martes, 21 de octubre de 2008

El Blog de Valeria Brandini

Valéria Brandini es una antropóloga brasilera que se intersa por el tema relacionado con por la cultura del consumo y del marketing, o sea : la ANTROPOLOGIA APLICADA Al MERCADO. Utilizando la Etnografia y la Teoria Antropológica hace investigaciones sobre las estrategias de diversos servicios e productos y en diversas áreas.

Ella dice lo siguiente:

Neste blog compartilho minhas pesquisas na forma de artigos publicados em revistas científicas e minha paixão pela ciência. Verso pela aplicabilidade das investigações em várias áreas, sobretudo, em minhas atividades como consultora empresarial nas áreas de Antropologia, Etnografia e Ciência da Comunicação Aplicados ao Mercado. Atualmente desenvolvo uma pesquisa de Pós Doutorado em Antropologia Empresarial, Etnografia do Consumo, com vistas a traçar um perfil do consumidor de luxo no País.

viernes, 17 de octubre de 2008


by Péter Érdi. Springer Verlag 2008

Published in the International Journal of General Systems,
Vol. 37, No. 5, October 2008, 637-639.

COMPLEXITY EXPLAINED, by Péter Érdi. Springer Verlag , Berlin, Heidelberg. 2008, 397 pages, EU €53.45, ISBN 13 978-3-540-35777-3,
e-ISBN-13 978-3-540-35778-0.

‘This introductory and reference book explains why systems research is fundamental in understanding the structure, function and dynamics of complex natural and social phenomena. … complex collective behavior emerges from parts of a system, owing to the interaction between the system and its environment. The basic philosophies, concepts and methodologies of this research are outlined: very different complexities can be analyzed by nonlinear dynamics since many systems of very diverse knowledge domains have similar architectures. The book demonstrates the very broad scope and complexity of the complexity theories – yet, it is not highly technical and uses basic mathematics sparingly’ (quoted/paraphrased).

The following overview of the Contents demonstrates the author’s very inclusive and broad coverage of systems science:

1. Complex Systems: the Intellectual Landscape. Century of Complexity, characteristics of simple and complex systems, overview of the book’s approach: connecting the parts.

2. History of Complex System Research. Reductionist success vs. organization principles, earlier research: cybernetics, nonlinear science, dissipative structures, synergetics, catastrophe theory.

3. From the Clockwork World View to Irreversibility (and Back?). Cyclicity vs. linearity – the metaphysical perspective, Newton’s laws-based universe, mechanics vs. thermodynamics, birth of modern theory of dynamical systems, oscillations, the chaos paradigms’ history, direction of evolution, cyclic universe-criticism.

4. The Dynamic World View in Action. Causality, teleology, scope and limits, chemical kinetics: prototype of nonlinear science, spatio-temporal patterns, biological systems, population/social dynamics and epidemic/biological models, dynamic models of love and war, social opinion dynamics, nonlinear and chaotic economic/business and pharmaceutical (drug) dynamics.

5. The Search for Laws: Deductive vs. Inductive Arguments. Principia Mathematica’s history, Karl Popper’s induction, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, inductive bounded rationality’s history.

6. Statistical Laws: from Symmetry to Asymmetry. Normal distribution, bimodal/multimodel distributions, lognormal and Power Law phenomenology.

7. Simple and Complex Structures: Between Order and Randomness. Structures/complexity and graphs, fractals, noise-induced ordering, elementary mathematical/statistical model, networks everywhere in science and technology: cell biology and epidemics.

8. Complexity of the Brain. Introduction to the brain-mind problem: experiments, organizational principles, single cells, structure/dynamics and functions of the brain, neural rhythms, complexity and cybernetics: a unified theory of brain-mind and computer, cognitive science aspects.

9. From Models to Decision Making. Equation- vs. agent-based model, motivations, artificial life and societies, computational economics, game theory, limits and scope of predictions (earthquakes, volcanism, stock markets, medical situation), phenomenology, statistics and dynamical models of extreme events.

10. How Many Cultures We Have? Complexity as a unifying concept, complex simulations, complexity explained.
Érdi covers such a great deal of important data on complexity that a shorter review cannot do justice to this excellent book – the above outline must therefore suffice.

