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CALResCo Complexity Writings

Thematic Introductions Alternative Dimensions Book Reviews Research Papers

The Complexity & Artificial Life Research Concept

Our meta-philosophical position is that a continuum of connectivity exists, which allows us to treat all conventional specialisms as just 'special case' mini-worldviews within a more general and universal model. This multi-level, multi-dimensional perspective can apply to all aspects of our universe, taking into account not only science, but arts, humanities and spirit also - in other words, "Life, the Universe and Everything". This document positions our philosophy and details the flexibility this approach offers for the treatment of complex situations involving highly unconstrained self-organizing systems.


The remainder of this page outlines papers which discuss more specialised aspects within the general complex systems viewpoint on which this meta-position has been grounded. These comprise both theoretical introductions to complexity science ideas and applications of these ideas to practical issues in the wider world of values of which science plays a part.

To navigate through the papers in turn press the Next button, or to select a particular paper directly click its title. Press First to return to this page or Back for the previous paper. For papers by other groups see our Online , Related Applications and Offline pages.

Thematic Complexity Introductions

This first set of papers are introductions to various concepts related to the fields associated with Self-Organization, Complexity and Artificial Life and give some insights into the meaning and relevance of these disciplines. Those completely new to these ideas may wish to start with our general Introduction to Complex Systems or with our Overview before pursuing these more detailed topics.

Setting The Scene - Science, Humanity and Interaction

A positioning of the quest to understand complexity in the context of science in general, to humanity in our social stuctures and to nature in the ecological interactions between species and environment, in preparation for our later more specialised thematic treatments.

Complexity & Artificial Life - What are they ?

Introduction to the concepts of complexity theory and artificial life in the context of its relation to traditional science and mathematics and the connection with self-organising systems. The treatment is light-hearted yet accurate and illuminating.

Attractors Everywhere - Order from Chaos

An introduction to the concept of attractor basins and the forms of attractor encountered (point, periodic, strange), as used in complexity theory and self-organisation. We look at fitness landscapes and co-evolution, phase space, evolution and mental categories.

Fractal Geometry - A Gallery of Monsters

Introduction to fractal geometry and its relationship to nature and iteration. We look at self-similarity, the Mandelbrot set and the pathological consequences of scale independent systems of non-integer dimensions.

Self-Organization & Entropy - The Terrible Twins

Introduction to the concepts of entropy and its opposite, extropy or self-organization in the context of non-equilibrium and internally constrained systems. We look at order, complexity, the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics and probability.

Genetic Algorithms - Nature's Way

Introduction to genetic algorithms, genetic programming, self-evolving programs and co-evolution as a way of artificially using nature's methods in evolutionary computation.

Automata - Agents of Life within

Introduction to cellular automata and other types, including the Game of Life, and their applicability to artificial life, nanotechnology, mind and society. We also cover the various classes of CAs.

Neural Networks - Artificial Brains

Introduction to neural networks, a way of emulating the human brain. We cover learning, self-organisation, attractors, computation and genetically evolving networks.

Nonlinear Science - Chaos tamed

Introduction to nonlinear systems in science and the phenomena of chaos. We look at sensitivity to initial conditions, the 'butterfly effect', the extent of nonlinearity in the world and iteratively coupled systems, along with bifurcation and control.

Fitness and Synergy

We introduce what is meant by fitness and what different forms this can take, contrasting differential and absolute fitnesses. Synergy relates to combinational effects, the change in fitness when parts come together and this leads us to types of interactions and the contrast between competition and cooperation in generating complexity.

Perturbation & Transients - The Edge of Chaos

Introduction to perturbations and transients in the context of self-organising Systems and their relationship to the 'edge of chaos' - instability with order. These non-equilibrium systems are important in the context of complexity theory, percolation, networks and phase transitions.

Emergence and Evolution - Constraints on Form

Introduction to emergence and evolution within the context of self-organizing systems and complexity studies. We look at natural selection, fitness, phenotypes and genotypes and the origin of form. We suggest as models of gene regulation emergence in Boolean networks and show how this can explain discontinuities in morphology. We consider wider co-evolutionary issues and teleology in constraining evolution.

