Friday, January 27, 2017

Flash back pause : Ken's hierarchy of systems

1. Frameworks. The geography and anatomy of the universe : the patterns of electrons around a nucleus, the pattern of atoms in a molecular formula, the arrangement of atoms in a crystal, the anatomy of the gene, the mapping of the earth, etc.
2. Clockworks. The solar system or simple machines such as the lever and the pulley, even quite complicated machines like steam engines and dynamos fall mostly under this category.
3. Thermostats. Control Mechanisms or Cybernetic Systems : the system will move to the maintenance of any given equilibrium, within limits.
4. Cells. Open systems or self-maintaining structures. This is the level at which life begins to differentiate itself from not life.
5. Plants. The outstanding characteristics of these systems (studied by the botanists) are first, a division of labor with differentiated and mutually dependent parts (roots, leaves, seeds, etc.), and second, a sharp differentiation between the genotype and the phenotype, associated with the phenomenon of equifinal or "blueprinted" growth. 
6. Animals. Level characterized by increased mobility, teleological behavior and self-awareness, with the development of specialized 'information receptors (eyes, ears, etc.) leading to an enormous increase in the intake of information.
7. Human Beings. In, addition to all, or nearly all, of the characteristics of animal systems man possesses self consciousness, which is something different from mere awareness.
8. Social Organizations. The unit of such systems is not perhaps the person but the "role" - that part of the person which is concerned with the organization or situation in question. Social organizations might be defined as a set of roles tied together with channels of communication. 
9. Trascendental Systems. The ultimates and absolutes and the inescapable unknowables, that also exhibit systematic structure and relationship. 

Beware cloud 9 !!!