What Ideonomy Can Do

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Help Describe the Individuality of A Thing

Science, scholarship, people in general, and the entire course of civilization might all be said to exhibit a biphasic tendency or cycle: at first they are sophomoric (like wise morons) and then they graduate to being morosophic (like moronic wisemen). (The difference is academic.)

Thus initially science and individual scientists discount, disregard, neglect, or deny the possible or actual individuality of the phenomena, entities, and even systems they treat. That is, differences between and peculiarities of things are forgotten about and the things are treated, conceived, or even perceived as being: similar, analogous, or identical, homogeneous, universal, abstract, perfect, interchangeable, symmetric, equivalent, simple, time-invariant, uniform, average, individually uninteresting, convergent or at least nondivergent, etc.

There are many reasons why this is done: The treatment gives great and undeniable power. It approximates to the truth. It simplifies methods, procedures, thought, teaching, communication, and the set of investigations being conducted by different scientists elsewhere in space and time. It leads to remarkable insights. General patterns, laws, and phenomena can be discerned. Science is able to profit from complex standardization. Important facts can be extracted or separated from those which are relatively trivial. A heartwarming illusion of absolute certainty, understanding, universality, perfection and finality of knowledge, unity and simplicity of topic, community of labors, etc can be and is created.

But there are hazards, costs, and fallacies to this dismissal of individuality: Things may possess at once nomothetic and idiographic aspects. Both may be important or necessary for understanding - or for that wisdom which is higher than knowledge or even understanding. Both may have their separate interest, meaning, and value. Research into both may not have to be competitive or antagonistic; combined and multipurpose approaches may be possible, or - if determinedly sought - a slow development of parallel tools, methods, inquiries, and theories, even ones that, if they involve tradeoffs at all, nonetheless gain in the net from synergisms. If the simultaneous pursuit of both aspects of the world or its phenomena is not efficient, then perhaps what would be most efficient of all would be some sort of regular or opportunistic alternation over time between what are really not so much opposite as complementary approaches. Research purely into individuality or purely into universality may give rise to invidious half-truths or to progressive, and perhaps ultimately fatal, fallacies; conceivably half-truths are not even truths at all, or are more in the nature of negative truths - of nonsense, quasi-truths, inversions of truth, antitheses of truth, or evil truths. Perhaps opposites meet and the universality and individuality of things are in some higher sense equivalent or interdetermined: to find and describe what is universal about a given thing one may have to, implicitly or explicitly, find and describe what makes it unique or distinct from others of its kind; and, paradoxically, to find and describe what makes it special one may have to uncover, comprehend, and integrate its syncategorematic universality or 'selflessness'. Certainly consciousness of both aspects of things may be mentally stimulating and sanifying, or what is ideal for the mind's long-term development and fullness of power.

Even if the actual individuality of a thing is minimal, and perhaps even if it is something that with the progress of science must endlessly diminish, it may in a residual form or sense remain critical to what the thing is, to how the thing behaves, to the problem for science that the thing represents, or to the definition or description of the thing's universality.

Certain scientists may find it easier to describe, understand, and work with the idiosyncrasies of things rather than with the large-scale and transcendent regularities of phenomena; whereas other scientists may be the opposite way. Attempting to force all scientists into a single, procrustean mold of any type could be fallacious and sacrificial of mankind's supreme talent - for diversity.

Likewise the surveyal of nature brings to light classes of phenomena for which diversity and individuality is the rule rather than the exception - just as for other broad classes of phenomena the opposite habit seems to prevail, as though individuality were irrelevant, unwelcome, or impossible. More precisely, there is a spectrum of all degrees of favor for either individuality or universality.

On the other hand, there may be a fundamental fallacy in the reduction or conceptualization of individuality and universality in terms of a single index or dimension or in a single sense. Thus a thing might be universal or lacking in individuality in one sense, and yet be riotously individual in some other, related or quite orthogonal, sense. The number of possible or actual senses and dimensions, that are relevant or essential to the description of the "individuality and universality" of things in nature, may be infinite or inexhaustible, and a source of many intellectual errors.

By enumerating the ways in which conspecific things differ individually or inter se, not only may limits be imposed upon scientific laws and rules that have the paradoxical effect of strengthening them by excluding or systematizing their exceptions, but new and additional laws and rules may be discovered that are defined or intimated by the very universalities and regularities of the noted individualities, oddities, irregularities, and variabilities of things. Conversely, inattention to the latter can mask the additional laws and rules.

Sometimes it is precisely the individuality and diversity of things that the scientist, technologist, scholar, or artist wishes to find, create, or exploit - or that he should aim for.

Particle physicists may recreate a single type of particle or particle interaction unnumbered times for no other reason than to see if they can flush out a corpuscular "black sheep" that indicates the existence of a novel phenomenon, force, relationship, or entity.

A mathematician may seek to conceive of a forbidden object whose existence within a class of objects would supply a counterexample able to confute a rival mathematician's theory.

A sufficiently 'individualistic' gene may perhaps be one that is also fertile for bioengineering.

The most individualistic men and women may constitute that set of persons who are the most apt to have or develop genius; where individualism flourishes genius may flourish, and prosperity of the former may prosper the latter. If individualism is the key to genius, what then is the key to individualism, or the set of ways in which it might be maximized?

Medicine and psychiatry try to heal individual human beings - but not as individuals. Rather they postulate and seek to treat a fictional 'universal man'--some sort of normal (or normally abnormal), mean, modal, standard, archetypical, idealized, frequent, or abstract human being who has few or no counterparts in the real world and who differs radically from a random person.

