irresolvably frustrated, extinguished in protracted Systematic Non Reinforcement, with only positive opportunities and outlets then provided for resolving said frustration. Conceivably, pathologically permissible and destructive jealousy might actually be provoked, thwarted and frustrated. Jealousy, the resentment of others who are less repressed, will turn back into repressed envy, the lust for what others exhibit the courage to express. If all goes well, ordinary needs demanding functional behavior for expression would finally then emerge, when destructive patterns of compensation through hostility are simultaneously frustrated unto behavioral extinction. But all of that would require a carefully controlled Transactional Analysis environment. Indeed, the jealousy and abandonment fear must be so completely engrossing and overwhelming that the subjects will not simply back of and/or bide their time and seek out another social context in which to act out. In this way can such conflicted needs be met, safely. Perhaps.
For precisely such purpose of productive deadlock and crisis under safety and control, another conceivable solution might be the creation of anonymous long distance social networks by interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, matched both for jealousy provocation and for Antithesis, with the safeguards of longitudinal data collection and reapplication, matching for error covariance, suspicious and caution. -And perhaps even expert guidance and a stated mission, and matching for an interest in the undertaking. But, for public safety, except to professional help, local area matching would then have to be deferred and stalled for inflexible abusers, until they show improvement. And Masochists and other entrenched headgamers, harmful primarily to themselves, may also prove unmatchable, locally, at least until they improve. This seems like the best that can be hoped for in such extreme cases, unless interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry actually succeeds in stumbling across each individuals irresistibly liberating "magic stimulus". And who knows? But this all seems like sheer wishful Psychomancy! What is there save for supposition and hope that everyone no matter how screwed up, has any irresistibly liberating "magic stimulus" only waiting for discovery by correlation? Is there even a clear hypothesis at all worked out?
Otherwise, the only viable modality of intervention remaining would still be coercion within a controlled environment, thus well exceeding the scope interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry alone and unaided, as well as the bounds of society and the available resources. Therefore, with all due respect to the Rolling Stones, you can't always get what you need, but if try our patience, you may keep getting what you want in order to remain unhappy.
Another problem is that some of the worst cases will quite consistently tend to retreat in to the fantasy refuge of Pathological Lying, even deprived of the ability to lash out for satisfaction or to self destruct for attention. And in all normal situations, such is, at best, a complete communications deadlock and a waste of time. So conceivably, again, interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry might someday even provide and transition anonymous long distance social networks where in Pathological Lying is acceptable and appreciated with compassion even as an outlet for emotional truth, indeed designed to seduce those who need it into Transference to reach Catharsis, with Pathological Lying redirected into a medium of emotional truth within the safety of fantasy. Such might even be helpful and appreciated for such other non communicating maladaptations as different modes of unintelligible idiosyncratic speech.
Rather than humoring or personality conflict, bypassing, an exchange which is not genuine communication because it lacks sufficient intersubjectivity and does not carry at all the same meanings between the participants, may be optimal and even Zen-like for those who simply need more soothing company until they may ever be ready to actually reach out, however tentatively. For, traditionally, in the Zen, conversation is seen as less important as an exchange, than as a catalyst. Because, though each party can never be entirely on the same proverbial page, fortunately, they need not even be! And so, who knows! Interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may even some day cross reference and catalyze even the Zen!
And failing that, as Thomas Szasz is fond of pointing out, everyone benefits from attention at all one way or another.
As inflexible as such cases may be, there may well be those with only a few more necessary added defenses to effectively thwart even whatever special measures. Worse still, the most dangerous are often highly socially skilled and adept and adapted to movement and function within the social network.
As in Behaviorism among other misguided ideologies of anti-intellectualism, Inductivism is often marshaled in defense of preference towards the Pragmatism or Instrumentalism of Engineering and perhaps Research and Development over investigatory research in pure science and the scientific quest for truth in it's own right, it's own sake, or even for anticipated technological application afterwards. And though rejecting the haphazard intrusion of Behavior Modification, Douglas Wilson has taken the above sentiment even somewhat further in Methodological theoretical elaboration:
Technology is often thought of as an application of Science, However, Technology does not always follow neatly from the application of Science. No, the History of Science and Technology doesn't always describe a one-way street where Science discovers first, and then Technology neatly applies that knowledge. Useful tools and techniques have been invented with almost no scientific knowledge, since prehistoric times. Many important ideas have actually been put into practice, and developed that way, long before ever even being articulated.
Indeed, often it has been the
Technology that opens the way for scientific discovery. Fire is a
prime example, it's usage long preceding the first Discordian
analogies of Heraclitus, let alone any modern
oxidation. Because fire was used without any
chemistry. And the state of the art
knowledge of Physics had long
been practical rather than formal, as materially embodied,
experimentally learned, and Memetically encoded and transmitted
all in the crafting and the utility of the wheel.
Likewise has it been through history with better governments, legal systems, education, and many other social institutions embodying a social technology expressing a practice of civic science in application, not formulated and formalized until much later. Indeed, unlike Philosophical idealizations of virtuous and harmonious life, many of the real principles behind the best practical and pragmatic governance of the Ancient Greeks where never explicitly stated in any Realist and even down right cynical Social and Philosophical literature until historical research and rediscovery in the Renaissance, in turn giving rise to the Social Contract Theories of the Enlightenment.
