In my first discussion on tautolomemes (1) I
touch on the fairly obvious idea that each individual in fact has their
[sic] own set of transition matrices. Another obvious extension of this
is that each individual would have a sub-inventory for each memetic
cohort of which they [sic] are a member. Of late I have been
re-examining some ideas I had about ideo-memetic systems,
how they act as an interface between the inner emotional economy and
the outside world, and how the "consciousness" (2) is the environment,
or rather, the expression of the operation of this ideo-memetic system. Furthermore, the failure
of this internal system to "synchronize" or pass information back and
forth (4) between the inner economy (3) and the outside world represents
a psychic break.
Complexity and Normalcy
can imagine an extra layer of transition matrices, i.e., an
ideo-memetic system, which is unique to the given individual. One
implication is that there be ideo-MIAOplexes which may be composed of
MIAOs and MIAOplexes which make up the set of ideo-memes available to the conscious mind and the combination (MIAO bonding
or MIAOplex formation) which prunes down the set of available memes to
an ideo-memetic sub-system. People suffering from psychoses or organic
brain disorders may have to construct some extremely complex MIAOs to
"explain" their brain economy to the conscious. This could manifest as
paranoia, exaggerated anxiety associated with largely unreal
associations (aliens, the FBI, et al are out to get me, etc.). Even
religions or other such supernatural belief systems involve an inner
collection of complex rules and objects to allow the individual to make
contact to outer reality, e.g., feeling shame, fear, etc., around things
which are not naturally such, attributing events to non-existant
factors such as magic or the action of "dieties", and so on, thereby
allowing memetic transitions to be made internally.
so individuals are expected to react in a certain way in order to be a
member of a given cohort, i.e., respond in a certain way to given memes.
Presumably most people settle into an "easy" set of responses, i.e.,
the computation of which memes to deploy in response to incoming memes
having very little need for translation, i.e., a simple network (5).
However, a person with mental challenges or coming from an alien culture
and trying to adapt, for example, may have to develop a fairly complex
ideo-memetic system in order to interface with the mainstream.
One theory is that the inner economy cannot be arbitrarily changed, perhaps not at all, perhaps only with difficulty.
this have implications for memetic engineering? Is it possible to
understand the ideomemetic systems of sub-cohorts, and make it easier
(or more difficult...!) for them to interface with the mainstream,
without having to modify the memetic profile of the mainstream itself,
i.e., without having to memetically "reprogram" the majority?
given memetic system has a defined set of transition matrices, each of
which represents a memetic state, which are the columns in these
transition matrices, with the rows representing the memes which are
available for deployment in that given state (describing the graph of
possible transitions to other states). The collection of all of these
matrices describes the graph of all memetic pathways of a memeplex (6),
i.e., the transition matrix of a given state corresponds to a vertex on a
directed graph of the whole memeplex.
Okay, this we know, but how do ideomemeplexes fit in, i.e., how do we represent them graphically
(and formulaically)? An individual trying to interface with a memeplex
must meet the requirement of enacting some acceptable meme in response
to an incoming meme from outside. This is clearly a matrix operation
This may be an exciting realization, since it may answer some tough questions about selection/optimization and also in issues of education and corrections/reform. How do individuals decide which memes to deploy? How do people learn
how to interact with a given megamemeplex, i.e., a culture? If
everybody has their [sic] own ideomemeplex, then their memetic inventory
vis-a-vis the external megamemeplex differs from person to person,
which potentially resolves troubling race conditions (7) which crop up
in the simple graph theoretical model of memeplexes and state
Ideomemeplexes, in my
original conception, provide an elegant model of and explanation for
psychic breaks, or how individuals lose touch with reality, or indeed,
how they manage to maintain it in the teeth of the ponderous
contradictions and inconsistencies present in most naturally-evolved
megamemeplexes (cultures, societies, religions, business organizations,
governments, etc.). This also has implications for the practice of
teaching and learning, and also the genesis of some antisocial behaviors
and how to correct them.
far from being limited to the modeling of psychoses and mental illness
(or fanaticism, such as religions, etc.) and otherwise unnecessary to
explain the macromemtic behavior of "normal" individuals, may provide a
fundamental solution to the race conditions and optimization problems
inherent in the simple matrix model of memetic states in memeplexes.
This solution may be thought of as deriving from the "extra network
layer" (11) provided by the ideomemetic matrix, i.e., the network is
more flexible and "intelligent".
The details of the
ideomemetic system of an individual very well may be accessible for
study via standard "memetic hacking" techniques, i.e., interviews
conducted in a private and "safe" setting. Further, despite the name,
ideomemetic systems may be largely shared by large groups, e.g.,
alcoholics in Alcoholics Anonymous share a large set of memes in the
form of "slogans" and "stories" and of course religious fanatics share
the tenets of whatever cult they're a member of, and in both cases these
memes and MIAOs are altogether alien to outsiders.
may actually be a bad example, or perhaps a very interesting one. The
more compatible a submemeplectic context (such as an AA meeting or a
religious service of a given cult) is compatible with the individual's
own ideomemeplex, the more comfortable the individual will tend to be
with the environment, i.e., they [sic] will require less energy to make
the required memetic transactions. This may have direct bearing on the
study of the formation and dynamics of subcultures, e.g., hipster, nerd,
religions, etc., and how this may actually relate to brain physiology.
occurs to me that my earlier idea of doing a memetic analysis on the
media (8), similar to Noam Chomsky's analysis of messages during the
Vietnam War Era in Manufacturing Consent, might work well
starting from a high-level analysis of MIAOs, possibly identifying
MIAOplexes, and the memes associated with those MIAOs, i.e., appearing
in proximity thereto. This suggests a theory of MIAOplex Formation or MIAO bonding.
