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The Foundations of General Schemas Theory

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  1. The Foundations of General Schemas Theory As an Extension to Systems Theory to Form a Mathematical and Philosophical Basis for Systems Engineering Draft 12 040413 Kent D. Palmer, Ph.D. PO Box 1632 Orange CA 92856 714-633-9508 kent@palmer.name http://archonic.net

  2. * Significant Points • The current most likely foundation for SE is Systems Theory • Emergence is an important viewpoint on SE • There are specific levels of Emergence some of which are addressed in current SE and others of which are not addressed yet, but should be • SE is a discipline structured by Emergence • Other schemas besides the ‘system’ schema are important to SE • Ultimately SE needs to become Schemas Engineering based on Schemas Theory

  3. * Emergence Engineering Horizons of SE Schemas Engineering Current SE

  4. * MAP (of the argument) Transformative ? Systems Engineering Discipline Other Disciplines Ontic and Ontological Levels of Emergence SW Eng / Comp Science • A transformative discipline is one which changes the relations between other disciplines when it appears Complex Systems Theory All Engineering Disciplines are the Academic counterpart of SE Complex Adaptive Systems Scope Broader Chaos Theory

  5. Systems Engineering a Transformative Discipline? • SE is a nascent discipline • It is attempting to gain academic respectability • Part of this is the attempt to establish mathematical and philosophical foundations for the new discipline • SE has no specific academic counterpart unlike SW Eng. has in Computer Science, rather, all Engineering disciplines are the academic counterpart of SE • Much SE research merely attempts to validate what has been put already into practice in Industry

  6. Systems Engineering a Transformative Discipline? • Few SE Ph.D. programs exist • Most SE academic departments concentrate on the masters level where the emphasis in on coursework rather than original research • In-depth research into SE foundations is rare • Most in-depth research at the Ph.D. level has a foreshortened horizon seeking to mostly validate what is already known or seeking to apply what is known from other disciplines to SE • Very few researchers consider SE a transformative discipline

  7. Systems Engineering a Transformative Discipline? • A transformative discipline is one which changes the relations between other disciplines when it appears • This is the highest possibility to which the SE discipline can aspire • Rather than viewing SE as a discipline which calls for bolstering in order to become academically respectable, let us explore the transformative possibilities of SE

  8. Systems Engineering a Transformative Discipline? • If we consider SW Eng. as a model, we can clearly see its vibrancy slowly transforming computer science into a support for industrial practice by bringing new problems and new applications for computer science to explore • SW Eng. has its own subject matter as well, which concerns products, processes, methods and tools that support large scale software development

  9. Can Systems Engineering be a Transformative Discipline? • Systems Engineering has no specific complementary academic discipline • Instead every sub-division of engineering in academia is its complement, as well as the meta-discipline of Systems Theory which has no dedicated department within the university • There is a gap between SE and all other Engineering disciplines which makes it difficult for these engineering disciplines to reap the benefits that SE has to offer • Systems Theory is too nebulous and diffuse since it lacks autonomy when spread throughout other engineering disciplines

  10. Systems Engineering a Transformative Discipline? • For the most part SE is adopting SW Eng.’s processes, methods, and tools • SE thus appears as a surrogate of SW Eng. at a higher level of abstraction • The unique needs of SE are not being considered very deeply • Unlike SW Eng., SE is neither driving academic research agendas nor is it fostering its own innovative research agenda • SE seems to be a late arrival with little new to offer other disciplines • Instead, it is borrowing and begging from other disciplines hoping for recognition because of its place at the top of the food chain in industry

  11. How can we reverse this situation? • One way is to realize that SE is the place where all the diverse industrial disciplines come together to produce the emergent effects of a whole working system being developed on a large scale • The key thing that SE has as its focus is Emergence, while other disciplines do not have this focus the same way or with the same intensity

