16. Collaborative, Concurrent Complex Systems

They may apparently obey certain real world rules at certain times but they may bleach these rules when no one is looking.

    We have seen production systems like F:X-->Y, represented by a set of 'IF [input x,...] THEN [output y,...]' rules or a certain f(x)-->y function. Let pretend now that we live in a real world where we have many different production systems running in (roughly) the same place at (roughly) the same time. All systems work to satisfy their own (self) interest. They make sure they get their input even when they have to buy, beg, steal or borrow in order to produce their expected output (which may be a set of several changes) in this real world environment. By being in the real world, somehow these systems inter-depend on each other. They interact collaboratively if there are certain mutual benefits to them. They may avoid interactions with certain other systems to reduce risk or complexity or time or some resources. They may interact competitively in legal manners or otherwise. They may apparently obey certain real world rules at certain times but they may bleach these rules when no one is looking. They may form a collaborative group (or a cartel) to maximize their benefits. They may leave their group(s) at any time when the benefits are no longer worth their while (investment costs).

    We may be a tad cynical to include systems of predators and preys. For examples corrupt officials and businessmen; middlemen and farmers; 'queue' (setters) and workers;...  We can see some preys' problems (some are yet to reveal). In our righteous and kind ways, we would learn and solve some preys' problems and help preys to flourish. But, helping preys makes predators prosper too. [By analogy, helping the poor makes the rich wealthier.]

    We can go on and write about these (currently over 6 billions) real complex systems in this (one) real world. [I would have a job writing for a few millions lifetimes.] But, we will do the sensible things, we will categorize (classify) them into a few categories (classes), like we do to classify objects, plants and animals, of 'similar' or 'like' characters (systems, inputs, rules and behaviours, outputs,... ). [Do we analyze or synthesize? Or do we analyze objects' characters so we can synthesize them into categories? ...]

[pictures of complex interactions -- web of relations among objects in classes: a) tree (roots, trunk, branches) b) leaf veins showing equal supply distribution]

    We can do better than that. We can put tags on objects (such as name, date of birth, {uses},...) and categories. We should note that objects in a category are tagged with all the labels for that category (as objects in a category must have all known characters of that category). But objects have at least one tag more than tags for the category (this tag differentiates between object a and object b). Some objects are related (twins/sharing storage/smaller/older/...) to other objects. We can also see that some objects may be used in some functions, some are used in different functions and some are spares. Just as people compete for different roles, positions, status and number of tags, objects too must prove their fittest by collecting 'useful tags' (like durable, recycle-easy,...). We can agree in general that these tags are either 'essential' 'conditions' which combine to produce 'desired' 'effects' for 'us' (either directly or as a ripple effect). We can rewrite relationships among objects as a collection of "IF {tags} THEN {tags}" where some tags may be in the form of "IF {tags} THEN {tags}" or some collections of tags. Suffice to say that at some points we end up with some connected networks of tags of objects -- complex systems of links or relationships. More interesting is these systems are changing characters and interdependencies concurrently -- not necessary to serve us and -- not actually under our control (anicca, dukkha, annatta). Think about it -- we do all that to family and friends all the time.

Let's see what our farmer friends are doing about complexity.

Some farmers have chosen to focus on one crop only. They start the process at a certain time of the year by preparing the land and killing weeds and micro-organisms in the soil. Then they plant, irrigate, fertilize and protect the crop from various attacks. Their aim is to maximise profit or produce. They try to control all factors (input, method, output,...) to remove risks and uncertainties. Competition is likely suppressed, so sharing and cooperating are rare. The process runs eventually to harvest which returns the fruit of investment and ends the process for one iteration. This process, a closed controlled iterative static (CCIS) process, is repeated again and again in much the same way.

Other farmers have chosen diversity and plant many crops to best fit characters of the soil, the water and available nutrients and so on. They have to interact with crops and other factors and learn more about them all the time. They may have to work longer in more varying activities to tend to different crops at different times. They harvest crops and receive incomes at various times. They may dream about 'self-perpetuating' farms where many crops grow in community, produce and die like the crops' wild counterparts do in natural forests. Because of the high amount of knowledge and work, competition is less likely but sharing and cooperating are more likely. This open guided evolving dynamic (OGED) process runs on without restarting as in CCIS.