Despite the profound limitations of present-day biological and medical knowledge, we already know that two persons drawn at random from a milling crowd will differ greatly in the size, shape, location, and function of their respective internal organs, in the operation, dynamics, and interdependences of their major and minor bodily systems, in their biochemical pathways, processes, and indexes, in their physiological needs and capacities, and in their reactions to drugs, foods, and therapies.

Even diseases themselves have different forms and expressions in each and every individual.

The enormous variability of human bodies and minds makes diagnosis imprecise, treatments crude and chancy-and apt to backfire, learning from practice difficult, and the progress of public health slow.

By studying health and disease in individual human beings much of value to medicine and biology might be learned. Persons more than ordinarily, or who are maximally, susceptible to particular diseases might provide superior clues to just exactly what it is that the diseases do, or to what their mechanisms and effects are or are in toto. Why after all study disease in relatively resistant or immune persons where the powers and manifestations of the disease are reduced, obscured, or hard to know? On the other hand, individuals less than normally, or minimally, suspectible to a disease might furnish the best clues to what fights and limits the abnormality, and to potential methods and means for medically combating it. Then again, persons responding to diseases in qualitatively unusual or unique ways could be a veritable gold mine of hints about how the disease will change and evolve in mankind over future years, to the past history and evolutionary homologies (or general origin) of the ailment, to the essence and physiology of the disease, to its marginal pathology (or symptomatology), to the possible therapeutic weaknesses of the malady, etc.

Moreover, it might be discovered that there are types of diseases that are limited in their incidence to but a single human being. Perhaps a person simultaneously has many such idiosyncratic diseases, and they must be considered in defining his basal health. Then again, diseases of this sort might actually constitute latent epidemic diseases and per se supply hints about diseases that will or could emerge on a societal scale in years to come or if environmentally triggered.

If the abstract space of all possible, or of all actual, diseases can be filled in by comprehensive surveys of the individual diseases and pathology of individuals, then there might be surprising benefits: theoretical insights into the nature of all disease; recognition that the bases and patterns of diseases are of a profoundly overlapping, concinnous, complementary, symmetric, interdependent, or convergent nature--or even holistically simple, systematic, lawful, canonical, rational, or predictable; and discovery and exploitation of methods, means, and rules for treating whole sets of diseases at once or cooperatively.

If understanding can be arrived at as to how a single person--or that vast society of organs, cells, systems, processes, functions, and events that the body of an individual represents--is constantly and inevitably becoming ill, and then becoming well, in myriad ways and senses, this might lead to a much fuller, clearer, truer, and more useful grasp of human disease.

As for individuality in still other fields: how do we know that our galaxy, the Milky Way, is really as normal or typical as we assume it to be? To answer the question we must study the individuality both of it and of other galaxies, including those galaxies that convention would assume are of the same type or maximally alike to it. We must actually demonstrate, or get a comprehensive and deep measure, of the absolute --and relative--similarity.

Perhaps the same situation obtains with galaxies as now appears to with human bodies, and galaxies are in reality, so to say, typically atypical, or at least are so much more diverse and individual than has hitherto been assumed that all talk about "a normal galaxy" or "normal (much less universal) behavior of a galaxy" is absurdly premature or misleading. The more appropriate and humble first step may be to simply determine the degree and form of the typical atypicality of galaxies, or the set of standard types of atypicality.

The history of science is replete with examples of cases where that which is most familiar, local, contemporary, accessible, traditional, oneself or like oneself (or judged to be like oneself), etc is ex officio wrongly and harmfully assumed to also be: average, normal, archetypical, necessary, universal, representative, eternal, known, 'random', healthy, all-sufficient, or the like.

It was said above that science and so much else repeatedly go from a sophomoric phase of wise moronity to an enantiomorphically equivalent morosophic phase of moronic sagacity. What that means in the present case is essentially that the scholar starts with a brash ignorance of the individuality of things and concludes his professional career with a cowardly or habitual ignorance of that same individuality.

Diverse examples of things that might be treated individually or idiographically include: organisms (bionts), persons, minds, human acts, cells, organelles, molecules (as opposed to entire molecular species), universes (sic), industrial goods, scientific instruments, natural phenomena, physical events, sensa, life 'moments' or instants, performances of musical works; genes, genomes, phenes, or phenotypes; sentences, photons, pathogens, readings of the same book (by the same or different individuals), stars, galaxies, repeated havings of the same disease (such as influenza) by the same individual, physical injuries (medically), tellings of a story, single data points (sic), days of a lifetime, neuronal events or action potentials, single means, agricultural crops, 'pieces' of fruit (e.g. individual apples), learning ('events of'), musical notes (soundings of), etc.

By studying these diverse examples many typical surprises about the individuality of things generally would automatically be found, and ever afterwards these could play a role in investigations into individuality. Powerful associations, and complex but specific modes of reasoning, would build up around the primary concepts they would represent.

Improve Industrial Goods

The potential applications of ideonomy to industry are many and various, and its long-term industrial impact will be enormous.

Some of the ways in which industrial goods can be improved, and will in fact be improved by ideonomy, are: Their standards can be raised and made more uniform; They can be made more individual and unique; They can be stripped of superfluous, redundant, inessential, contradictory, accidental, and other unwanted elements; They can be made safer and less harmful; They can be made more beneficial, useful, desirable, convenient, appropriate, multipurpose, etc; They can be made more efficient, economical, and productive; They can be made simpler, more elegant, and easier to use; They can be made more charming, beautiful, and inspired; Their design can be freed of errors and fallacies; They can be made less destructible, more enduring, and more reliable; They can be made more encompassing and diverse; They can be made more complex and multidimensional; They can be made more evolved qua themselves or per their function or promise; They can be integrated better with some or all other goods; They can be made to realize to a greater degree the full possibilities of life, civilization, science, and technology; They can reflect deeper insights into human nature; Etc.

