The Reality Report: Episode 1

Friday, 6 February 2015

Episode 1

The first of four episodes in which I talk with Miriam about emergent phenomena and reductionism.

Apologies for the image quality, crude editing, etc. This should improve as the series progresses.

Please feel free to leave comments, including suggestions for future topics.

Some relevant links:


Blogger Andy Letcher said...

If my memory is correct, the way humans arrange themselves in supermarket queues and train platforms is the same as the way dung flies do on a cow pat! In Behavioural Ecology it's called Optimality Theory, which explains foraging behaviour and the way individuals compete for limited resources :)

10 February 2015 at 10:42  
Blogger Andy Letcher said...

10 February 2015 at 10:43  
Blogger Du de Danann said...

Enjoying that chat, I often wonder, as a passenger in a car, what Force of hive mind probability contributes to the extremely low frequency of crashes. I never feel like it's the skill of the drivers that keep vehicles from crashing, but more likely a 4th dimensional groove that allows the individual vehicles from colliding

11 February 2015 at 01:48  
Blogger erik said...

hi Matthew! Interesting new project!
What comes to mind is that it not only happens with animate "objects"..the same happens with drops of mercury on a surface, or drops of water even, that want to be in "groups" as large as possible...and the groups in turn attract each other...
In animal or human groups (flocks or herds), protection and feeling safe might be a reason? Why mercury or water do it...?
Maybe it is here where "animate" and "inanimate" follow the same super-conscious "laws" to create order from chaos..maybe it's the "psychological" equivalent of gravity?
anyway, good to see you so inquisitive and passionate about the Mysteries of Life!
say hi to Miriam for me,


11 February 2015 at 03:53  
Blogger erik said...

and also, ofcourse: why is it all so beautiful? If it would be "un-conscious" that is...

11 February 2015 at 04:04  
Blogger LizBet said...

oh and it is something I have always wondered about, subways and people and flocks of birds, and the lovely movement, always assumed it was down to energy :)

2 March 2015 at 10:45  
Blogger LizBet said...

hey my first comment didn't show, like the theme and the conversation look forward to the rest

2 March 2015 at 10:46  
Blogger Martin Winer said...

Hi Guys, great discussion. How about how proteins fold. You see most people think life is reduced to DNA. It can be thought of in that sense but the flat proteins that come out of a ribosome quickly fold intricately and the 3d structure they form is key to their operation. I'd say that DNA is agnostic to the 3d proteins it's forming so in this sense, proteins are an emergent behaviour of DNA, RNA and protein synthesis.

16 March 2017 at 14:51  
Blogger Martin Winer said...

I'm pretty sure you'd have both seen something like this:

16 March 2017 at 14:54  
Blogger Dale Lehman said...

Peter Wadhams thinks it still possible to limit effects of
human induced warming. Professor James G. Anderson, Harvard, also but only if we act immediately. He told an audience at UChicago that when past level of atmospheric CO2 existed at today's levels,"The ocean was running almost 10ºC warmer all the way to the bottom than it is today," ...."and the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere would have meant that storm systems would be violent in the extreme, because water vapor, which is an exponential function of water temperature, is the gasoline that fuels the frequency and intensity of storm systems."

People have the misapprehension that we can recover from this state just by reducing carbon emissions.... Recovery is all but impossible,.... without a World War II-style transformation of industry—an acceleration of the effort to halt carbon pollution and remove it from the atmosphere, and a new effort to reflect sunlight away from the earth's poles.

This has do be done, Anderson added, within the next five years.

Recommend you interview him,
Dale Lehman

5 September 2018 at 12:16  

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