Tag Archives: space

Emergent versus Imposed Boundaries

When organizing large quantities of resources and information in the digital world… putting things into groups, determining what goes where and assigning boundaries, it can be helpful to look at the real world for lessons learned.  Imposing boundaries in unnatural locations is bound to fail sooner or later, the results can be disastrous taking generations to overcome.

Take for example Southern Africa. Oceans, mountains, deserts, vegetation and other natural features determined where people lived and worked.

 

Physical Geography and Natural Vegetation
from Exploring Africa at Michigan State University 

Over time, people settled in various areas surrounded by their culture. Learning the best ways to be productive based on the conditions in their area – whether it was a jungle with vast resources or a desert with very few. 

From Africa Expat

Ancient people such as the Shona in modern day Zimbabwe congregated and stuck together in different areas.  Many of these languages and traditions continue today. But these curving, natural, and emergent boundaries don’t match boundaries imposed from outside cultures.

From Wikimedia Commons

Occasionally, an imposed boundary may coincide with a natural boundary such as a river.  More often though, imposed boundaries are designed to work within larger more global schemes, without paying enough attention to the local impact.

From Wikimedia Commons

Anyone can see where arbitrarily drawing lines has gotten us today.  What can be learned from history to avoid similar situations in the fresh, clean, brand new digital world where ideas and information are still patterning out and have no where in particular to belong except where they are emerging as “next to something else” or arranged for convenient, all encompassing, upper level views

Linked Open Data, Colored, as of March 2009

What about situations where digital terrain and intellectual data boundaries are being purposefully laid out. For example Master Web of Science, mapofscience.com and Places & Spaces where navigating the data is like exploring uncharted territory, and Katy Borner and collaborators seek to enable the discovery of new worlds while also marking territories inhabited by unknown monsters.


The difference in the semantic world versus the physical world should be that the digital world has no constraints like rivers or mountains. Eventually all of the layout can be determined.  Attention does need to be paid to where cultures are emerging, and how this can benefit everyone both globally and locally.

 Not only watch how the semantic web is emerging, but to direct it’s flow in productive ways, geared for people in different areas that may vary widely in their density and resources, rather than as one empire. Because that only causes trouble in the long run.

Layout Algorithm, NYU

Data Mining at Information and Visualization

Random Layout Algorithm at Cell System Markup Language (CSML) an XML format for modeling, visualizing and simulating biopathways.

The advantage of paying attention to this is, reaching an appropriate balance between random emergence and directed flow will ultimately serve end users and programmers better than any other option, and the solutions will last for a long time.


Communities of Practice at NASA

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BIMstorm.NBIMS.OGC.OOR.Flickr

There is a gathering storm to document space in the physical world that will eventually impact, or help to form and track, the development of the semantic world. Go see BIMstorm ~ here are some reports.

BIMstorm is a series of spontaneous 24 hour long collaborations organized by the Onuma Planning System. The participants don’t even meet each other for a kickoff meeting. Players all just start designing and utilizing different types of expertise… and design architect can go back to work on their design again and someone else has added onto its information – for example a structural engineer or interior designer could refine what was only put up as BIM blobs. Its hard to understand semantic space. There are multiple locations of the same things. There is Google Earth for a bigger picture anyone can use. There are the programs, purposes. and information exchange priorities in these spaces. But there are no building codes about use groups yet. There have not been any catastrophes, like fire driving the development of US codes. And now BIMstorm is a call to link up all the building and geographic information in semantic space too. An statement on the challenges of Open Standards vs Commercial Technology is here and here.

The requirements of accurately documenting physical space include the Building Owners and Managers Association Calculations (BOMAcalcs), National Building Information Modeling Standard, w3 rules, ontology, language, model definition rules and more, and more. Architects and specification writers can get in trouble for “making things up” because there are reasons the rules are in place. Building and geographic data meet exchange requirements by being standardized, accepted measurements – which is figured out in detail for the physical world, but how is semantic space designed, built and measured?

stairs

 

Zu in the swirl by sgatto

swirl

 

Swirling by exper

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Curving, Swirling by shapeshift

A huge quantity of building and geographic records are currently being made to design, operate, and maintain public buildings and public spaces. What are we going to do with all this information?

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Single Point of Failure

Duane Nickull Senior Standards Strategist for Adobe Systems set forth a set of goals on Ontolog Forum
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Start thinking about the 2008 Ontology Summit

+ Free public API’s where organizations with folksonomies (tag clouds often represent these), can link terms in their folksonomies to disambiguate words like “Washington” which may have several meanings.

+ a system architecture with no single point of failure and a flexible service oriented approach to creating a platform for ontology work on the web.

+some artifacts to explain in simple lay terms, how to use the ontology and how to reference items in it from taxonomies and folksonomies with simple context and event declarations.

+ a strong thrust of work on context.

…which lit a fire of discussion over the term context.

Implementing Duane Nickull’s stated goals would benefit the general public in a number of ways. But there are unanswered questions for example: What is meant by a single point?

SinglePoint

Single Point Perspective by Mark Reeves

 

What system features fail and how can the single points of such failures be diffused to enable functional workarounds on the fly?

Diffuse

The behavior of a perfectly diffuse, or Lambertian, surface is described with the help of this figure by the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) in their remote sensing tutorial.

 

Duane Nickull states the following in response “Single point of failure in (Service Oriented and System) Architecture is a concept whereby one component has the power to render a larger set of components useless if it fails. When architecting ebXML, the W3C Web Services Architecture and the United Nations architecture, we employed multiple failsafes such as a federation of registries instead of a single registry repository since the single one represented a potential point of failure. Even if we employed multiple registry-repositories and syndicated master records from one, the one represented a single point of failure. Instead, all these architectures use a system of high water marks and federation (much like DNS for the internet) to guarantee no single point of failure can bring the entire infrastructure down”


SCIP, meaning the Stanford Computer Industry Project, reports “major computer industry problems such as interoperability, systems errors and project failures are in large part software problems.”

collapse

Collapse the Light into Earth by ~EvidenceE~

 

The other SCIP, meaning Specifications Consultants in Independent Practice, has lively discussions about failures. Everything from a wood floor product failing in adhesion, to windows not passing performance tests, to buildings falling down and exit doors failing to operate during an emergency. What emergencies are caused by the single point of failure in a system architecture?

systemcollapse

System Collapse by isbsh

 

In the real world, people get trapped in a nightclub fire and exit devices are not only invented, they are required by building codes and local laws. Where do ontology users get trapped?

Trapped

Day 30: Trapped Inside a Migraine by Susan and her 5d’s

Who maintains the system of building codes and laws to avoid system wide failures caused by single points in semantic space? In the case of an exit door in physical space, the point of failure is the unfortunate fact there is only one way out, the opening might be too narrow, and untrained people do not know how to operate the locks or control the flow.

Locks in Hugh Moore Park 6 by Mareboy

Locks in Hugh Moore Park 6 by Mareboy

The Construction Specification Institute CSI has a discussion forum on Code Interpretation and Failures. Because building the physical world is already an established process, the roles of contractor, architect and engineer are defined. Are the only architects designing “system architecture with no single point of failure and a flexible service oriented approach to creating a platform for ontology work on the web” actually engineers? Who are the Contractors and Owners of these semantic spaces and designs?

design

Palais de congres de Montreal 2 by Cocolinda

The CSI discussion on code interpretation and failures include contractors points of view “with a lot less time to research the code requirements than the Architect and the Engineer that already have the contract to produce construction documents, would it not be the proper thing to just list the requirements , instead of putting the responsibility on all the bidders to research code requirements which only one bidder will be successful?”

 

Architects designing systems without single points of failure are researching which code requirements? Common Logic? Conceptual Graphs? ISO Standards? Yet, outside of failures to communicate which could be caused by crossed wires between originators and interpreters for a million reasons – what are the current worse case scenarios? What fails, falls down, breaks and blocks the path of progress? What checklists are used to contract the Architects, Engineers, and Contractors for large scale public projects? What construction documents are available to end users as if the plans, specifications, and warranties were in the hands of a condo board, comprised of lawyers, waiting for their windows to leak?

leak

Its Time to Break Up by Nobel4

 

 

What are the warranties against failure? Failure of what? Adhesion? Not passing performance testing? Emergency response or instantaneous reconfiguration, opening up, structural disappearance or collapse to allow large scale escape during an emergency? Has the digital age faced these emergencies yet?

 

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Rework Old Work

Per request by Susan Turnbull at GSA, the position paper below from the American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting a few years ago is resurfacing to update and present at the workshop Mapping the Navigable Waters of Public Information: Connecting People to Science and Scholarly Knowledge. Images from AAG slides will be interspersed soon, both text and images will be updated.