The 581 References are one indication of his inclusive broad coverage. Yet, many more publications are available, including numerous more-recent books, as the field of complexity is expanding rapidly.

In particular graduate students, researchers, and teachers in any of the numerous sciences, technologies, and humanities, as well as the general educated public are addressed. There is no limit: just about every profession has been ‘drawn in’ to consider the theories of complexity – usually in combination with a host of other concepts (see below). Some disciplines, e.g. physics, astronomy and cosmology, chemistry, biology, geology, medicine, mathematics/statistics, computer science, economics, history, philosophy, religion, and psychology, are mentioned by Érdi (some all-too-briefly).

To broaden the appeal, here are some knowledge-domains or fields of investigations were complexity has been applied (covered by many publications): ecology and environments (all geographical/geological types) in general, resources (water, minerals, energy, agriculture, soils), predictions (of climates, floods, pollution, earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanism, etc.), various technologies (e.g. engineering), industrial and natural catastrophes, outer-space research, pandemic diseases, pedagogy (teaching, training, learning), business/administration (including risk problems), legal situations, city planning, and politics (national health systems and poverty control).

To be highlighted is the fact that although the brief two-word title of the book is Complexity Explained, pointing to the main topic, the wealth of compactly-presented information it demonstrated by the references by Érdi to many other increasingly important inter-related theoretical and practical fields of research (some older, but several rather new) where complexity finds many types of associative contexts.

The following are some of the complexity theory-related parameters/variables and phenomena discussed by Érdi (only a few listed in the Contents): systems analysis and systems properties, cybernetics, holism, synergetics, information theory, inter-disciplinarity, experimentalism, data mining, meta-science, catastrophe theory, dissipative structures, fractals, pattern recognition, hidden variables, fuzzy logic, decomposition, causality chains and chance, chaos, dynamics, evolution in time and space, types of modeling/simulation, stability/instability, phenomenology, amplification, initial-condition control, butterfly effect, strange attractors, strange loops, synchronicity, regularity, periodicity, fluctuations, reversibility, recursion, circular causes-effects, determinism, probability, randomness, order/disorder, entropy, certainty/uncertainty, networks (e.g. citation types), emergence, non-linearity, hierarchy, feedback, open vs. closed situations, meta-languages, connectivity, artificial intelligence, brain-mind-computer trichotomy, neural cognition, organization theory, self-organization, self-assembly, self-similarity, self-reference, self-modification, inductive/deductive/abductive reasoning, teleology, symmetry/asymmetry, possibility/impossibility, graph theory, unification/theory of everything, decision-making theory, game theory, predicting/forecasting, linguistics, and third-culture general (epistemology) philosophy concept.

Any researcher planning to write a book ought to copy Érdi’s styles: the English is superbly conversational, clear, uncomplicated, and logically compressed; all text sections are short and logically subtitled; numerous anecdotes (some humorous) are rather illuminating; use of many illustrations (diagrams, figures, flow charts, models) and ‘boxes’ containing quotations, paraphrases, and important information are eye-pleasing; where possible information is presented as bulleted lists; …. Although the Index is rather meager, the Contents is providing all sub-headlines and is thus allowing a quick overview of the book. And finally: all references to publications are in one References – rather than each chapter having its own separate list! In several book reviews I pointed out the absence of editing – in contrast, Érdi’s book has unequivocally undergone extensive editing, although there are still some awkward/quaint English expressions as well as numerous grammatical and spelling errors.

One surprise: Érdi’s multiple references to the Wikipedia internet encyclopedia, although many criticisms have been leveled against this source! Consider the following, however: if many experts like Érdi ‘keep a continues vigilant cognitive/intellectual eye’ on the accuracy/reliability of Wikipedia, why not use it while being careful via double-checking with other sources?!

reviewed by Karl H. Wolf
Emeritus Professor of Geology
Springwood, NSW 2777 Australia

miércoles, 15 de octubre de 2008


La revista digital RBUR, administrada por Sonia Bastos y Margarita Barretto, se encarga de artículos arbitrados relacionnados con el TURISMO. En el número del próximo mes de noviembre publicarán un artículo de Alfredo Ascanio titulado “La opinión sobre una crisis turística: la cultura mediática detrás de bastidores”. Se trata de un análisis multivariante de componentes principales relativo a un conjunto de opiniones de expertos sobre la crisis turística de Gran Canaria y publicados en un diario de la Isla.