To understand how ideonomy would go to work here, consider as a representative industrial good the automobile:

Ideonomy could generate ideas by looking at the historic variation and evolution of the car in an unprecedently comprehensive, broad, precise, fundamental, imaginative, critical, classificatory and comparisonal, conceptual and cognitive, complex, synthetic, heterodox, etiological, matric, vergent, processual, hierarchical, decompositional, etc., way.

It could identify all of the present and possible future functions, roles, uses, elements, and aspects of a 'car'. It could suggest all of the ways to perfect, extend, extrapolate, generalize, transform, combine, synergize, and supplement them.

It could examine all of the meaningful, contrasting, and revelatory ways to define, describe, logicize, and reconceptualize the automobile. "What are all the good and bad things about a car?" it might ask. "What are all automotive problems, defects, and limitations, and all possible solutions and answers thereto?"

"What diapason of other industrial goods and services could be pointfully hybridized with the 'car'?"

"What are all recognized and unrecognized quantitative and qualitative dimensions for evaluating cars?"

"How can all actual and possible automotive properties, features, concepts, and dimensions be systematically and rigorously interlinked to generate and explore the infinite canonical idea space of all possible 'cars' and future automotive scenarios? What gaps and truncated ranges in that Pegasean space correspond to the existential and imaginative poverty of the present?"

Inevitably it would draw on its systematic and encyclopedic knowledge of generic and specific principles, paradoxes, and other bits of wisdom.

For example, the principle that so-called or apparent progress is often illusory or retrogressive--if applied to automotive progress--might elicit the thought that the quest for ever greater speed could be mistaken, or bad in a net sense, because the enjoyment of scenery is inversely proportional to one's rate of travel through the scenery.

Another principle applicable here is that a monotonic function is often fallaciously assumed to have an infinite range, when in fact its range is finite, and the actual relationship between the things in question is nonmonotonic beyond that range: the point being that above a certain speed the enjoyability of scenery with additional speed may remain flat or even increase (although with the sense in which the environment can be enjoyed being very different), or sit at zero.

A further paradoxical principle that might be relevant would be to the effect that often what a thing mainly is, or is mainly celebrated for being, is not what the thing really ought to be or ought to be thought of as being; and that the former may be hiding the latter. Then again, what a thing is celebrated for being may not actually be what the thing mainly is, involves, or allows. So much of the time and effort that is spent in driving a car, for example, may be boringly repetitive, and perhaps there should be comprehensive research to think of ways to reduce the repetition or its boring character, say by introducing technology that deliberately varies the parametric characteristics of driving over time and thereby reintroduces the elements of novelty and challenge that have been lost. Possibly most time spent in cars is passenger rather than driver time- certainly a large part of it is-and for that reason the automobile should be redesigned to serve mainly the needs, interests, and possibilities of passengers, and to insure that their time on Earth is not wasted.

Point To Infinities

Infinities--whether real or merely apparent--occur throughout science or abstract thought, and their systematic discovery and characterization is profoundly important. If there are no limits, or no known limits, to things, then that should be known--if just because the erroneous supposition of limits can inhibit inquiry, imagination, and the funding of research, and can misdirect investigations. Then again, ignorance of limits that do in fact exist may not be discoverable until after we have become aware that the existence of infinities has long been unconsciously--though unjustifiably--assumed.

Human and intellectual progress often consist of a march in the direction of some sort of infinity. But this fact, or the nature of the direction, is frequently lost sight of. Whatever reminds mankind of its infinite quests, or facilitates those quests, may therefore be valuable to civilization or to the realization of its destiny and larger possibilities. The image of infinity is a complex--perhaps an infinitely complex--one and hence requires constant elaboration.

Many things are irreducibly coinfinite, in the sense that their infinitude ceases to be perceptible or meaningful whenever they are not considered mutually, reciprocally, or synergistically. On the other hand, many things are of an exactly opposite nature, or irreducibly co-finite, in that they involve limitations that are imperceptible or meaningless when the things are not simultaneously considered or active..

Ideonomy can be used to divide up the set of all actual or possible infinities into fundamental and defined categories, types, and taxons. Things can be put more accurately and meaningfully into their unique or multiple modes, kinds, and domains of infinity. Means can be developed for predicting, explaining, and criticizing such assignments.

Certain things can be shown to be infinite only in a sense, or to be at once finite and infinite in different senses.

Where things belong to the same infinity, this can be used to predict things about, or to draw analogies between, those things.

Different infinities can be derived from one another.

Other undiscovered members of a genus of infinity can be anticipated. Things logically excluded from a genus of infinity can be indicated.

Ways to test or promote the infinitude of things can be devised.

The relative importance of, and best order in which to investigate, different infinities can be suggested.

Sometimes things are 'infinite', not in an absolute, but in a relative sense. Yet indicating such relative infinities can be equally important.

The properties and behavior of things may change enormously or infinitely on the road to infinity. Certain traits may predictably fail or predictably arise, and these circumstances may be important. It may even be possible to characterize the complex nature of the negative and positive changes that are foreseeable as some quantity or quality tends to become infinite.

Ideonomy could be used to suggest bases for, or consequences of, various human goods or resources tending to become infinite, e.g.: knowledge, wisdom, intelligence, physical power, energy, creativity, sanity, safety, beauty, self-understanding, self-mastery, life, morality, industrial efficiency, human evolution, etc.

It might also help to suggest ways in which the universe may be infinitely: extended in time or space, diverse, complex, accomodating, bizarre, paradoxical, many-dimensioned, dense, hierarchical, etc.

