Confronting Complexity

The book you are seeing on your screen may look like a normal book; it is not. It is a conversation in which you are a participant. The book does not offer pat answers to hard questions. In fact, it barely even gives definition to hard questions. Rather, this book presents that stage in which science is most challenging and, arguably, most interesting—the period of identifying just what the problems and issues are. That is why we solicit your help in writing this story—the story of extreme events in social systems.

The participants in this book-writing enterprise are independent thinkers who wish to understand the forces impinging on social systems and the systems’ often dramatic and extreme responses to those forces. Extreme events, the sudden and discontinuous response of social systems to these forces, are what we for shorthand term X-Events. X-events We imagine the reader to be a person who wants to intelligently manage his or her actions and behaviors in the midst of an X-event—in short, to manage an organization in chaos. And not only manage, but be a beneficiary of that event. Explicitly, we understand that there are no simple answers to social questions. But but there is at least a gestalt that can help an individual anticipate and manage X-events. The program outlined here is to build the gestalt by total immersion in the topic—by examining the issues from many perspectives.

SANTA FE

Touch the country [of New Mexico] and you will never be the same again. — D. H. Lawrence, c. 1917

Polarized Microscopy of Chemical Crystals by Doug Craft

These are images taken of chemical crystals using a Nikon polarizing microscope from 2004-2006. I prepared slides of melt crystals of phenol (carbolic acid) and benzoic acid, and precipitation crystals of ascorbic acid and potassium acid phthalate. Crystal will form vivid colors in a polarizing microscope as you can see this video. The music is a piece called “Impermanence,” I composed in 2011 using Acid Pro.

17 Chihuly

These are photos I took with Instagram on my cell phone of the Chihuly exhibit on a recent trip to Seattle. (August 2018)

BIG IDEAS IN SCIENCE, ART, AND SOCIETY

Hello fellow space-time travelers. My name is Roger Jones. I am coming to you from steamy downtown Pensacola, Florida. It is 7:30 in the morning in late June, so you can see the morning sun streaming through the east-facing windows behind me. This is the first post on this channel, TheX-Press channel, so I thought…

THE (NOT ART) EXPERIMENT

At any rate, let’s get back to why we are having this conversation. We are here to use the language of art to search for a boundary between Art and (Not Art) in a real example. Surprises occur at boundaries. Surprises are the basis of humor. So … we might know when we are close to a boundary between Art and (Not Art) when we start laughing.

WHAT IS (NOT ART)?

Systems of knowledge have languages associated with themselves. The language can be a natural language, mathematical language, or even artistic language. We can say that each of these closed knowledge systems has big holes in it. There are true things that the knowledge system will never know. Any system of knowledge is like a great sponge with structure, but that is full of holes. Knowledge does not expand like a bit of perfume into a room. It expands like an interconnected sponge skeleton of knowledge.

Secrets of Eternal Youth III

Secrets of Eternal Youth III The Book Of Everything From A Globe Circling Forever Youthful Artist/Photographer Who Hangs Out of Helicopters & Flew “The Dead Man’s Curve” A Million And A Half Miles Over Every Continent f With Newest Scientific Studies On How To Keep Your Brain Young Harvey Lloyd & Ivana Lovincic   HARVEY…