These farming practices typify two extreme processes. Both can unravel complexity. CCIS works by reduction and simplification of parts and tight control. OGED works with interdependencies among parts, tending them at times of need and (understanding then) adapting (rather than controlling) for long-term health of the whole system.

Are we crops or farmers? As a web of learners and given a choice, which process do we prefer and why?

<NB> Taxonomy Tax*on"o*my (t[a^]ks*[o^]n"[-o]*m[y^]), n. [Gr. ta`xis an arrangement, order + no`mos a law.]
1. That division of the natural sciences which treats of the classification of animals and plants, primarily by consideration of their natural relationships with respect to their structure or genetic origin; the laws or principles of classification; systematics. [1913 Webster]
2. A systematic arrangement of objects or concepts showing the relations between them, especially one including a hierarchical arrangement of types in which categories of objects are classified as subtypes of more abstract categories, starting from one or a small number of top categories, and descending to more specific types through an arbitrary number of levels. An ontology usually contains a taxonomy as one of the important principles of organization. [1913 Webster]
    taxonomy N. วิทยาศาสตร์หรือเทคนิคเกี่ยวกับการแบ่งประเภท relate:[การจัดแบ่งสิ่งมีชีวิตออกเป็นกลุ่มต่างๆ] syn:[classification; nomenclature] [Lexitron2]

<NB>  Complex Com"plex (k[o^]m"pl[e^]ks), a. [L. complexus, p. p. of complecti to entwine around, comprise; com- + plectere to twist, akin to plicare to fold. See Plait, n.]
1. Composed of two or more parts; composite; not simple; as, a complex being; a complex idea.[1913 Webster]
Ideas thus made up of several simple ones put together, I call complex; such as beauty, gratitude, a man, an army, the universe. --Locke. [1913 Webster]
2. Involving many parts; complicated; intricate. [1913 Webster] Complex fraction. Fraction.

Complex number in the theory of numbers, an expression of the form a + b[root]-1, when a and b are ordinary integers. Syn: See Intricate. [1913 Webster]

    Complex Com"plex, n. [L. complexus] Assemblage of related things; collection; complication. [1913 Webster]
This parable of the wedding supper comprehends in it the whole complex of all the blessings and privileges exhibited by the gospel. --South. [1913 Webster]
Complex of lines all the possible straight lines in space being considered, the entire system of lines which satisfy a single relation constitute a complex; as, all the lines which meet a given curve make up a complex.
The lines which satisfy two relations constitute a congruency of lines; as, the entire system of lines, each one of which meets two given surfaces, is a congruency. [1913 Webster]
   complex N. ความคิดหรือกิจกรรมที่สัมพันธ์กัน ADJ. ซับซ้อน syn:[complicated; involved] ant:[simple] ADJ. ที่ประกอบด้วยสองส่วนขึ้นไป [Lexitron2]

<NB> Interaction In`ter*ac"tion, n.
1. Intermediate action. [1913 Webster]
2. Mutual or reciprocal action or influence; as, the interaction of the heart and lungs on each other. [1913 Webster]
3. Hence: (Physics) The effect, such as exertion of a force, that one object exerts on another, especially the capture or emission of a particle.
4. Communication between people, or the actions of people that affect others.
    interaction N. ปฏิกิริยา relate:[การมีปฏิสัมพันธ์, การสื่อสารระหว่างกัน, การทำงานร่วมกัน] syn:[collaboration; interplay; synergy] [Lexitron2]

<NB> Cooperation is a particular subset of Interaction. Before we can work together we have to interact with each other ;) .

This challenge is a couple geography trick questions (asked by a 10 years old in Mid-Northern Thailand)
     เราอยู่ที่ไหน ถ้าอยู่เหนือ ...สวรรค์ แต่ใต้ ...โลก
     ตะพานอะไร อยู่ระหว่าง ...โลก และ ...สวรรค์

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