• Please note we do not meet in January

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    We don't meet in January. Topics for Meetups from February will be announced in the lead up to each, some expanding on parts of the Supervenience "book" outlined in August 2018 and others from members or guests with topics of interest.

  • Mark 50th anniversary of Tragedy of the Commons paper with flash back to 2012.

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    Our Meetup falls on the exact 50th anniversary of the publication in Science of Garrett Hardin's paper: The Tragedy of the Commons. http://science.sciencemag.org/content/162/3859/1243 Given that attention is returning to the Commons as a potential pathway for mitigating the worsening tragedy of late modernity, we hope to get some wider input into how that paper speaks to 2018. As a stimulus for discussion, we will reprieve a presentation first given to the Asia-Pacific Foresight Conference in Perth in late 2012 which looked for connections between the Peer to Peer emphasis of Michel Bauwens and Kevin Kelly's description of The Technium. Six years on, it appears only the terminology has drifted, Bauwens now placing more emphasis on the Commons and the techno-positive community still overconfident that human ingenuity will save us from ever increasing problems of our own collective making.

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  • Share background to forthcoming review of Emergency Management.

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    Taking break from Supervenience "book" outlined in August but may give brief update if time permits, after also slotting in some minutes for AGM of Kororoit Institute Proponents and Supporters Association Inc. In September the Inspector-General for Emergency Management sought submission of themes and issues for a decadal review of policies and procedures coming out of the state government's response to the Bushfire Royal Commission. Sadly, it was hard to duck given recent focus on situations in Separation Creek following the 2015 Christmas Day fire evacuation compounded by floods and landslips in the winter, and along lower Stony Creek following the late August warehouse fire, Stony already being an ongoing project. Will also look quickly at the contrast between DELWP/CFA cool burns and Wurundjeri Cool burns. Following Tony, Daryl Taylor from Kinglake will provide a short presentation on Preparing (and Preparedness) for the Emergency Response (and its Consequences).

  • Choose any of 3 chapters of Supervenience 'book' in preparation

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    We can take a first look at either of two 'chapters' now in preparation or a third which is being updated from the September version as a dynamic situation. Title and first slide text for each follows to set the scene: i) Birds and Others Understanding Evolutionary History via basal birds and mobile animals an exercise in systems analysis and trimming hierarchical networks As with mammals, it appears a minimum of 3 still represented avian taxa had diverged from our basal bird during the Cretaceous with viable populations in viable ecosystems surviving the KT event, then diversifying as new niches appeared and life recovered. From its last common ancestor with crocodiles, our basal bird was a relatively late arrival within the diversification of dinosaurs. From the winners corner it may appear that basal bird was the successful line, but each extinct species had been viable in its time. Long odds against fossilisation, geological continuity, and eventual discovery suggest a much longer succession of viable ancestors. (Cladograms from Wikipedia Bird page) Neoaves diversified rapidly with major taxa appearing before passerines separated from their last sibling order, parrots. Passerines are “sometimes known as perching birds or – less accurately – as songbirds”, the latter more accurately as passeri, with lyrebirds “the most ancient true songbirds, endemic to Australia” and more divergences before the later division between vast families: corvoidea and passerida. Tim Low in Where Song Began asks re the Lyrebird as model for the first songbirds: “How could evolution create the best musicians first, with thousands of younger lineages producing simpler and weaker sounds?” ii) Here Now Succession Process Traces Time Causation? Dynamic encodings in condensed matter maintaining interesting isolates through cosmological timescales Bigger History through lens of self-organising systems with dynamic capacity for encoding acquired knowledge in forms that modulate subsequent response to asynchronous environmental triggers Condensed Matter Active Planets Metabolism Genetics Neuronal Networks Ecosystems Collaboration Instruction Recording Executables (This emerged as an organising theme from the August presentation of 19 chapter cards. Hopefully it is close to getting an easier title.) iii) Urban Hydrology out of Sight Stony Creek was a Supervenience case study before last week’s fire fire fighting flood meets urban waterway rehabilitation Following August’s introduction of an initial topic list for Supervenience, for the next three weeks it had been intended to start exploration of those topics at “Birds and Others” The industrial history of Stony Creek has been an increasing focus over several years, very recently in the context of Waterways Priorities versus Priority Waterways for Healthy Waterways On Tuesday, 28th August, ministers on the banks of the Maribyrnong announced the formation of a Ministerial Advisory Committee to develop a “Waterways of the West Action Plan” Two days later, two weeks ago today, we woke to news reports of a large industrial fire west of Footscray necessitating the closure of Somerville and Paramount Roads Firefighters professionally contained and controlled the fire within 420 Somerville Road save for a big smoke plume and a toxic cocktail of chemicals which flowed straight into Stony Creek So tonight we instead explore “Urban Hydrology out of Sight” drawing into focus the rehabilitation of this industrial waterway by local community groups and their need to refresh

