A tale of two worldviews: How feedback leads to scientism and how it can be harnessed to rescue science

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The title for this forthcoming book (~2017) is tentative.

Feedback is ubiquitous and provides for the emergence of an infinite amount of change and complexity. However, the power to explain change in simple terms requires an open-form language that harnesses feedback, e.g., as used in the “hard science” of Physics. However, the “softer sciences” (and philosophy) continue to apply closed-form thinking – language and meaning that fundamentally disallows feedback – to the problem of change. It is an unfortunate mathematical fact that, at best, closed-form concepts lead to an endless set of local re-descriptions that over time and in hindsight, amount to scientism. Moreover, each closed-form approximation also requires an infinite set of terms to improve local precision. This book highlights the differences between these two epistomologies – languages for theorizing about change – and attempts to harden the soft sciences by converting closed-form thinking to open-form. It amounts to a revolution from the current linguistic turn (which happens to be closed), to an open one.

Infinity Dragons by Dan Morris (2010)The “naturallanguage of continuous change is of a system of interacting open-form expressions that harness feedback. They are epitomized by “dynamics” – the partial differential equations of modern physics – and were critical to overcoming the closed-form limitations of natural language. That, and the search for universal laws, i.e., invariants not relative to local contexts, permitted Physics to become a “hard science“, a unified science.

The Tower of Babel by Pieter BruegelHowever, the “softer sciences” (and philosophy) are replete with the closed-form conceptions of natural language. The closed-form problem stems from the dictionary style hierarchically structured definitions of words that does not allow for feedback. These do not have the power to explain change in a unified manner, and can only allow for an endless and infinite variety of local re-descriptions – the hallmark of scientism. Indeed, that is why the search for unification and external validity is given such short thrift in the soft sciences – they are mathematically impossible.

David’s book exposes the linguistic flaw within the soft sciences and philosophy. All the assumptions withing the closed-form linguistic turn are exposed, and this allows the move to the open-form linguistic turn to begin. The hardening of soft sciences demands it. The search for unification can now begin with a firm foundation.

WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science (poster)

Leibovitz, D. P., West, R. L. & Belanger, M. (2014) WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science. Poster presented at the 36th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2014), Quebec City, Canada. [doi10.13140/2.1.3139.9048] (PDF)

Leibovitz, West & Belanger (2014) WikiSilo (Poster)Abstract: WikiSilo is a tool for theorizing across interdisciplinary fields such as Cognitive Science using a specific vocabulary and structure. It is designed to show if a particular cognitive theory is complete and coherent at multiple levels of discourse, and commensurable with and relevant to a wider domain of cognition. WikiSilo is also a minimalist theory and methodology about effectively doing science, and is therefore a form of epistemizing. WikiSilo theory provides for a disciplined exploration of explanatory space via an axiomatic hierarchy of epistemizing and ontologizing postulates. The WikiSilo tool, via a software version control system, supports the long term goal of working toward coherent and unified theories. More generally, WikiSilo facilitates self-organization leading to academic silos with well-defined conceptual frameworks that are vertically related as compared to poorly related ad-hoc academic fiefdoms.

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WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science (abstract)

Leibovitz, D. P., West, R. L. & Belanger, M. (2014) WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science [Abstract]. In P. Bello, M. Guarini, M. McShane, & B. Scassellati (Eds.), Proceedings of the 36th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (p. 3333). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society. [doi: 10.13140/RG.2.1.2455.9840]

WikiSilo bases and forksAbstract: WikiSilo is a tool for theorizing across interdisciplinary fields such as Cognitive Science using a specific vocabulary and structure. It is designed to show if a particular cognitive theory is complete and coherent at multiple levels of discourse, and commensurable with and relevant to a wider domain of cognition. WikiSilo is also a minimalist theory and methodology about effectively doing science, and is therefore a form of epistemizing. WikiSilo theory provides for a disciplined exploration of explanatory space via an axiomatic hierarchy of epistemizing and ontologizing postulates. The WikiSilo tool, via a software version control system, supports the long term goal of working toward coherent and unified theories. More generally, WikiSilo facilitates self-organization leading to academic silos with well-defined conceptual frameworks that are vertically related as compared to poorly related ad-hoc academic fiefdoms.

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WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science [Supporting Paper]

Leibovitz, D. P., West, R. L. & Belanger, M. (2014) WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science [Supporting Paper]. Working paper, pp. 1-6. Carleton University. [doi: 10.13140/RG.2.1.3359.1529]

WikiSilo bases and forksAbstract: WikiSilo is a tool for theorizing across interdisciplinary fields such as Cognitive Science, and provides a vocabulary for talking about the problems of doing so. It can be used to demonstrate that a particular cognitive theory is complete and coherent at multiple levels of discourse, and commensurable with and relevant to a wider domain of cognition. WikiSilo is also a minimalist theory and methodology for effectively doing science. WikiSilo is simultaneously similar to and distinct, as well as integrated and separated from Wikipedia™. This paper will introduce the advantages of WikiSilo for use in the Cognitive Sciences. Note that this paper supports (but was not presented) with:

Leibovitz, D. P., West, R. L. & Belanger, M. (2014) WikiSilo: A Self-organizing, Crowd Sourcing System for Interdisciplinary Science. Poster presented at the 36th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2014), Quebec City, Canada. [doi10.13140/2.1.3139.9048]

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WikiSilo

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WikiSilo bases and forksWikiSilo theory is a minimalist epistemology that supports a unifying discipline within academia. It is supported by the WikiSilo tool (from wikisilo.org), and Wikimergic is its first client.

History:

  • The Emergic Approach is loosely defined for unifying cognitive modeling
  • Wikimergic (a product of the Emergic Approach) is used to document the Emergic Approach. It includes WikiSilo components, and ECM.
  • WikiSilo becomes a minimalist version of the Emergic Approach for science in general. It is housed in the master root level 0 WikiSilo named Wikisilo at wikisilo,org, Simultaneously, Wikimergic has extensions of WikiSilo theory for unifying cognitive modeling.
  • Open-form thinking updates mostly Wikimergic, but WikiSilo as well. Wikimergic becoming suitable for unifying all of science, academia, general learning and decision making. A tool for unifying the world!

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External links

WikiSilo.org – Free tools and content to support a unifying discipline within academia

Leibovitz, D. P. (2013) WikiSilo.org – Free tools and content to support a unifying discipline within academia. Wiki software and content accessed November 17, 2013 from http://wikisilo.org/.

Three SilosAbstract: WikiSilo.org (or simply Wikisilo) distributes free software tools and content that support a unifying discipline within academia. This involves a hierarchy of WikiSilos at ever increasing levels, each acting as a unifying base to their unifying forks.

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Wikimergic: unifying the science of brain and mind according to the Emergic Approach

Leibovitz, D. P. (2013) Wikimergic: unifying the science of brain and mind according to the Emergic Approach. WikiSilo accessed July 15, 2013 from http://en.wikimergic.org. Accessed September 7, 2015 from http://web.archive.org/web/20130703150953/http://wikimergic.upwize.com/wiki/Main_Page.

Abstract: Wikimergic logoWikimergic is a WikiSilo. Both are theories, methodologies, frameworks, tools and approaches for collaboratively unifying science. However, a WikiSilo is a minimalist and pure epistemology unconcerned with the nature of reality, while Wikimergic is used for explaining change, behaviour and time. This item publicizes the availability of Wikimergic.

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