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Chaos and Organization
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Norm often criticizes me because I don't want to talk to him, engage in a conversation. That's because, I say, his conversation consists of what errands we have to run, how often he needs to use his assistive devices, what bills need to be paid and how someone is ready to rip him off.

So yesterday I started a conversation topic of my own, rather a monolog I'm afraid, since he had nothing to contribute. Not really a conversation. I was talking about chaos theory, collaborative neural nets, the electrical network of the heart, rime frost and self-organizing chaos. Self-organizing chaotic systems may be more pervasive that we have really acknowledged.

Today he's making "notes" for the book. And reading them, I discovered my ideas appearing in print. NOW I understand why he hasn't written "The Book" yet. And why he's been angry that I won't share my ideas with him. It never occurred to me, since derivative research isn't my idea of original thinking. And it would never occur to me to steal someone else's creative ideas without giving them credit.

Just ask the people at work. Sometimes they've been embarrassed a little at my vocal enthusiasm and endorsement when one of them contributes an idea to help the whole group. It's important to me that the original source be widely acknowledged, since everyone contributes to the sum of human knowledge in general and special expertise in particular.

But obviously Norm has a different take. As he has said himself, he is takes many ideas and puts them together. Not an analyst but a synthetist (is that the right word?) I'm happy to contribute ideas, because there are lots more where those came from, but I'm uncomfortable with what he's doing. However, the ethics and intellectual honesty (or not) of his process is on his head, not mine. I've known many professors and research directors who've made their names on the backs of their grad students and research assistants. Why should he be any different?

Maybe self-organizing chaos is the theory of everything (hello, Einstein). That idea I'm going to keep to myself and meditate upon it. By the way, if you're interested in chaos theory, read Gleick, Chaos.

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