How Complex Systems Science Affects The Manosphere

Ever since I read Niall Ferguson’s book Civilization (2011), I have wanted to get a closer look at Melanie Mitchell’s book Complexity: A Guided Tour (2011), which the Scottish Harvard University historian refers to in an engaging discussion about how civilizations, like the West, are constituted.

Ferguson and other historians analyze civilizations at a level where many people can connect the dots, about for instance demographic and economic data, but the deeper connections require a closer investigation. If one urges to grasp how the underlying patterns are formed and why they ”behave” in such and such ways, one has to look into various complex systems of our world. Such as cell DNA and data computation among other sub-fields within emerging multidisciplinary science.

Mitchell’s book provides relevant information in that respect and can help the reader to increase his ability to make social and cultural analysis. It can also help us understand new and sometimes alarming trends in our current digital world.

Complex systems science as a cumulative process

Discoveries within various fields of science can be described as a cumulative process. Some make discoveries and then some other modify and clarify these a bit later. Even though individual genius is important for scientific progress, genuises working over time and space are seemingly even more significant.

We don’t have to reiterate that most prominent scientists are males, and in this book names such as John von Neumann (principles of self-reproduction), John Holland (balancing exploitation and exploration), Robert Axelrod (evolutionary cooperation), Stephen Wolfram (computional equivalence), and Albert-László Barabási and Réka Albert (preferential attachment related to social networks theory) pass by throughout Mitchell’s guided tour.

Their ideas hinge upon those of for instance Ludwig Boltzmann, Charles Darwin, Alan Turing and James Watson. But what can we more specifically actually learn from them?

Which complex systems are relevant?

Much of this book is basically history of science. If you know the basics of physics, mathematics, genetics and computer science then at least 1/3 is known stuff. In this regard this book is as good as any, although particularly well-written. But there are some dimensions that could actually benefit writers and readers (or theorists and practitioners for that matter) of the manosphere.

The strength of the manosphere is the empirical angle: people collect data from real life experiences and observations rather than speculative abstract theories, and are not afraid of realtalk on contentious topics. But the scientific reliability of this or that argument is sometimes questionable, to say the least. It is not like everything has to be scientific anyway, but some of the more sophisticated analyses have to be that in order to actually say something substantial about the world.

Additionally, the dissident angle represents a potential threat to the American globalist establishment, and new algorithms and other measures can negatively affect even those well-articulated voices who just wish to express their opinions online.

Here are some areas – largely inter-related – that can be improved or at least understood by the means of complex systems science:

1. Computional science

2. Network theory

3. Information processing

Before I carry on and explain which specific areas that an improved knowledge can be useful within, I will quote a passage from the book that gives a hint about some of the underlying principles discussed in Complexity (pp. 180-81).

One consequence of encoding information as statistical and time-varying patterns of low level components is that no individual component of the system can perceive or communicate the ”bic picture” of the state of the system. Instead, information must be communicated via spatial and temporary sampling.

In the immune system, for example, lymphocytes sample their environment via receptors for both antigens and signals from other immune systems cells in the form of cytokines. It is the results of the lymphocytes’ samples of the spatial and temporal concentration of these molecular signals that cause lymphocytes to become active or stay dormant. Other cells are in turn affected by the samples they take of the concentration and type of active lymphocytes, which can lead pathogen-killer cells to particular areas in the body. In ant colonies, an individual ant samples pheromone signals via the receptors.

It bases its decisions on which way to move on the results of these sampled patterns of concentration of pheromones in the environment. As I described above, individual ants also use sampling of concentration-based information – via random encounters with other ants – to decide when to adopt a particular task. In cellular metabolism, feedback in metabolic pathways arises from bindings between enzymes and particular molecules as enzymes sample spatial and time-varying concentrations of molecules.

