Thursday, October 30, 2008

MINDing the Economy: [“MINDing one's SELF” through the Technology of SYNTHETIC MIND]

MINDing (or To Mind)”
Definition (in the present context): To Mind (or Minding) is an act intended by the acting mind to increase the Intelligence &/or Knowledge &/or Wisdom of the subject as mind(including that of self), or as affected by or effected through mind, where each such mind can reside principally in Reality or Virtual Reality or Virtuality.

Definition: Virtuality is an Autonomous Semiotic Universe in which a sign (e.g. a piece of information) is taken to be transferable (communicatable) only among (virtual) minds resident in this Virtuality and relatable to (Human) Reality only through the Virtual Reality of the Internet/Web.

Definition: Stages in Synthesizing Mind as a Semiotic Relational System
From computerized raw data/information
to First Stage
Perceptual Processes
focused on Syntactic Patterning

to Second Stage
Conceptual Processes
focused on Semantic Patterning

to Third Stage
Valuational Decision Processes focused on Pragmatic Patterning
i.e. Action Selection
[Wisdom (defined): the expression in acts of value through knowledge]

The uses of the term “MINDing (or To Mind)” in our culture are so numerous and varied so as to make it near-unconsciously common in examples such as – she’s minding the store – where the implication is one of focus of attention or care or concern. Herein the intent is to extend this “focus” to augmenting, enhancing or improving mind in its functional parts as it reflects or affects subjects such as the World, Humanity, Society, Community, AgReCulture, Research, Technology, Arts, Education, Business, etc. In subsequent posts we intend to address various of these subjects from time to time with a query as to how to Mind them. The specific subject for focus to initiate this process in this post is MINDing the ECONOMY.

MINDing The ECONOMY: EcoGnomics [This latter term is not conceptually originated from any reference to David Bowie’s “Not at the London School of Ecognomics!” from his lyrics of the Laughing Gnome, or from any other prior use, but was formed simply to convey “the intent of bringing Gnosis (knowledge/wisdom) explicitly into re-formulating the disciplines of Economics”, i.e. MINDing Economics]

Despite the near-total negative global impact of the current crises in the World’s Financial Institutions, triggered specifically by massive failure in the US Lending system, and ignoring, for the simplification of the present argument, the disparity in presumptive foundations, formal theories, applied models and means of results measurement in Formal Economics, albeit many Nobel Prizes have been awarded for aspects thereof, the proactive inclusion of Synthetic Intelligence/Mind is rarely addressed.

Some Partial Descriptions
[See, MIND Creating MIND: A CoCreative Re-Evolutionary Act {Re:SYN5-Prologue1} SYNTHESIZING MIND: A PERSPECTIVE]

Semiotic Relational Systems
A Semiotic Relational System is a system of relations exhaustively admitting all forms of interrelatedness among systems and/or relations and with certain systems or relations taking the place of (i.e. imaging (signifying)) other systems or relations.

The AutoGnome is a self-knowing general purpose software system of automated (autonomous) inquiry, inference and intuition exploiting a mechanized carrier system for relational semiosis as a virtual (synthetic) mind.


The Intellisite (an Intelligent WebSite) is a constructed software environment (a Website) with an embedded form of the AutoGnome known as a WebGnome(tm), an intelligent agent residing in this cyberspace environment which, with its continuous adaptive learning from mimicking the user’s behavior, will grow into a likeminded replica (MindClone(tm)) of a user-self acting in the Virtual Reality of the Internet with the synthetic mind capabilities of the AutoGnome.

The CoGnome is a selected WebGnome which, inter-connecting two or more Intellisites in a Network of Intellisites, provides a computerized collective intelligence, an automated co-intelligence, i.e. the Collective-AutoGnome (Auto(Co)Gnome) or simply the CoGnome.

The CogWeb is the Network of Intellisites implemening the CoGnome for Network Decision-Making by autonomously formed Intellisite-defined groups, organizations, communities and societies.

We are in the midst of sweeping global economic and social transformations where creativity will increasingly replace physical labor and large-scale bureaucracy as the key source of community and economic growth. This derives largely from the explosive growth of an information-based, chaotically changing environment in which success depends on the superiority of continually accelerated Innovation.

Not surprisingly then, one of the most significant remaining unmined potentials is in the rich base of human, social, relational and intellectual capital to be found in small (including from one up to a small handful of entrepreneurial persons) to medium size enterprises. A strong and independent small enterprise system disperses economic power, localizes economic decision-making, and protects the potential for voluntary cooperative organization.

The need in order to effectively engage this resource is for new processes and technologies for improving personal and organizational effectiveness in “Knowledge Development” implemented through an organizational and management architecture respecting autonomy throughout its hierarchical and heterarchical levels by effecting co-intelligence in a cognitive network for Rational Collective Decision Making to support and extend individual Innovation. See, for example, the following:

Dynamics of the Informational Interface: Statement Of Relevance
Edwina Taborsky
(Edited slightly for the context)
“The twentieth century's momentous introduction of the network as the operating infrastructure of our global socioeconomic reality has set up a new socioeconomic structure, a 'complex adaptive system' composed of multiple and fluid connections, operating within hierarchical and heterarchical levels, to access and process a wide range of resources. Networks have the capacity to process not only goods and services but also information in a manner that promotes wide-ranging involvement in strategic planning and decision-making rather than unilateral transference. If we were to consider the major component of a network that enables such collaborative interactions, it would be the Interface, the spatial and conceptual gaps or gateways that act to both separate and connect its multiple parts. As intermediary zones between different sides, so to speak, interfaces are sites of resistance, exchange and negotiation. Globalization of the new economy and its knowledge base does not eliminate borders. Instead, borders change from functioning as closures to acting as major opportunities for the collaborative reconstruction of resources, services and information. We consider this border, the interface, to be the crucial site for the interactional processes that enable the multidimensional operational productivity of our new global economy.

Our networked economy and knowledge system requires a mode of exploratory information processing that acknowledges the reality of our global diversity and builds on this diversity by enabling the processes of decision-making to be co-held by tactical alliances of users in different domains of the complex system. A major characteristic of this new economy is that questions that investigate information are also questions that investigate the operational reality of the economy, for the two are intertwined. What is the organizational and management architecture of this economic and informational network - and what are the conditions that enable robust interface interactions in both fields? And importantly, how does a global economic and informational network negotiate the ecological and cultural disparities that are our historical legacy?”

The CogWeb is, by definition, the implementation of a computerized collective intelligence [automated co-intelligence] through the adaptation of the AutoGnome Technology (as the CoGnome) for Network Decision-Making by IntelliSite-defined groups, organizations, communities and societies. While the IntelliSite itself was focused on the development of a semiotic engine as an Individual Intelligence, the extended potential of individual intellect, be it human or machine, can be realized in groups; hence the reason for the Automated Community Builder functionality of the IntelliSite. This collective creativity, while related to the intelligence of the individual, is actually a feature not only of the Decision Network’s inference/inquiry/intuition processes (the CoGnome), but more generally of the Network Architecture.

A proprietary “breakthrough application” of the CogWeb, as an example, is the following approach to Rational Group Opinion Assessment. Assume the group targeted for a survey is a population of users of MyWebGnome via an IntelliSite subscription. Instead of statistically extrapolating useful data from a well-drawn small sample group (with all of the attendant margins of error), the response is taken by the CoGnome from a user’s WebGnome standing in as the user’s proxy. Hence it will be common to effect virtually a 100% response in every Assessment.

In general, a CogWeb is the first True approximation to a Rational Collective Decision Process accomplished without constraining the Network to being a top down organized system since each and every IntelliSite WebGnome responding to a query can also pass the query on to it’s closest neighbors, and so on, until the entirety of the Network has been mapped by the query, which could have been initiated by any individual WebGnome or the CoGnome itself.

Since it is increasingly evident that smart aggregates of humans can frequently be more effective decision makers than individuals, this CogWeb architecture collectively technologically enables Co-Intelligence Via Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution.

What if, rather than, or in parallel with, the construction of models for realizing a specific formal socio-economic theory, we were to build out a virtual society (Virtuality) of synthetic minds (WebGnomes), a CogWeb, as a Virtual Reality-connected Human Reality Societal Test-bed for doing real-time experimentation on global economic issues. This approach, EcoGnomics, would actually provide a first real opportunity to explore a People’s Economics, particularized to the individual WebGnome and computer-implementable in “real time”?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

AgReCulturing the WORLD


Rural Transformation, Inc. (RTI) was created as a joint enterprise between the Rural Learning Center (RLC) ( located in Howard, SD and TrueFarmer, Inc. (TFI), a South Dakota subsidiary of As It Is, Inc (Ai3) ( located in Buffalo, NY. RTI development is an outgrowth of the RLC’s desire to develop and market new learning and community development practices and Ai3’s interest in augmenting these practices through the integration of its virtual synthetic intelligence ( technologies in rural communities. TFI is focused on the Ag(ricultural) aspects and RTI on the ReCulturing aspects in AgReCulturing the WORLD. To this end RTI staff are also engaged as consultants with the RLC in communities across the region conducting rural economic development/community revitalization activities. It is from this community work that the concept of “social satisfaction” as an economic development strategy was developed by the visionaries behind the RLC.

RTI Blog: building a deep conversation about the future of rural, an outgrowth of the Rural Learning Center (see below), is a blog for rural residents who want to be a part of building a new future for their communities. It’s no secret that most rural communities have struggled in recent decades with outmigration, poverty, and general decline. We belive this downward slide can be turned around by the people who take time to reimagine and work towards a different future.

A movement of change is rolling across the rural landscape as many communities pioneer a new future. Rural communities are coming alive with big ideas and people are connecting to each other and to the world of opportunity.

We hope to be a part of these connections. In fact, we hope that by sharing ideas on this blog, we will inspire rural residents to “reimagine” their communities and become a part of this changing rural landscape.

RLC VISION: renewed hope is the driving force
The Rural Learning Center ( is a product of visionaries. Both organization and place, it is a platform for rural people to discover, teach, share and reimagine--together. In the midst of Miner County, South Dakota's quiet, remarkable transformation from dying town to place of hope and opportunity, this small rural community has become a living learning laboratory for innovative and sustainable solutions.

Now, as a centerpiece for the work in and out of Miner County, the RLC and dozens of partners are building a learning and demonstration center in Howard, SD ( The Maroney Rural Learning Center facility will be a one-of-a-kind conference and training center - a living showcase of innovations in rural sustainability, a gathering place to share and experience rural community learning, and the home of an innovative workforce development experiment.