2014-04-07

Latest Aphorisms

Aphorisms collection at http://turing.iimas.unam.mx/~cgg/aforismos.html

“Reality: always one step ahead of my most imaginative sarcasms”

“The more I travel, the more borders become artificial”

*“In science, there are no finished problems, only narrow-minded scientists”

“The fact that it has always been that way does not mean that it cannot change”

“Since I am finite, I tend to be biased towards speaking only about those things which I have experience with.”

“If I say: "I might be wrong", I cannot be wrong”

*“If you do not have the right perspective to see the rainbow, it does not imply that the rainbow is not there.”

*“One can warmonger interpreting a religious or a scientific text.
 One can peacemonger interpreting a religious or a scientific text.
 What is more important: the text or the purpose of the interpretation?”

“It is difficult to gain new knowledge without first questioning current knowledge”

“Remember that you are always setting an example. Do things as you want things to be.”

*“Context is everything”
“New ideas solve old problems and generate new ones.”

“The most comfortable role in life is that of a victim”

“Rules are efficient if they do not need enforcement. That occurs when people clearly benefit from following them.”

“Check what you can, but this does not imply that you should reject what you cannot.”

“There shouldn't be so much discussion about abortion being legal or not, the aim should be to prevent the circumstances that lead to abortions, i.e. undesired pregnancies.”

“Reason is a subset of feeling”

“The only worthwhile competition is against yourself”

*“You are not one more. You are every one.”
“If two computations occur at the same time in different parts of the universe, was information transmitted?”

2014-04-02

Paper published: Complexity measurement of natural and artificial languages

We compared entropy for texts written in natural languages (English, Spanish) and artificial languages (computer software) based on a simple expression for the entropy as a function of message length and specific word diversity. Code text written in artificial languages showed higher entropy than text of similar length expressed in natural languages. Spanish texts exhibit more symbolic diversity than English ones. Results showed that algorithms based on complexity measures differentiate artificial from natural languages, and that text analysis based on complexity measures allows the unveiling of important aspects of their nature. We propose specific expressions to examine entropy related aspects of tests and estimate the values of entropy, emergence, self-organization, and complexity based on specific diversity and message length.


Complexity measurement of natural and artificial languages
Gerardo Febres, Klaus Jaffé and Carlos Gershenson
Complexity, Early View
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cplx.21529


2014-03-17

Commentary published: Info-computationalism or Materialism? Neither and Both

Upshot: The limitations of materialism for studying cognition have motivated alternative epistemologies based on information and computation. I argue that these alternatives are also inherently limited and that these limits can only be overcome by considering materialism, info-computationalism, and cognition at the same time.

Open peer commentary on the article “Info-computational Constructivism and Cognition” by Gordana Dodig-Crnkovic.

Gershenson C. (2014) Info-computationalism or Materialism? Neither and Both. Constructivist Foundations 9(2): 241–242. Available at http://www.univie.ac.at/constructivism/journal/9/2/241.gershenson

2014-02-27

Call for Abstracts: Design and Control of Self-organising Systems @ WOSC 2014

The 16th International Congress of Systems and Cybernetics WOSC2014 will take place on October 15-17 a the University of Ibagué, Colombia.

One of the congress themes is Design and Control of Self-organising Systems

Many real-world problems are non-stationary and highly complex. That is, they are changing constantly and interacting, generating novel information that limits prediction. If the change is faster than our ability to optimize our solutions, then these will be obsolete. As an alternative, we have designed adaptive systems, in many cases inspired in biology. One approach for designing adaptive systems has been proposed with the use of self-organization: instead of trying to optimize a problem, the aim is to design components of a system that by local interactions actively search for their best configuration. When designed properly, self-organizing systems can adapt to extremely dynamic and complex problems at the same scales at which changes occur. As our systems become more dynamic and complex, designing them using self-organization offers greater benefits compared with traditional approaches.

Calls for abstract submissions are open until March 31st 2014.
Submitters will be notified of acceptance or rejection no later than April 30th.

Author Guidelines
You need to submit an extended abstract:
That clearly attempts to discuss aspects of “our self-organising world: from disruption to reparation” from a systemic perspective and supported by cybernetic approaches.
You are requested to use our template (http://wosc-congress.unibague.edu.co/images/template_for_abstracts.doc) to submit the abstract.
The length of the text body of these submissions should be about 1000 words (2 A4 pages).
Authors of the extended abstracts should add their bios in “About the Authors” of the template. The bio of each author shall be about a 100 words.
Extended abstracts should be submitted via Make Submission in http://wosc-congress.unibague.edu.co/
Authors with accepted abstracts, in order to be considered for publication in a journal are expected to submit a full paper of about 5000 words by September 30th.

2014-02-25

Postdoctoral Fellowships at UNAM

//Please forward to whom may be interested.




The National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) has an open call for postdoctoral fellowships to start in September, 2014 or March, 2015. 

Candidates should have obtained a PhD degree within the last three years and be under 36 years, both to the date of the beginning of the fellowship.



The area of interests of candidates should fall within complex systems, artificial life, information, evolution, cognition, robotics, and/or philosophy.