Boolean Networks - Dynamic Organisms

We introduce the concepts of Boolean networks in the context of complex systems research, covering logic, cycles, attractors, genetic regulation, behaviours, thoughts and fuzzy reasoning.

Fuzzy Multidimensional Logic

Bivalent, or two state, logic is just a sub-set of the more powerful methods of fuzzy logic, introduced here, which reject the law of the excluded middle. This logic can be used to evaluate choices in the vague multi-dimensional scenarios common to complex systems incorporating multiple variables.

Practical Multiobjective Optimisation

In the world around us it is rare for any problem to concern only a single value or objective. Generally multiple objectives or parameters have to be met or optimised before any solution is considered adequate. This introduction looks at some of the issues involved when we try to do this, and outlines the technique of Evolutionary Multiobjective Optimisation that can be used to solve such problems by using forms of genetic algorithms called Multiobjective Evolutionary Algorithms.

Classifier, IFS, L-Systems and Beyond

Classifiers, iterated function systems (IFS) and Lindenmeyer systems form part of a range of complexity techniques known as production systems. Here we shall introduce these ideas and see how they can be used to allow systems to develop over time in a contextual way, potentially forming self-creating universal constructors.

Complex Adaptive Systems - Webs of Delight

This is a vision of tomorrow, a world out of control, yet promising a level of understanding and achievement far beyond anything yet seen. This is the era of the complex adaptive system (CAS), a 21st Century metaphor relating innovation, cybernetics and complexity, within a new organic cosmos filled with living machines and emergent organization.

Quantifying Complexity Theory

Complexity theory is decidedly a new way of looking at things, and as such seems to throw out many of those traditional mathematical techniques used in our scientific work. This has led many scientists to question the whole basis of the theory, regarding it as too vague, ungrounded and inapplicable to be called science. To address this issue we look into the various problems and approaches we find in the quantification of complex systems.

Cybernetics and Stochastic Systems

Cybernetics is the science of control and a precursor of complexity theory. Whilst generally applied to deterministic artificial machines these techniques are of equal validity in the more stochastic biological and social realms. Here we introduce this field and demonstrate its wider applicability to complex systems of all kinds.

Autopoiesis and Coevolution

Autopoiesis is based on the way living systems address and engage with the domains in which they operate. This biologically based theory, introduced here, defines life as the ability to self-produce, rather than as the ability to reproduce. It is a systems perspective, and is applicable to brains and societies as well as to biology and artificial life.

Evolutionary Psychology and Sociology

Human beings are part animal, and like most animals we have at birth a large number of abilities. What these are and what abilities and biases they give us at birth is the subject of evolutionary psychology, which we introduce here.

The Philosophy of Complexity

The various fields that comprise the complexity sciences utilise a set of axioms that differs in many ways from those used in conventional science. Here we will introduce the ideas that comprise this viewpoint and contrast them with traditional views, in a way that emphasises the value of this new thinking and integrates our series of introductions.


Essays in Alternative Dimensions

In these essays we give free reign to musings, from a complexity viewpoint, on interesting aspects of life and our behaviour. They explore alternative ways of thinking to those common in our world today, and many concentrate on applying complexity thinking to our social and personal realms. We have tried to keep these essays approachable, but they do contain many deep and subtle ideas that often challenge our unconscious prejudices and instinctive judgements.

Breaking Our Mental Chains

An introduction to some of the themes covered by our essays. We emphasize the contrast between the static knowledge adequate for simple systems and the wider ranging dynamic knowledge necessary for the proper study of complex systems.

Inner, Outer and Middle Natures

We consider those aspects of our psychological makeup that relate to evolution, society and learning and look at how they interrelate in our behaviour and interactions. We investigate just how our minds develop, and how we may best enhance them to better utilise what are often called our higher faculties of mind.

The One-Dimensional Paradox

A look at the need to base our decisions on more than one simplification if we are to avoid the all-too-common divisions that result for our society. We relate this to those omissions and generalisations needed if we are to employ our conscious, serial, mode of thought in the evaluation of situations.