And the Rationalistic ideals of the Enlightenment live on, particularly the hope that someday social technology may well be no more than the application of Social Science, upon which our social institutions may then be fastidiously founded upon. Alas, currently what we don't know about society appears to vastly exceed what we do know.
Worse still, most of our current haphazard disastrously inefficient and so blatantly mismanaged government, legal system, schools, and other social institutions are bereft of any minimum of Sociology, let alone the full measure of knowledge and skill readily available and currently practiced. For, alas, policy tends to be the last concern of Politics, incompetence is monumental and our legislators rend to be scientifically and technologically illiterate! Only corruption at all holds the system together, and only the political technology of the democratic form barely alleviates such pressures by which it should all otherwise collapse under it's own weight!
Not that we are as yet at any point where any social technology is the straight forward application of any well-understood Social Science. Someday social technology may well be no more than the application of Social Science, upon which our social institutions may then be fastidiously founded upon. Alas, currently what we don't know about society appears to vastly exceed what we do know.
But we may hope that a new instance of social technology such as interaction as one day facilitated on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may lead the advance of Social Science, not merely as a distinct research initiative, but in the evolution of society, as with Ancient Greek statecraft in practice embodying the gain and growth of a practical knowledge analogously to the Physics of the wheel, or as the spark for unprecedented new social patterns to be investigated, like unto the long unknown physical information manifest in fire, and likewise tamed by an uncomprehending humanity.
However Epistemologically supportable from the History of Science is the model of relative incomprehension in technological rather than scientific progress, it remains unclear Methodologically how supportable or reliable particular success or failure predictions might ever thence accrue. Any support for such predictions, no less than explanations for the results should any such predictions ever be borne out, can still only be pursued scientifically, Hypothetico Deductively.
But some predict progress in the art of successful prediction without explanatory support, at the vanguard of Technology preceding Science. Specifically, computational brute force used to uncover obscure correlations and test them with attempted prognosis. Interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may conceivably some day make the most of the surprising and even accurate predictions that Artificial Intelligence has been able to draw from poorly understood correlations, and pushing this tool to whatever it's limits. After all, we should expect lurking within the Gestalt, more complex interrelations than we yet understand. And the first indication thereof, as with many a Scientific discovery, may be anomalous correlations, at all consistent and therefore predictable, thus calling for new explanatory hypothesis that may well be longer in coming. And hopeful confidence may arise from knowledge and experience of what the constituent Sociologically and Psychologically applied data processing technologies can do, of encouraging research and experimentation, even short of such real scientific understanding of how and why which hopefully may accrue in the fullness of time. For such appears to be the Technologists' credo of Epistemology of the unknown, in practice, and the well spring of hope for visionaries the likes of Douglas Wilson.
And this already raises serious problems of Scientific Method. Most of all, that the sheerest possibility does not equal to probability or preponderant evidence, only initial hypothesis, if that. After all, a purely engineering challenge begins from that which is well known. And masking experimentation under Research and Development does not change any of this. And so, in designing any properly rigorous and precise experiments, why not also seek to test the particular contrary hypotheses or exceptions already exposited, as well? That is why Scientific experiments require a range of control groups, for the discriminating precision to rule out contrary or competing viable hypotheses. After all, such much is how Interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry is hoped to become more Scientific and testable than as currently in Psychodynamics. To properly define a relevant experiment so as to adequately test an hypothesis to exclusion of contrary hypotheses, still requires a full range of test and control groups, including, for interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, those most challenging and resistant character types. Why abandon the Scientific quest for truth (correspondence to reality in assertions), unless one lives in denial, afraid to know?
Until conclusive evidence, the mass of any supporting evidence especially for the most extreme and optimistic claims of Douglas Wilson at all is embodied only in the work of Douglas Wilson and as yet remain in his private possession. And so, much remains unclear for the rest of us.
In his own concept of sophisticated Sociometric futurism, CASA, his acronym for: Computer Assisted Social Activity, Douglas Wilson stand firm in the Instrumentalist position of traditional cybernetics, challenging even of the very evidentiary role of explanation in Science. And this is problematical, because, how can anything be testable without any (explanatory) hypothesis to test? The Instrumentalist answer is that of R&D, that tests are not for the viability of hypotheses, but rather simply for practical results. However, the problem with that is of Adductive Validation, as in Fortune Telling, wherein one continues to build upon encouraging results without backwards error checking, easily veering off far astray and never suspecting. And exactly this has been a chronic difficulty in Cybernetic research. With no idea what they are doing, apparent successes are often wild goose chases dragged out by Adductive Validation, as when a neural net learned not how to recognize the difference between empty forests and forests full of camouflaged tanks, but only how to tell bright days from cloudy ones, in photographs provided, because the means for proper Scientific error checking are simply not provided for.
This is why the most glaring deficiency with traditional Cybernetics has been that it amounts to sheer Cyber-Behaviorism! Because only the input and output are known, but never the the activity inside the neural net itself. And there are dissidents within the field of Artificial Intelligence espousing systems capable of at least monitoring and recording their own internal state, so that researchers would have more to go on.
But can even this be enough?
With neither the scientists nor their neural nets having any idea what to look for, finding it takes that much more luck. The central problem is that of Pattern Recognition, which is really pattern creation (as demonstrated by Feature Integration Theory's vindication of Gestalt). Correlations drawn in fantasy must then be tested against reality. For the aim of Science is knowledge of truth, truth defined as correspondence to Reality, not just practical results, whatever that actually means. And this is the Hypothetico Deductive Method.