  12. * Systems Engineering means . . . • Engineering Large Scale Emergence • SE is where emergence is the appearance of new properties at the level of a whole not seen in the parts, • E.g., cell/organism; Hydrogen,Oxygen elements/Water (H2O) molecule; sub-system/system/super-system • The problem of emergence appears in other engineering disciplines but it comes to a head in SE because of the scale of SE projects

  13. Emergence Engineering • Emergence is a hot topic in complex Systems Theory and science in general • It is related to Chaos Theory and Complex Adaptive Systems Theory • SE has an intimate hands-on knowledge of how large scale complex systems are built to produce holistic emergent effects • And SE is concerned with the huge and open problem of how to deal with these systems of greater scale and complexity

  14. Emergence Engineering • By studying the successes and failures of the development of large complex systems, SE has a ready-made focus for inquiry • No other discipline attempts such large scale production of emergent wholes, and it is essential to note that differences in scale can produce qualitatively different problems • Effects come into play which do not appear on smaller scales • This is one of the lessons of Hegelian Dialectics, i.e., Differences in quantity produce differences in quality in relation to dialectical synthesis

  15. * Emergence Engineering • If we begin to think of Systems Engineering as Large Scale Emergence Engineering, then our view of the discipline begins to change radically • When we change our vision of SE, it changes its relation to other disciplines • The biggest problem is our own limited vision of SE, not the subject matter of SE itself • Emergence Engineering must be a transformative discipline in relation to other disciplines, and what it studies will have a profound effect on itself

  16. Emergence Engineering • In our new vision of SE, we can see it as an emergent event within industry and academia • The study of Emergence comes into it own in a practical sphere of industrial practice which gives a ground for theories of emergence that are developed in Complex Systems Theory • In the advent of an emergent event, it is natural to see SE as a radically transformative discipline changing itself and other disciplines profoundly when it is considered from this new viewpoint

  17. * MAP (of the argument) Emergence Engineering Meta-levels de-emergence supervenience emergence meta-levels of emergence meta-levels of Being

  18. * Supervenience & Emergence Gestalt = Whole greater than sum of parts Emergence Excess organism LEVEL N+1 new characteristics Supervenience is Homomorphism with lower level supports emergence Synthesis LEVEL N cell supports Qualitative and Quantitative Jump

  19. * De-emergence Proto Gestalt = Whole less than sum of parts gives knowledge of implicate order Emergent Lack Loss of knowledge or information LEVEL N+1 Cannot reconstitute the whole <Reductionism De-emergence> Part Part Part Part Part LEVEL N Analysis/ Architecture Parts don’t add up to the whole There is normally a cycle between emergence and de-emergence

  20. Emergence • An emergent system gestalt must be based on supports from the next lower level of phenomena • Its dependence on these supports, although it rises above them, is called supervenience • However, the emergent system gestalt must add new properties and characteristics that go beyond the limitations of these supports opening up new horizons of combination and complexification that produce other higher properties with their own reality which cannot be reduced

  21. Supervenience • All systems designed and built by SE practitioners attempt to produce wholes with emergent effects on a large scale • These wholes are supervenient on the supports of their subsystems and parts, but attempt to go beyond these sub-system or parts to produce characteristics and properties not contained in the parts themselves which go beyond what the parts can accomplish in isolation from each other

  22. Philosophy of Science • From the point of view of Philosophy of Science it is clear that there is no method for producing emergent leaps to the whole greater than the sum of its parts, which is the emergent whole • As Paul Feyerabend says, “The only method is NO METHOD”, so that ‘anything goes’ when it comes to design and construction of emergent wholes • This gives SE its character which is based on trial and error and applying the best of “engineering judgment”

  23. Uniqueness • Because there is no method, nor royal road for producing emergences in SE practice it is necessary to bring creativity and innovation into the development of Emergent Systems • This is also why Engineering practice seems so ad hoc and why it is so difficult to estimate and predict outcomes • Each new system presents unique challenges and requires unique configurations of products, processes, methods, and tools to create the required emergent effects