Emotional Reactions to Complexity, Confusion and Chaos - David Kirshbaum

Reality and the world feel naturally quite complex, unpredictable, and confusing to human beings, and this has always been a source of stress. Ironically, we are finding that these qualities are actually inherent in reality, and that they are not just the reaction of our limited minds to a world and reality that is just too vaste for it to grasp completely.

Fact, Theory and Dogma

On what basis can we believe our theories, and can we have contradictory ones ? Here we will try to look a little deeper into the basis of our convictions and their relation to the world around us, and attempt to establish a more balanced viewpoint in which to determine the validity of our thoughts.

Fourth World Thinking, Transcending the First Three

We contrast, from the viewpoint of the complexity sciences, the three world systems currently believed to exist (based on thought, emotion and senses) and develop a new paradigm based on a world integrating and going beyond the limitations of each.

Multidimensional Economics

Complex notions of value require a type of economics that is itself complex and multi-dimensional, a value system that goes beyond the trade based concept of material exchange and takes into account the wider needs of people and planet. We try to outline such a complexity based economics.

Patterns of Unreality

We take a look here at an aspect of life that most people ignore, the structure of what is unreal. Our assumptions that we live in what we call reality are questioned and we reposition ourselves, using complexity thinking, into a new form of living, a world so much deeper and richer than normality as to be Godlike. Tomorrow's world.

Creativity and Consciousness

Breakthroughs in science or art are rare. Most of the time we see variations on a theme, work that, whilst new, is easily classified as part of a school or discipline. Here we will look into the meaning of innovation and the steps that may be involved in creating an artificial innovative system, steps that should also be applicable to creative novelty in humans.

Alien Consciousness - Philosophical Problems

An investigation of the philosophical problems associated with non-human intelligent life forms, robots, brain transfers, alternative biology and extraterrestrials as it relates to artificial life and complexity studies.

Exploring The Impossible

Here we will look into the possibilities for human evolution, the growth in the power of our minds and our connectivity to a wider universe. We shall look at the vastness of state space and the new methods that we can employ to explore this universe, the world of the impossible.

Irreversible Paths

All scientific equations are said to be reversible and this contrasts strangely with the equally fervent attachment given to the second law of thermodynamics, which says that the universe is irreversible. Here we look at this inherent contradiction within science and try to use complexity ideas to show that it is only apparent and due largely to a misunderstanding of probability.

Value Objectivity

Two defining criteria of science are the claims that it is objective and that it is value free. Both these claims invoke a view of life that involves dualism. By dissolving that dualism we enable ourselves to include in science many aspects of the human condition which were previously excluded as subjective. This extension to scientific thinking allows us to apply scientific concepts to the complex processes of mind and behaviour.

Metahuman Science

Taking science beyond its current material limitations, and extending it to cover complex systems in all realms, requires a transcendence of some of the concepts that currently restrain it. A metascience, able to consider all aspects of our universe, mental as well as physical, needs to be based on a metahumanity, a view of humanity that in itself dissolves the barriers that separate us from the physical world and limit us as individuals. Science is ultimately a social activity, it can operate within a restricted world view or can grow to embrace the full possibilities of our reality. We will pursue the latter aim here.

Neo-Transcendentalist Philosophy

Going beyond the ideas of objective reality, beyond even the ideas of the subjective mind, and into a new vista of evolutionary abstract thought, means walking a tightrope between the chaotic vagaries of much mystical thought and the static determinism of the mathematical equivalent. This edge-of-chaos transcendental thinking we call here neo-transcendentalism, a dynamic, complexity related, way of thinking that treats the whole not the part, one eminently suitable for the 21st Century.

Freeing Our Wild Side

The ability to inhabit a detached abstract world is rightly valued as a sign of advanced intellectual mental development but in many humans this function is under-utilised, especially in the sense that we can re-evaluate both our cultural world and our own mental behaviour. Here we will look more deeply into this aspect of abstraction and try to introduce some techniques to aid its development.

Entering a New Millennium

We seem to have learnt a lot in the last two thousand years, or have we ? Looking back over the history of 'civilisation' one despairs at the waste and the destruction that has accompanied our 'climb' from the animal world. True civilisation will require the tenets of enlightenment to percolate the global mind, to attain a critical mass such that it becomes self-sustaining and impervious to the pockets of negativity that so pervade current societies. Our millennium essay considers this issue.