Computational science, network theory and information processing

Much like complex systems theories in general, network theory is interdisciplinary and can be applied to many fields, such as economics and medicine (metabolical networks and mapping of sexually transmitted diseases). For instance, some network scientists came up with this simple yet pragmatic solution regarding STD:

…choose a set of random people from the at-risk population and ask each to name a partner. Then vaccinate that partner. People with many partners will be more likely to be named, and thus vaccinated, under this scheme.

Scale-free networks, such as the Internet, are dependent on the interplay between internal hyperlinks and external hyperlinks, often via Google and various social media websites that can create more traffic through posting, sharing and search optimization.

Using network terminology, Return of Kings is the hub within the manosphere, with other discussion boards, articles, books, websites, blogs and social media channels as interconnected dots. If some dots disappear, like peripheral individuals, blogs and comments, it is not particularly important for the entire network, but if hubs do then it will affect the network in its totality.

The problem is not necessarily the lack of competence of readers and writers, but the Google hegemony on the Internet. If for example Google, YouTube, Facebook and WordPress came up with a solution, based on algorithms and computer simulation, to block dissent and trolling it could (arbitrarily) imply a severe curtailment of free speech online. In that case are there any hopes for substantial parallel alternatives to Google and the largest social media platforms? Things that people in general can use without being a computer expert?

Apart from that, interplay between online and offline networks could certainly be approved by means of talking to at least 10 prospects within your own network, spreading ideas in a chain-like system. Or to use the vaccination example in another way: try to “vaccinate” one influential person in your network (with many partners, whatever that means) from the ideas of the Matrix.

These strategies are also used, more or less, by other spheres so perhaps it is the content rather than the strategies that makes the difference. But that requires that the content is available.

Read More: Game Does Not Need Science

22 thoughts on “How Complex Systems Science Affects The Manosphere”

  1. Complex systems theory, also known as the theory of information, lead to the creation of quantum mechanics.
    Information science is quite probably the most important science today, all of our technology is based on complex systems theory.
    All computers, & tech today are based on algorithms & theories created by information science.
    This is because …
    All action is really the transmission of information on a quantum level, transposed across self assembling fractal algorithms, or recursive algorithms scaled up on a macroscopic level.
    You can easily organise & assemble electrons on a subatomic scale, if you understand the organisational & emergent principles of data.
    Imagination is probably the ultimate type of emergent data …
    Imagination is really the bleed through of alternative dimensions, & multiple universes.
    Information science is the hidden science, responsible for single handedly creating the 21st century as we know it.

  2. If you’re not a heavy reader, but want to read a legit article with substance, start with this one. Same if you are a heavy reader, I reckon.
    Well done.

    1. I only managed the first two lines. Not much tolerance for new age pseudo intellectual bullshit.
      We need more stories about sluts and hookers!
      (back to Emma Watson’s boobs)

      1. I don’t think I’ve ever agreed with anything you’ve ever posted but you’re spot on here. What a load of pretentious pseudo intellectual wank.
        Disagree about Emma’s tits though, they are pretty underwhelming. Fake news.

        1. It’s because you feel inferior about your 90 IQ. You could not understand the part about for instance the immune system so you had to use your own immune system, a verbal defense mechanism, to feel better about yourself.

        2. Tee hee. I studied with Stephen Wolfram (at Oxford when he was a particle physicist before he became obsessed with algebraic computing). Stephen Wolfram was my friend. You’re no Stephen Wolfram.

        3. I did an IQ test once ……. 138.
          But I was young then, and I’m guessing drug abuse and dementia have taken a chunk out of that.

        4. You know scientists aren’t generally all that bright. You get one or two really good ones per decade ….. if that. Most are just plodding sheep. I mean, how many people have actually invented something really worthwhile …… Newton, Tesla, Edison, Einstein, Thomas Newcomen ……

        5. Yes. I am more interested in girls, but what they say can sometimes be interesting.

        6. I’m guessing that you relationships with both girls and prominent scientists exist mainly in your imagination. Try to stick to things you’ve actually experienced.

