cybernetic points of views

I am thinking of cybernetics as a science and technical method enabling us to tackle practical problems that would otherwise defeat us by their complexity. All these models must start with the question 'What do you want?' -- The cybernetician’s thoughts must start here. -- Ross Ashby





Norbert Weiner



Heinz von Foerster





































Stein and Toklas



Why Cybernetics?


Norbert Weiner


von Glasersfeld





Maturana SDEntities
























Biology of Love a Fundmenta


Faltse Statements


Brün's When is a Paradiigm


Richards, et al A Report

Triadic Relations

























































































I want social transformations that generate a society I desire to be an element of. Such transformations require thinking differently about: causality, purpose, emotions, control, independence and common sensical ideas we hold so near. (Mary Catherine Bateson, ASC 2014)

Cybernetics is a way of thinkng about ways of thinking, languaging, composing and preforming that speaks me rather than me it.

Cybernetic thinking opens space for anything to emerge in the domians and constraints in which we exist. (Paradigms: and the Inertia of Language)

Cybernetics -- a way of thinking about ways of thinking of which it is one. (Richards)

First cybernetics was defined in the mid 20th century by Norbert Wiener as the scientific study of control and communication in the animal and the machine. When he and others were considering the question: How can I make a machine that thinks and acts like a Human?

Cybernetics as a science focused on concepts such as organization, feedback, recursion, information, homeostasis, requisite variety, entropy, control, communication and circularity....

Throughout the 1940s and into the 60s Wiener, Ross Ashby, Warren McCulloch, Grey Walter, Gregory Bateson, Margaret Mead, to mention a few, focused on generating a transdisciplinary language relevant to both living (non-trivial) systems and non-living (trivial) systems.

Circularity a central concept in cybernetics opened a space for a new way of thinking to emerge. Self-organization. This generated an awareness of the responsibility for one's self and what one creates -- ethics.

For some this distinction was a contradiction so they left the group and created Artificial Intelligence as an alternative.


Turning from looking at to looking in generated a new cybernetics, a second c new cybernetics also known as the Cybernetics of Cyberenetics.

Cybernetics is relevant to the study of mechanical, physical, biological, social cognitive, emotional, systems and the arts. What's left?

Margret Mead triggered this shift in cybernetic language and thinking at the First ASC meeting in the late 1960s when suggesting that

I now would like to consider cybernetics as a way of looking at things and as a language for expressing what one sees. -- Margaret Mead

It was an invitation for members of this new organization to focus on its own organization by applying cybernetics concepts onto itself. To focus on the organization of organizing itself.

What struck me was her speaking about cybernetics in a cybernetical way. Thus I chose for her the title Cybernetics of Cybernetics. -- Heinz von Foerster


Cybernetics emerges when one considers economy not as an economist, biology not as a biologist, engines not as an engineer..., and in each case its theme remains the same, namely how systems regulate themselves, reproduce themselves, evolve and learn. -- Gordon Pask, 1970s




Cybernetics, one approach to solving problems when turning together, looking at our looking and wanting while paying attention to our language and doing differently.

Gertrude Stein once said, when there is communication there is no creativity. I say, when there is creativity there is anticommunication.

Herbert Brün invented the term anticommunication as a premise for designing a new and more honest language, since insistence on

Communication ultimately generates social and physical violence because communication feeds-on, speeds-up the decay of information in human systems.

Anticommunication feeds on newness and retards decay of living systems, since anticommunication ultimately insists on composition and peace as a need.

So, when I want(s) to create something new, I observe(s) an a-synchronicity, design(s) an alternative, often an anticommunication nested in communication, and ACT(s) accordingly = performance.

We are all actors acting all the time and when we act with intent performers.


Second cybernetics emerges ... and so does Artificial Intelligence.

Second order cybernetics as it was coined by HvF requires a scientist to include oneself -- as an observer in -- one's explanations. Shifting the language when making a distinction between first-cybernetics (the study of observed systems) and second- cybernetics (the study of observing systems),



Cybernetics, a transdiciplinary approach for exploring variety, in a variety of systems I look(s) -- What one sees. Including, dynamic relations and circularities, structures, processes, constraints and possibilities.

Scientist claim they are not emotional and it is not true. -- Humberto Maturana,

Cybernetics is not about generating a grand theory or ideology, It is about epistemologies, ontologies and intersubjectivity. Among other things....


Hence, third cybernetics is in the doing when including oneself in one's descriptions intentionally.

Why a third cybernetics? (Kenny)


Epistemology, the study of how we know and come to know what we know. How one's knowing is constructed through on one's history or herstory of knowing. For observing systems are historically dependent. (HvF)

One cannot come back to the question when is knowledge too often, and the answer knowledge is what one knows, -- Gertrude Stein

As a science, epistemology is; a) a branch of philosophy concerned with the question how is it possible to know anything and what is truth. b) studies of natural history, b1) the study of how people think they know things, b2) the study of how people know things. -- Gregory Bateson

Everybody has an epistemology or they could know anything and those who say they don't have an epistemology have a lousy one. (G.B.)

Different epistemologies entail different postures or relational attitudes that determine different domains of validity for human actions. -- Humberto Maturana

To take seriously that everything said -- everything said -- is said by an observer (an epistemology) to another observer (again an epistemology), is to revolutionize human experience. It is to hear every assertion not as 'fact' or 'truth' but as an invitation to orient in a particular manner, and no more. -- Rodney Donaldson

STILL very much contructing...

Designing Cybernetically

Cyberneitcs of cyberentics, responibility for one actions, regardless of the constraints one finds oneself emmersed in. Always doing what one wants. (Richards 2014 ASC)

Designing Desires

Premise: an art of being is doing what one wants, and in order to do what one wants one must know what one desires.

Right or Wrong MY Desires

While using the word “desire” to mean something wanted with the momentary urgency of a need and necessity, write a list of statements for which you would say:

While it is not the case, I desire it to be the case that ______.

A Desire Statement: I desire all human needs be satisfied.

Generating False Statements

In order for desires to become tools for designing one’s desires I then turn my desire statements into False Statements based in a dynamic premise that suggests: “The past is past, the present happens anyway so understanding and agreement has to be given to False Statements.

False Statement: All human needs are met.

Paradigms, Models and Premises

I like using words to describe particular phenomena so that I can build on my knowing when using certain words. I want to make the distinction between paradigm, models and premises since it helps me design a society I desire to be a part or more accurately a society I desire to be an element of (recursions).

Assumption: our language is embedded in the old paradigms for communicating. For example, the sun still sets and the moon risesin our languge even though we know that is not the case. Even though we know the heliocentric model replaced the geocentric paradigm a thousand plus years ago the language of the old paradigm haunts our epistemologies and our worldviews.

So in order for social transformations to emerge anything that is not the case may be a more valuable a statement then anything said about what is the case, since “what,” usually reflects old paradigms, models, premises and assumptions from the past rather than a present or future.

Old Paradigms Die Hard

A reward-oriented hierarchy guides our language, languaging, communications in ways that maintains the way things are a status quo that prevents “social” transformations I desire.

Reward-oriented hierarchy: needs are met when appropriate actions are achieved = status an element of a system for stratification. Stable hiearchies of power, nature and beliefs.

Longing for Links

Longing for Links which favors change over stability, yet insist that these changes be non violent and NOT improvised BUT composed in search of changing forms. (H.B.)