jueves, 9 de octubre de 2008


Esta revista digital de ciencia política proviene de la Universidad de Chile.

martes, 7 de octubre de 2008

Dos japoneses y un estadounidense reciben Nobel de Física

Dos japoneses y un estadounidense reciben Nobel de Física

ESTOCOLMO (AP) - Los japoneses Makoto Kobayashi y Toshihide Maskawa y el estadounidense de ascendencia japonesa Yoichiro Nambu compartieron el martes el Premio Nobel de Física 2008 por estudios relacionados con la ruptura de la simetría en la física subatómica.

La Real Academia Sueca dijo que Nambu, investigador de la Universidad de Chicago que nació en Japón, fue galardonado con la mitad del premio por el descubrimiento de un mecanismo llamado ruptura espontánea de la simetría en la física subatómica.

Kobayashi y Maskawa compartieron la otra mitad del premio por encontrar el origen de la ruptura de la simetría que predice la existencia de al menos tres familias de quarks en la naturaleza.

"La ruptura espontánea de la simetría oculta el orden de la naturaleza bajo una superficie aparentemente revuelta", dijo la academia en su argumentación. "Las teorías de Nambu calan en el modelo estándar de la física de las partículas elementales. El modelo unifica los bloques fundamentales más pequeños de toda la materia y tres de las cuatro fuerzas de la naturaleza en una sola teoría".

Kobayashi y Maskawa "explicaron la ruptura de la simetría dentro del marco del modelo estándar pero obligaron a que el modelo sea ampliado a tres familias de quarks".

El galardón comprende una suma total de 10 millones de coronas (1,4 millones de dólares), un diploma y una invitación para la entrega de los premios el 10 de diciembre en Estocolmo.

The Wealth of Nations: An Interdisciplinary Approach

The Wealth of Nations: An Interdisciplinary Approach
Another way to analyze the subject at a time of crisis

Alfredo Ascanio (askain)

Why are some countries are rich and others poor? How is overcome poverty? More than 200 years ago Adam Smith in his book "The Wealth of Nations" tried to find a recipe, but the answers to previous questions are very complex.

The complex problems have many components and therefore there are many theories on the matter. There is no single recipe. However it is possible to transfer an interdisciplinary causes and effects of a science to another.

The current population now is 10,000 million and the material wealth of mankind (GDP) is roughly US$100,000 billion in constant US$ of 1990 (real GDP), then the estimated real GDP per person, expressed in US$1,990 is more or less than $10,000 and this is due in particular the success of the industrial revolution and the birth of the modern enterprise, which enabled the sustained increase wealth of humankind, which had not been reached with the agricultural revolution.

The accumulation of knowledge and technologies and solid institutions has enabled the industrialization of some countries. But there is still no coherent theory of historical analysis which tells us the transition of agricultural societies to industrialized societies. What we do know is that the skills and diversification of the tasks affecting the future.

The climatic factors also have influence and are the countries with temperate a climate that favor individuals and benefits their industrialization. The real per capita GDP, expressed in logarithm, is highest in the extent to which countries deviate from Ecuador and its climate is more temperate. In countries with tropical climates is more costly maintenance of physical assets that are deteriorating rapidly and there are more problems with diseases and pests. In countries with temperate climates entropy is lower.

Another factor is the possibility of development and trade using the sea and the major rivers. The flat fertile lands are a good complement to raise agricultural productivity.

A Biochemical process regulated by molecules of DNA in the genes has led to evolutionary biology to interact with the progress. Many problems and solutions depend on the skills and human genes have impacts in the way that men organize their institutions. The effect on the phenotype of individuals impact the behavior and the culture, they have to do with evolutionary biology and ways to manage a business.

Civic responsibility and honor encourages the individual to assume more efficient practices.

The economy tries to manage scarce resources to produce wealth and with the function of financial instruments is a key element when they are handled with rationality. Countries with the lack of working capital and higher productivity usually cannot make an efficient economic activity. The use of capital and labor should be harmonious and also must produce value added at the macro level.

