POSTMODERNISM AND CYBERNETICS

One basic idea of postmodernism is that there are infinite possible models of reality and those with different perspectives, advantages and disadvantages, and priorities will prefer different models. This seems to ignore the lessons of experience that not all models are equal in helping one control and navigate the world around them, with a model’s track record of success often becoming the dominant criterion in a choice of model, and to ignore the advantages of communicating with others to create shared models for mutual benefit.

Cybernetics concerns communication and control relationships between different objects or entities, which, at its most fundamental, is about feedback loops. Models of reality are constructed from feedback loops, with positive feedback reinforcing a model or part of a model and negative feedback discouraging it. So any models, including those from a postmodernist perspective, are subject to negative and positive feedback as they evolve, which leads to enduring models being likely to have more components with a record of success, with a history of positive feedback, which implies that models that survive would evolve over time away from being a self-serving function of the unique or defining characteristics of the groups who hold them and approach other enduring models of other groups that also have a record of success, given that models with a record of success are likely to be correlated with each other.

About John

Retired Attorney
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