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Stored Purpose - Semantic Communication

Stored Purpose - a new approach to computing leveraging the current capability of information science


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Warren Jones, Lana Rubalsky (2010) "Stored Purpose - Semantic Communication", wJones Research, October 8, 2010
When existential components share the same Construction basis, such as cellular instruments with the same genetic Identity, they are “in communication” in Construction, even if there is no information exchange in Expression. This is a phenomenon we discovered when designing intent propagation for the metacomputer. The result is two components can pursue goals in a coordinated fashion, without information, as long as each has access to the same external state information, we call Context.

Figure - Communication in Construction<br />Existential components that share genetic Identity in Construction are “in communication” and “of the same mind.”  Communication in Expression requires only coordination of context.

Figure - Communication in Construction
Existential components that share genetic Identity in Construction are “in communication” and “of the same mind.” Communication in Expression requires only coordination of context.
We coined the term Semantic Communication to describe the coordination of expression between Ema building blocks. Coordination is an outcome when two or more existential components pursue Goals aligned with a region of identical Purpose in Construction. Since any two entities sharing Purpose regions will automatically pursue Goals related to measured states of context, coordination for such systems requires only the following:
Requirements for Semantic Communication
  1. Shared Purpose in Construction
  2. Shared Context in Expression

These requirements can be restated as three Rules:
  1. Coordination of agents with Shared Purpose requires only the alignment of Contexts (i.e. its raining)
  2. Agents with Shared Purpose can coordinate action without transfer of information about an intended outcome (i.e. bring umbrella)
  3. Agents with Shared Purpose that subscribe to the same Context (i.e. both aware of raining sky), need not exchange information to communicate or coordinate action, and thus communication wil not be subject to information flow constraints (i.e. no latency)

This becomes possible when two Ema entities share one or more Goals for a region of Identity, and both enter a context where the Goals of that region apply. Contexts can be a point in time, or proximity to an object, symbol or state.

A Simple Illustration

The following describes coordination between two mechanized bots:

An organization employs two bots to maintain grounds. One has a Goal to “maintain grass” and the other a Goal to “keep walk paths clear.” The first bot will cut the grass, creating a context state of “grass clippings on the walk path.” The other bot will re-align measured states with “right” states of its identity, and clear the walk path.

The two bots are part of a “purposeful system“ because each has Goals that are part of a greater “Maintain Ground” Purpose. Semantic communication says that coordination will automatically occur between the bots when they both enter the same context. To “enter the same context,” each agent must become aware of a context state, i.e. “the walk path has grass on it.“

Shared Genetic Purpose

In body Mica systems, all cellular components share Purpose in genetic Identity and are nearly identical in Construction. This means that a requirement of Semantic Communication, namely “shared Purpose” is always met, for most regions of Context. Given that Purpose will be pre-shared, then “sharing context” will be the primary, if not exclusive information transfer in semantic communication.

Note that in cortical Mica systems, which combine body Mica with an Ema symbolic learning ability, non-aligned, not shared Purpose can be accrued. An agent possessing such “learned” Purpose would not be in semantic communication in any regions of context aligned with the new Purpose.

Figure - Semantic Communication<br />Two agents will “be of the same mind” and coordinate action without observable communication when they detect similar context states.
Figure - Semantic Communication
Two agents will “be of the same mind” and coordinate action without observable communication when they detect similar context states.

Coincidental and Propagated Context Sharing

There are two primary means of sharing context, coincidental and propagated. To illustrate the difference, consider rainfall in a forest. All agents in the forest may become aware of the “raining” context. This is coincidental sharing.

Another example would be a starling bird’s screech, after detecting the approach of a threatening falcon. The audible message would be a purposeful transfer of information indicating impending attack. This is context propagation.

Note that in both cases, agents must share in their Identities a Goal with the coincidental or propagated context. They must also have a sense or control technology, linked to the transition vector for the state domains of the context. For example, some might posses within their genetic identity a hypergraph link in the context region of “raining” between the state transition vector “dry--wet” and the technology vector “in shelter--out shelter.”

Once the agents share context, they will automatically coordinate by pursuing their Purpose. The design of the coordinated action is in Construction. It need not be reflected in the specific actions of any single agent. For example the forest may have Purpose to provide air and water to roots of plants. The technology employed by the forest might be a Goal in worms to burrow to the surface to drink water for themselves. The worm could be completely unaware that the path it left behind became a source of water and air for the plant, yet it and plant are in Semantic Communication and coordinate activity. The specific actions of neither reflect the linkage.

Coincidental context sharing is fast, since it requires no direct information transfer between agents. This makes it suitable, when direct communication is not possible, or when operating over a broad distance. This can make regulation possible in a large ecosystem, even when there is no central means of information exchange.

Coordination of Higher Existential Entities

Semantic Communication in Humans -- Cortical Mica

Humans appear to be unique in the ecosystem in so far that we can accrue Purpose that is not aligned with the regulatory Purpose of the general ecosystem. When this learned Purpose is combined with genetic Identity, the result is a unique Purpose that is not shared by peer humans or other agents of the ecosystem. We theorize that this makes homo sapiens less able to participate in semantic communication, because each linkage between learned and genetic Purpose renders a region of Context “different” and thus not shared. This makes humans more dependent upon other means of information transfer in Expression. Communication in Expression entails transfer of desired outcome states and abstract Forms in formats such as written text.

Semantic Communication is possible between humans. Excepting use of Stored Purpose metacomputer technology (which was developed specifically to enable semantic communication between human and other agents), two persons could create shared Purpose by learning identical read-write Purpose for a region of shared read-only genetic Purpose. Since all humans are genetically similar, semantic communication can be achieved with any precisely moderated learning of structure, such as with synchronized sports, musical orchestration, martial arts, military marching and operations.

