Thursday, February 11, 2010

[Yasmin_discussions] Around Simulation - A Final Thought

"We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time."

Thus wrote T.S. Eliot [1] in "Little Gidding", No. 4 of Four Quartets

In a world of artistic exploration which takes the artist from the beginning
of a body of work and around and back to that beginning, it is also the
observer who travels together with the body of art itself. This links to
the cybernetics of cybernetics (second order) and to the double-bind theory
of Gregory Bateson. In Mind and Nature: A Necessary Unity (1979), Bateson
addresses the patterns that connect us to each other and the environment in
an ecology of thinking that locates the patterns of thinking about thinking.

Which is the real you, the real environment, the real situation, and which
interpretation, of many interpretations, holds current and significant value
for your duration in real time or simulated time-space?

The interdependency of actions and actors do matter because, as artists, we
address them each and every moment. There is no need to quantify a truth
within them, for that is left to the hard sciences. Yet, we engage a
certain truth in large part by emotive-driven reasoning and truth is
fundamental to aesthetics in a rational investigation about life and meaning
wherein truth is borne.

Simulation has truth, even if its realization is momentary, simply because
it occurs. Theorizing elements of the occurrence is secondary to the
immediacy of the experience. Nevertheless, it is the theory of simulation
that is necessary in an age where alternative universes and synthetic
systems are suggested to contain personal existence of many types and forms
of life-biologically derived or otherwise.

To those of us interested in future humans, bio-synthetic life, NBIC
enhancement, and radical life extension, these issues have great
significance because the mind/body of neuroscience and simulation are
getting married and witnessing their union is something that "every
school.[person] should know" (Bateson). Regardless of the face that the
Blue Brain [2] simulation is working slowly (and hopes to self-assemble
neurons to function like a biological brain), attention to relationships of
neuroscience and simulation affects artistic practice working with

In the biological brain, a simulation is created by interacting neurons.
Yet, neuroscience "does not know everything there is to know about neurons".
[3] Nevertheless projects like the Blue Brain involve brain/mind simulation
which could undoubtedly help to understand the fundamental principles of the
brain and the visual and semantics of the mind of memory and cognitive
projection. [4] A future exobody neocortex as a connective human mind could
modify biological prerequisites with bio-synthetic structure in
designing/forming experiences.

The necessary unity of mind and nature, real-time experience and simulation
are crucially intertwined. This is an area forthcoming and one which has
unyielding potential for the simulation of simulation.

[1] T.S. Eliot received the Nobel Prize for Literature. He was the second
person in recorded time to have referred to transhumanization of humanity in
his comedy "The Cocktail Party", concerning human behavior and which is
linked to Alighieri Dante's use of transumanar in the Divine Comedy.
[2] Noah Sutton's documentary on Markram's Blue Brain Project
[3] John Clark (Extropy chat email list]

Natasha Vita-More

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