Re: virus: Swollen Ranks

Dave Pape (
Sun, 28 Feb 1999 23:32:23 -0800

KMO wrote

>> Unfortunatly, the level 3 membership ranks have swelled to at least
>> three (Brodie, Reed and Tim)
>Better make that 4.

My lord and god!!! (Kisses ring)

>If you don't think that
>level 3 exists, then I don't know what you think level 3 is supposed to
>be. Saying there's no such thing as level three is like saying there's
>no such thing as "adaptive" or "flexible."

My problem with L3 is that it always seems to be about (lost my copy of VotM, so can't check up) an enlightened person somehow in control of their ideas, mastering the memes which control the mind of the level 2 individual. If that's what it's about then the concept's COMPLETE arse dribble.

If it's just about idea systems in control of other idea systems, then it's not QUITE as pants, but still brutal enough as a categorisation to be misleading and daft. When we think about idea systems controlling ideas, we're talking about cognitive circuits whose input is the output of sensory transducer circuits or other cognitive circuits. There must be LOADS of tiers/levels of that kind of input-output control relationship involved in any culture-level thinking.

And anyway: if there's large-scale cognitive circuitry, or put another way a cognitive machine constructed from a system of ideas, which coordinates other ideas encoded in a brain, then the owner of that brain is still no more in control of their mental content than anyone else.

So the enlightenment of level 3 is just another cognititve module (a la Stephen Pinker/Minsky) and the system (what "you" call "you") is still... a deterministic system.

Interesting that the level 3 people are the obviously most senior apes in the troupe: does level 3 bring with it special headgear of pomp, by any chance? When you reach level 3 can you post to JOM EMIT and not get the piss taken out of you?

>Well, like all of us, I could go on forever on this topic, but I have no
>intention of doing so.

I've had the last word then. Nice! :)

Well, that certainly came across as a bit confrontational. Won't edit it though, cos I'm tired and fractious (it's a Greenwich Mean Time thing).