Es lebt!

Mike Holderness on the Principia Cybernetica Project

Vannevar Bush proposed that his Memex would generate “a new profession of trail blazers, those who find delight in the task of establishing useful trails through the enormous mass of the common record”. That’s us... but, of course, folk want to automate the process. One bunch work under the influence of PCP – not angel dust but the Principia Cybernetica Project. Easy, really: build hyperlinks that are strengthened by exercise and fade with disuse. Hey presto: classic Hebbian learning, as in artificial neural networks. In late 2002 the number of web pages should be about the number of neurons in a human brain. So start talking about “The Social Superorganism and its Global Brain”. And they do. But all references to the Golem myth are broken. Odd. – dreadful slow this morning.

Mike Holderness <>