  24. Godel • One way to think about the production of sui generis emergent characteristics in creative systems design and construction is in terms of Godelian statements • Godelian statements are undecideable with respect to supervenient lower level axiomatic foundations • The emergent excess of the designed and constructed system can be thought of as equal to the undecidable Godelian statements that cannot be designated as inside or outside the system • They are beyond what is definitely inside the system, yet not outside it

  25. * Conjecture: Emergent Properties are Godelian Undecidable means non-reducible This could be the basis for formalizing the concept of emergence emergent excess decidable inside decidable outside undecideable emergence de-emergence

  26. Large Scales • All engineering attempts to produce emergent effects on a small scale • SE attempts to produce these effects on a large scale by integrating small scale emergent sub-systems into large scale systems or “systems of systems” • This is, in effect, an attempt to produce an “emergence of emergences”

  27. * Emergence of Emergences E2b E3 Can’t get to E3 directly from lower levels of Emergence E2a E1 E0 Current view of SE as concerned with Integration

  28. Meta-levels • The idea that there can be different meta-levels of emergence changes our concept of emergence itself by fragmenting it into an infinite series of possible meta-levels using the Higher Logical Type Theory of B. Russell and A.N. Whitehead from Principia Mathematica (cf I. Copi) • This theory can be used as a means of teasing out the different meanings of emergence

  29. Radical Possibility • Emergence is a radical possibility of Being • Emergence is what allows different technologies to be combined to produce new levels of synthesis which gives rise to new possibilities of Being • The levels of emergence are another face of the meta-levels of Being • Our attempt to understand the levels of Emergence leads us directly into what Heidegger calls fundamental ontology as developed in Continental Philosophy

  30. * MAP (of the argument) repeated Emergence Engineering Meta-levels de-emergence supervenience emergence meta-levels of emergence meta-levels of Being

  31. * Ontology Meta-levels of Emergence Meta-levels of Being Emergence7 Thatness/Suchness Emergence6 Manifestation Emergence5 Ultra-Being existence threshold Wild Being Emergence4 Hyper Being Emergence3 Process Being Emergence2 Pure Being Emergence1 ontological difference beings Emergence0 Correspondence between meta-levels of Emergence and meta-levels of Being

  32. Characteristics of Emergence • Each kind of Being expresses itself in a characteristic of emergence • Emergence is a phenomena in the world that brings to bear all the kinds of Being as a face of the world transforming one face of the world into another • Emergence and kinds of Being have a reciprocal relationship • Each allows us to understand the other better if we study them together

  33. Ontological Difference • Ontological Difference is a kind of meta-difference that distinguishes between “Being” and “beings” • It appears as the difference between genuine and Artificial Emergence • Artificial emergence is incremental change that is not genuinely new but merely combinatorially different • Genuine emergence clears the stage for the advent of the utterly unheard of here-to-fore rewriting of the past and production of new horizons of possibility

  34. * horizon horizon horizon Stairs to Nowhere: Meta-levels of Emergence Existence Emptiness / Void Lack Radically Unpredictable, unknown E4 chiasm between actualities, errors, voids E5 genuine emergence Being Ultra Being essencing forth in time E3 E2 excess Supervenient combinatoric or additive change E1 undecidable E0 non-emergent change

  35. * Emergent Difference • Ontology covers the various standings of everything that presents or absences itself phenomenologically • Ontological Difference distinguishes those standings from the various beings which have those various standings • Emergent difference relates to the intensification of nihilism • Artificially emergent events are additive, incremental, and combinatoric intensifications of nihilism • Genuine Emergent events are quantum leaps that reset all parameters and recalibrate by producing a new origin

  36. Non-new change More of the same Random alteration Entry of the New beings, entities, things Entry of Being * Emergence0 = beings Emergent Difference and Ontological Difference Example: Car wear Example: Projection

  37. * Aspects of Being • Truth • Reality • Identity • Presence I am only going to describe the differences in the meta-levels of emergence not the differences and the kinds of Being or the aspects of Being in this talk. These change at the different meta-levels of Being