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Position Paper for Mapping Humanities Knowledge and Expertise in the Digital Domain held at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (AAG), Denver, CO, April 5-9, 2005. Organized by Katy Borner & Andre Skupin. By Deborah L. MacPherson, Projects Director
Accuracy&Aesthetics, PO Box 52, Vienna VA 22183 USA

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Part 1 This session

1.1. Describe your main interest in this session.
I am interested in participating in this session because I am bothered by what a map of all of humanity’s knowledge and expertise would look like, how it would function, and how or why people would use it. On the one hand, it seems very straightforward to compare this type of map with “regular maps” that show geographical features, relationships, distances, and even how each of these aspects may change over time or be influenced by people, technology or events. On the other hand, most “regular maps” capture and simplify features, relationships and distances that can actually be measured. Information maps are different, we are not sure how much is there.

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1.2. Which major technical challenges do you see for Mapping Humanity’s Knowledge and Expertise in the Digital Domain, as laid out in the session description?
There are countless reasons why each knowledge domain needs to use their own numbering systems, methods of describing and citing pieces of work in relation to other work to form a whole. By trying to consolidate all of humanity’s knowledge and expertise into one shared system, there will need to be significant, possibly permanently damaging, mathematical and conceptual reductions down to a level where the details and relationships can no longer be seen.

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1.3. Which major non-technical challenges do you foresee?
Changing the way people work and organize their ideas and information is worse than many technical problems because look at the progress that has already been made since 1990 when the total number of websites was 1. Tim Berners-Lee’s prototype. All of humanity’s knowledge and expertise is much older, interconnected and sometimes isolated behind impenetrable walls. Databases, patents, designs, maps, new frontiers and papers (good or bad) are peoples’ work and they are attached to it. Each person, research institute and field of study prefers their own words and don’t care if anyone else knows them, they may even have their own spatial visualizations, and definitely believe they know the best way to fit it all together to decide and show which information is most relevant, interesting or important. Many individuals and institutions entire life’s work is devoted to exactly these tasks – and they know what they are doing so creating a map like this must account for all of these different ways of knowing, techniques and expertise. When all the pieces from every domain are all thrown on the floor together, suddenly, we are asking everyone to cooperate and let other people who do not care or know about the details or relationships of their information to be in charge of what it should look like, act like, and how it should influence or relate to other information around it. If we can work this out, I believe many of the technical challenges will solve themselves.

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1.4. Which major opportunities do you envision?

Educate and inspire the general public. Make people more curious. Let people look outside their knowledge domain and area of expertise. Get history to quit repeating itself. Learn and discover new things we could not do without a map such as this.

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BEGINNING OF PART 2 OMITTED UNTIL THE PROTOTYPE IS REALIZED

2.4. Supported User Tasks
The ability to look through other domains information, place your information where you think it belongs then have it reviewed to be argued against, rejected or raised higher according to the collective view of people who understand what you are working on. In the long term, being able to save only the ideas, information and techniques that actually work; and the ability to streamline all digital collections into one interconnected knowledge base accessible to all people from all cultural and intellectual backgrounds.

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2.5. Data Sets Used
The first set will be created especially to be random and cross cutting against different intellectual/cultural backgrounds and institutional requirements. Subsequent data sets are intended to include digitized art collections, patent specifications and drawings, architectural work, mapping and exploration, large scale databases and new types of digital collections that are not possible yet.

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2.6. Algorithms Used
Context Driven Topologies, a mathematical and perceptual system based on algebra, knot theory topology, cultural anthropology and art curation where each entity within a group knows where it belongs within the context of each particular group, or arrangement, of digital information. Over time, streamlining overlaps between entities, groups, arrangements, and layers of information will generate new views and associations. The purpose of the prototype is to see if these automatic views and associations actually correspond to the ways that people generate and create work to represent ideas in a variety of artistic and scientific fields.

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2.7. Sample Maps – WILL UPDATE

2.8. Pros and Cons
Pro- looks like the right overlaps when you are remembering it. Con- The computer just put everything in places, it no longer corresponds to the placement I gave it and cannot be searched.

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2.9. Planned Work
To develop a prototype of the Context Driven Topology system then present it via papers, conferences and exhibits. Gather feedback from individuals and institutions around the world to consider these views and work requirements in the development and implementation of this system.

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2.10. Publications

Collecting Patterns that Work for Everything, the International Journal of Dynamical Systems Research, Chaos and Complexity Letters Vol. 1, #2, special issue: Chaos and Complexity in Arts and Architecture

Perceiving Design in Virtual Spaces the International Conference of Mathematics & Design June 7-10, 2004, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Collective Consciousness, Qi and Complexity, Consciousness Reframed 2004 in Beijing, China November 2004. Organized by the Planetary Collegium

Digitizing the Non-Digital in Rethinking History, The Journal of Theory and Practice, published quarterly by Routledge/Taylor&Francis.

