Letter to the search committee after a daylong interview process.
(edited to remove references to persons)
Chairman Search Committee
cc: Search Committee
I thank you for hosting my visit. Aside from discussion that we might have had with the professors of natural science and education, the dialog was fairly complete. I understand that the shortness of time before the semester starts is a constraint.
I apology for the length of this note.
My desire to join the faculty is sincere, and yet I know that my work here in Washington DC is competing for my attention. The stress of these types of meetings is hard to communicate. (see RoadMap for US Customs)
My discussion with Professor M.L. was constructive and important to me. She comprehends many paths that, when followed, brings new resources for the expression of the culture of art and the culture of New Mexico. Computational science can be a bridge between New Mexican culture and science.
The computational sciences are being shaped by many academics in precisely the same lines as what she communicated to me. The key common perception, by this community, is about how media arts expression is a form of knowledge generation and propagation. Her perception is consistent to what is being realized first as art and then as natural science.
There is a long history related to the use of graphical computer interfaces and science. Professor M.L. has great clarity in how she sees the media arts enhancing new university-community outreach activities. I will be bold and suggest that the vision enables increased cultural ties between the Hispanic and Anglo community leaders. My role is supportive of her efforts and follows her leadership in projects that she has labored, over a period of some years, to establish. I am grateful that she has firmly established a leadership role in this important activity. My "return to roots in New Mexico" could not occur without an established community of advanced scholars and scientists. Her conversation with me allowed me to feel comfortable and "at home".
I realize that significant things can happen by setting expectations and by being involved in some of the projects that she has with the Santa Fe Institute and with the NM museum. I know several senior members of the Los Alamos community who are in the complexity group there, and in visual arts representation of physical science (my uncle's, Dr. Melvin Prueitt, work on computer graphics). Professor M.L. envisions the continuation of regular visits to NMHU from these prestigious communities.
She also has a clear viewpoint about a scholar's outreach to the community. This viewpoint is widely shared within a distributed community of scholars, within which many discussions are presently occurring. She and I talked about the notion of curricular development for the "knowledge sciences" starting at the elementary school, middle school and then high school levels .. so that one can bring in "ecological design principles" from design theory and from ecological psychology (J. J. Gibson, Michael Turvey, Robert Shaw). These design principles apply to new forms of collaborative economics... and the economic theory is core to her work. I like that very much.
The talk I gave at the World Future Society, last week, addressed how the anticipatory web technology creates the foundation for a new manufacturing sector that is, or will be, consistent with the emerging Hydrogen economy. We technology is a bit beyond the mainstream, but many see the anticipatory web services as an essential element of near term future enhancement of the shopping experience (see Taos discussion: www.virtualTaos.net )
Though I have software that is developed to benchmark anticipatory performance and to thus allow an comparison to traditional data mining and information systems, the notational and theoretical foundation to Human-centric Information Production and Orb (Ontology referential bases) is not complete. I stress this point !! Many of my colleagues are making contributions to a field that has not been fully defined as yet. See my chapter for “Computational Semiotics” in press.
Our group has done considerable work on the new approach to an intelligence behavior for computer programs. The software and tutorials on the software have been made available for no cost download. We have perhaps 25 different tutorials, and have taken perhaps 30 people through them. Four or five, perhaps more, have learned how to use the "SLIP" browsers. One tutorial, and the software, exists for developing Orb constructions from the analysis of text.
My sense is that perhaps four hour long sessions on the notation and on stratified theory
is necessary before the full impact of the SLIP and Orb software can be appreciated.
Towards the end of my talk I sensed two things:
1) Professor R. saw a bit into how the new HIP AC-IT with Orbs "stand up" in a structured comparison to traditional biomathematics and to the classical form of investigations by natural scientists into issues of medicine, ecology and biology. Inductive informatics (Lev Goldfarb's term) sets aside the numeric model and then builds a new induction and expresses this as a system of signs (see the URL above). My work achieves a structured (non-statistical, ie categorical) induction of a symbol system differently that does Lev's. There are similarities of methodology but these are not obvious at first.
2) A comparison of HIP AC-IT to traditional data mining and "informatics" is necessary. My description of the relationship in history between electrical AC (Tesla) and electrical DC technology (Edison) is an analogy, but this analogy is limited and has to be placed into a grounded context. This is done by "doing the homework" and building systems. I communicated that this is the work that I hope to do, in contexts that include the application of the Key-less hash table to a variety of tasks both inside linguistic analysis (where I already have working systems) and in areas such as web services and graphical (example: animation rendering) interfaces. Doing this in C and Java (within Linux) is what I imagine I would be doing. This work will, my group feels, draw upper level mathematics, computer science and media arts students into projects that lead to thesis and working systems. Publications will also follow, and IF this is to be accepted by the computer science community, we have to answer the types of questions I could not answer regarding benchmarking. I need some help on this.
The types of questions that the natural sciences, and I include education in the category of "natural sciences", would be interested in are questions that are not fully answered, except in theoretical terms (and often these are not published as yet). I have done some small amount of notational work in the application of Orb constructions to a measurement and control information system about the critical event structures "experienced" by commercial fishponds:
This fishpond control system is just a thought experiment. The software to support this type more generic type of measurement/control (event cycle with semiotic sign system) has not been developed. This could be done in one master's thesis rather easily (in two semesters). One only needs a target and the physical instrumentation to measure and control event reactants. It is our group’s feeling that this new formalism and controlled system becomes "biology" rather fast, and is exciting in the context of the life sciences.