Cognitive Development of the Web

Abstract

The sociotechnological system is a system constituted of human individuals and their artifacts: technological artifacts, institutions, conceptual and representational systems, worldviews, knowledge systems, culture and the whole biosphere as an evolutionary niche. In our view the sociotechnological system as a super-organism is shaped and determined both by the characteristics of the agents involved and the characteristics emergent in their interactions at multiple scales. Our approach to sociotechnological dynamics will maintain a balance between perspectives: the individual and the collective. Accordingly, we analyze dynamics of the Web as a sociotechnological system made of people, computers and digital artifacts (Web pages, databases, search engines, etc.). Making sense of the sociotechnological system while being part of it, is also a constant interplay between pragmatic and value based approaches. The first is focusing on the actualities of the system while the second highlights the observer’s projections. In our attempt to model sociotechnological dynamics and envision its future, we take special care to make explicit our values as part of the analysis. In sociotechnological systems with a high degree of reflexivity (coupling between the perception of the system and the system’s behavior), highlighting values is of critical importance1. In this essay, we choose to see the future evolution of the web as facilitating a basic value, that is, continuous open-ended intelligence expansion. By that we mean that we see intelligence expansion as the determinant of the ’greater good’ and ’well being’ of both of individuals and collectives at all scales. Our working definition of intelligence here is the progressive process of sense-making of self, other, environment and universe. Intelligence expansion, therefore, means an increasing ability of sense-making. The two most significant factors in the dynamics of the sociotechnological system is increasing complexity and accelerating change (see [Helbing, 2013, Systems, 2013]

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Cite this paper

@article{Veitas2015CognitiveDO, title={Cognitive Development of the Web}, author={Viktoras Veitas and David Weinbaum}, journal={CoRR}, year={2015}, volume={abs/1505.04265} }