Sent September 30, 2004 to katy@indiana.edu and askupin@uno.edu

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Carbon Dating / Digital Information

TheRooms

The Rooms from Daily Dose of Imagery

Semantic architecture is not like physical architecture because evidence of previous or alternate use is hard to find.  There is little reason to study older digital archiving or exchange requirements.  There is no carbon footprint equivalent to measure over time yet.

gleanings

Theosophical Publishing House   Ideas and information are published, maintained and available, or the only results are a mysterious, unexplained broken link or 404 Error.  Less than 5 percent of previously published, no longer maintained information may continue to have value.  In addition to efforts such as the Wayback Machine to capture everything, there should also be efforts to capture only some things based on patterns and evidence of use so only the most important connections and examples can be preserved even if the individual or organization that instigated this information is no longer around or maintaining their website or database.  Its a major conceptual, mathematical, and artistic problem to work on.  If digital information is to leave footprints, maybe these could mimic carbon in their structure. Carbon1

Allotropes of Carbon   carbon2

Utah scientists find longest Carbon-Carbon Bond.

Even the band Modest Mouse is curious about the persistence and interchangeability of carbon. The song, Parting of the Sensory, is talking about more than the chemical structure.  Select phrases about a different kind of bonding and tracking are below.

Dehydrate back into minerals

A life long walk to the same exact spot

 

Carbon’s anniversary

The parting of the sensory

Old old mystery

The parting of the sensory

 

The weather changed it for the worse

And came down on us like it had been rehearsed

And like we hope, but change will surely come

And be awful for most but really good for some

I took a trip to the exact same spot

We pulled the trigger, but we forgot to cock

And every single shot

 

Some day you will die and

Somehow something’s going to steal your carbon

 

Some day you will die and

Somehow something’s going to steal your carbon

 

Well some day you will die somehow and

Something’s going to steal your carbon

 

Some day you will die and

Someone’s or something’s will steal your carbon

 

Some day something will die and

Somehow you’ll figure out how

Often you will die somehow and

Something going to steal your carbon

 

Well some day you will die somehow and

Something’s going to steal your carbon

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One Shared Space

What an amazing invention Google Earth is. It is unprecedented how lucky all people are today to have access to these images and geographic locations knit together and made available for free.

GoogleEarth_Image_BI2.500

One of the many beauties of Google Earth is that it was not put together for wars, spying, or tracking hurricanes ~ even if many of these images may have been originally gathered for these reasons. In Google Earth these maps and images remind us we are all here together in one place along with everything, man made or not, that happens here.

– zoom in, fly down, see how far away an area is, go visit, discover how people express themselves there. See bigger.

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Finishing Touches

183855882_2535f6936e

If ideas and information can be cared for like a garden over long periods of time, we need simpler tools to assemble the essential elements and finishing touches needed to create memorable semantic spaces.

The current digital world is not set up to cultivate reflective and contemplative places able to transcend any one person or organization’s lifetime yet.

New, special processes and requirements need to be defined to span the boundaries of multiple communities, create new knowledge together, and accelerate our knowledge flows.
What Is the Knowledge Garden

This Knowledge Garden is a public service of Community Intelligence Labs, a part of the global commons. Here we explore ideas that span the boundaries of multiple communities, create new knowledge together, and accelerate our knowledge flows.

The Knowledge Garden is continuously seeded with thought-provoking articles, interviews, research papers, slide presentations and work-in-progress documents by the CoIL team, our friends, allies, and partners.

Depending on how much attention those seeds will receive from you and other users and members, some of them may turn into fast-growing, robust plants, others will not. Welcome to our participatory collective intelligence!

Not only the content, but the structure of the Knowledge Garden too is evolving with our deepening understanding of the relationships between the knowledge domains–and their corresponding communities of practice–represented here. Currently we feature the following knowledge domains:

Communities of Practice

Generative Leadership Strategies

Intellectual Capital

Knowledge Ecology

Organizational Intelligence

Virtual Communities

If you want to have some fun, take a trip over to the Flying Carpet, and allow yourself to become inspired by the collected bits of wisdom and high-flying adventure awaiting you there.

garden

IMAGE: A Stream in The Ginkakuji Garden by S.O.D.A.

Ginkakuji was constructed as a Buddhist temple using Kinkakuji as a model. It was originally intended to have silver lining, but because of the Onin War it was never completed.

The complex has a large Zen sand garden with a pile of sand symbolizing Mount Fuji on one end, and a large wooded and moss garden stands behind the main area.

I personally think the gardens are the main reason to come to Ginkakuji, although the incomplete pavilion stands as an interesting contrast to the almost gaudy Golden Pavailion.

Map it:
Google Earth | Street | Satellite | Hybrid

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