Creation of a Global Life - Jiri Donat

One cannot resist some fascination when observing the miracle of the creation of new life. Within a month we have the first indication of the future central nervous system, but cells don't care. It's function only emerges with the complete organism, a mode of complex life strangely echoed in the artificial world of the internet...

Genomic Delusions

Genes are components of a complex system, operating in a complex organism within a complex environment. Here we will outline what is and is not known scientifically about the workings of genes and their effects, and how this affects the debate about genetically modified food and genetic engineering.

Contextual Ethics

Many old systems of ethics incorporate an assumption of permanence, standards are invariant. Here we criticise this idea and suggest that an ethics based upon context is a far better basis for a system of social behaviour that aims to maximise overall fitness.

The Abnormal Normals

Human societies are all about norms. To be judged abnormal is to be rejected, to be regarded as faulty, in need of repair. But it's all a myth ! Here we will look at what it could mean to be normal and contrast it with the actual human condition of diversity.

Quality of Life

Is life worth living ? Why ? Assume science makes you immortal, what will you then do for eternity ? If the answer is "not a lot" then we may wish to reconsider our options and construct a better lifestyle or 'Quality of Life' and this is what we consider here.

Fighting Manipulation

Our world of today spends an inordinate proportion of its resources on manipulation. These processes work against the fitness of the individual, and by implication against our societies themselves. We can take steps to ensure that we understand the techniques of manipulation being used against us by the unscrupulous, and this we pursue here.

Freedom Beyond Control

One of the findings from the study of self-organizing systems is that maximum benefit comes from de-centralisation, the ability of the parts to do their own thing without overall control. This has major political implications for business and society and here we will look into the ramifications of this on the conflict between state or company interests and those of the individuals making it up.

Global Power Networks

Wherever we look in our society, the use and abuse of power is evident. In a complex interconnected world the causal effects of these actions do not restrict themselves to just local issues but have ramifications throughout the globe. Here we will examine the effects of power on overall social fitness, and look at how our power behaviours could be changed by complexity thinking to generate fitter political and economic structures.

Connecting Synergistically

When people meet we can take two basic attitudes. In the first, competition, which is typified by male behaviour we regard the other as threatening, as an action that potentially reduces our fitness as an individual. In the second, cooperation, typified by female behaviour the other is regarded as needy, actions taken potentially increase overall fitness as a group. In modern complexity thought these two aspects of synergy interrelate and we explore this relationship here.

Corporate Disintegration and Product Virtualisation - Jiri Donat

The categories of the world of atoms and the world of bytes split our world into the tangible and intangible worlds. These categories are not evolving at the same speed. Our tangible world has come to contain an ever larger infrastructure, allowing the intangible world to lead its own independent life. But it appears that this is not enough for the intangible world. What will the next new infrastructure be and what kind of companies will best be able to use it ?

Complexity Theory: Actions for a Better World Book

A comprehensive critique of the need for systems thinking and a science of values in the search for improvements in the quality of our planet and our lives. We stress three aspects as critical to this - Systems, Synergy and Sustainability, and show how invalid assumptions influencing our collective mental states have led to many of the problems we experience today. We offer a new approach, a fourth wave 'mental revolution' based on 'whole systems', in an attempt to generate a viable 'science of wisdom'.

Integrating Knowledge With Needs

Scientists, in their attempts to maintain a detached 'objectivity' have always rejected the consideration of subjects, of values, of teleology, of purpose. The results of this has been blindness to much of our human reality. To relate science more concretely to the dynamic needs of living creatures and to their conscious or subconscious beliefs we need a form of logic that can encompass knowledge, belief and values as well as truth, a type of reasoning that can deal with fuzzy inferences and uncertain conclusions.