It could be used to suggest what will happen as the future evolution of various sciences - chemistry, biology, physics, mathematics, logic, psychology, geology, etc - continues toward infinity.

Attention to infinity has great power to inspire human beings; it is for the infinite that Eros yearns.

Help Extract Maximum Information From A Single Datum

How much can be learned from a single thing or fact? No one knows! But finding out is important.

No finite limit may exist. The amount deducible from single clues may vary enormously, depending on what the particular clue is and on the nature of that which would be deduced. The value of the clue will also be a function of its context, and it may be fundamentally impossible to circumscribe the context of a thing.

Conceivably with the historical passage of time--or endless progress of science, technology, mathematics, logic, and ideonomy-- it will become possible to say more and more, about more and more, on the basis of a finite amount of, or even of less and less, data, knowledge, or matter.

Certainly this has been the trend in the past. Vast things can now be learned from tiny things in archaeology, biology, physics, mathematics, chemistry, geology, astronomy, and elsewhere. The disproportion is actually a measure of the relative and absolute development of a given area of science or technology. Probably a direct way to force the evolution of a field is to purposefully accelerate the growth of that disproportion. It is a task to which ideonomy by nature Iends itself.

What measurements, quantities, experiments, parts or aspects of things, relationships, interactions, mathematics, methods, instruments, phenomena, etc--either alone or in combination--are appropriate for getting maximal information from a single datum? What imperfections of these things presently exist, and how are they remediable? What is our ignorance of such things, and how can we determine and remove it? How can the foregoing things be maximally extended and generalized?

Among the many reasons for wishing to derive maximal information from a single or given datum, or for being able to, are: Research needs might be minimized; Experimentation, analysis, and synthesis might be shortened; Simpler theory might be possible; Different investigations might be made less redundant; Overall scientific progress might be accelerated; Research less disturbing to the phenomenon, specimen, world, or itself might be possible; Scientific instruments might be made more sensitive; Etc.

Illustrative examples of things from which--and for which--it might be desirable to maximize extracted or extractable information: Recovered stone parts of the tools of man's earliest ancestors (to reconstruct the diet, skills, modes of thought, and mores of the latter); Set of thousands or millions of minor molecular species produced as by-products of a chemical reaction (to more fully understand the complete chemical kinetics of that reaction); One-letter sample of a man's handwriting (to graphologically predict his character); Genome of one biont of a species (to predict the totality of realized or possible polymorphisms of that species, or even the evolutionary course of the species); A man's face (to deduce his character physiognomically); Earth (to deduce from its bios the range of life-forms that might have evolved elsewhere in the universe); The present moment (to predict the future, and retrodict the past, course of human history); A midden (to reconstruct the archaeology of an entire culture, perhaps that vanished without leaving any other surviving trace); Fundamental physical laws and constants (as clues from which to decipher the initial conditions or possible earlier epochs of the universe); Etc.

One reason why it might be possible to deduce an altogether unexpected amount from a single datum is that the datum might have, or else reflect what does have, a fractal, holonomic, recursive, or -'similar' relationship to the whole of a thing or system, so that the apparent complexity of the latter is illusory or the product of some simple but powerful state, operation, law., or the like.

It is desirable to find or produce the most extreme cases of maximal information extractable from a single datum. By studying such extreme cases it may be possible to learn methods and rules for the universal production of maximal knowledge from minimal clues. Also such studies may stimulate the discovery of other and even more extreme cases.

Propose Innovations

There are presumably always new ways of doing things and new things that might be done. Might there be more efficient ways to think of them?

To illustrate the sort of innovations that are possible:

Dates might be written, not in the conventional order "May 15, 1988", but in the most logical order (for a number system that ascends leftward and is notationally irreversible) "1988 May 15" (of millennium, century, decade, year, month, tenth day, day).

Many American holidays have recently been shifted by a few days so as to combine with weekends and minimize disruption of the workweek.

The spelling and pronunciation of English words might be rationalized by making the two wholly consistent. There might be an even grander reform: the across-the-board elimination of redundant letters (and even sounds).

The validity of one's ballot in an election might depend on one's simultaneous ability to answer correctly a minimum number of questions discriminating the views of the different candidates (the qualifying questions being randomly varied for different voters to prevent the bias of organized preparations).

Recently the longevity and spectral excellence of lightbulbs have been reduced in favor of greater energy efficiency. The excellence of lightbulbs involves many competitive dimensions, and innovations are possible in the priority given to the different dimensions.

Ideonomy can enhance the entertainment and adoption of innovations of every kind by identifying all of the actual and possible major and minor dimensions, properties, elements, and laws of things; all of the possible combinations, permutations, substitutions, inversions, transformations, systems, and structures thereof; and all of the actual and possible reasons and functions therefor. Obviously nothing like this has ever been done before, and it itself would represent a stupendous innovation.

The mere occurrence of innovations stimulates innovations. Should ideonomy stimulate widespread innovation it will cause much innovation simply as a result of such chain reactions. Innovations are clues to other possible innovations, they necessitate complementary and adjustive innovations, and they demonstrate the important fact that the world is not as old as it perhaps thinks and that it still has room and need for changes, novelties, and revolutions.

From the ideonomic and 'combinatorial' perspective nature, civilization and the mind are flabbergastingly young and unformed, and permit an infinity of alterations, transformations, and improvements--of discoveries, creations, substitutions, rearrangements, reorderings, transvaluations, enrichments, syntheses, reconceptualizations, supplementations, intercalations, inversions, redirections, augmentations, superimpositions, transcendences, derivations, simplifications, corrections, inspirations, sophistications, inventions, and inceptions--of experiments, explorations, and adventures.

