Are we looking too hard for order?

Though we were talking a lot about fractals in the class session, they were once a hype. And because of
that, we need to consider them with using some "hype-correction".

Let's start with Google Trends.

Source: Google Trends, Topic: "Fractal"

Let's also compare with something that can hardly be hyped. Let it be "Cancer"

Source: Google Trends, Topic: "Cancer"

So we already know one thing: people became less interested in fractals since 2004 (they also became
less interested in a lot of other topics).

What we know about fractals? That they can be found almost everywhere. And as something to be found
everywhere, maybe it is just the way anything that is ordered always is.

There was once a humorous (and turned rather obscene in Russian-speaking internet) concept of number
π holding everything there can be. And it largely looks like we are approaching fractals in a similar way:
everything is a fractal, everything can be expressed as a fractal, we think in fractals…

No, we don't think in fractals. It just happens, that fractals are repetitive, both generalizing and specializing
structures. And this happens to be how our brain works, and this happens to also be how many other
things in the world work. This has nothing to do with fractals beside the fact, that this is the simplest form
of making something complex out of some basic principle — generalize (or specialize) and repeat.

Also, here are some other posts I wrote about brain structures that I think are relevant to the concept of repetitive
structures and consciousness:

Behavioral modus
Neural-something and brain-something
Loss and Gain


Can we split "scientific practice" into "reality-bound" (normal) and "unbound" (creative)?

And likewise, maybe there is something similar to do with artistic practice?

I see two reasons. One stems from modern scientific problems, another stems from relative change in
scientific practice over the years. Both of them are connected together but are still separate. Let me start
with the second one.

Scientific practice has become less creativity and art, and much more a profession. Something that is
largely based on the what we can call "scientific practice of positivism", essentially abstracting one layer
further. So "unbound" scientific practice arises from the need of binding current science to a profession-kind
work. We then have a "gap of creativity" — the professionalized spectra of science and applied science now
misses the creative spark, slowing the advancement of scientific progress through new discoveries.

As for the first reason, it is slightly more complicated.

Science Evolution

Scientific process is about observing and then making assumptions and deducting the governing principle.

That is an axiom, defining scientific process. And it may happen to be wrong.

Another take at the core axiom: Scientific process is about imagining the governing principle first and
making assumptions and then observing.

At a first glance, not much has changed. Either way, it all bounces back and forth between observing and
deducting. At a second glance, this may be even ridiculous. So let me explain further.

The creative scientific process is not born out of observing something that contradicts current knowledge.
This is the "reality-bound" scientific process. The creative, "unbound" process starts with a general concept,
a principle, a law, that is not bound to the reality or current knowledge. It then follows to draw conclusions
from this principle, and understand possible requirements to an imagined reality. After it has been done,
a transitionary process may happen, where an attempt is made to merge the "unbound" science with
the reality, by using knowledge and experimentation. If successful, this specific aspect becomes "reality-bound"
and is now in realm of normal scientific process.

Imagine the following mostly hypothetical case (not unlike chicken or egg question): Was the fire originally
discovered by observation of the results of wildfires, or was it discovered by imagining the concept of
something that scares animals away (or of a cooked food, or something different entirely)?

I believe the human is remarkably too often incapable of noticing something that is ordinary and unrelated
to anything he usually thinks about/encounters. So, for example, if you (being not a birdwatcher) see a bird
flying in the sky, what are the chances you catch yourself thinking about how it flies exactly? Apparently,
it took humans a couple of millions of years to notice. Maybe (here we go completely into speculation)
the first one to actually imagine flying and how interesting and useful this may be was da Vinci, creating
some completely hypothetical aircrafts — and only ages later, already given the hypothetical idea, others
started trying to "merge" those with the reality.

Out of darkness

Joining those reasons, we may imagine a dark labyrinth. In this labyrinth we start at the center, and the
exit is somewhere outside. There is a multitude of ways, but the further we go, the more dead-ends we
encounter. Each new scientific advance is a light that we set up in the labyrinth, showing us the way around
and how to progress further. But the farther we are from the center, the more lights we need to move
effectively. But what if we may "guess" the layout of this labyrinth? Instead of poking into the darkness
slightly getting out of the "known circle", we could conceive various possible layouts of some far-out
labyrinth sector, then find a possible path to that sector, and then try each of those path. We would not
only go much farther in one step, than we could've gone in hundreds of usual steps, but we will also see
new ways back to the known circle (how many technologies that were "breaking new" have been eventually
simplified and found to be based on much simpler basic principles?), as well as imagine much more other
sectors around.

So eventually, maybe we should create a separate field of study, concerned with "unbound" science.


Actually, I have only two. And also, actually, I once found myself trying to do things in some common "arbitrary"
numbers, i.e. 5 reasons to do something, 3 ways something is wrong, etc, etc. Which, eventually, lead me
to never set a number. If it comes — it comes, if it doesn't — that's it, stop now. Anything with a preset
number only makes things look (and be) forced and unequal. So, that's it :)

  1. Translated with Google Translate. Original: Поведенческий модус [update-1] ↩︎