Whitaker's Autopoiesis and Enactment

see also his page on Francisco Varela: http://www.enolagaia.com/Varela.html

clipped from www.enolagaia.com

The Biology of Cognition
Autopoietic Theory
Enactive Cognitive Science

The Theories of Humberto Maturana and Francisco Varela

Autopoiesis and Enaction

Brought to You By:

Dr. Randall Whitaker

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Cat Out O'the Bag?

*I’ve been in “stealth mode” for years … cat definitely in the bag.*

A while back I did a little online work for a guy on the other side of the Atlantic … just helping him re-design the frontpage of his commercial site. Not rocket science, but not thumb-twiddling either.
Thing is, he had no means of paying me. I don’t have credit card, so paypal is out.

So I decided to start the implementation phase of my project and arranged for him to get me an account at DreamHost. And that’s where things stand.
But now the time has come for me to renew that account and secure my domain name.

Well, I just let the cat’s head out:

“The Antenna is You” – GroundPlane.wordpress.com

Quick bookmarks (re-jig)

Re-posting August 04, 2005 which I deleted due to constant Russian spamming.

*I’m on my second laptop and so don’t want to add these sites to bookmarks*


http://www.xulplanet.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=3 XULPlanet and its http://www.xulplanet.com/forum/ Forum
http://www.xulplanet.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=4 General, http://www.xulplanet.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=1 XUL, http://www.xulplanet.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=3 XBL, and http://www.xulplanet.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=3″ XPCOM .

http://www.xulplanet.com/ndeakin/ aka ”Neil’s Place” (XUL blog)

Dugg: Web2.0 … Epiphany doesn't just happen

It’s not easy to make something easy.

I just Dugg Paul Glazowski’s “Web 2.0: How Hard Could It Be?” over at Mashable.com:

“It ’s not easy to make something easy. … The focus of the story … is to uncover the true tale of start-to-finish process. That taking something from an idea conjured during time spent in gridlock traffic … to something you can hold in your hand … is a process that is almost always longer than one might expect.”

The comment I posted there was about the underlying dynamics

“It’s not easy to make something easy” and making things simple is really complicated. (GEOS, the GUI for C=64, was hackable at assembly level with GEOProgrammer … those were great days!)
I’ve been using the phrase “cognitive ergonomics” more often recently. (It was in current usage back in the mid-80s, around the time SGML was coming out.) The tools and techniques we’re rolling out give us the sort of capabilities that stress our imaginations!
What I’m seeing is something like “When all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail” … pages are being lumbered with elaborate AJAX functionality but the user experience isn’t being complimented with effective functionality … the interfaces are entertaining, so it’s fun to play with them, but come time to do heavy lifting and things get bogged down. That, for me, is the acid test: enhancing work flow.

(Somebody wanna give me a hand AJAXifying TRAC and/or subversion? Can’t ya just see it? all gridded up and popping with interactivity?)”

The article that got Paul moving on this is from the NewYorkTimes’ Janet Rae-Dupree, “Eureka! It Really Takes Years of Hard Work“, documenting Jim Marggraff work to bring a few products to completion. It reads, reads in part:

“We’ve all heard the tales of the apple falling on Newton’s head and Archimedes leaping naked from his bath shrieking “Eureka!” Many of us have even heard that eBay was created by a guy who realized that he could help his fiancée sell Pez dispensers online.
The fact that all three of these epiphany stories are pure fiction stops us short.”

“Epiphany has little to do with either creativity or innovation. Instead, innovation is a slow process of accretion, building small insight upon interesting fact upon tried-and-true process. Just as an oyster wraps layer upon layer of nacre atop an offending piece of sand, ultimately yielding a pearl, innovation percolates within hard work over time.”

I can date my “Eureka moment” precisely … Dalhousie’s Killam Library, February 2003, 3rd floor, corner table, John Willinsky’s OpenAccess text “If Only We Knew; Increasing the public value of social science research” open and sitting /there/ with Jürgen Habermas’ “Discourse Ethics” also open, sitting just /there/; the penny dropped and my re-conceptualization of dialectical concept-mapping came clear … it was that easy!
Yaa, sure, it really was just that easy … and I had started on that project in late May 1975. Do the arithmetic. *grin*


See also:

  • on Willinsky -“”Accessing medical information”; Dr. John Willinsky makes the case for open access to research publications.“, “An Interview with Open Medicine’s Publisher – John Willinsky“, a review of Willinsky’s “The access principle: the case for open access to research and scholarship”; “The Access Principle The Case for Open Access to Research and Scholarship” (2005) at MIT Press.
  • on Jürgen Habermas – “Moral Conciousness and Communicative Action (Studies in Contemporary German Social Thought)” by Habermas, Christian Lenhardt, and Shierry Weber Nicholsen (2001), and “
    Justification and Application: Remarks on Discourse Ethics
    “, both at Amazon
  • my Amazon wish-list *nudge-nudge / wink-wink*”