But, after all, the Hypothetico Deductive Method is essentially a democratic value system demanding the free and open contest of competing viable hypotheses, even to that of the Hypothetico Deductive Method itself. What, then, are the competing viable hypotheses to the Hypothetico Deductive Method itself? One such may be the Zen. But central hypothesis to Zen seems to be more as to questions of priorities and life style, possibly in competition with any others, including those of Scientific curiosity. Zen appears to be more of a competing value system than a competing Epistemological Methodological and Ontological hypothesis.Indeed, Zen tends to define knowledge at all, according to it's importance within Zen priorities, entirely.
Another competing viable hypotheses to the Hypothetico Deductive Method itself is Douglas Wilson's bold endeavor to rehabilitate Inductivism, an important and separate concern deserving of explicit exposition and treatment.
"Perhaps there are some areas of science that inductivism fits, and others that it does not. [...] the nature of inductivism depends upon what one takes induction, as a method of reasoning, to consist in. Standard critiques of inductivism take the induction involved to be induction by simple enumeration. It certainly is pretty clear that this pattern of reasoning on its own is too impoverished to constitute the main process of scientific thinking. Not everyone thinks of induction as consisting solely in the pattern of inference by enumerative induction. Not surprisingly, the more relaxed one is about what can count as inductive reasoning, the more plausible inductivism becomes. More plausible, but also less distinctive as a methodological position. Some writers have suggested that we should call any inference to the best explanation an induction. If we do that, then I suppose we are all inductivists. But it is questionable whether we should allow that degree of latitude to inductive inference. Since there is quite widespread disagreement over what the criteria for a good explanation are, there is a danger that taking inductive inference to be inference-to-the-best-explanation may only result in making it unclear what is and what is not a warranted inductive inference." - INDUCTIVISM AND ITS DEFECTS
And among the worst practiced abuses of Inductivism, quite aside from Epistemology, beware the path to underhanded consensus manipulation, revamped in high tech concealing low guile.
Conceivably, future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may one day come into play bolstering the one revolutionary poorly understood tool, Psychology and Psychotherapy, by the use of a newer and even more poorly understood revolutionary tool, Cybernetics and Artificial Intelligence. And Artificial Intelligence research has been deeply entrenched in Neural Net experimentation, electronic imitations of the brain, from which only input and output can be recorded, but not their mysterious internal operation. But then, revolutionary tools are often poorly understood especially by those who most rely upon them. And this is never without detriment to the practical result, Pragmatism be damned. It remains folly to cavalierly dismiss the goal of Science which is the pursuit of truth.
One thing, however, that is actually if only generally understood at all about this new way of Heuristic Computing, is the utilization of brain-like imperfect weak correlations, even logical fallacies of weak induction typical of various blithe overextension of argument by analogy, fallacies in which the connection between whatever premi/praemissa and conclusions are not strong enough to support said conclusion, conclusions that are not necessarily but only somewhat and even very slightly possible and suggested from any given premise, as cumulative circumstantial evidence. Unlike any living brain, computers can uncomprehendingly process volumes of just such weak correlations that agree and that together nevertheless make for too much of a coincidence to ignore, even despite falling short of logical necessity.
This involves the assignment of probability "weights", which, as yet, makes no concrete sense, except as an estimate, however arbitrary, of our own subjective certainty and uncertainty, called measurement uncertainty (which, indeed, makes far better sense from a stand point of NeuroScience), unless one accepts the objective reality of probability (and operative somehow in the Macro not just the Quantum universe, yet!) whatever that means. But all this is another question entirely.
One way or another, interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, routinely discover multiple correlations that no individual can even guess at unaided. But at least unlike trafitional Cybernetics, the technology can be designed to record by what steps conclusions are reached, even if not precisely how probability weights are reassigned, from continual feedback. Evolutionary Computing, by trial and error, gathering longitudinal data, thus selecting the most successful responses even without gaining understanding of the problem, accrues new riddles with every success. And yet this may even be promising.
And so, we may even keep alive the hope even for the most inflexible and non responsive cases, thought intrinsically unmatchable for any helpful purpose, that even the most unresponsive and depressingly consistent people may only be waiting for the right social stimuli, not only beyond their reach but our imagination, which may yet be discovered by interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry,. Some as yet untried "magic stimulus" to yield some new and beneficial response.
Who knows? Perhaps, one day, almost no one will be unredeemable by interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry living up to the immortal advertising slogan of Philip Kindred Dick, "What God Promises, we deliver!"
But there may be yet more to consider:
The most optimistic assumption for interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, seems to be that there will always be some vector to come at any thorny issue sideways, by meeting some other need at the root of the problem, such that the contacts and social stimuli facilitated by interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, are to be attractive and therefore effective. Even by way of evolutionary computing, even such that we may never understand quite how the solutions work. But can that always be the case? Is that always even intrinsically possible?
Much as those Psychopharmacological NeuroScientific Reductionist Neo-Buddhists may decry the Ecclesiastical vanity of any such snares of the Ego, and advocate, rather, a future of better living and perfection through Utopian NeuroChemistry instead, nevertheless no human desire or illusion endures as more cherished and powerful than fulfillment of the yearning for sympathy and understanding. But not always. Not for a person in denial, hiding from themselves, ambivalent even and especially at the prospect of understanding with an unacceptable entailment of honest self knowledge. Indeed, such will tend only to accept the unearned pity that is dishonest Existential Validation.
Interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, conceivably may, at least initially, be programmed to seek the elimination of drama from life by selecting best interpersonal influences towards desired outcomes for all. Or can the human condition ever be made that simple? What if truthfulness hurts? Can freedom then ever be attainable without that cost or without that willful choice?
Perhaps the worst practiced abuses of Inductivism, quite aside from Epistemology, beware the path to underhanded consensus manipulation, revamped in high tech concealing low guile. Indeed, interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may be hoped to dispel all such chicanery. And so, can truth best be served by steering certain people out of contact with one another as incompatible? Would that really be that much more more noble than the old chemical straightjacket? For as George Orwell put it, liberty, if it means anything, is the freedom to tell others that which they do not want to hear. In other words, the right to clear the air with disruptive, flagrant and incompatible insensitivity, the very catch-all and vague cardinal sin of intolerant and oppressive Political Correctness.
So, what is to become of real life character development, growth, which often entails real life dramatic conflict at the very least on on the level of creative tension as that is sometimes called, in order to reach of any sort of real happy or hopeful ending? Is interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, constantly readjusting by recompiling longitudinal data, to end up matching for those criterion as well? Even by interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, can we, indeed, always get we want? Or, like the Rolling Stones sing it, if we try some times, we might just find, we get what we need? Might interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry actually choreograph drama, in the true sense as opposed to the melodrama of headgames, but for real life?
Yes, indeed, what really defines nurture in life? What is compatibility? And what would it really be like? Are the liberating social stimuli, if and when they may ever be possible, predictable, and reproducible repeatable and on demand, all sweetness and light, just the way that certain insecure passive, selfish and uncaring types, so shockingly lacking in values and unwilling to relate, fantasize them to always be? Not everything of real abiding value that passes between people is all sweetness and light. Can, or indeed, should it ever be so? At least given that the vast majority of people still do have their personal issues and inner demons to confront.
Therapy is not the first social interaction serve in coping with tragedy, after all. Most everyone wants sympathy and understanding, and may benefit greatly therefrom. What some might not want, however, is responsibility. Empathy for others, that calls upon the individual to be responsible, is a weak and buried impulse in the sullen and self centered, lacking in character and seeking to locate their own faults anywhere else but in themselves. And these number among those pining the most for more compatible matches to other people, who are, in actuality, incompatible with others because they are ambivalent and hence incompatible even with themselves, much less others. For example, those most remote, professing the quest for true love. In a nut shell, the most entrenched maladies of deeply seated hypocrisy.
No matter that courage may even derive from joy and strength from thriving and nurture rather than Nietzschean adversity, yet it has even been observed that character growth manifests only from the experience of regret that may even require facing it and coming to grips. If that be true, then it takes character in order to gain character. And if that where so, how would any one have any? Perhaps it's some sort of emotional boot-strap operation, an arduous and painful stretch. nevertheless, perhaps, under the right "near perfect" circumstance, everyone is to find themselves amenable. Or else, just maybe, even given the optimal best opportunity, it may still take free choice, resolve even sometimes against the grain, more than any any seduction of Positive Transference sliding along any perfect and utterly dreamlike initiativeless path of least resistance, no matter how consummately well charted and navigated by technological miracle.
Can technological advance actually render character redundant and obsolete? Character as manifest in Scientific integrity demands such important and serious questions not be taken lightly. But it has been tried before, particularly in the history of Scientific Method:
Science began to seek investigative procedures, Epistemological Methodology, that do not depend upon character ever since confronting the bull-headed failure of religion to build character reliably. But to no avail. Because Hypothetico Deduction, the last viable human Epistemological Methodology, relies entirely on intellectual integrity and honesty.
Though some rebuke what they see as the Moral Relativism entailed, and perhaps not without justice, the great advance in state of the art of modern Psychotherapy over Religious Salvation is to do so much more to fit the treatment to the patient, than to force the other way around as Religion particularly and Moralism in general are chronically wont. And interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may be hoped to fit the end user better than ever before. But, nevertheless, might there yet remain important limitations intrinsic to reality? If so, then there may still remain issues of character, no less in lives we lead than in Science.
And, for the most deeply disturbed, frightened and mistrustful, the seductive Positive Transference (traditional to Psychoanalysis and the whole of Psychotherapy which has it's roots therein), even if the defenses of Negative Transference are overcome, has always depended upon the professional relationship and the illusion, the extreme non threatening and undemanding role of the analyst or therapist as exemplified by TVs Mr. Rogers and is no less unreal and manufactured. But even this is often not enough. How is any real relationship, no matter how consummately matched, ever to replace or surpass Positive Transference for the worst cases? Again, Douglas Wilson's confident reply remains that this will come about, all as smooth as silk, by the input and computational correlation of factors we do not know and will not even understand afterwards!
The limits of Psychological and Psychotherapeutic guess work would be transcended by more precise details that we don't have, perhaps won't grasp or need to when we have them, but must, nevertheless, exist. Hope for even seemingly miraculous interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may help run the world better and more smoothly us what Douglas Wilson extols in his conception of a Utopia in which there is to be no inconvenient and expendable people who do not abide by some meticulously restrictive social contract! Only the better pursuit of happiness for each and all. But even best optimal facilitation of the pursuit of happiness may still only be part of what would actually be required.
The appropriateness of grief?