If ideonomy can not only make mankind believe this but actually show that this is so, then it may parent a new age unprecedented in the history of the world for the universality, extremity, reach, enlightenment, purposefulness, ease, and eternality of its innovation.

Accentuate Intelligence

Human intelligence depends far more greatly upon experience than has been suggested, but in a way, and for a reason, that has never been imagined.

The great interest of ideonomy is to discover those supremely fundamental, simple, irredundant, comprehensive, and consequential elements of nature, existence, and the mind whose 'divine' interplay gives rise to and explains all else or might be used to create infinities or remake the universe or assumed reality.

What are the elements and elementary processes with which we think, perceive, feel, communicate, and act? What are they in their ultimate decomposition or when perfectly systematized? What are they, stripped of all else that is secondary and derived?

If we can discover and grasp such things we can employ them to utterly remake the mind, to increase its efficiency and powers beyond calculation, and perhaps to create a world teeming with geniuses.

Such a thing will be possible because knowledge of the elements and elementary processes underlying physical and mental reality will enable us to fundamentally, totally, systematically, and purposefully reconstruct human experience and the environments in which we live and develop.

By thus recasting the matrix of existence, and by differentiating it in a variety of directions, we will gain access to the infinite inherent plasticity and pIuripotentiality of the mind; by synthesizing new environments and experiences we will be able to synthesize new, higher, and endlessly variegated minds.

The point is that until now the universal experience of mankind has been so fantastically rigid, arbitrary, monotonous, accidental, and, above all, unintelligent--all unknown to ourselves, since we have been its blighted and blind product--that a potentially infinite intelligence has been constrained to a random walk upon a pinhead.

Enter ideonomy in the role of Prometheus.

Ideonomy can serve as an amplifier and catalyst of human intelligence in ways innumerable:

It can make us systematically aware of the recurring types of ignorance, errors of reasoning, and illusions that, synergistically and accumulatingly, so impair our individual and collective intellectual functioning;

It can further the analysis of intelligence into its many different parts, and then insure that those parts are maximally developed, both separately and interdependently;

It can aid the discovery and characterization of all actual and possible mental processes;

It can show us how the many parts and forms of intelligence operate, or should operate, in powerful hierarchies (and in other so-called meta- structures);

It can highlight the myriad needs and opportunities for intelligence that exist, but that in many instances have gone unnoticed;

It can devise a more powerful language for thought, both in its unconscious operations and in its public expressions and communications;

It can uncover and publish important principles of thought; Etc.

Enable One To Plot the Successive Interactions of Two Things

When two or a few things are put together how do they interact? This is a major question throughout science and in other fields.

What are the causes of interactions and what are the effects of interactions? What types of interactions are there?

What interactional : levels, events, processes, mechanisms, combinations, limitations, errors, bads, goods, goals, functions, needs, origins, problems, solutions, surprises, differences, similarities, conflicts, cooperations, courses, extremes, dimensions, properties, geneses, transformations, flows, motions, opportunities, realms, domains, series, strategies, capacities, complexities, simplicities, cycles, convergences, divergences, vergences, paths, conditions, experiments, mathematics, descriptions, laws, networks, spectrums, uncertainties, knowledges, ignorances, distributions, matrices, illusions, elements, appearances, methods, relations, probabilities, equilibria, disequilibria, games, hierarchies, niches, paradoxes, rings, spaces, manifolds, perfections evolutions, conservations, cybernetics, degrees of freedom, emergents, equalities, inequalities, order taxa, representations, pathology, topologies, virtuals, relaxations, etc : exist or are possible, of either a universal or special nature?

What needs to be found out about such things? What questions should be asked? What is the importance of knowing such things? What kinds of experiments should be conducted?

Among the many things that interactions can tell one are: What things have in common; What things do not have in common; What the essence of things is; What things do, or might do, to one another; Whether, and how, things are competitive; What the capacities, abilities, and potentials of things are; How sensitive, or insensitive, things are to one another; Novel purposes that things might be used for, or novel ways in which things might be used; How things interact normally or in nature, or would interact under extreme or special conditions; How the interactions of things could be controlled, amplified, changed, or redirected; What interactions actually are not or do not involve; What the hidden nature of things may be; The interactions of different interactions, either ina descriptive or in a dynamical sense; The extent to which the nature of a thing actually depends on or expresses its interactions; What the potential self-interactions of things are; How different interactions can exist side-by-side without interference; What things exchange and how they reciprocate; What the relative importance of different interactions is, both quantitatively and qualitatively; What the longevity, history, and future of interactions is; How the whole of nature can be described as an infinite and integral system of interactions; How the interactions of different phenomena, and of different subjects, differ or are the same; How interactions may derive from, or give rise to, other interactions--both individual interactions and great systems of interactions; Etc.

The two things interacting (if they are just two) may variously be: Two like or identical things; Two different or opposite things; Two things of equal or unequal size, power, activity, etc; Two things of disparate category, such as a process and an object; Two things whose mode of acting upon one another is the same or different; Simple or complex; Etc.

The interaction of two (or more) things may variously be: Static or progressive; Alterative (of the things) or not; Antagonistic, neutral, or reinforcing; Direct or indirect; Linear or nonlinear; Synchronous or diachronous; Minimal, maximal, or optimal; A closed or open system; Productive or product-less; Etc.

Examples of things whose interactions might be studied are: The populations of a predator species and of its prey species; Two stars coorbiting in a binary system; Two passing or colliding galaxies; Two ions of identical or opposite charge, either in free space or in a material; Two opposite mental impressions, in the mind or brain; Two cellullar automatons; Two rival scientific theories over historical time; Two different industries in the same economy; Two ancient cultures whose lifetimes overlapped; Two characters in an animated cartoon; Opposite geological processes simultaneously acting to destroy and maintain the same landscape; Pupils in the same classroom; Different rumors simultaneously afoot; Two contiguous cells in a tissue; Water droplets suspended together in a cloud; Two different but compatible customs in a society; Two themes within a symphony; Different tides or tidal components in the ocean; Two lifelong friends; Two soil horizons or soil components; Two branches of a lightning stroke; Etc.