Holarchic Meta-Ethics and Complexity Science

Our complex world includes many levels and types of value, but our normal specialised treatments tend to obscure the real inter-connectedness of our world, the way in which all these values and levels link together. In this conceptually integrating metaview we emphasise a coevolutionary form of human valuation, which has some interesting perspectives to offer upon many traditional ethical or moral problems. We critically examine some of these, employing a methodology which can give practical meaning to ethical guidelines.

e-Business For Managers - Jiri Donat Book

There is nothing mystical about business on the internet. As at any time in history, the present has introduced certain new elements which are changing the existing business environment. As has been the case with every innovation so far, some of those new elements will become the foundations of business in general in the future. This book is for people who can find a little time to reflect upon how our present world is changing and how to use the changes underway as effectively as possible to win a competitive advantage.

Intrinsic and Holarchic Education Book

Intrinsic education relates to the whole person, as a complete entity. It brings together all the systemic and extrinsic capabilities of the child, a collection of disjoint abilities, and evaluates how they contribute and balance as a whole. Holarchic education considers how this intrinsic whole relates to all the other intrinsic wholes that comprise our societies and environments. It considers how the education we give suits our needs as inhabitants of a complex planet and how it relates to sustainability, to diversity, to tolerance, to balance and to wisdom in the way that we approach others and view ourselves.

The Corporate State

In the last century we has seen the incessant growth of the corporation, an insatiable concentration of power over vast numbers of people into one profit-obsessed and unaccountable organization. This has culminated in a new form of state, the uncontrollable Transnational Corporation (TNC), which has no physical boundaries but extends fractal like into all corners of the globe, and into all levels of our reality, and has assets larger in total than many entire 'Third World' countries. Here we examine in detail this new imperialism and its effects on our claims to live in a democratic world.

2004 - An Odyssey into Insanity

Is the world sane or insane ? Trying to take a balanced view of human behaviour is fraught with problems. Which assumptions of normality should one hold in considering a global society ? Is it possible for the whole world to be insane ? Here we claim that not only is this possible, but to a large extent human behaviour must already be designated to be showing signs of pathological insanity.

The Will To Power

The title "The Will To Power" is well known, yet almost nobody knows what it was about. It is only now, with the rise of the complexity sciences and our post-modernist viewpoints, of our understanding (at last) of the reality of those aspects of our world actively suppressed by Nietzsche's opponents, that we can see just how far in advance of his times he really was.

Global Civil Society v Totalitarianism

The 'consumerist' dogma of Western society has become global, undemocratic, arrogant and obsessed with totalitarian manipulation of all aspects of our lives. Yet over recent decades there has been a tremendous growth in non-profit and non-Governmental organisations (NGOs), independent thinkers who have banded together (self-organized via the Internet) to oppose the oppression of humanity and of our diversity, not to mention the destruction of our very planet. This perspective we shall discuss and endorse here, along with a look at how a real democracy might operate.

Incentives and Disincentives - Organizational Dynamics

We compare two styles of systems thinking. In General Systems Theory we see a move from disjoint groups doing specialist reductionist tasks to a focus upon the whole, a top-down perspective which brings the separate functions together and analyses the overall result, before proposing changes to make the system function better and more predictably. In Complexity Theory we see a focus upon the self-organization of the parts, upon allowing the bottom-up values of the agents to drive the unpredictable dynamics of the system, without any explicit leadership. We investigate the sorts of incentives and disincentives associated with each style.

Strange Attractors and Society

Social systems are invariably complex. In traditional science it is usual to assume that all questions have one answer, but complex systems invariably have many answers, thus we must look to new techniques in order to deal with them. One of the newest findings in dynamical systems theory is the existence of what are called 'strange attractors'. The forms that such attractors can take and how we can regard them, in relation to social systems and behaviours, is the theme of this essay.

What Difference Does It Make ?

Our holarchic valuation identified three questions to ask. The first determined relevant values and needs, the second identified our beliefs and the third evaluated the difference these made to our behaviours. In this essay we will look at the importance of the third question in clarifying the synergic or dysergic strategies employed by groups of people. But we will also look at how we can expand our valuation methodology to allow us to evaluate such strategies, to map 'how we value' to 'how we behave'.