Semantic Communication in Regulated Mechanical and Biological Systems

In papers on Organizational Intelligence and Ecopoesis (Jones Rubalsky 2010), we describe the key processes of regulation in purposeful systems. This regulation is made possible by semantic communication between and within diverse agents of the system. Communication will be primarily by means of coincidental and propagated transfer of contexts, but agents will also transfer learned Purpose. The following is a summery of some of the forms of semantic communication at various existential levels:
Body Mica
Within metacomputers and eukaryotic Mica systems, cells communicate with the exchange of context state information as Purpose is pre-shared as genetic Identity across all cells. In complex entities, context messages are sent via a variety of means that may span long distances. Household machines can use 802.15.4 udp “squirts” as broadcasts or as multi-hop transmissions. Eukaryotes may utilize hormones to support wide area coordination or paracrine and autocrine signaling for proximate cells. A body can thus use semantic communication to indicate to every cell the pending state of a violent fall. This would enable all cells to take action to protect themselves.
Organizational and Planetary Eco
A future metro regional system based upon Stored Purpose metacomputer technology, might employ a specific communications band for “squirt” messages initiated at all existential levels to indicate context information for any region of the city’s fabric. Future cities would thus be able to use semantic communication to advertise the direction and speed of a transportation vehicle carrying a passenger suffering cardiac arrest. All traffic lights, vehicles, bridges and trains, could thus participate in awareness of the context, and execute Purpose defined by the city, which might initiate an “on path -- off path” transition to get out of the way and safely let the sick man’s vehicle pass.

Use of both coincidental and purposeful context to coordinate action enables fast context sharing and the ability to “run” in parallel with minimal direct communication and thus without communication related latency. This will make the Stored Purpose infrastructures of the future very much like natural ecosystems, i.e. responsive and highly scalable.

Another example of coincidental communication is a rapid double shift in wind direction in a forest. If all creatures in the forest have matching shape and coincidence graph Forms in Identity that link the wind change to danger, then the entire forest will be in semantic communication when sensing the change, and “of the same mind” with regard to pursuing safety.
Importance of Semantic Communication
Semantic communication is essential complexity in existential systems. If an organism with multiple cells needed to communicate exclusively in Expression, it would be constrained in performance and thus limited in potential complexity. We believe the scalability of Construction-side communication is what makes it possible to sustain Identity on a planetary scale. It is extremely efficient, as context propagation remains brief even as Goal complexity increases. It is portable, as it works across all forms of existence. It supports complexity, including cascading communication in which the state outcomes of one process become the initial states of the next. As long as all agents of a purposeful system can be “tuned” to states of context, then all agents, which could number in trillions or more, can work as a coordinated entity.
Dangers of Semantic Communication
The Semantic communication can be a danger when serving the Purpose of unregulated entities, i.e. humans. It is processed on the sub-cortical Mica and Ema levels, called “instinct” in humans. As with all existential thought, Goal pursuit responses to contexts are translated straight from Construction, which means responses aren’t sequentially calculated. This makes it possible for sea life to get clear of dangerous ocean waters before a tsunami, or a flock of starlings to gracefully and swiftly avoid a falcon attack. In short, if ill used, semantic communication can directly trigger harmful action.
Peregrine Divebombs Flock of Starlings
Although Cortical Mica processing makes humans poorly suited for semantic communication, and thus less susceptible, ... high priority Purpose related to Self protection, feeding and sexual reproduction remain “shared” among large portions of the population. This means that context related to these Goals can be employed for semantic communication. This makes it is possible to trigger a human stampede at a concert or in a theatre, if a context state indicates a threat to safety. Thus, use of semantic communication by unregulated humans poses a potential risk for all humans. While a wolf would never yell “fire” in a crowded forest unless it were true, humans have no such constraint.

Another, more subtle use of semantic communication is advertising and media, in which a company propagates context states to individuals in order to evoke Goal Pursuit for a corporate Purpose. This requires a two part effort of creating a learned and shared Form in the minds of an audience, then linking that Form to a base Goal. For example, an advertiser might create a visual Form that links Golden Arches to food, or Light Beer to reproduction. Then by simply sending abstract contexts that communicate that food or an attractive mate is in context, the mind pursues the Goal Pursuit means linked to the symbol. Such commercials are allowed because their effectiveness seems limited, due to the fact that few respond to the false context states shown in the commercial, that indicate a warm juicy hamburger is near. But the effectiveness of the media communication is not in the immediate response, but in creating a persistent learned Form link between the transition of “hungry -- not hungry” and a Goal Pursuit technology of “out Golden Arches -- in Golden Arches.”

Semantic Communication in Humans Revisited

As described in Organizational Intelligence, cortical learning in the human population increases unregulated Purpose (Jones, Rubalsky 2010) . This makes humanity a counter factor to Eco Purpose and Goal Pursuit, removing available work and energy and increasing entropy. This can eventually reduce system Purpose. Although the ecosystem is robust and unlikely to be significantly threatened, that same “robustness” and total success at regulation poses an increasing risk to an unregulated species.

Humans can gain the ability to communicate semantically, between each other and with the ecosystem by capturing ecosystem Purpose in a format accessible when pursuing Goals. In the future, metacomputers may be able to capture said Purpose and agents of a Stored Purpose system might make it possible to link human organizational Purpose with the greater ecosystem. Agent technology can advertise contexts and facilitate sustainable choices and efficiency. Over time, as each individual learns to make choices aligned with ecosystem Purpose with technology, need for Stored Purpose infrastructure would diminish. A Stored Purpose tool would help humanity not only learn requirements of a regulated ecosystem, but help it become capable of driving regulatory evolution, becoming a steward of the system.

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