Scalable quantitative dimensions of interactions include: Rate; Velocity; Rate of exchange; Rate of compensation; Flux rate; Maturity; Totalness; Completeness or finality; Intensity or energy; Violence; Consistency; Symmetry or asymmetry; Density; Volume or spatial range; Mass, number, or diversity of things involved; Duration; Efficiency; Productivity; Variability; Orderliness or chaoticness; Probability; Etc.

Generic causes of interactions include: Simultaneity; Proximity, contiguity, overlap, superimposition, and mixing; Interconnection; Convergence, collision, and coalescence; Mutual affinity; Antagonism; Competition; Interdependence or unilateral dependence; Mutual or unilateral catalysis; Complementarity, synergism, and resonance; Interadjustment and interadaptation; Equality and commensurability; Homology (giving virtual interaction); Etc.

Generic effects of interactions include: Creation of a stable or metastable system involving the interactants; Search for, and discovery or creation of, some new form, level, mechanism, system, or law of mutual, reciprocal, or differential stability on the part of the interactants; Convergence of the behavior, form, or nature of the interactants to some sort of average, common denominator, or compromise; Divergence of the behavior, form, nature, tendencies, locations, or motions of the interactants; Exchanges or transpositions; Vitiation, change, dedifferentiation, distortion, disintegration, or extinction of one or more of the interactants or of their interactional system; Addition or hierarchic superimposition of new minor or major forms of behavior, phenomena, structure, e/vc; Inefficiency or waste; Linkage, integration, or merger of the interactants; Creation and substitution of new interactants; Evolution of the interactants or their joint or greater systems; Release from the interactants or their system of matter, noise, energy, information, processes, sub-interactants, subsystems, or the like; Cooperative or synergistic phenomena; Acceleration or deceleration, or excitation or energetic depression, of one or more of the interactants or their system; Obscuration or deemphasization of the interactants themselves; Random, wandering, or chaotic behavior; Generation of boundaries; Inversion of properties or reversal of normal behavior; Extreme behavior; Stratification of behavior; Synchronization or desynchronization of the interactants' behavior; Sequential, alternating, and cyclic behavior; Induction of other interactions; Mutual dependence and government of the interactants; Telltale and consequential traces; Narrowing or specialization of the behavior of the interactants; Etc.

Possible surprising discoveries--of a GENERIC nature--that may occur about various interactions in the future: That two mutually remote, isolated, or seemingly unrelated, opposite, or incommensurate things are able to interact, perhaps through a novel mechanism; That two things that interact in the most active, intimate, violent, complex, enduring, large-scale, direct, fundamental, crude, or multifold way actually have little affect upon one another or leave one another unchanged; That two things thought to be engaged in intense interaction do not in fact interact at all or are somehow queerly isolated from one another; That seemingly tiny, rudimentary, or noise- like interactions --or means or mechanisms of interactions--can have giant effects or be more important than giant interactional-events, mechanisms, or means; That things may interact in an unexpectedly delayed (hysteretic) or instantaneous way; That different interactions, or interactions of different things, may in many instances subserve, piggyback, or depend upon one another, or form synergistic, complexly differentiated, and irreducible systems; That two seemingly different or unrelated interactions or types of interactions are actually identical, equivalent, or homologous; That disparate interactions can produce identical effects-and vice versa, that practically indistinguishable or in fact completely identical interactions can paradoxically cause the most divergent or seemingly unrelated effects; That a multitude of diverse and powerful interactions occurring side-by-side or involving the self-same objects need not interfere with one another and may be virtually multiplexed; That the very existence of certain things may be impossible sans their mutual interaction; That things that oppear to be interacting on a single level or in a single way may in fact be simultaneously interacting on many levels or in many different or separate ways; That certain interactions of things that appear to be progressive may in fact be static-and other interactions that give the opposite illusion of being static are truly progressive; Etc.

Recurring questions to ask about arbitrary interactions of arbitrary things include: Is this the right interaction to study, or are there other interactions? When and how did this interaction begin? When, how, and why may the interaction end? Why did the interaction begin; what factor or cofactors caused or enabled it? What principles should be brought to bear in analyzing or treating the interaction? How can I exercise or develop my mental faculties by approaching an interaction differently on this occasion--or by asking novel questions about it? How broad--or restricted--is the interaction? How does the process of interaction perturb or govern itself? What is the content and structure of this interaction? What would be the best way to describe the interaction, or my ideas about it, to another person? What errors of observation, or logic, may I be making about the interaction? How does the interaction resemble and differ from those forms and instances of interaction I have examined before? What are the various quantitative dimensions of this interaction? Is this a natural or an artificial interaction; if it is natural, could it be produced artificially; or if on the contrary it is artificial, might it also occur in nature? Apart from its simple cause, what function or role might it have? What might the best example of the interaction be like? Where should I look to find other examples, or suggestive analogs, of the interaction? Which aspects of this interaction are clear, and which other aspects are vague, ambiguous, or perplexing? What predictions can I make to test the interaction or my ideas about it? What other interactions could this interaction be combined with in interesting ways or to produce interesting effects? What quantitative and qualitative aspects of the interaction could probably be changed without destroying the interaction or its essential character? What narrow and broad reasons do I have for attending to the interaction? What are the most--and successively less--primary aspects of the interaction?

