Volume 8 · Number 1 · Pages 103-110

< Previous Paper · Next Paper >

Communication Emerging? On Simulating Structural Coupling in Multiple Contingency

Manfred Füllsack

Download the full text in
PDF (560 kB)

> Citation > Similar > References > Add Comment

Abstract

Problem: Can communication emerge from the interaction of “self-referentially closed systems,” conceived as operating solely on the base of the “internal” output of their onboard means? Or in terms of philosophical conceptions: can communication emerge without (“outward” directed) “intention” or “will to be understood”? Method: Multi-agent simulation based on a conceptual analysis of the theory of social systems as suggested by Niklas Luhmann. Results: Agents that co-evolutionarily aggregate probabilities on how to cope with their environment can structurally couple and generate a form of “eigenbehavior” that retrospectively (i.e., by an observer) might be interpreted as communication. Implications: The “intention” or the “will to be understood,” as prominently claimed to be indispensable in communication by theoreticians such as Jürgen Habermas, can be seen as a retrospective ascription to an emergent property of complex interaction. Constructivist content: The paper attempts to base constructivist reasoning on data generated in simulations.

Key words: Communication, information, contingency, structural coupling, intentionality, observer dependency, multi-agent simulation.

Citation

Füllsack M. (2012) Communication emerging? On simulating structural coupling in multiple contingency. Constructivist Foundations 8(1): 103-110. http://constructivist.info/8/1/103

Export article citation data: Plain Text · BibTex · EndNote · Reference Manager (RIS)

Similar articles

Füllsack M. (2014) The Circular Conditions of Second-order Science Sporadically Illustrated with Agent-based Experiments at the Roots of Observation

Hejl P. M. (2011) The Individual in Radical Constructivism. Some Critical Remarks from an Evolutionary Perspective

Leydesdorff L. (2012) Radical Constructivism and Radical Constructedness: Luhmann’s Sociology of Semantics, Organizations, and Self-Organization

Bettoni M. C. (2007) The Yerkish Language: From Operational Methodology to Chimpanzee Communication

Palmaru R. (2012) Making Sense and Meaning: On the Role of Communication and Culture in the Reproduction of Social Systems

References

Arthur W. B. (1989) Competing technologies, increasing returns, and lock-in by historical events. Economic Journal 99: 116–131. << Google Scholar

Barber M., Blanchard P., Buchinger E., Cessac B. & Streit L. (2006) Expectation-driven interaction. A model based on Luhmann’s contingency approach. Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation 9(4) Available at http://jasss.soc.surrey.ac.uk/9/4/5.html

Borensztajn G. & Trehan V. (2006) Luc Steels, the talking heads experiment and cognitive philosophy. Available at http://staff.science.uva.nl/~gideon/Steels_Tutorial_PART1.pdf

Clayton P. & Davies P. (eds.) (2006) The re-emergence of emergence: The emergentist hypothesis from science to religion. Oxford University Press, Oxford. << Google Scholar

Crutchfield J. P. (1994) The calculi of emergence: Computation, dynamics, and induction. Physica D 75: 11–54. << Google Scholar

Füllsack M. (2009) Antizipation und ihre Formalisierung. Zur Simulation sozialer Systeme nach Loet Leydesdorff. Österreichische Zeitschrift für Soziologie 34(3): 62–81. << Google Scholar

Füllsack M. (2010) Die Arbitrarität der Zeichen, oder: Was widerspiegelt ein Glider? Simulationen und die Unterscheidung von beobachtetem und Eigen-Verhalten komplexer Systeme. In: Füllsack M. (ed.) Simulation komplexer Systeme. Forschen in der Von-Neumann-Galaxie. Institut für Wissenschaft und Kunst, Vienna: 47–54. Available at http://homepage.univie.ac.at/manfred.fuellsack/salience.pdf

Füllsack M. (2011) Firstness – As seen from the perspective of complexity research. E-Logos. Journal for Philosophy 8: 2–19. << Google Scholar

Füllsack M. (2011) Gleichzeitige Ungleichzeitigkeiten. Eine Einführung in die Komplexitätsforschung. VS-Verlag, Wiesbaden. << Google Scholar

Füllsack M. (2012) Information, meaning and eigenforms. In the light of sociology, agent-based modeling and AI. Information 3(3): 331–343. << Google Scholar

Fiorillo C. D. (2012) Beyond bayes: On the need for a unified and Jaynesian definition of probability and information within neuroscience. Information 3(2): 175–203. Available at http://www.mdpi.com/2078–2489/3/2/175/pdf

Fleischmann A. (2005) A model for a simple Luhmann economy. Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation 8(2) Available at http://jasss.soc.surrey.ac.uk/8/2/4.html

Foerster H. von (1976) Objects: Tokens for (eigen-)behaviors. ASC Cybernetics Forum 8(3–4): 91–96. Reprinted in: Foerster H. von (2003) Understanding understanding: Essays on cybernetics and cognition. Springer, New York: 261–271. << Google Scholar

Habermas J. (1984–1987) The theory of communicative action. 2 Volumes. Translated by Thomas McCarthy. Polity Press, Cambridge MA. German original “Theorie des kommunikativen Handelns” published in 1981. << Google Scholar

