"Dialogics" is one of a set: see here also "Ground Zero" and "Discourse and Dialectics";
elsewhere, "Beginning with Foundations" and "Getting Down to Brass Tacks"

''Participatory Deliberation''


"The Purpose of computing is insight, not numbers."
--Richard Hamming

I made up the term "dialogical" because I think it's cute. And it seems to signify something meaningful that, quite by accident, accords with this project's intentions.

We are conversational because we are alive. I won't here address the fractal nature of inter-dependent origination and inter-connectedness (feel free to ping me on this topic). Elsewhere (see ''Beginning with foundations'' at VibeWise and ''Ground Zero'' at Many2Many) I've treated how we are narrative by nature (history as a story that is conconant with the dominant paradigm in a way that's at least acceptable to the majority). I have similarly tried to advance the notion that we are foundationally dialectical in our beings; my recent ''Discourse and Dialectics'' here at Particatory Deliberation goes there but does not engage the cognitive psychology as pect of the whole: our brains are constantly reality testing, searching for stasis in an ever-changing surround. Blood chemistry, body temperature, posture and position, orientation with regards to significant objects ... and thoughts. "Do the Oilers have any chance for the Cup this year?", "Did my suggestion of NDA offend that good fellow because he was taken by surprise and not prepared to undertake a binding agreement?", "Was Baudrillard actually a nincompoop and I'm just naive and mistaken about post-modernism and semiotics?", and on and on and on.

Phenomenal world is similarly dialectical (without getting into the fractal aspects of non-linearity). The heat released by this bit of water freezing agitates the surrounding molecules and prevents crystalization from propagating, the hydro-dyamics in the leave twist the struture and turn it towards the light, tracking the sun's movement across the sky, an infinite array of present condition (thesis), feed-back consequences (antithesis), and compensatory reaction (synthesis). And so it is with sentient beings.

I enter a quarter-back's name into a search engine. (I could equally have intended a politician or movie star, of course.) For a whole set of subtle and not particularly rational reasons I click on one of the results, and am served a screen full of images and text. I'm reminded of how I would like, some time, to get into betting, and find my self-esteem challenged by the fact that I really don't grok odds and "spread" and all of that. I gaze at the snapshot and wonder at why the athlete seems kind of glum while the golden girl draped on his arm is beaming so spectacularly. I shelve notions of digging into his stats and think about snooping around for information about his salary. I graze and graze and at some moment the pointless triviality of it unsettles my pscyho-metabolism and I check to see if I need to eat or drink ... or go to the bathroom ... or shift in my chair ... or put on some music, or get off the computer to watch TV ... and so it goes. Mindless, pointless, superficial, and essentially meaningless. Like pebbles tumbling down a cliff face under the effects of time and weather and gravity.

I enter a couple of key words for a topic. I see a set of websites, a couple I recognize as forums, more I see to be blogs, and I make a selection, perhaps to check out a novel source and perhaps to revisit a site that I previously deemed credible. Likely I'm immediately inundated, enough material to write a very mediocre term paper. But I'm intent on feeding my appetite for that topic, so drill down. I find an opinion piece that conforms to my own view, get bored, page back, and find another that sets off an entire series of quibbles and questions. I read the comments, perhaps write a comment, perhaps drill down to a forum page. And on and on. In the end I've likely encountered a whole pile of unstructured knowledge concerning the topic of interest. A vague bewilderment washes over me and unsettles my pscyho-metabolism so I check to see if I need to eat or drink ... or go to the bathroom ... or shift in my chair ... or put on some music, or get off the computer to watch TV ... and so it goes.

I go to a gnodal site and select the category of interest, skimming the KWIC array for something that resonates. I spot a proposition that states the precise contrary of my own 1-line opinion, and select it. I'm presented with a cluster of evidence, some in support of the proposition, some presented as contradictory, some qualifying or otherwise questioning, and in a moment I find that an opinion I took quite for granted seems un-grounded and simply wrong. I click on the operative fact and am presented a new cluster, a new array, a set of sources, supporting material, indicators of credibility and confidence, and with another click I'm presented with the active forum thread or appropriate wiki page. I comment on how I've been taken aback, that the fact seems solid, but yet feel that there's something amiss. Am email and bookmark process is triggered and I'm introduced to others who are in some way intrigued by that specific. I adjust my set, reset a couple of viewing preferences, and drag my mental finger-nail across the face of the argument looking for a crack. I'm substantially engaged in the application of active intelligence using methods and techniques that broadcast my effort into an integrated network of likewise engaged individuals, producing a slight trace of sentience that can be later discovered and developed by others. This is endless, and productive, and beneficial to all. My internal dialog has become a dialectical discourse in the public domain.

For more information and to signify interest or support please contact Bernard D. Tremblay | ab006 AT chebucto.ns.ca