  • "Start" … a feed widget from ''Sprout''

    "Prologue" and "WordPress does Twitter"

    Updated 29JAN08 13:25MST:
    My comment to Joseph Scott’s “Prologue, A WordPress Theme” :

    A couple oddities I hope to work on: I created a page and got page titles to display in the sidebar, but when I select one of those I don’t see any of the text that’s in it.
    Also, and this is core to the functionality I’d like to see, a post submitted on a page doesn’t display any differently than a post entered on the mainpage.
    So right now: neither About nor PlaceHolder display the text they were created with. So they, along with mainpage, display exactly the same.

    Now: if pages could carry their own stream … know what I mean?
    What I’m getting at is that the “most recent by each contributer” shouldn’t be universal.
    Mainpage? yes, of course, that’s the point.
    Separate pages? How about “most recent from each contributer on this page”?
    Categories? I don’t know … maybe that should dump all posts.

    I haven’t looked at the code, so don’t know how you implemented the logic; maybe I’m at counter-purposes with you.”

    My thinking is this: with minor changes, posts could be sorted a number of ways:
    1) MainPage shows only “most recent by each contributor”
    2) separate pages show “most recent by each contributor on page”
    3) categories … not sure … maybe a dump of all contributions, sorted by date?

    Another interesting wierdness (apart from the fact that page text isn’t showing … ‘sup with that?): you can add a title in Edit, and the title shows up in Recent Posts, but you cannot add a title from the main post form.
    RFE: don’t change the post display function, but do change the submit form to allow the creation of a title.


    <rant>Without prejudice: it comes down to the kidz who have the toys get to call out the rules of the game.

    If I trotted out a description of my stuff … would that result in the resources needed for a launch?
    You see, this is where “discourse variance” kicks in: one moment we’re talking like the world is all fun, then how it’s a tough place with folk ready to mug you anytime, then back to the light and love delusion … and that’s what BluePill and “constant partial attention” allow; the people around me show all the integrity of pin-ball machines.

    If I could develop this stuff I know I’d have something really special. But I /can /not// … think it’s easy? Try it sometime. But no … that’s too much like work. Scoffing? Scoffing is easy.</rant>
    Indulge me: I get cranky/frustrated sometimes.

    Anyhow: WordPress has released a theme … no big deal there … but it creates something like a Twitter interface. I’ve applied it on http://42words.wordpress.com … it’s pretty neat.

    Anyhow, http://wordpress.com/blog/2008/01/28/introducing-prologue/ and http://ma.tt/2008/01/twitter-theme/ tell the story.

    BTW: if you want to set it up on wordpress.com the theme is there to be selected, but you need to navigate to page 3 or 4 to find “Prologue” … alphabetical.

    Anyhow, I’ve got the files from SVN … I really really really think it needs a sidebar. (I’ve just started a stand-alone page as work-around.)

    '96 style blog post [draft]

    From ”Teachers” at PBS: “Web 2.0 and Education: Hot or Not?” by Andy Carvin, 11JAN08

    “Andrew Keen’s polemic on Web 2.0 culture, The Cult of the Amateur, has been riling the social media community for months now. It was probably just a matter of time before it came up in a big way within the edtech community, and now that just might be happening, thanks to a new blog by online safety advocate Anne Collier. It’s inspired her to ask a simple question to the education community: why do a growing number of educators like Web 2.0 in the first place? But I want to know something else as well – what don’t we like about Web 2.0, and is there anything we can do about it?”

    From PerfectSpace blog, two items:
    *How Geeks Can Help In Disasters (San Diego Fire 2007)

    “A sad and yet hopeful few days. Even though I went through a “100-year flood” in Washington, going through the so-called “Firestorm 2007” in San Diego, I’ve learned more than I ever thought I would about disasters and what people need.”

    *Using Twitter to Help Communities

    “My experiences in the San Diego fires of 2007 gave me an interesting outlook on how Twitter, as a tool, could be applied in different circumstances. Just a few months after (and some even during) the 2007 firestorm some agencies are scratching the surface of what’s possible with this service.”

    And recently joined: Digital Divide Network:

    “The Digital Divide Network was launched in December 1999 as a response to the National Digital Divide Summit hosted by U.S. President Bill Clinton. Originally developed by the Benton Foundation and the National Urban League, DDN was designed as an online clearinghouse of news and resources regarding the digital divide.”

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