“I shall not declare: never lament; for not all tears are an evil.” — Gandalf
To curtail the most one sided exploitation, the moral inhibition of Empathy already encourages and facilitates all manner of "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" defensive coercion, in learned sensitivity, conduct, custom and pressure of moral suasion, not to mention enforcement of the law. And bearing that in mind, do we really want to live in a world where no one ever feels put upon? And what sort of a society would that be? Indeed, is mythic flimflam of pure and utterly noncommittal collective Not-Doing fobbed of as purported spontaneous collaboration and to the exclusion of all else, remotely feasible or even desirable?
Real life is full of disappointments, loss, and inconveniences. Happiness is not to be found in denial, escape from suffering and adversity that must instead be confronted head-on, without being overwhelmed. For not in any strategy of denial or resignation, but only by premise in the appropriateness of grief to both identity and situation, that inspires the will to fight back, is any moderation of the self-loathing so yearning for an end to suffering by an end to self in eventual death. Indeed, a rich and meaningful life unfolds replete with the full range of contrasting emotions.
Do people want only to avoid the emotion of sadness, or don't we actually desire to prevent and to avoid actual misfortune and even death? Pain which persists until cause is removed and injury healed, may be valued as useful, even howsoever aversive, as often highly beneficial and meaningful motivation. For even though nowadays many threats are psychological rather than physical, the same primitive impulse to destroy the threat yet arises. And the ability to quickly discern friend from foe is essential to survival because mistaking either can be deadly. Disgust motivates the avoidance of all that which is toxic and corruptive. Contempt distances one from the unworthy. Suffering mobilizes escape from harm while pity thereof raises alarm and succor. Or will this all be better managed for us in lives better navigated by advanced automated network Sociometry? And what of regret of that which cannot be changed? Life is suffering. And that just won't do. Most of life's struggle is, indeed, flagrantly needless and tragic. Might it not, however, still be not only inevitable and indispensable but even desirable and crucial to inculcate such inner struggle, and even it's interpersonal manifestation, even friction, as is essential to growth and to character development? Innocence being rare and irretrievable as it is. And has not every society that has endured depended on tribulations of personal growth, one way or another? Might it not also be prudent to include such parameters in the design of interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry? But, and here's the rub, might that not sometimes run against personal preference? After all, how enticing is regret? And thus, would there be any point in such an offering? Only sympathy that sooths regret can help make facing regret at all more attractive. Understanding is what those who suffer often want the most. Indeed, in the words of Simone Weil: "The malheureux need nothing else in this world but men capable of paying attention to them." But we have already seen how complicated even such a simple thing becomes. And how even so clear a free choice becomes obscured. One must ignore human nature and Psychology entirely not to anticipate difficulties. After all, will every proverbial horse brought to the metaphorical water drink, even when it tastes medicinal, not only when it runs sweet and clear? Not without the thirst and ambition that takes, in the individual. That which we call, in our limited understanding, character growth out from regret, not fleeing from it. Not conflict aversion or passive aggression. Among such may therefore remain if not unmatchable, challenging, to say the least. What if character growth out from regret, just isn't tempting?
Medicine may soon be capable of selective removal or suppression of memories, on demand. Amnesia, if it could only be had, would spare one from the pain of loss, but memories may be all one has left of any past happiness! And death, the end of consciousness, is bereft even of thought at all. Any wish for death, immediate or eventual, or perhaps instead merely if not for amnesia, then sublime apathy, is sheer escapism, the yearning to end suffering which is natural. But the most radical pain management strategy of whatever mode of annihilation cannot be the preferred solution, despite the manifest efficiency and availability as ever the craven cynics are so quick to point out. In truth, what is attendant upon the appropriateness of grief, suffering that persists with whatever the injurious cause thereof, therefore valued as useful, even howsoever aversive, as often highly beneficial and meaningful motivation, is the impulse of expression, a desire no less that such relief cannot actually be called pleasurable. That and the yearning for understanding. There is no self salvation, no dignified exit. Barring intolerable suffering with no hope to give any reasonable point in delaying the inevitable, suicide only comes from dispirited self pity filling that void of yearned for understanding. And even the latter case of the worst suffering, may nevertheless actually be the more motivated by the sense of isolation because no one seems to comprehend their extreme plight, than by the relief from any other adversity. Actually, death may often be a release more for onlookers who really can't be bothered, those malignant angels of death. For in the words of Simone Weil: “Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.”
Research where in actual chemical disinhibition, rather than repressive stabilization, is applied, even for particularly intractable patients, to lower their defenses but only during the actual Psychotherapy of one kind or another, has been routinely curtailed by the authorities phobic of the Drug Culture. Because, any drug just as it shows the first glimmer of promise in therapeutic disinhibition during sessions of treatment, quickly also becomes popular on the street for much the same transient liberation of affect. Therefore any such therapeutic prospect may remain difficult to evaluate.
In contrast, today's over lucrative and over promoted primitive suppressant chemical straightjackets are touted by Psychopharmacological Neurochemical Reductionism more often than not predicated upon dehumanizing invalidation, by simply ignoring environmental factors and how emotions are always naturally reflected Neurochemically, instead of first investigating to properly rule it out, all so as to simply jump to the causally reverse conclusion, despite that such is so obviously the exception, not to mention, typically fairly blatant, as in puberty and menopause!
Even such alternative approaches as of treating malnutrition as any sort of contributing cause to depression, often likewise seemingly miss the very question of how, contrawise, affect and temperament might actually influence, for example, Omega-3 fatty acid production, digestion and uptake in the body.