Capitalism is a fabulous, but it must be controlled by the state to avoid chaos, anomie and speculation or monopolistic behavior. It is also true that what is called the "etoeconomy" or economy based on ethical behavior, can overcome the limitations of economics as science.

The index of the Human Development (UN) is highest in countries that have a GDP per capita real value higher. But the rich country, as a whole, does not eliminate totally poverty and inefficient distribution. The so-called Gini index, or the percentage distribution of the wealth of a nation, is very different from for example the Gini of Nicaragua and the United States of North America (41 and 60 respectively). In Nicaragua 90 percent of the poorest population consumes roughly 50 percent of the total wealth of the country, and 10 percent of the more rich population consumes the other half of the national wealth. In countries with a better distribution of profits 10 percent of the population consumes only between 18 percent and 20 percent of wealth.

The rate of poor distribution of wealth is related to inequality in access to education and health due to an inefficient state spending. There are roughly 255 million people in the world who earn only US$ 2000 dollars a year, or US$ 5 a day. African countries are poorer in the year 2000 that the poverty they had in the year 1980, but China and India, for example, are closing the gap between rich and poor in a more accelerated that wealthy countries because they removed the populist policies and have accepted the market economy.

There is a concomitant relationship between freedom and equality of opportunity. If you lose freedom, equality is much harder to achieve. Direct subsidies to the most vulnerable sectors relating to education, health and housing policies are redistributive of wealth and this means that people who receive such subsidies are more tolerant and more interested in participatory democracy.

Natural resources are another variable related to wealth and poverty. There are countries with great natural resources but are poor and other countries without natural resources but are rich.

For example in Venezuela until the year 1975 the GDP grew a real value and with that growth also increased the price of crude oil but from 1980 to 2000 continued to grow in real GDP of the country with lower prices for crude oil, even in 2008 the price of crude oil has been high (more than US$100 per barrel), but its effect on the country's wealth and redistributive aspects remain very small and this has to do with a political style of governing, with a high increase of corruption and an inefficient management of the oil industry and petrochemicals.

The size of the state bureaucracy and its activity is another variable that intervenes in a good or bad wealth generation and its possible distribution.

From 1990 onwards, in Venezuela with a very large and very inefficient bureaucracy, GDP per capita fell to real value and inflation was even more severe. This perverse relationship between the size of the state and its quality and low productivity of the economy is a worrisome variable.

The strength of the institutions of high quality contributes to social progress and evolution. A country with many obstacles to legalize property or to solve social problems harms growth, development, progress and evolution. A strong rule and laws is a guarantee for moving forward.

Other variables are the culture and religion. They are qualitative variables related to ethical values, values of self-expression, self-confidence and secular values.

The mistrust and lack of support among social groups negatively impact the wealth of nations. The laws are very important for generating wealth and economic freedom, especially in decentralized economies.

The investment to improve education, verbal skills and even scientific research as a collective value of networks and relationships that fortify attitudes toward work and business; it is an important cultural resource that contributes to progress and benefit sharing.

The mechanisms to deal with psychosocial problems and crisis makes the best endowed with rich countries can successfully overcome their recessions more quickly and consistently. The learning capacity is greater in countries with strong institutions. But the wars and conflicts are detrimental to the nations. There are also problems when there is injustice internationally. The full freedom and welfare, is an achievement of every nation and not a gift from individuals or powerful countries.

There is a narrow economic rationality. It is very complex to perceive the risk and uncertainty. Sometimes we choose the first solution we have at hand, without considering possible alternatives; this behavior to achieve a minimum of effort that does not optimize the decisions, Herber Simon called "sufficing."

The human trial takes shortcuts that deviate from the most efficient. The politicians also have to cooperate in a crisis situation when others want to cooperate, but they have to be moderate and benevolent, because this attitude is beneficial to citizens; in brief, that attitude add synergy and creativity and are key factors for progress and evolution.

(Este es un resumen en inglés del excelente libro del profesor Klaus Jaffé, La riqueza de las naciones: una visión interdisciplinaria, Caracas, Editorial Equinoccio, UAB, 2007.)

domingo, 5 de octubre de 2008

Growth, Development, Progress and Evolution

Growth, Development, Progress and Evolution
The four functions of an efficient society
Alfredo Ascanio (askain)
Published 2008-10-05 11:51 (KST)

Although people use these terms as if they were equal, the truth is these terms are different phenomena.

