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SHAPE Issue 16 Jan 2011
From Avalanche to Control
The Demise of Formalism III
Welcome to Issue 16 of SHAPE Journal.
The recent publication of The Theory of Emergences was originally supposed to have been prepared for by a long series of papers produced by the author over many years, but it wasn’t! Its completion was such a cause for celebration that it went out immediately as a SHAPE Special to hopefully conquer the World all by itself. But, such an attitude was perhaps as mistaken as Darwin’s opposite decision to delay the publication of his Origin of Species until every possible objection had been overcome. But, it soon became clear that the Theory of Emergences would not mean much to most people unless some idea of the steps in its development were made evident too.
So, in this issue and the accompanying Blog there are a couple of contributions, which played an absolutely vital role in the birth and growth of that Theory.
The two papers in this issue are From Avalanche to Control and "Immanent" Emergence. And though they certainly cannot be said to provide all the answers, they certainly did pose the right questions and suggest where to look for their successful addressing. Both of these pre-date the Theory of Emergence by more than two years, but they indicate very well the necessary direction and requirements, which via a large number of intervening papers did ultimately lead to that significant conclusion.
At the same time, the Demise of Formalism series of papers continues, and provides a perfect companion in its criticism of the current consensus position in Science and Philosophy, that had to be replaced by a serious and systematic approach to Qualitative Change.
On the Blog simultaneously there are the papers Holistic Equations and From a Peak in Darien. The former, though written in 2008 did in fact lay the main foundation stone for an approach to Science, which for the first time began to break loose from Plurality. The latter paper was both a celebration and a recommendation of the former. These are as usual available at :-
Our new policy of regularly producing Reviews on our Blog is continuing with the pieces mentioned above. So this will indeed continue to happen at regular intervals from now on.
Read and enjoy, and if moved to do so, react! Send us your views for publication in the Journal. We look forward to such reactions as they inform us of what our readers require. Left to ourselves we will not necessarily produce from our prodigious store of work in the best possible order.