        7. You’re guessing very wrong. Stick to facts, not guesswork and false assumptions.

        8. Why should you be ? Scientist are not interesting as persons, but for the results they get.
          Vey often, most people can’t understand what they are doing, and what’s for.
          But it has made all the difference between us and the rest of the world.

        9. Don’t let the haters get you down. I don’t see them writing articles.

        10. If a person has studied at a higher level at a high-ranked university, like me, you see and meet all kinds of more or less “famous” academics and scientists over the years. Some of them are your teachers, even friends, and some are guest lecturers who draw big crowds. For instance I have an older friend who is sort of a big name within medicine but who the fuck cares? It’s interesting to talk to really knowledgeable people but younger people do only care about Instagram celebs anyway so there is no big admiration there from anyone (and the old males know it).
          I have also met some celebrities – actors, singers etc – here and there in for instance L.A., NYC and Seoul (big in East Asia but not as much globally). It’s a bit interesting but there we can speak of imagination and a fuzz over nothing. But I definitely think that narcissism plays a key role in this respect. Of course I know that celebs have a higher social status, but I have never thought that they are more valuable than me, so to speak, while the betas and omegas treat them like gods and goddesses. When you do not put people on a pedestal you can easily chat with famous people.

  3. I try to be as offensive as possible to liberals online. I like to think I do my part.

    1. Same thing & after having a good laugh at them, the last I tell them ? I’m wearing a shirt with a collar & a tie ?? Do you know why ?? It’s to hide my “redneck” of course ??

  4. That bit about the pragmatism of probable carriers treated through election by multiple sexual partners reflects fascinating reasoning. After consideration, it reminds me of what I’ve been told about how McCarthyism played out.

  5. On to practical applications: Duckduckgo or Startpage instead of Google. Protonmail and encryption instead of Hotmail or G-mail. Yeah, you have to pay, but privacy and tying up the establishments decryption resources is worth it. Gab instead of Twatter. Bitcoin (or other crypto currencies), gold & silver instead of Federal Reserve Notes. The more we use the alternative resources this network provides the more we weaken the elite and their established order.

      1. Based on what little I know (and that’s very little…I can provide references) I lean toward Zerocash. Its Basecoin currency, which isn’t really anonymous, can be converted to Zerocoin which (supposedly) is. Dash looks like it may take a bite out of Bitcoin as well because of its Instasend feature. Bitcoin transactions can take a few minutes (like 45 minutes), where a Dash transaction is (supposedly) instantaneous as well as private. What bothers me about Dash though is it has jumped up so quickly in price recently. I am wary of following any crowd. Frankly, we’ll have to wait and see. Another interesting blockchain based venture is Ethereum which allows individuals to create their own crypto currencies as well as contracts and other transactions in an environment that has (according to them) no “possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third party interference.” What scares me about Ethereum is that JP Morgan Chase, BP, Microshaft and whole host of other corporate 900 pound gorillas are jumping in with both feet.

  6. Here are the “system archetypes” from Peter Senge’s book “The Fifth Discipline. The teeter-totter symbol means “balancing feedback” (“negative feedback” in the original cybernetic sense), used in a thermostat, for example. The rolling snowball means “reinforcing feedback” (“positive feedback”), like an amplifier squealing when the microphone gets close to the speaker it is driving. Once the system is mapped, “leverage points” can be identified to change the system’s behavior. [Edit: for some reason the 1st and last images are not loading. While I didn’t want to link to WP, Infogalactic doesn’t have the images for this article, so here’s the WP link.]
    Balancing process with delay: “my actions lead to overshooting the goal”
    Limits to growth: “after initial success, the rate of improvement falls”
    Shifting the burden: “short-term fixes lead to long-term problems”
    Eroding goals: “instead of solving the problem, goals are lowered again and again”
    Escalation: “my doings are provoking others”
    Success to the successful: “to reach my goals, I’ll directly interfere with others”
    Tragedy of the commons: “others are using up the limited resources I need”
    Fixes that fail: “after a while the problem returns”
    Growth but underinvestment: “after a while I have to redefine/reduce goals”

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