systems

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Architectures of Control v. Designing for Emergence

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In the course of research for my Media Law paper, on Creative Commons and designing for emergence in law, I came across this excellent blog. In many ways this site might be considered the opposite of "designing for emergence":

Architectures of Control
http://architectures.danlockton.co.uk/

What are Architectures of Control?

[example images - Audi A2: The user cannot open the bonnet; Bench designed to prevent lying down: 'redesigned to face contemporary urban realities'; printer: Some HP printers shut down the cartridges at a pre-determined date regardless of whether they are empty]

Privacy isn’t dead -- it never lived.

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Privacy isn’t dead -- it never lived. Personal information is currency in a consumer society. It allows for prediction and strategy. Rewards cards, credit cards, contests, transponders, websites, subscriptions, donations, investments, bill payments; they all require of tracking. Whether or not this is bad thing is the issue. If you look at your life as property, something you own, then you could classify this as theft. However, if you look at your life as a natural phenomena then observation can only further progress.

The more we learn about how people live, the more insight we will have on how we can change and grow. Unfortunately, most people take the ownership approach to their personal information. Even the phrase “personal information” sounds like a very private thing, which is why the issue is so deceiving. In a small town everyone knows your business. This is what allows for town meetings, participatory politics, and culture in general. When a population grows beyond a certain size, around 150, it becomes less of a cohesive unit and begins to rely more on institutional rather than communal organization. This is necessary for a large community to maintain it’s order.

Everything Originates in Fire

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My friend Alex Busby just returned from Chennai, India where he was working on visual effects for a feature film. He related to me a philosophical concept about connectedness that he encountered there.

This view touched on everything from microbiology to the tangible realm including details like the chambers of the heart. One of the central ideas was that fire transforms inanimate substances and compounds into living ones -- it is a catalyst. It is held to be the most primal of the elements.

A ritual using coals and lighting fires from other fires was part of the experience Alex described. I hope to learn more about this. Perhaps it is connect with Ayurvdedic medicine or Vedic thought.

Metabolism: The sum of all biochemical processes involved in life

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Definitions of "metabolism" from Answers.com

me·tab·o·lism
n.

1. The chemical processes occurring within a living cell or organism that are necessary for the maintenance of life. In metabolism some substances are broken down to yield energy for vital processes while other substances, necessary for life, are synthesized.

2. The processing of a specific substance within the living body: water metabolism; iodine metabolism.

[From Greek metabole, change, from metaballein, to change : meta-, meta- + ballein, to throw.]

What’s in a Name? Insect Social Systems

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Choosing a name for this site was tough. The interdisciplinary (or transdisciplinary) focus of my research is one issue. Most important to me was to allude to nature or biology with a term that operates something like the way "biomimicry" does.

This intriguing page provided one of several deciding factors. Deep within its text I discovered that "metabolo = change."

Insect Social Systems - "The study of insect social systems is an active and fascinating field, encompassing many important issues in behavioral ecology, evolutionary theory and even genomics." [del.icio.us/gva]

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