This could potentially evince actual transition matrices (9), and even
lead to the "automatic story writing" machines envisaged by George
Orwell in 1984. Once a memetic model of a story setting were
constructed, and the ideomemetic matrices of characters (some of which
may be novel), it might be possible to "run the simulation" forward,
possible with selected starting conditions, and "write" a new story in
the same style, or a "fanfic". Again, we may be approaching Asimov's
"psychohistory" (10) from The Foundation Trilogy.
(1) "state-the-obvious" memes, or memes where no challenge may be reasonably mounted to the contents. Other such memes include complainomemes,
and "pretending not to understand" memes. These kinds of memes are
"unassailable", and thus provide a reliable memetic reward ("payoff" or
(2) whatever the hell that means...!
the inner economy is effectively the low-level wiring of the brain from
which the "consciousness", or the platform able to support memetic
transitions emerges. This "platform" may be subject to instabilities due
to mental illness, extreme stress, etc.
like gearing ratios in a mechanical systems, or "impedence matching" in
electrical ones. Failure to match power input and output can result in
total energy loss or destructive explosions. My memetic description of
the breakdown of the conscious "mind" and the ideo-memetic system
"running" on it to be able to convert back and forth between the outside
world stimuli and the internal economy (3) of the brain is what
constitutes a "psychotic break".
(5) This could be a
major area of study and research. The formation of memetic systems could
be partly driven by the predispositions of the minds making up the
memetic fabric upon which the memeplex operates, i.e., whatever memetic
pathways and transitions are most "efficient", whatever this means.
which is in principle infinite in extent in both dimensions, but in
practice limited to a finite number of states and memes since most memes' influence is too weak in any given state, and the probability of reaching most other states is very small.
If everybody in a memetic deployment decision juncture has an identical
memetic inventory and an identical probability vector for each
(combined with a decision time vector), then it becomes a race as to who
deploys first, and also it will always be the same meme (the one
with the highest probability), which is clearly not the case, and is
therefor vexing for the graph theory of memeplexes. That is, the system
is woefully "divergent", so to speak. The reality we hope to model is
more along the lines of the same (usually powerful) people tending to
deploy, and usually from the same subset of memes, everybody deploying
memes from the allowed set but with differing distributions, and it
being almost always being clear which person is going to deploy at a given juncture, i.e., no "jinx events" or collisions. Ideomemetic systems may solve the conundrum.
(8) I had originally thought of using a few scripts of Sex and the City.
One theoretical question mark is the "MIAO granularity" of MIAOplexes,
i.e., do memetic inventories shift around based on which MIAOs in a
MIAOplex are in play at the given deployment juncture? In short, is
there any way to build the transition matrices other than textual
analysis of which memes are present in conjunction with which MIAO(s),
and the sequences in which they appear? This presents a completeness
problem which may not converge well even for extensive texts, and may
have provability issues. However, one could start with the set of all
combinations of MIAOs crossed with the set of all memes (12), prune all
rows and columns which are "ridiculous," and then one is left with the
set of all memetic transitions which actually appear in the text, plus additional transitions which are "plausible" and which may have significant predictive value. More on this later...
Isaac Asimov's character, Hari Seldon, was a professor who had
developed a theory called "psychohistory" which allowed one to predict
with great accuracy the future behavior of large numbers of people (the
larger, the more accurate). Among other things, he predicted (correctly)
the decline and fall of the Galactic Empire of which he was a citizen,
and was able to take action, namely creation of "The Foundation" prior
to the collapse.
(11) Known as the "hidden layer" in network theory.
(12) I want to explore a theory of MIAO bonding, or MIAOplex Formation,
which promises to enormously simplify the construction of transition
matrices as well as the enumeration of the memes making up the inventory
of a memeplex. The idea is that all memes in a memeplex are attached to
some MIAO or other, or rather, that any meme is attached to (at least)
one MIAO, and that the combination of MIAOs which may be identified as
part of memeplex "contribute" their memes to that memeplex's memetic
inventory. Thus, by identifying (all of) the MIAOs in a memeplex (13),
one can elaborate the memetic inventory of the memeplex (16).
More precisely, the MIAOs recognized by the cohort determined to be
inured of the memeplex under study. This might seem like circular logic,
but I don't believe it is. Rather than analyzing memes, one focuses on MIAOs, many of which may be well-studied elsewhere, e.g., co-opted from other memeplexes (14)(15).
For example, the Christian co-opting of the German Weinnachtesbaum
(Christmas Tree), the Mormons co-option of the Catholic Jesus, American
borrowing of the English language and Common Law from the British,
creative leitmotifs in art forms such as film, television, painting,
sculpture, the Japanese borrowing of Chinese (and American) culture and
(15) Other similar concepts
to Co-option are trans-pairing and accretion. I still need to elaborate
all of these and define them rigorously (in terms of matrix operations,
etc.), but they are all ways in which memes attach to MIAOs.
One question is whether this process, i.e., MIAO bonding, brings in all
of the memes of all of the MIAOs, or only those which are shared among
them, or something more complex. The second one seems problematic.
Perhaps there is some further process where memes are removed (or even added) which we might term meme paring (as opposed to "pairing").
模倣子 Memetic Essays - Memetic Index