Of course, neurochemistry is bound to reflect changing emotion. But there are also clear special cases of the reverse, of emotion instead subordinate to neurochenical fluctuation, as for examples: puberty and menopause. Hence, arguing from sheer stubborn lack of imagination and circuitous reasoning, simply ignoring rather than howsoever investigatively eliminating all that is well known applicably regarding traumatic and environmental causation, springs forth the myth of endogeny, of congenital neurochemically spontaneous anxiety or even Existential depression, among other chronic cognitive or emotional states, together with the Stress Vulnerability Model of Psychiatric Disorders being flawed only in how what is called: biological vulnerability is, again, no determinant on it's own, being, of course, actually universal and even generally uniform in the human condition. Indeed, clearly the determinant is nurture, not nature or: nature via nurture [Matt Ridley]. Obviously, neurologucal heredity, biological evolved behavioral genetic nature, only and fairly consistently enables the Empirical capacities for learning by encoding from the Phenomena, from experience, from nurture, to begin with. Experience is also now understood to trigger epigenetic change in genetic expression. Fraudulent obfuscation and denial to the contrary on either count, are only the current preferred high powered junk science marketing tactic of the Psychopharmacolical industry, pandering to compassion burn out and desperation, "soullessly" mocking and trivializing such cherished illusions as the yearning for understanding and with them all Philosophically meaningful values arising from the deep wellsprings of human emotional needs. Whereas it used to be that when a patient complained of anxiety out of the blue with no trigger, administering the old talking cure, the Therapist would gently ask the patient what they just happened to be thinking of at the time, however supposedly unconnected to whatever mysterious attacks from out of the blue, and guide them past their denial into catharsis and insight. Instead, disregarding the mind still leaves the physical brain, therefore Behaviorism is routinely called into service in standing support of neurochemical Reductionism along with the myth of endogeny, comprising the long refuted blanket rationale for so often reckless psychopharmacology.
Indeed, the opposite approach entirely, that we may some day be truly be free of all deep regret and character issues, a hope which is of great appeal to those who have the hardest inner lives and demand everything easiest, is the Utopian vision of better living and perfection through the Utopian and subtle Psychopharmacology of the future as propounded and prognosticated by the Hedonistic Imperative website. Because, in all fairness, real Futurism predicts greater technological advance than ''Brave New World' Aldous Huxley' perhaps shallow Science Fiction dystopia of repressive Behaviorist Psychopharmacological blunders and nightmares of coercive Borg consensus, because the nanotechnology drugs of the future, sooner than we think, may well be able to really change mind and mood! To actually improve function and even induce happiness. And without side effects as such. In short, because Soma is greasy kid's stuff! And so, it may be argued, that with better living through chemistry, there is to be no need either for revolution from within or in the outside world. Indeed: "There is an eerie confluence between what Prozac does and what society demands." After all, the personality is a complex whole. Thus how can even the smallest and most artful change, in order to have it's cascade of profound strategic effect, ever be anything less that intrusive distortion by definition? The questions and challenges of Pathology have long overshadowed Positive Psychology and definition of wellness and the essential nature and definition of true integrity which may not be so easily extricable from the problems of unhappy and bizarre maladaptive rigid inflexibility.
The mechanics of character and the human condition may indicate the effective limitations even of interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, no less than they do of Religion and Psychotherapy, and for that matter, why any future perfected Psychopharmacology, as advocated by the Hedonistic Imperative website, must be intrusive by definition the more so should it ever succeed, even given advanced progress and an experienced state of the art minimizing unforeseen and unintended consequences and no matter how economically the new technology tweaks the personality (indeed, because of that!), and with all due respect to that vision. Because some part of human rationalization pursuant whereof one might balk from actually tampering with the fundamental realities of our existence, may be in any part constituent from our values beginning with meaningful sense of self and survival instinct.
Self-alienated psychotics tend more often than being actually delusional about the world around them, are nevertheless strangely disoriented by a real lack of values! This is because of the nature of the psychosis, an intellectualized defense, shunning the body and emotions that are the biological wellspring of human values. The psychotic evades all investigation of uncomfortable aspects of reality relating to the abnormality of the way they function, specifically how, one way or another, the psychotic typically attempts all manner of intellectualized substitution for deep personal motivation and value, whether by projection onto the outside world, systems of formal rules and norms, symbolic substitution and fetish, or by any other conceivable rationalizing scheme or equivocation.
And therefore, a psychotic can be quite surprised to consider how by contrast, I myself, like may other people, have suffered long and painful complicated grief, yet I never experienced any of it as something alien to my being to be somehow excoriated and expunged. Even at my most vulnerable and helpless, I just don't hate myself that way.
But there is nothing reasonable or practical about any of this, either. -Only the most confounding of values, the appropriateness of grief, in whatever degree and kind, perhaps even unto self pity. After all. if, for example, one experience significant misfortune, loss or bereavement, that will bring sadness. And in that case, would you rather with a snap of the fingers, banish all entirely subjective experience of sadness, or would you rather save or restore whatever loss?
After all, one way or another, people are unhappy for their own individual good reasons that cry out to be addressed. Then people can be happy and thrive when their needs towards happiness are met. And so, are not such all worthy values to strive for? Sadness has even been thought of as a significant state of mind that offers meaningful moral guidance or inspiration. Or can all such be better simply ignored, chemically or otherwise? Indeed if one fine day, psychoactive medication ever really did work properly, would that ever constitute anything at all more or less than Nihilistic value destruction and assault upon identity, thereby robbing us of our true voices and life of meaning?
