Andrew Pickering – Engaging Emergence: From Cellular Automata to the Occupy Movement

It’s come to my attention that this may have gotten buried in the powers of the horde here and that would be unfortunate as I think it is central to our mission as a blog and worth attending to.

If we can’t come to terms with what Andy is illustrating for us here there really is no point in going forward with attempts at organizing that I can see and would welcome any feedback folks have to share.

4 responses to “Andrew Pickering – Engaging Emergence: From Cellular Automata to the Occupy Movement

  1. Reblogged this on sinceritypop and commented:
    enjoying this. “being-with” or tarrying-along, is a topic that heidegger and his followers since have been obsessed with. certainly a worthy philosophical topic, but i’m more curious how “being-with” is accomplished emotionally, not from a speculative advantage.

  2. Great post, and well worth watching! I like the metaphor of the homeostats and the implications for social and political life. I wondered as I was watching whether stability is really what we’re after – a social machine that goes to sleep. I’m not sure. Something like a continual oscillation sounds to me like the best we might hope for, but he does make a point – using Occupy as an example – that such continual oscillation doesn’t necessarily produce results. I’ve heard of all of these folks – Ashby, Beer, etc. – but I’ve not really read their works directly (except Bateson).

    Have you seen All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace ( It also points out the challenges of organizing society around principles of self-organization, etc. – though in Adam Curtis’s characteristically creepy and hyperbolic style.

    • thanks for taking this up JT, always important I think to hear Andy with an ear for the poetic (even cheeky) as I don’t think he means “stability” in the strict cybernetic/homeostatic/machinic sort of way (wouldn’t fit with the “mangle” of practices) but rather to point to the need for co-operations that can be sustained (and tweaked!) over time and not just fall into squabbling factions as we so often do in this corner of the web that we all tend to circulate thru.

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