Questioning Our Methodologies

Recently some additional attention has been given to what are called WH questions, such as "why", "who", "what", "where", "when", "which" or "how", asking whether "why" is more fundamental than the rest. Questions of valuation and of alternative logics were also raised. So how could WH questions could be better adapted to a complexity perspective ? To do this we need a scope based meta-perspective.

Glimpsing Heaven, Oh So Close

An illustrated comparison between the concepts of complexity science and those associated with the Buddhist eightfold path, both related to interconnected worlds, which identifies several implications for non-dualist thought, selfless responsibility, Earth sustainability and fitness through social synergy.

Synergy and Complexity Science

A comparison between the synergy and complexity science paradigms, seeing how far they can enhance each other. This leads to a merging of both disciplines in a evolutionary metascience which emphasises the emergent social value of cooperation. A comprehensive list of the meanings of each concept from this synergic complexity science and their implications for human behaviour is given.

Complex Living Tensegrities

Today, we do not expect the zero-sum results predicted by linear thinking, but enter instead into a non-zero-sum mode, where what we get out is so often less (negative-sum) or more (positive-sum) than what we put in. This essay investigates these possibilities and looks at how we may better understand the complex dynamics of humans, societies and ecologies by relating it to the balance implied by the tensegrity ideas of Buckminster Fuller.

Spiral Complexity Dynamics

Human dynamics takes many forms. One useful approach to understanding this is that of Spiral Dynamics which suggests that there are not types of people but types in people. Merging these ideas with the insights from the complexity sciences is the aim of this essay, with a view to better understanding how we can help the majority to increase their options and to achieve a more encompassing worldview.

Integral Intersubjectivity

We saw earlier that the idea that there is an objective set of facts is wrong, reducing objective 3rd-person accounts to probabilistic 2nd-person accounts. Here we do the same for 1st-person accounts, showing that the idea that we have an isolated and culturally free subjectivity is also wrong and that only a we perspective or intersubjectivity is valid. We then consider our collective behaviours from an integral viewpoint, looking at how different streams or types of mental activity develop and at how they relate to each other and the world.

Qualitative Living and Thinking

Traditionally science has been a quantitative endeavour, whereas human life in general often takes a qualitative approach. When we come to animals we find a more situated communal experiential mode is relevant. Since qualities naturally form part of complexity science it seems we may be able to merge this middle perspective with more quantitative science, as well as dealing with the more individualistic qualitative diversities. Here we look at doing this in order to better understand systems, human experience and nature.


Book Reviews

This section contains our reviews of books related to complexity and self-organization. Book reviews by other people can be found on our Reviews page.

Open Boundaries by Howard Sherman & Ron Schultz

An assessment of a book concerned with applying complexity and self organizational ideas to business innovation. Here the authors promote a decentalization of company structure within an organic philosophy of co-evolving companies and cognitive values.


CALResCo Research Papers

Our research papers investigate interactions within various areas of Science and Philosophy as well as Complexity related ones, and are more formal in presentation or more difficult in content generally. They explore new ideas in the relevant fields and show the insights that can arise when these new sciences are brought to bear on some very old problems. Papers are by Chris Lucas unless otherwise indicated.

Self-Organization and Human Robots

A look at the possibility of growing functional robots, following the natural development of organisms as seen in meshing of embryogenesis and self-organization. This biological approach treats robots as autopoietic systems embodied within an adaptive environment

Evolving an Integral Ecology of Mind

A deliberation upon the possibility of generating a comprehensive view of 'mind as a whole' by integrating biology, psychology and sociology, and considering 'Mind' as a dynamical interplay between values existing over many levels and scales of complex systems. This view of mind as a coevolutionary whole is related to similar ecological viewpoints being developed in the fields of artificial life and multi-agent systems. A meta-model of mind is proposed which attempts to integrate the various existing views of mind.

A Logic of Complex Values

Our world is run by a logic that has no room for values, by a scientific methodology that disdains the very notion. In this paper we try to redress the balance, extracting many modern scientific findings and forms of philosophical reasoning from the field of complex systems, to show that values can and should be made part of an enhanced normative logic derived from Neutrosophy. This can then be employed to quantitatively evaluate our beliefs based on their dynamic effects on a full set of human values.