But failing all effort to remedy or avert misfortune, what is the point of crying? And what is the point of consoling the bereaved? Is it rational for the suffering to reach out for comfort and solace? No, surely it is not. What then is the value thereof? How can the value be known? Indeed, what is the value of even being human? In the end, it still comes down to perception of self and survival instinct.
Values are psychological, individual and cultural, arising from the motivation of biological imperative. And the tension they promote is a sign of life. The choice before the individual remains between valuing values or Nihilistic value destruction. And no one is whole without values.
Hence, pursuit even of optimum of happiness on the one hand, and pining for ecstasy on the other, inevitably must run at cross purpose.
Even the very definition of suffering becomes profoundly different, depending whether one pursues happiness or pines for ecstasy.
Pursuit of happiness suffers in unhappiness, whereas in the pining for ecstasy, every twinge brings despair and latter day salvation anxiety at the imperfection of life. Only pursuit of happiness can embrace the optimism of progress.
Conceivably, all this may be radically changed by future advanced neuro-technology. But as yet we must continue abiding in the here and now and in the human condition. Indeed, anyone very personally invested in the prospect, might become significantly happier indeed to partake of any engrossing involvement in advancing research and development into such passionate interest, even without ever becoming a human guinea pig. -that latter is not the true frustration, here.
In any case, for only one among many possible examples of strategies or modes of actual intervention into objectively real external circumstances, interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry alone, by contrast, is to be drug free entirely, and is to improve life as defined as that which is experienced, real interaction, as stimuli, rather than directly and intrusively enhancing the mind that experiences. Nevertheless, just the advocates of neuropharmacological Utopia extol the complete elimination of what they perceive as pointless suffering in the mind, likewise it may be argued from the most optimistic position, that with interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, there would be no need either for need for conflict on any level, neither inner effort of character nor struggle with the outside world. And so, we return, again, to the question of exactly what eerie confluence, then, do we imagine? Indeed, while the hope for progress in development in the most refine conceivable interaction on the frontiers of the most advanced automated network Sociometry, is no less towards artful subtlety, nevertheless, must not interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry remain heir to at similar fundamental limitations and ethical questions than bio-Utopia?
Imagine some latter day bomb throwing Anarchist, instead, bringing online some sort of disguised evil psychotherapist program designed to subtly encourage violent crime, equipped with artificial intelligence to learn what sort of prompts seem to work most effectively. For that matter, matching people to egg one another on in the worst behaviors is far easier, indeed so difficult to prevent, than making desirable matches. Imagine Terrorists matching together their most dangerous psychos for co-validation and greater mayhem! Indeed, here is a parody (I hope!) warning of the abuse of online resources in the perpetuation of sinister cause. But then, there are already USENET newsgroups as bad and worse...
After all, there are already thriving communities of spite, not just cutting edge Web-tech in the dark service of ubiquitous Neo Nazis and various and sundry other legions of angry kooks, but forums of revenge, cyber-vandalism and, of course, flaming. All swords are two edged, and every tool is only as good or evil as the hand that raises it to action. Any optimistically forecast intrinsic goodness of Interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry must ever depend upon the seduction and neutralization of dangerous tensions. But sheer human perversity has by far the decided head start.
We seek out those we can relate to and then we screen for trust and reliability. And that the idea even of shared tasks may help as a vehicle to discover how we relate to one another and also to better focus the otherwise possibly unmanageably broad problem of reliability.
To recapitulate, the process of the brain imitated in Cybernetics by the fabrication Neural Nets, is believed to begin from circumstantial evidence of sensory input, subject to weak correlation, triggering a cascade down the path ways of the brain, in which each neuron in turn switches one way or another, choosing a decision. And the outcome is majority rule, for opinion, reaction, or even perception itself. But what does this mean, unless it's completely arbitrary?
Of course, the form of the brain is not quite arbitrary, but a product of evolution, and, there fore, an experimental mechanism for survival. But that is no explanation of what happens, or why it works! And there are those who are satisfied with whatever works, never mind how or why, at least for now. In the mean time, however, the only known guiding principle for weak correlation remains probability weighting, whatever that is or however that is done.
It's rather the same mess as Quantum Mechanics, and in the macro universe, yet! The first question is, what is probability? Probability, it stands to reason, is either zero or one hundred percent, given perfect knowledge, which, of course, is thermodynamically impossible. Thus, probability is merely measurement uncertainty, inevitable under the Physics of Fisher Information. Alas, that much common sense is rejected under the claim that probability is objectively real, and not just of future outcomes, but of current conditions to begin with! But the begged question then remains unanswered, what is probability? And how are probability weights assigned, except from imperfect knowledge? And even then, how? This is by no means clear.
The only good news is the Pragmatic defense that computers excel in adjusting probability weights by trial and error. And that is what Neural Nets, natural or artificial, do.
And so, once understood, in totality as in generality, any cognitive process can only be about refining conjecture by testing. So much for Inductivism.
Indeed, another complication is is the notorious obliviousness of AI to Biased Sample, if anything even more so than any other valid conclusion from dubious premi.
So much for all the questions Douglas Wilson believes that one should not ask about the concept, the trend, the proposal that he calls CASA for Computer Assisted Social Interaction. For there is not only room but, fortunately, also means for improvement:
Intelligent question-answering programs already implemented, do more than simply retrieve raw data; they make deductive inferences in order to return all valid responses and report logical inconsistencies, possibly even upon input. Indeed, further information is requested from the user should a question asked be discovered to be ambiguous.