Growth is the temporary expansion of the social product.

Development is the growth of the potential social product that has a country.

Progress is the increase of goods and services to benefit to society as a whole.

Evolution is the qualitative change of the economic organization of society (institutional changes).

America for many years grew and developed, but its progress and evolution have been questioned. Not all people have the same benefits as others. Not all institutions, as the big banks and Wall Street have had any significant changes to social benefits.

The current crisis is a good lesson for the US to progress and achieve its institutional evolution.

Obama and McCain are calling for the reform of the Banks and Wall Street, and Obama is asking benefits for people who have lost their home, for people who are paying high taxes and for people who pay social insurance.

Obama and McCain already know that a country can grow without development, a developed country can grow without progress, and also a country grows, succeeds in its development and the country progresses, but without structural changes in its institutions.

With this crisis we noticed that some institutional changes destroy or neutralize the potential for growth, development and progress. The evolution is not analyzed with the tools that are used to study the growth and economic development, because evolution is a qualitative issue.

Social tensions, mistrust in the future as elements of economic decline, because people feel that the gross domestic product grows but the distribution of benefits is not the most appropriate.

"The progress and growth can be separated. A country can have growth without progress," said economist Julio Olivera of the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. This phenomenon is best known in Latin America and in other poor countries of the world.

Alfredo Ascanio is a professor of economics at Simon Bolivar University in Caracas, Venezuela.
©2008 OhmyNews

Other articles by reporter Alfredo Ascanio

Existe algún problema con Internet ??

Vamos a leer en idioma portugués lo que le puede pasar a Internet en el futuro...

Revista de Cultura Urbana en Chile

El enlace de arriba se refiere a la revista digital de antropología y cultura urbana que viene desde CHILE.

sábado, 4 de octubre de 2008

Un trabajo de Ingrid del Valle García Carreño

En el enlace de Arriba Ingrid nos ofrece la propuesta para promover el aprendizaje colaborativo y su aporte a los salones de clases divergentes. Es un tema de la pedagogía moderna que nos interesa conocer.

viernes, 3 de octubre de 2008

Una encuesta para ustedes los investigadores

Por favor pueden hacer CLICK arriba para contestar la encuesta. Muchas gracias. Thanks. Obrigado.

jueves, 2 de octubre de 2008

Time Travel on the Wayback Machine

Time Travel on the Wayback Machine
With the Internet Archive, search in the 4th dimension

Alfredo Ascanio (askain)

The institutions hold their memories in libraries. For example, the Library of Congress in Washington, DC is very important for the volume of its records and books.

But now in this century there is a vast library that gives us Google, Yahoo and other companies that have been born with Internet.

The world learned for the first time the Web 2.0 and blogs, wikis and other social spaces, in these digital sites many people have written their own stories and the new citizen journalists are participating actively in journals such as OhmyNews, Citizenxpress.

The most dramatic news today on this issue is the new Google services: Internet Archive Wayback Machine. This service will revolutionize the history of preserving what has been written on the Web for other generations.

What is the Internet Archive Wayback Machine? Google says:

"The original idea for the Internet Archive Wayback Machine began in 1996, when the Internet Archive first began archiving the web. Now, five years later, with over 100 terabytes and a dozen web crawls completed, the Internet Archive has made the Internet Archive Wayback Machine available to the public. The Internet Archive has relied on donations of web crawls, technology, and expertise from Alexa Internet and others. The Internet Archive Wayback Machine is owned and operated by the Internet Archive."

The idea is so spectacular that the tool: Allows you to search for “2 petabytes of data and is currently growing at a rate of 20 terabytes per month. This eclipses the amount of text contained in the world's largest libraries, including the Library of Congress”, said the designer of the service.

“Imagine surfing circa 1999 and looking at all the Y2K hype, or revisiting an older version of your favorite Web site”. It is one of the promises of this new service.

Google is celebrating its tenth anniversary with its new browser (Google Chrome), and with this new search engine (the vast archive of the Net).

The service is already available and, thanks to the Machine, you can read and hear many events since 2001 when you click on the link: