Monday, March 1, 2010

Between a Gladwell and a Strogatz

A bit of an odd juxtaposition but here are two talks about ideas that I find very inspirational for my work.
  • One says that seemingly simple things may actually be complex.
  • The other says that seemingly complex things may actually be simple.
 But both suggest a deeper order exists somewhere inside the system.

 Malcolm Galdwell: On Spaghetti Sauce 

"There is not perfect spaghetti sauce. Only perfect spaghetti sauces"
"We cannot always explain what we want deep down."
"What is the great revolution in science over the last 10, 15 years? It is the movement from the search for universals to the understanding of variability."

Steven Strogatz: On sync

Simple rules give rise to complex behaviors.
Feedback produces surprising behavior that we don't fully understand (we can say "how" (simulate) but not "why").
... and the Book is better than this video but the video does give some sense of the main idea.