Obliquity Safe-to-fail experimentation Strategy is based on coherence of experiments & emergent properties

What we can manage
Boundary conditions Probes/experiments Modulators (magnet metaphor), drivers if complicated Constraints Cynefin works with the constraint based definition of complexity: Order:system constrains agents to the level where their behaviour is predictable. Chaos: system places no constraint on agents behaviour is random. Chaos is always a transitionary state, difficult to maintain. Complex: system partially constrains agents, agents modify the system as they interact with it. They co-evolve. Order is then split into simple and complicated depending on if the relationship between cause and effect is self-evident or not. Disorder is an inauthentic state; not knowing which system you are in. Key linked biological concepts: coevolution and exaption (linked to serendipity) Complex systems are not conventionally causal, but they are dispositional Interaction & proximity

Differences with Systems Thinking
CAS focuses on describing the present and evolving forwards to an unknowable but sustainable future state, in contrast with defining the ideal future and attempting to close the gap. Dissent and diversity are critical, consensus reduces scanning capability. Dialectic not Dilemma resolution The only valid model of a system is the system itself

Human complex adaptive systems (or why we are not ants)
Intelligence, our ability to impose on the environment, but also our pattern based ability to manage large data volumes, its not rule based decisions (per Boids) Identity, we can move between them easily so no clear agency, and narratives and myths along with ritual can determine it. Intent which includes things like alturism and sacrifice outside of family groups. Its not a blind response whatever the new calvinists say.

Work with finely grained objects Distribute cognition (commonly wisdom of crowds) Disintermediation (direct interaction with raw data by decision makers)

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Characteristics of complex systems (paraphrased)
from Cilliers “Complexity & Post-modernism 1998

Complex systems consist of a large number of elements as a result of which conventional means (eg. differential equations) not only become impractical, they also cease to assist in any understanding of the system. A large number of elements are necessary, but not sufficient. Numbers are not enough, they also have to interact and those interactions do not have to be physical, they can also constitute information. This interaction is fairly rich, i.e. elements are influences and is influenced by quit a few others. However a number of sparsely connected elements can perform the same function as that of one richly connected element. The interactions usually have a fairly short range, long range interation is not impossible but it is modulated over multiple links There are loops in the interactions. Feedback can be positive (enhancing, stimulating) or negative (detracting, inhibiting). Both kinds are necessary and this is called recurrency. Complex systems are usually open systems, they interact with their environment. Framing indicates that the scope of the system is influenced by the position of the observer. Closed systems are usually complicated. Complex systems operate under conditions far from equilibrium. There has to be a constant flow of energy to maintain the organisation os the system and to ensure its survival. Equilibrium is another word for death. Complex systems have a history. They evolve through time and their past is co-responsible for their present behaviour. Time is key to any analysis. Each element of the system is ignorant of the behaviour of the system as a whole, it responds only to locally available information. Cilliers once described the difference between a complex and a complicated system as that between a mayonnaise and a aircraft.

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