Examples of various particular interactions of things that were discovered or investigated historically are: Interference of light waves; Gravitational tides among astronomic bodies; Psychosomatic (mind-body) interactions; Interactions of subatomic particles via the nuclear Strong and Weak forces; Interactions of normal air currents in the upper atmosphere; Interactions of the various semiautonomous subcortical nuclei of the vertebrate brain; Synergistic and antagonistic interactions of drugs taken simultaneously; Mother-child interactions in human development; Interactions of "virtual" phenomena ceaselessly 'emerging from' and 'reuniting with' Dirac's infra- cosmic sea; Queer 'interactions' that appear in the combinatorial theory-of interdependent probabilities (co-probabilities); Etc.

Of course the subject of interactions is one that is naturally close to the heart of ideonomy or to what might be referred to as the ideonomic world view.

To gain a sense of how this division INTERACTIONS would work--and of its power to give insights to, to inspire, fecundate, and guide, the human (and mechanical) mind--try to apply the eleven successive organons above, and their series of items, to imaginary theoretical and experimental investigations of three phenomena that would each be expected to appeal to the student of interactions: different memories (in the cortical neuropile or in artificial neural nets, say as possessed, processed, or reflected by connected pairs of neurons), territorially cobounded ant nests, or neighboring convection cells (such as atmospheric thermals or Bernard cells in a kettle of boiling water)::

In the case of MEMORIES,_ for example, should there be interactional: levels, events, processes, combinations, errors, differences, extremes, cycles, games, hierarchies, niches, rings, conservations, and inequalities: that exist and that pose challenging questions or offer opportunities for major discoveries in the quest to understand the cerebral and abstract bases of memorization, engrams, remembrance, and mnemes? . . .

Proceeding to the next organon: Might mnestic interactions tell us what the memories do and do not have in common? What the essence of the phenomenon of memory is? What memories do to one another? Whether --or how--memories compete? What the capacities, abilities, and potentials of memories are? How sensitive different memories, or mnestic traces or processes, are to one another? . . .

And the organon after that: Might two interacting memories be alike or identical? Or different or opposite-in content, pattern, law, mechanism, function, or other important respects? . . .

Could some interactions of memories be: Static or progressive? Alterative (of themselves or one another-the interactions or memories; or of mnestic or neuronal processes or structures) or not? Antagonistic, neutral, and reinforcing? Closed or open systems (themselves or as a part of same)? . . .

Again: Might the ecological interactions of the populations of predator and prey species be worth studying for the light they might throw-through simple or complex analogism--upon the prima facie disparate and unrelated interactions of memories? . . .

Could mnestic interactions be scaled for their: Rate (in any sense)? Velocity? Rate of exchange (of anything)? Rate of compensation? . . .

Do interactions of memories include among their possible or actual generic causes or concauses: Simultaneity? Proximity, contiguity, overlap, superimposition, or mixing? Interconnection? Convergence, collision, or coalescence? Mutual affinity? ...

Do the diverse effects of such interactions embrace: Creation of a stable or metastable system involving the interactants? . . .

Might the surprising discovery one day be made about the interactions of memories: That two mutually remote, isolated, or seemingly unrelated, opposite, or incommensurate things (e.g. memories or mnestic interactions) are able to interact, say via a novel (psychic or neural) mechanism? . . .

Might a scientist sitting down to investigate memories' interactions find himself asking, or stand to profit from asking: "Is this the right interaction to study (say an excitatory or inhibitory interaction between memorial cells or circuits mediated by norepinephrine, GABA, acetylcholine, or some other neurotransmitter), or are there other interactions?" "When and how did this interaction begin?" "When, how, and why may this memory-memory interaction end?" "Why did the interaction begin; what factor or cofactors caused or enabled it?" "What principles should be brought to bear in analyzing or treating the interaction?" . . .

Might (seemingly unrelated) interactions of (related or seemingly unrelated) things that were discovered or investigated HISTORICALLY have some analogical or other ideonomic power to clarify or define the multifarious interactions of memories; e.g. the historically discovered, probed, or described: Interference of light waves? Gravitational tides among astronomic bodies? Psychosomatic (mind-body) interactions? Interactions of subatomic particles via the nuclear Strong and Weak forces? Interactions of normal air currents in the upper atmosphere?

An appendant and superordinate question is: Might all of these questions, and the answers to all of these questions, have mutual implications and importances?

The answer in every case--I can say as a neuropsychologist--appears to be: Yes!

Show the Interdependences of Ideas

Interdependences of ideas may variously be: Natural or artificial; Real or hypothetical; Superficial or fundamental; Eternal or transitory; Minimal, maximal, or optimal; Finite or infinite; Positive, nil, or negative; Complete or partial (integral or fractional); Absolute or relative; Intrinsic or else extrinsic or virtual; Singular or plural; One-one, one-many, or many-many; Univalent or polyvalent; Homotypal or heterotypal ; Unidirectional or bidirectional; Reversible or irreversible; Invertible or noninvertible; Uni- level or multilevel; Linear or nonlinear; Quantitative or qualitative; Separable or inseparable--or independent, dependent, or interdependent; Direct or indirect; Symmetric or asymmetric; Transitive or intransitive; Associative or nonassociative; Distributive or nondistributive; Fixed or variable-or static, progressive, regressive, or cyclic; Simple or complex; Divisible or indivisible; Hierarchic or not; Good, bad, or neutral; Dynamical or statical; Relevant or irrelevant; Genuine or illusory; Known or unknown-or definable or indefinable; Universal or local; Redundant or irredundant; Abstract or concrete; Useful or merely aesthetic; Transformationally invariant or not; Paradoxic or not; Structural or not; Finitely or infinitely interactional; Contradictory or not; Antithetical or not; Etc.

