Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Emergent Systems and Technology

As Steven Johnson makes clear emergence happens at local level. Emergence is a process. The product of this process can be seen as the manifestation of a “bottom up approach”. More than likely emergence is a process that results in a process. To explain, if the localized interactions of people within in a given environment result in a specific and particular place, inherently complex and intricate, distinct with unique idiosyncrasies, it is hardly static, but rather is dynamic and will continue to morph or change with time.

How has technology disturbed emergence? If emergent systems are the result of local interactions and technology is increasingly making us more global and withdrawn from our wild, organic, natures, is the threshold between behavior and system increasing? Basically, I am wondering if technology and our over exposure to information is forming a gap with our genetic or biological intuitions. I and a few other designers were recently asked by our professors to play and not to over think while designing. I assume they mentioned this because they wanted emergent qualities to surface from the underlying ideas that we had already procured and researched. In the past did designers have to be reminded to play?

1 comment:

  1. I think that, in a way, the technologies or emergent systems are just part of our changing genetic or biological intuitions. We are constantly striving to know more, and if technology helps us with this, we will develop it to tell us more. Technology is man-made and not just something that appeared. At least from what I know, the human hand or mind is always involved in some step of the process. I think we have intuitions that will always define our design, and technology is just a tool to make that happen.