Composing, Triadic Relations and Performance

When might the power of a respondent, powerful images and the responsibilities of a designer generate triadic relations? (Enslin, Eglash, Richards, von Foerster)

When does the power of a respondent, powerful images and the responsibilities of a designer generate triadic relations? (Enslin, Eglash, Richards, von Foerster)


jManagment, Self-Interest, Self-Organization



























Designing a Society (Marianne Brün)

Herstory of Cybernetics (jLombardi)

For God's Sake, Margaret (S. Brand)


Brün's Language of Resistence (Ross Feller)

Cybernetics is.... (Lombardi and Richards)

my words where I want them #48 (Herbert Brün)


The Notion of Control (Humberto Maturana)

Responsibilites of Competence (Heinz von Foerster)

Cybernetics and the Art of Liviing (EvGlasersfeld)


Why Cybernetics 2011 (Mary Catherine Bateson)

Anticommunication Imperatiive (Larry Richards)

From Versailles to Cybernetics (Gregorry Bateson)


Cybernetic Explanation (Gregory Bateson)

Interview with Heinz von Foerster (Yveline Rey)

Why 3rd order Cybernetics (Vincent Kenny)


Epistemology (objectivity) (Gregory Bateson)

Cybernetics and Human Knowing (Rodney Donaldson)

Ontology of Observing (Humberto Maturana)


When Peace is a Need (jLombardi)

Praxis of Thinking (Larry Richards)

Power of the Respondent (Mark Enslin)


Composing Inputs (Herbert Brün)

Dilemmas of social Design (Larry Richards)

Cybernetics of Cybernetics (Margaret Mead)


Longing for Links (Herbert Brün)

Designing Triadic Relations (J. Lombardi)

(Heinz von Foerster)


Ethics and Cybernetics (Heinz von Foerster)

Toward Composition Herbert Brün (S. Smith)

RC social Transformation and Design (Richards)


Cyber Design, Design Cyberentics (K. Krippendorf)

Paradigms: The Inertia of Language (Marianne Brün)

What's so Radical about Radical Constructivism?


Circularities of Listening (Larry Richards)

Information Entropy Cybernetics (Heikki HyÅNotyniemih)

Can RC Become a Mainstream Endevor? (Riegler,Qulae)


Why Some Like It Radical (EvGlasersfeld)

Asynchronicity in Conversation (Larry Richards)

Feedback, Induction, Epistemology (EvGlasersfeld)



Paradigms Recursion and Praxis (jLombardi)

Idea Avoidance Reflection (Larry Richards)

History of the History of Cybernetics (Larrry Richards)


Languaging Language (Cristina Margo)




Richards ASC 2012

lombardi Constructivist Journal 2015

Kauffman knots





































































































Difference-Making from a Cybernetic Perspective
The Role of Listening and Its Circularities
                  Larry Richards, 2012

I want a new society.
Not a derivative of the current one.
This is not easy to create or make happen.
A new society requires social transformations.
It requires alternative ways of thinking about thinking
Different than a Reward Oriented Hierarchical paradigm
One alternative way of thinking about difference-making is cybernetics.
Cybernetics is a way of thinking about ways of thinking of which it is one.
Cybernetics is not success oriented, instead cybernetics is resource oriented
Why Cybernetics (video)

It is not interested in cause and effect BUT constraints and possibilities.
It is interested in refiguring resources, alternative systems, anything new.
It often emphasizes a composer, composing, compositions when designing.
At the core of any cybernetic thinking and doing is the concept of circularity.
From the observed, to the observer, observing, observing one’s observing.
Observing our observing, looking at our looking, listening to our listening

Possible circularities -- when listening to our listening is of interest to me.
Circularity of listening turns attention to language and its consequences.
When everyday language creates, maintains and can change a society.
Two possible forms of listening include descriptive and orientative listening.
When listening for both “what is said” and “what is said, about what is said.”
Listening for both with emphasis on the later turns language into _________.
Listening for content (said) and dynamics (does) generates a dialogic space.
A dialogic opens space for conversation to emerge, when peace is a need.
Just as hunger has to be met by food, conflicts have to be met by peace.
In order to meet peace with our conflicts, differences, tensions and problems
We need a language, a languaging that does not assume peace as a reward.
So that conflict becomes desirable and celebrated so that it can meet peace.
Conversation begins with asynchronicity and moves toward synchronicity.
Conversations are opportunities for conflicts to generate something new.
Something that would not arise when peace is not a need hence it is so.







dialogic participation



social transformations

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