Things one can do to or with all or some interdependences of ideas: Define them (or things); Explain them (or things); Use them to find others; Strengthen or weaken them; Extend or generalize them; Test, prove, or refute (them, others, or other things); Transform them; Describe (them, others, or things); Bound or constrain them; Discover their laws, relationships, properties, analogies, identities, differences, covariations, meta-structures, raisons d'etre, etc; Combine them and construct things; Criticize their defects; Identify their virtues, uses, and values; Classify and systematize them; Circumvent or transcend them; Redescribe or redefine them; Formalize, axiomatize, operationalize, or simulate them; Document their histories; Quantify them or things; Use them to develop either simpler or more complex pictures of things; Connect, synthesize, or mutually derive them; Discover, explore, or experiment upon them; Weight their differential probabilities; Elucubrate their infinite corollaries and implications; Etc.

Illustrative examples of ideas that are or may be interdependent: Peace and war; Truth and proof; Thought and consciousness; Motion and position; Height (geographic) and topography; Play and amusement; Life and homeostasis (in biology); Work and transformation (in chemistry); Convection and disequilibrium (in meteorology); Etc.

Possible causes of interdependences of ideas include: Similarity of form or aspect; Similarity of nature; Similarity of origin or cause; Similarity of function, role, or value; Similarity of relationships; Homology of origin or cause; Hidden equivalence or identity; Mutual implication; Oppositeness; Antisyzygialism; Etc.

Suggest New Interests

Of what possible or actual interest are the things that exist or that might exist? Answering this question is an important concern of ideonomy. But no less important, and in fact of a complementary nature, are the set of passive and active interests--in anything and everything and of every type--that individuals have or might have.

Suggesting new interests is one of the relatively narrow purposes of ideonomy that can directly and indirectly profit from its much more comprehensive approach to things.

Thus ideonomy addresses the interests that things, ideas, persons, organizations, creatures, and subjects have from the standpoint of those interests': causes, origins, histories, mechanisms, alternatives, alternative histories, ambiguities, analogies, analyses, anomalies, antisyzygies, appearances, assumptions, bads, behaviors, capacities, abilities, chains of consequences, clusters, chance elements, circumstances, coderivations and coevolutions, combinations, commonalities, complexities, concepts, conditions and states, conflicts, connections, conservations, contents and parts, controversies or controversial aspects, convergences., synergisms, correlations, courses, co-probabilities, criterions, criticism, cybernetics, cycles, evidences, decisions or decisional bases, defects, definitions, degrees of freedom, descriptions, geneses, differences, dimensions and properties, discoveries, equilibria and disequilibria, disjunctions, distributions, divergences, domains, ecological aspects, 'economic' aspects, effects, elements, emergents, engineering, equalities and inequalities, symmetries and asymmetries, errors, essentials, evaluations, events, examples, excellences and perfections, experiences, expectations, experimental possibilities, extensions, extremes, first principles, functions, fundamentals, futuribles, game-like or -related aspects, generalizations, wholes and gestalts, changes and transformations, goals, goods, 'group-theoretic' aspects, heuristic possibilities, hierarchies, higher realities, identities, ignorances and knowledges, illusions, implications, impossibilities, individual instances, infinite and finite aspects, instruments and relevant methods, interactions and interdependences, interpretations, interrepresentations, inversions, kaleidoscopic invariants, 'languages' or 'linguistic' aspects, laws, levels, limitations, logicizations, manifolds, mathematics, matrices, measurements and measures, quantities, meta-dimensions, models, morphisms, morphogeneses (sic), morphology or meta-structures, motions (sic), myriontology, needs, negations, networks, niches, evolutions and niveaux, nonexistences, noology, responsibilities (or deontological aspects), opportunities, opposites, order taxons (and aspects thereof), organons, ideograms, orthodox and heterodox aspects, paradigms, paradoxes, pathoses, paths, patterns, perspectives, phenomena, philosophies, planning, possibilities, practices and habits, predictable aspects, prejudices, preparations, probabilities, problems and solutions, processes, psychology, random aspects, ranges, reactions, realms, reciprocities, reconstructions, recursions, relations, relaxations and simplifications, rings, roles, rules, scenarios, self-relationships, senses, series, simulations, spaces, spectrums, speculative possibilities, story-related possibilities strategies, surprises, systems, classifications, technological possibilities, transcendences, transvaluations, trees, uncertainties, unifications, uses, values, vergences, virtuals, 'relevant' questions and answers, etc.

The supposed interests that things have are highly conventionalized, and often the greatest potential interest of those things is unnoted. Ideonomy has the ability to circumvent the accidental, conventional, and trivial interest of things and to describe a vast range of additional possibilities.

It can systematically transform given interests, or sets of interests, into other interests and sets of interests of novel and greater--related or unrelated--nature.

It can show how different interests interlock or have the potential of illuminating, heightening, or serving one another.

It can take given interests and show what is wrong with them: How they do not reflect the needs or peculiarities of an individual; How they lack the ability to develop the talents of a person; How they ignore special opportunities; That they are redundant; That they exist unknown to the individual; That they are too rigid; That the person approaches them with no method or strategy; That the individual developed or inherited them unthinkingly; Etc.

To illustrate the larger interest that things have or can have: Molds can suggest the ways in which things in general can or do spread; The surface of the sea can suggest the comprehensive fluidity and adaptability of all things; The accidental dropping of a glass can suggest the larger contingencies and hazards of human life; Libraries provide a chance to find out what interests other people; Jokes can furnish clues as to the prejudices of people; Deserts in their shocking emptiness afford opportunities to see oneself better; Birdsong heard one morning can speak volumes about the aesthetic contribution to life of little things; Etc.