  38. Pure Artificiality Combinatoric expansion Superficial newness Additive or incremental improvement Nothing fundamental changes Determinate and continuous Present-at-hand Pointing Standing reserve Subject/object dichotomy Form level Symbol Shape * Emergence1 = Pure Being Example: New cars

  39. Aspects of Being at Emergence Level 1 • Identity1 – Change and difference occur but make no fundamental difference • Presence1 – Changed Emergent characteristics appear • Reality1 – Emergent characteristics are embodied • Truth1 – Emergent characteristics can be described in language

  40. Emergence becomes an event It takes time for something to “be” what it is Emergent change reveals the essence of the thing seen Like Catalysis in Transformations Probability Ready-to-hand Grasping Dasein (being-in-the-world) Pattern Level Value Sign Flux Structure * Emergence2 = Process Being Example: From Buggy to Car

  41. Aspects of Being at Emergence Level 2 • Identity2 – Self identity revealed though change – sameness – belonging-together family resemblance • Presence2 – showing and hiding • Reality2 – Physus - unfolding of new kinds in nature • Truth2 – Logos – unfolding of new kinds in language

  42. Projects new possibilities on new horizon Emergence itself is undecidable Emergent excess is Godelian Possibility In-hand Bearing Query (expansion) Trace Level Differance Differing/Deferring Excess / Supplement * Emergence3 = Hyper Being Example: Car with Software

  43. Aspects of Being at Emergence Level 3 • Identity3 – Self Identity revealed though Other (Alterity) • Presence3 – secrecy, lies, deception, dissimulation • Reality3 – Simulacrum – unreality of reality is more real than reality • Truth3 – Fiction – lies tell truth deeper than the facts alone can tell

  44. Actualizes new possibilities on new horizon Emergence is intrinsically unpredictable Reveals unexpected, unheard of, unthought, anomalous appearances from a direction previously unknown Propensity Out-of-hand Encompassing Enigma (contraction) Tendency Rhizome Chiasm (reversibility) Flesh * Emergence4 = Wild Being Example: Car with AI

  45. Aspects of Being at Emergence Level 4 • Identity4 – Chiasm between self’s and other’s identity and difference • Presence4 – Chiasm between self’s and other’s presence and absence • Reality4 – Chiasm between nature’s and artificiality’s reality and illusion • Truth4 – chiasm speech’s and silence’s between truth and fiction

  46. Genuinely emergent existent appears from itself in its own time and a place of its choosing No projection Face of the World Interpretations Ultra Being Emptiness Void Inter/intra penetration/surfacing Being seen from outside as a found thing being-out-of-the-world * Emergence5 = Existence Example: Flying Car, New Media

  47. Aspects of Existence at Emergence Level 5 • Identity5 – uniqueness • Presence5 – Fully and Genuinely Emergent Alterity • Reality5 – Phenomena bodies forth in itself in its own style of non-nihilistic distinctions in action • Truth5 – Wipes nihilistic background clean - clears the clearing-in-being and makes non-nihilistic distinctions as phenomena speaks for itself in its own voice

  48. * Emergence means . . . • History is rewritten • New future possibilities appear while old future possibilities vanish • What is presence is seen in a new way • New Theory • New Paradigm (assumptions) Kuhn • New Episteme (categories) Foucault • New Ontos (projection, intelligibility) Heidegger • New existence (found) • Mythos is reformatted • SE does not deal with all of Emergence in its current form • Realm of Futurology, Venture Capital, or IR&D

  49. * horizon horizon horizon Meta-levels of Emergence Existence Emptiness / Void Lack E4 E5 genuine emergence Radically Unpredictable, unknown Being Ultra Being E3 E2 excess essencing forth in time: event Supervenient combinatoric or additive change E1 undecidable E0 non-emergent change

  50. Torn between alternatives • In SE we are always recombining existing components when attempting to build new systems • We are constantly torn between, reuse, subcontracting, and new development • When we engage in new development we recognize that process plays an important part • There are certain stages that force themselves on us • It takes a certain time to build a system from scratch and many times shortcuts cost more in the end