 Interested candidates should send CV and a tentative project (1 paragraph) to cgg-at-unam.mx by Monday, March 3rd (if starting in September 2014, otherwise in the coming months). Full application package should be ready by Friday, March 7 at noon, Mexico City time.
 Projects can be inspired from: http://turing.iimas.unam.mx/~cgg/projects.html

 and/or http://froese.wordpress.com/research/

Postdoctoral fellowships are between one and two years (after renewal).
 Spanish is not a requisite.
Accepted candidates would be working at the Self-organizing Systems Lab (http://turing.iimas.unam.mx/sos/ ) of the Computer Science Department of the IIMAS (http://turing.iimas.unam.mx ), and at the Center for Complexity Sciences (http://c3.unam.mx/ ), both at UNAM's main campus.
To know more about UNAM, please visit http://turing.iimas.unam.mx/~cgg/unam.html




2014-02-14

New draft: Harnessing the Complexity of Education with Information Technology

Education at all levels is facing several challenges in most countries, such as low quality, high costs, lack of educators, and unsatisfied student demand. Traditional approaches are becoming unable to deliver the required education. Several causes for this inefficiency can be identified. I argue that beyond specific causes, the lack of effective education is related to complexity. However, information technology is helping us overcome this complexity.

http://arxiv.org/abs/1402.2827

2014-02-04

New draft: Measuring the Complexity of Self-organizing Traffic Lights

We apply measures of complexity, emergence and self-organization to an abstract city traffic model for comparing a traditional traffic coordination method with a self-organizing method in two scenarios: cyclic boundaries and non-orientable boundaries. We show that the measures are useful to identify and characterize different dynamical phases. It becomes clear that different operation regimes are required for different traffic demands. Thus, not only traffic is a non-stationary problem, which requires controllers to adapt constantly. Controllers must also change drastically the complexity of their behavior depending on the demand. Based on our measures, we can say that the self-organizing method achieves an adaptability level comparable to a living system.

Measuring the Complexity of Self-organizing Traffic Lights
Dario Zubillaga, Geovany Cruz, Luis Daniel Aguilar, Jorge Zapotecatl, Nelson Fernandez, Jose Aguilar, David A. Rosenblueth, Carlos Gershenson
http://arxiv.org/abs/1402.0197

2013-11-22

New draft: Complexity measurement of natural and artificial languages

We compared entropy for texts written in natural languages (English, Spanish) and artificial languages (computer software) based on a simple expression for the entropy as a function of message length and specific word diversity. Code text written in artificial languages showed higher entropy than text of similar length expressed in natural languages. Spanish texts exhibit more symbolic diversity than English ones. Results showed that algorithms based on complexity measures differentiate artificial from natural languages, and that text analysis based on complexity measures allows the unveiling of important aspects of their nature. We propose specific expressions to examine entropy related aspects of tests and estimate the values of entropy, emergence, self-organization and complexity based on specific diversity and message length.


Complexity measurement of natural and artificial languages
Gerardo Febres, Klaus Jaffe, Carlos Gershenson

2013-11-20

CfP&A: ALife 14

ALIFE 14: THE FOURTEENTH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON
THE SYNTHESIS AND SIMULATION OF LIVING SYSTEMS


July 31st - August 2nd, 2014
Javits Center, Manhattan, New York, NY, USA


http://alife14.org


Sponsored by the International Society for Artificial Life (ISAL)


January 15, 2014 -- Workshop/tutorial proposal deadline
February 1, 2014 -- Science visualization competition deadline
March 31, 2014 -- Paper/abstract submission deadline

**********************************************************************


We cordially invite you to submit papers to ALIFE 14: The Fourteenth
International Conference on the Synthesis and Simulation of Living
Systems. Since its inception in 1987, ALIFE has been the leading
biyearly international conference in the field of Artificial Life --
the highly interdisciplinary research area on artificially constructed
living systems, including mathematical, computational, robotic, and
biochemical ones. The understanding and application of such
generalized forms of life, or "life-as-it-could-be", have been
producing significant contributions to various fields of science and
engineering.

The upcoming ALIFE 14 will be held at the Javits Center located in the
middle of Manhattan, New York, the world's largest economic and
cultural center. We hope you will find it a perfect place to discuss
Artificial Life, the intellectual melting pot that mixes biology,
computation, technology, art, philosophy, and more!!

ALIFE 14 accepts submissions in either full paper (8 pages) or
extended abstract (2 pages) format. Accepted papers and abstracts will
be published by MIT Press as open-access electronic
proceedings. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the
following aspects of Artificial Life:

 - Bio-inspired and evolutionary robotics
 - Self-replication, self-repair and morphogenesis
 - Artificial chemistry and cellular automata
 - Perception, cognition and behavior
 - Embodied, interactive systems
 - Collective dynamics of swarms
 - Complex dynamical networks
 - Evolutionary dynamics
 - Ecological and social dynamics
 - Economy/society/social media as living systems
 - Methodologies and tools for artificial life
 - Applications to nanotechnology, biology or medicine
 - Applications to business and finance
 - Applications to games and entertainment
 - Artificial life-based art
 - Philosophical and ethical issues
 - Artificial life and education

Best paper awards (best paper, best student paper, best poster) will
be given to highest quality work, with prizes offered by Wolfram
Research, Inc.

Organizers:
General Chair -- Hod Lipson (Cornell University)
Program Chair -- Hiroki Sayama (Binghamton University)
Workshop Chair -- John Reiffel (Union College)
Competition Chair -- Sebastian Risi (IT University of Copenhagen)
Executive Producer -- Ira Fraitag
Event Producer -- Craig Ryan

For more information, please visit the conference website: http://alife14.org.

2013-11-14

Editorial Published: Multidisciplinary applications of complex networks modeling, simulation, visualization, and analysis

(...) complex systems are characterized by the interactions between their numerous elements. The word ‘complex’ comes from the Latin plexus which means entwined. In other words, it is difficult to correlate global properties of complex systems with the properties of the individual constituent components. This is primarily because the interactions between these individual elements partly determine the future states of the system (Gershenson 2013). If these interactions are not included in the developed models, the models would not be an accurate reflection of the modelled phenomenon.

Gershenson, C. & M. A. Niazi (2013). Multidisciplinary applications of complex networks modeling, simulation, visualization, and analysis. Complex Adaptive Systems Modeling 1:17  http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/2194-3206-1-17