The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

some characteristics of organic and emanent life

homeostasis - boundary maintenance + (coherency of avatar body)
elaboration: coherency references a body that remains topologically
  connected, no matter what external and internal motions occur.
consideration: of course the body may be split by wounding, division,
  and other processes; in these cases, the body homeostatically
  repositions itself. external motions: the organism or emanent changing
  position in relation to the external world (space time coordinates);
  internal motion: processes, motions, within the body of the organism.

immunity - identity maintenance + (database accountancy)
elaboration: immunological processes based on body identification
  (organism) and database stability and stable addressing of whole and
  parts (emanent).
consideration: relationship of dis/ease and disease/hacking. identity
  maintenance occurs within absolute fluidity; with organism, motility
  and bodily changes (disease/death/exhaustion/dissolution/decay/
  extinction/mutation etc.), and with emanent, 'remakes' (new textures,
  bodies, accouterments, etc.), corporate transformations (economy,
  merger, dissolution, etc.), and interest/disinterest/defuge in
  relation to maintenance.

culture - remembrance and communality + (history of interactivity)
elaboration: organism - culture occurring 'all the way down,' with
  internal/external memories/storage/data-processing/quantum and
  molecular, etc. memory and communality inhere. emanent - relation-
  ship of external (organic) or internal (digital) mind to avatar
  _steerage_ (which is intentional).
consideration: mind inhabits organism inhabits mind; inherence is
  primordial, backgrounding. there is a complex relationship between
  this inhabitation and issues of health, disease, death, etc. - issues
  that simultaneously reify and parcel the body, and a turn towards
  moments or places/spaces of body (pain for example) that call for
  tending. there are qualitatively different tendings for organism and
  emanent; it is a matter of time before they coalesce.

negation - circumscription of an other + (avatar interactions,
  game physics)
elaboration: circumscription sends the other to the pale; structures
  gesture and language, transforms ikonic into indexical.
consideration: semantics of avatar boundaries on a subtextual level;
  semantics of organic boundaries on the supra-textual. the latter is
  ikonic, the former, indexical. (perhaps there is no place for the
  symbolic in the midst of emanents and organisms.)

consumption and excretion tropisms (energy flow)
elaboration: evanescent organic life as abject spew, continuous
  breathing. a stationary emanent requires no energy; a stationary
  organism continues its tropic behavior.
consideration: nature of the tropism, energy-seeking, pollution-
  fleeing. direction of emanent irrelevant; energy comes from external

variegated metabolic processes (chemical, quantum, atomic)
elaboration: striations and differentiations within organism.
  epistemologically, organism transforms internally and externally
  from horizon to horizon; emanent possesses epistemological
  equivalence (substance) and differentiation occurs in syntactics.
consideration: herbert simon's nearly decomposable hierarchies;
  differentiation in organism occurs on the level of the phoneme.
  emanent and organism meet on the plane of semantics, sememe.

-- absorption and excretion
elaboration: or circulation, necessary for organism, and only for
  emanent in the sense that mind requires circulation (as do
  computers in terms of cycles, energy-flow, etc.).
consideration: note in all of these instances we're considering life
  in terms of the _metabolic,_ flux-processes, remembering, identity,
  recognitions, tropisms, negations, perceptions.

-- reproduction
elaboration: organisms most often self-reproduce through one or
  multiple generations; emanents do not. organic emanent minds do
  but not electronic emanent minds, do not.
consideration: reproduction is not necessarily a constituent of
  life - dreams of the loch ness monster point in another direction.
  and there is always the exhaustion, punctum, of the 'last of a
  species' or reproductive pool, which is becoming more and more
  common. say that reproduction temporally smears the organic while
  identity spatially restricts the organic.

----- carrier image (reproductive plan, layout) + (template)
elaboration: reproduction is haunted by the organism to be, whether
  template or internal processes.
consideration: with organism, reproduction is always already uncanny;
  with emanent, reproduction is canny. with organism, internal and
  with emanent external, steered. the emanent is always already
  hallucinatory, which is not to say inexact or 'unreal'; its model
  and modeling are elsewhere. let us say that the emanent is freed
  from reproduction but an emanent class is bound to steering mind for
  continued existence.

maintenance of interiority
elaboration: what goes on inside, stays inside, is maintained inside.
  for organism this includes temperature control (or adjustments to
  non-control); for emanents, this again is a matter of contiguity at
consideration: wounds close, bruises heal, diseases disperse; there
  is an ideal at the back of organism, backgrounding organism, as if
  primordial (and when i use 'primordial' here, i mean nothing meta-
  physical, only primitives, backgroundings, against or within which
  everything else occurs). nothing immediately with emanents, but a long
  time ago, in irc (internet relay chat), netsplit would occur, and
  members of coherent communities would be cut off from each other -
  there would for example be two, not one *love channels. it would be
  of interest to think through the metabolism and political economy
  of irc channels and channel communities as organisms.

biome and niche maintenance (immediate vicinity cleanup)
elaboration: what happens outside the body of the organism, more or
  less in the immediate vicinity (think of potential exceptions such
  as albatross or plankton, bring them into the model by including
  mobile niches, evanescent biomes). emanents also tend to control
  their immediate vicinity; sl avatars will have a 'home' teleport
  site, will fly to a certain height, will be admitted or not to
  restricted territories (and may create restricted territories of
  their own).
consideration: mobile niches within evanescent biomes are of great
  interest; they reflect the potential of taz (temporary autonomous
  zones) and extend the concepts of home and territory - the latter
  might be considered a personal niche, and the former, that biome
  which provides a necessary degree of comfort for its species and
  occupants. different species may connote different biome
  definitions which overlap and are displaced from 'human geography'
  and its defining characteristics.