If whatever advanced automated network
Sociometryy is to match new problems to previous cases and all of their characteristics, from a growing and continually revised longitudinal database, for the purpose of then adapting
successful solutions from the past to current
offering recuperations in compatibly matching users to one another, and also to written advice and recorded prior experience of others,
then to that extent, future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated
Sociometry is already conceived of as cased based rather than merely rules based.
However, CBR data bases also retain explanation of results, and, so, seek to advance learning in some true sense. And this has been crucial to it's progress and success, in the field and on the market, while other approaches still founder in the lab. In short, CBR as applied to software is claimed to be an actual conjecture-engine. Science, not merely Technology. Seeking explanation, thus rejecting sophisticated Obscurantism.
Indeed, the CBR software is supposed to 'understand' new problems in context, by soliciting such input. Indeed, prior states
-both current environmental and prior developmental, in application to problems
pertaining to human behavior- may be utilized to explain new and reoccurring features of problems.
in short, causes are also sought to explain behaviors, and reasoning decisions in particular.
CASA for Computer Assisted Social Interaction, as conceived by Douglas Wilson, is also to seek to correlate prior data with new data, but not in an explanatory fashion. Explanatory elegance and Hypothetico-Deductive Method having been rejected by Douglas Wilson as inessential to predictive power in Inductivist Research and Development. Because, (to repeat) from the standpoint of Technological Pragmatism, understanding can wait for Science to catch up, later. And, after all, computers are facile in even the most unwieldy calculations. Though, perhaps if CBR can obtain elegance in reasoning, might that not translate, after all, into more efficient code to reduce the load on the CPU?
First of all, perhaps CBR can redeploy as an improved filter for the Creativity Machine's vaunted random creativity. But more saliently, the versatile variation of which the Creativity Machine is capable, might better enable the strategic variance in questionnaires and even thereby the modifying and testing new theories, all autonomously, even beyond just building associations over time as do conventional neural nets.
IEI's Patented Creativity Machine Paradigm purports to be a quantum leap in electronic mimicry of the conjecturality of the living neural system functionality, forever antiquating brute force computing and quaint notions of Inductivism unaided. To maximize opportunity, it is most sagacious to bring about the convergence of new technologies by widening the scope of knowledge referenced in development, as recommended in TRIZ.
The mechanics of character and the human condition may indicate the limitations of future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry no less than they do of Religion and Psychotherapy.
It should be admitted, of course, that given how correlation is fallible in the first place (Pattern Recognition being, in fact, only pattern creation, as demonstrated by Feature Integration Theory's vindication of Gestalt), explanation only advances even further into conjecture.
But conjecture is, after all, the preferred domain of Science. And for good reason. While the mysterious in Cybernetics has tended to be a stumbling block to progress, not a Promethean boon like fire and the wheel. Because, computers being so idiotic, it still all comes down to how precisely the programmers define the problems. Or in Cybernetics, how well they filter the extraneous from data sets compared. As when the computer may learn to distinguish a bright day from a cloudy day, instead of, as intended, woods filled with or empty of camouflaged vehicles. Just for one example of a problem which can be daunting. Thus, if, instead, future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry is to be equipped to explain it's decisions along with the automated monitoring and record of internal state missing in more traditional Cybernetics, to log the changes in it's inner state, then any ongoing tweaking advanced automated network Sociometry may be that much better guided, efficient, edifying, and more fruitful, benefiting from error checking crucial to Scientific Method as crucial safeguard from Adductive Validation, perhaps to become only the more of a Methodological issue as AI advances towards true cognition..
When we don't know what computers are doing, and how, then how are we ever know that they are doing what we want them to? Why, from the desirable results, of course. That is, if the desires be simple, as they always are in those successful cut and dry Evolutionary Computing proof of concept experiments. Not nigh unfathomably complex, as are those to be dealt with in the course of future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry. Making human sense of longitudinal data may still prove challenging, in case whatever software's own uncomprehending success criteria ever run however subtly awry, never mind sheer human perversity.
And accepting the Scientific need for explanation still seems the first step for predicting, admitting, and grappling with the most ultimately rigid human problems, even regarding future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated Sociometry. Even acknowledging the intriguing prospect that future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may discover correlation and matching mysterious solutions inconceivable to the unaided human mind, we might still be better off at least trying to recognize and understand whenever should that occur.
And, from a business standpoint, the more extreme and precise the definition of character types beyond help by future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry, the stronger the support for claims of a that much broader market waiting to be tapped.
And, while future interaction on the frontiers of advanced automated network Sociometry may be frightening enough to some, never mind CliqueBusters by far more so, aggressive appeal for support, among those most progressive, serious, interested, curious, visionary, compatible and helpful to the advancement of advanced automated network Sociometry, is more important than cravenly avoiding offending anyone at all, even those most conservative and already least interested or even most opposed. Market dominance is more often the prize seized by the first who can do it well enough, rather than falling to the one who eventually does it best. Thus Perfectionism is irrelevant to the true Pragmatists, the Entrepreneurs. And the real opportunity may yet survive fallibility and imperfection. However, lost opportunity, in wait for perfection and hiding from criticism, is less easily recoverable. (And that is cause for regret, hence growth and maturation of character or else the failure all thereof.)
Copyright © 2000-2013 Aaron Agassi
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