Saturday, October 29, 2005

Reality against Virtuality

I believe that the moment is near when by a procedure of active paranoiac thought, it will be possible to systematize confusion and contribute to the total discrediting of the world of reality.

Salvador Dali

It is now the post industrial information age. Each day we experience data transformed in both electronic visual and print mediums to our senses and perceptions. The data transcends both virtuality and reality. The convergence of reality and virtuality in News and entertainment, with science and controversy, with chaos and catastrophe, and the transformation of the delivery of data along the various modes of information have resulted in uncertainty and confusion.

Indeed how can it be expected to identify reality, when there are difficulties of distinction between reality and the unreal when the unreal is being realized, and the real being shown as unreal. Each day we experience a growing crisis of unrealized proportions .As Umberto Eco observed “crisis sells well” The question such crisis pose is whether attitudes have been undermined by the experience of modernity, or whether reality itself, something objective and firm, is an illusion .Is the paradigm now one of “there is no reality?” When the media, governments, and advertisers tell us that dreams are becoming realities, does this mean conversely, reality is becoming a dream?

The philosophical ideology of what is, or not real are continuing debates.The primary questions being ontological and epistemological. The former is about being: what is real? Is there reality and form behind appearance? The epistemological question is about knowing: what is truth?. Is knowledge by reason or experience? Or do our everyday systems distinguish between reality and appearance, and truth from falsity. We expect the system of road rules to regulate the traffic, and do not question if the other drivers are rationalists, or empiricists .Although the parentage and marital status of the regulators is often questioned .Previously the normality of the result of an experiment, performed by a scientist, did not rest on whether the scientist performing the experiment is an idealist or materialist, or the source of funding, but the outcome and replicability of the experiment that showed reality.

The transformation of the interpretation of science and the contemporary views on the ways science operates in both form and validation, and the variances of the determinants of science have caused obfuscication of the basic tenets and norms of the characteristics of the scientific model. This has formed an ideological involvement in scientific validation that has created uncertainty and confusion. and. a convergence between reality and virtuality that have obscured the outcomes and development. The loss has been one of order and objectivity, and its replacement by chaos and controversy. The underlying philosophical conditioning, the interpretation of the results, rather then the scientific model and reality. The Divergence from Realism and its objective reality and existence to one of the Feyerabend model of anything goes and his promotion of anarchy as an antidote against epistemology and the scientific method.

The social component of science also is an important determinant in the truth of the outcome. This is not only within the scientific community, but in the areas of funding and oversight. This form can see the suppression of some theory and the enhancement of others. The theories suppressed are not always incorrect, but in some instances far ahead of their time and interpretation. The example of the Austrian Ludwig Boltzmann and the connections he discovered with heat and thermodynamics and the notion of entropy that went against the social climate rather then logic whilst questioning Newtonian mechanics. Another is the Russian Boris Belousov whose work showed entropy could move both forward and backwards along the arrow of time. His experiments proved the mathematical theories of Turing were possible.Belousov theories and publications were dismissed as against the laws of thermodynamics ,but obstinacy and the persistence of one of his post graduate students and the publication of the BZ reaction saw it enter the real world of science and that a theory is changeable.

The philosophical intents of Feyerabend and also the misrepresentations of the ideals of Thomas Kuhn and his structure of scientific changes by Paradigms by the alternative and anti science movements meant the order or formalization of the scientific method has undertaken structural change that blurs the line between reality and virtuality,of possibility and probability.
The constraints of the formal method has seen pseudo science take equality with recognized science theory ,and often the merging of the real and virtual worlds.

We have seen the transformation from the Merton norms of Originality, detachment, universality, Skepticism.and public accessibility, and its cognitive structure, to theories that have the form and reason of Pseudoscience. These rely on a casual approach to evidence, spurious similarities, explanation by scenario, research by literary interpretation and a refusal to revise.

The last the refusal to revise is the primary indicator of Pseudoscience.The scientific method readily accepts this it brings order to phenomena ,and changes to the landscape of the theory often enhance it.The pseudo scientist respond to criticism but never revise their position,They see scientific debate as an exercise in rhetoric not opportunity.They suggest possibility not probability and the form often is hidden in the Virtual world by obfusications and assumptions.

Large models are often chaotic, which means that very small changes in the input variables produce very large changes in the output variables. Some very simple processes can amplify errors, taking the difference between numbers of a similar magnitude for example. The errors (or noise) are then propagated through the system. If there are feedback mechanisms present, it is quite possible for systems to operate on the noise alone. The larger models use both complex and irrational numbers and even a mistake of 0.0001 in one of the input variables will produce outcomes of low probability.

The outcomes are often only present in the Virtual world .When these models are often tested in reality the results are not accurate.The results in the models of the virtual world are infinitesimal.Grunbaum suggested that in a run infinitely transcribed the staccato operations each independent and occurring successfully in time ,which are not the result of an analysis of pre-existent unified and uninterrupted run .If we exclude the dynamic complications this constitutes an absurdity that an infinite aggregate can be constructed in real time. It attempts to reverse the infinite regression into the positive affirmation of being, to transform the absurd into the rational, and fiction into reality.

The model the Deity or God of the virtual world is created to suggest the infinite, the infinite exists only in the abstract and not within Reality.


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