Value Metascience and Synergistic Choice

Complexity thinking already challenges many of our deeply help scientific assumptions, yet by taking this conceptual analysis a stage further we can also reformulate science itself in a way that dissolves both objective-subjective and fact-value dualisms. This allows us extend science, using the evolutionary concept of fitness, into many areas previously thought unscientific and immune from falsification. In this paper we first look at the justification for doing this and then outline a new hypothetico-deductive-evaluative (HDE) metascience, which adds to traditional scientific methodology alternatives in state space, teleological goals, multidimensional values and an overall multilevel fitness evaluation.

Complexity Philosophy as a Computing Paradigm

An overview of the philosophical implications of complex systems thought and an investigation of how this alternative viewpoint affects our attempts to design and utilise adaptive computer systems. The types of complex system that relate to self-organisation are classified and the old inorganic paradigm (control based) is contrasted with the new organic (self-organising) perspective. The overall requirements for self-organising computing are considered and various ways of moving forward in the area of practical contextual computer system design are discussed.

The Spirit of Complexity

We investigate the value of spiritual concepts in the context of our evolutionary fitness, and attempt to bring together science and spirit under the common viewpoint of complexity theory. Within such a paradigm, we show spiritual ideas to be perhaps the most valuable and neglected aspects of our education, and give some complexity based criteria for the evaluation of religious systems. The idea of spirituality as a worldly asset permits us to re-evaluate many of the assumptions lying behind traditional science and religion, and allows us to move to a viewpoint integrating both spiritual and scientific processes into the psychology of the mind.

Conflicts as Emergent Phenomena of Complexity - Chris Lucas and Yuriy Milov

Complexity Theory as a model of interacting parts applicable to social situations is introduced. The application of such ideas to conflict situations is considered and new paradigms are suggested with which to view conflict resolution within an evolutionary social context.

Transient Attractors and Emergent Attractor Memory

Investigation into short lived or transient attractors and their relevance to form, memory and action in biological and artificial systems. Emergent Attractor Memories (Eames) are introduced. Probabilistic categorisation, co-evolutionary adaptation and dynamic reconfiguration are also considered.

Ethics as Emotions - An Evolutionary approach

We contend that Ethics as practised are emotionally based and our ethical reasoning interacts with emotions to organise into feedback loops - a self stabilising interplay of Rational and Emotional Brain subsystems.

Politics and Rights - Social Ecology

We briefly compare historical political systems from a philosophical viewpoint and relate them to a modern idea of rights. We contrast selfish and co-operative modes of working and suggest a new complexity related political framework, a social ecology

Big Bang or damp squib - An Alternative Cosmology

A detailed critique of the big bang model with reference to experimental data and a simpler alternative model based upon the self-organising properties of interacting electrodynamic, plasma and matter/antimatter systems.

Towards an Edge Methodology for Complex Systems Simulation - Yuriy Milov

A look at using the features appearing at the edge of chaos in nonlinear systems as a methodology for detecting the onset of complexity in simulations of complex systems and as a basis for a new form of expert system.

The Generalised Theory of Life - Vyacheslav Kalmykov

An attempt to formulate the logic of organization and the evolution of life for its probable use in Artificial Intelligence, especially for purposes of Artificial Life and Evolutionary Computing. The essence of the method is the invention of ideal objects (creative synthetic definitions) that are still missing from a sufficiently good understanding of life.

The Non-Linear Dynamics of War - Linda Beckerman

This paper is about two seemingly antithetical concepts, stability and adaptability in war, as viewed from the perspective of non-linear dynamics. The application of non-linearity, chaos and complexity theory to warfare has enjoyed some attention during the past decade and has the overall positive benefit of causing us to rethink our basic warfighting assumptions.

The Ecosystemic Life Hypothesis - Dan Fiscus

The ecosystemic life hypothesis inverts the current working assumption that life originated and developed from the cell or organism in the general to the ecosystem in the specific. Instead, organisms are seen as emergent properties of ecological dynamics of energy flow coupled to nutrient cycling. Whole-part integration - the focus on understanding the part-to-whole relationships in living systems - is a synthesis of reductionism and holism.

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