contiguity of body or bodies + (substructure of sheave-skin)
elaboration: organic body held together by skeletal (internal and
  external) structures, skin and muscle, etc.; the sheave-skin held
  together by parent-child relationships and restrictions on size
  and angle. contiguity is complex with sheave-skins; importing a
  bvh file into blender requires hand-setting the parent-child
  relationships, and motion capture models permit extensions and
  topological remodelings of these. generally organic bodies are
  topographically defined; there are physical restraints to size, etc.
  while emanent bodies are topological, once 'set' into structure by
  node assignments. again, the latter reference external steerage.
consideration: this external steerage of emanents is mapped in
  various ways - through mind and gui or other interfaces, through
  virtual reality interaction software, through software itself which
  may operate emanents autonomously, so that the emanent becomes
  nothing more than an output display of a program epistemologically
  other. of course this may change in the future; there is no reason
  why emanents should not be autonomous and locally-so, so that
  steerage, communication, etc., is part and parcel of the emanent
  software, integral to it, inhering.

regulated, homeostatic communication
elaboration: organisms and emanents are nodes, channels, transmitters,
  receptors, codes, encodings, decodings, part-objects and their per-
  ception, skins and sheave-skins and their perception. to the extent
  that regulation occurs, cohering semantics emerges; to the extent
  that noise or parasitism enters the systems, transformations and
  possible mutations occur, beneficial or destructive, possibly inher-
  ited or not (and the latter, with emanent mind-steering, becomes to
  some extent an issue of conscious choice).
consideration: one begins to approach a _plasma model_ within which
  forms flux, and flux forms, stases are imminent and always in the
  process of forming and dissolving; memory is primordial (in the
  above sense).

-- internal and external + (between mind and emanent)
elaboration: internal processes are homeostatically regulated in
  organism; it is moot whether such occur in emanents except to the
  extent that _emanents are inherently part of the gamespace, do not
  ontologically exist other than as gamespace._
consideration: external communication - one might bring issues of
  data-bases with both organism and emanent, steerage, community and
  individual memory, community and individual hallucination, etc. it's
  here that language comes forth as the mutual orienting of cognitive
  domains (maturana); while one might speak of the cosmos as languaging
  and only languaging (epistemologically and ontologically), one might
  also conceive of languaging as ikonic in terms of the primordial,
  the thinging of language, or language grounded (as in electronic
  grounding) in things. in this sense, language is literally an after-
  thought, shape-riding.

-- emitters and receptors (within and without organisms)
elaboration: sm (sado-masochist/abject) maws/fits/misfits,
  the contradictory transformed into the contrary or wayward.
consideration: emitters and receptors are in-line, online, bought
  into line vis-a-vis codings. without emitter and receptor interfaces,
  languaging doesn't happen; one might think then of emitters and
  receptors _themselves_ as ikonic languages, so that sign-flows are
  fundamental (but not symbols or indices).

---- emitter and receptor codings (entranceways and exits)
elaboration: entrances and exits but also molecular or protocol
  structures, sm touch/scent/contact. information must obey etiquette,
  otherwise it's noise. etiquette touches on the aesthetics and
  efficiency of coding. _coded emanents have no code_; their code is
  external steerage, subtextual beneath the surface, in the dis/splay
  of sheave-skin.
consideration: it's important to think through analog/ikonic and
  digital/indexical here. organism code is ikonic to the extent that,
  for example, dna coding _is_ molecular, while emanent code is
  indexical since to some extent programming languages are interchange-
  able, they're teleologically drawn-out to steerage goals, and they
  form/construct a performative layer which runs the emanent directly.

---- domain orientations (tropic turns towards energy, communication
elaboration: organisms are tropic, turning towards, away, or skew-
  orthogonally; emanents are tropic through camera positioning (without
  the camera, emanents are invisible, non-existent, which are not equiv-
  alent) within the aegis of mind.
consideration: cameras move emanents as residue, dejecta, abject stain
  on occasion blocking the field of view.

pollutions and abjections (body disposal, chemical slough)

-- purifications and expulsions
elaboration: this operates on the epistemological if not ontological
  dichotomy described re: kristeva, douglas, etc. organisms are channels
  and flows; the flows channel, and the channels flow. the abject is
  integral to organism, just as purification and expulsion may be
  integral to emanent.
consideration: this may be far too simplistic, but it's a step at
  least. when the true world is considered, emanent and organism are
  interpenetrated, intermingled, formed and in/formed together at the

emanents and avatars inhere, cohere, mishmash, spew, emit, slur, slough,
intermingle, interpenetrate, within the true world, they are true-world-
ing, in a sense mind-only, but only in the sense that steerage is always
present, from language through metabolic process through retinal process-
ing, immunological defense systems, heartbeat, hormonal maintenance, soft-
ware updating and replacement, membrane filtering, and so forth. this is
_not_ life force, but inherited and inhering organization in relation to
reproduction, within which the carrier image is but a dream, our dream,
our presentification of the future anterior.

(elements marked + pertain in particular to emanent/avatar process. note
that in the above, 'emanent' and 'avatar' are to some extent equivalent,
although the latter is mostly reserved for entities within second life
and other online/offline 'virtual' worlds.)

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