Kim J. (1993) Supervenience and mind. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Kron T. & Dittrich P. (2002) Doppelte Kontingenz nach Luhmann – Ein Simulationsexperiment. In: Kron T. (ed.) Luhmann modelliert. Ansätze zur Simulation von Kommunikationssystemen. Leske + Budrich, Opladen: 209–251. << Google Scholar

Kron T. (2005) Der komplizierte Akteur. Lit, Münster. << Google Scholar

Kron T. (ed.) (2002) Luhmann modelliert. Sozionische Ansätze zur Simulation von Kommunikationssystemen. Leske and Budrich, Opladen. << Google Scholar

Kron T., Lasarczyk C. & Schimank U. (2003) Doppelte Kontingenz und die Bedeutung von Netzwerken für Kommunikationssysteme. Zeitschrift für Soziologie 5: 374–395. << Google Scholar

Lewis D. (1969) Convention: A philosophical study. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Leydesdorff L. (1993) “Structure”/“action” contingencies and the model of parallel Processing. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 23(1): 47–77. << Google Scholar

Leydesdorff L. (2002) The communication turn in the theory of social systems. Systems Research and Behavioral Science 19(2): 129–136. << Google Scholar

Leydesdorff L. (2008) The communication of meaning in anticipatory systems: A simulation study of the dynamics of intentionality in social interactions. In: Dubois D. M. (ed.) Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Computing Anticipatory Systems CASYS’07. American Institute of Physics, Melville NY: 33–49. Available at http://www.leydesdorff.net/casys07/casys07.pdf

Leydesdorff L. (2012) Radical constructivism and radical constructedness: Luhmann’s sociology of semantics, organizations, and self-organization. Constructvist Foundations 8(1): 85–92. Available at http://www.univie.ac.at/constructivism/journal/8/1/085.leydesdorff

Lorenz E. N. (1969) Atmospheric predictability as revealed by naturally occurring analogues. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences 26(4): 636–646. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (1977) Interpenetration – Zum Verhältnis personaler und sozialer Systeme. Zeitschrift für Soziologie 6(1): 62–76. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (1978) Interpenetration bei Parsons. Zeitschrift für Soziologie 7(3): 299–302. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (1990) Die Wissenschaft der Gesellschaft. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (1995) Social systems. Translated by J. Bednarz Jr & D. Baecker. Stanford University Press, Stanford CA. German original published as: Luhmann N. (1984) Soziale Systeme. Grundriß einer allgemeinen Theorie. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (1997) Die Gesellschaft der Gesellschaft. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (2001) Aufsätze und Reden. Reclam, Stuttgart. << Google Scholar

Luhmann N. (2002) How can the mind participate in communication? In: Rasch W. (ed.) Theories of distinction: Redescribing the descriptions of modernity. Stanford University Press, Stanford CA: 169–184. << Google Scholar

MacKay D. M. (1969) Information. Mechanism and meaning. MIT Press: Cambridge MA. << Google Scholar

Maturana H. R. & Varela F. J. (1980) Autopoiesis and cognition: The realization of the living. Reidel, Boston. << Google Scholar

Maturana H. R. & Varela F. J. (1987) The tree on knowledge: The biological roots of human understanding. Shambhala, London. << Google Scholar

Parsons T. & Shils E. A. (eds.) (1951) Toward a general theory of action. Harper and Row, New York. << Google Scholar

Parsons T. (1952) Superego and the theory of social systems. Psychiatry: Journal for the Study of Social Relations 15: 15–25. << Google Scholar

Parsons T. (1964) Social structure and personality. Free Press, New York. << Google Scholar

Parsons T. (1968) Interaction: I. Social interaction. In: Sills D. L. (ed.) The international encyclopedia of the social sciences, Volume 7. McGraw-Hill, New York: 429–441. << Google Scholar

Russell A. R. (2000) Odour detection by mobile robots. World Scientific Publishing, River Edge NJ. << Google Scholar

Schimank U. (1988) Gesellschaftliche Teilsysteme als Akteurfiktionen. Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie 4: 619–639. << Google Scholar

Searle J. R. (1980) Minds, brains, and programs. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3: 417–424. << Google Scholar

Shannon C. (1948) A mathematical theory of communication. The Bell System Technical Journal 27: 379–423, 623–656. << Google Scholar

Spencer-Brown G. (1969) Laws of form. Allen & Unwin, London. << Google Scholar

Steels L. (1995) A self-organizing spatial vocabulary. Artificial Life 2(3): 319–332. << Google Scholar

Steels L. (1999) The talking heads experiment. Words and meanings. VUB Press, Brussels. << Google Scholar

Vanderstraeten R. (2000) Autopoiesis and socialization: On Luhmann’s reconceptualization of communication and socialization. British Journal of Sociology 51(3): 581–598. << Google Scholar

Varela F. J. (1992) Autopoiesis and a biology of intentionality. In: McMullin B. (ed.) Proceedings of the Workshop “Autopoiesis and Perception,” Dublin City University: 4–14. Available at http://elm.eeng.dcu.ie/~alife/bmcm9401/varela.pdf

Wolfram S. (2002) A new kind of science. Wolfram-Science, Champaign IL. << Google Scholar

Comments: 0

To stay informed about comments to this publication and post comments yourself, please log in first.