  • Urban Hydrology out of Sight: Stony Creek's toxic fire water flood

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    Following August’s introduction of an initial topic list for Supervenience, for the next three weeks it had been intended to start exploration of those topics at “Birds and Others” The industrial history of Stony Creek has been an increasing focus over several years, very recently in the context of Waterways Priorities versus Priority Waterways for Healthy Waterways On Tuesday, 28th August, ministers on the banks of the Maribyrnong announced the formation of a Ministerial Advisory Committee to develop a “Waterways of the West Action Plan” Two days later, two weeks ago today, we woke to news reports of a large industrial fire west of Footscray necessitating the closure of Somerville and Paramount Roads Firefighters professionally contained and controlled the fire within 420 Somerville Road save for a big smoke plume and a toxic cocktail of chemicals which flowed straight into Stony Creek So tonight we instead explore “Urban Hydrology out of Sight” drawing into focus the rehabilitation of this industrial waterway by local community groups and their need to refresh August's first step towards "Supervenience: how emergent minds and money seize power over matter" briefly introduced 19 candidate "chapters" in quest of early input: Too Funny for Words Multiple Paths to Emergence Better than Out of Control Here Now Succession Process Traces Time Causation? Towards Healthy General Knowledge Abstractions, Category Errors, Epistemic Cuts Constraints and Degrees of Freedom Information, Maps and Territories Codification and Communication The Inside View: knowing when you're dreaming Life on an Active Planet Birds and Others Urban Hydrology out of Sight Exploiting a Dissipating Gradient: creaming, trickle down Verbal Blindness The Two-edged Sword Interweb to Facebook Dystopian Utopias and Science Fiction Accepting Cosmological Responsibility

  • Explore: "Supervenience: how emergent minds and money seize power over matter"

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    First step towards "book" briefly introduces 18 candidate "chapters" in quest of early input. Ties together a few earlier Meetup topics. Too Funny for Words Sharing a story with occasional reference to mathematical concepts aiming to convince you that cultural reliance on words and numbers both facilitates and impedes our experience of the world and our capacity to act. Multiple Paths to Emergence To study Emergence is to look at things which could not have reasonably been predicted based on prior knowledge but which can subsequently be seen to be clearly within bounds. Major mechanisms include: synergistic/symbiotic pairings, larger population organisation, formation of persistent patterns within a dissipating gradient. Better than Out of Control Kevin Kelly’s 1993 book was the first popular account of growing interest in Complex Systems. Misconceptions about the roles of emergent Order and Chaos motivated an unproductive search for a boundary between, obscuring the possibility that they are partners in creating the universe that begat life and us. Here Now Succession Process Traces Time Causation? While we make productive use of treating time as a dimension, this may have been overplayed in ideas like the Block Universe. We live in the here and now, though life developed pattern recognition based on traces that persist in condensed matter which DNA and neuronal networks dynamically encode. Towards Healthy General Knowledge The amount of accessible knowledge is growing rapidly. It is way beyond an individual to be across most fields. We need to respect others’ areas of focus. We and they also need knowledge grounded on foundations that stand scrutiny. I might have wider and deeper knowledge across the broad sweep of sciences, but only fragments about popular entertainments. Abstractions, Category Errors, Epistemic Cuts Thoughts about something, not even detailed descriptions, can do no more than represent that thing incompletely. Thinking is assisted by recognising what kind of thing you are thinking about and not accepting a contestable placement. Laws governing behaviour emerge with the entities concerned, enabling focus to be kept without spurious back reference. Constraints and Degrees of Freedom Concepts which are formalised in mathematics sometimes provide insights into worldly behaviour. Too much choice can be as inhibiting as too little. Given a blank slate, identifying external constraints can help discover a productive path. Mathematically, adding constraints correspondingly reduces degrees of freedom. This translates well to physics and to life. Seek sweet spot. Information, Maps and Territories Late modernity is so obsessed with information technologies that even serious scientists have proposed that the world is built on information. More productive to see information as useful abstraction while allowing usual philosophical disclaimers. Don’t confuse maps with territories. Treat the patient, not the clipboard. Codification and Communication Our proliferation of coding systems are one more variant on an old trick for collecting and using knowledge, preceded by DNA and neuronal nets. Lynne Kelly explained monumental transition in oral memory methods needed to support agriculture. Bill Hall explained post literate growth with climatic impact. The Inside View: knowing when you're dreaming Science is casting off its behaviourist blinkers in important areas but still averse to doing a lot with subjective accounts of mental processes. So for now we are stuck examining our singular experiences informed only by general worldly awareness. Noting our own transitions to and from sleep and dreams may help. (Meetup limits this so the last 8 are just headings.) Life on an Active Planet Birds and Others Urban Hydrology out of Sight Exploiting a Dissipating Gradient: creaming, trickle down Verbal Blindness The Two-edged Sword Dystopian Utopias and Science Fiction Accepting Cosmological Responsibility

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  • Ride the flood of water policy–related draft words and illustrations.

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    A year on from Melbourne Emergence Meetup addressing the application of our co-founder Dave Snowden's Cynefin framework to parallel Catchment Collaborations covering the Maribyrnong River and Moonee Ponds Creek, this July sees a flood of draft policy documents demanding consideration and rapid response: • Melbourne Water's Healthy Waterways Strategy renewal with more detailed Catchment Works Programs for each of the five catchments • Cities of Moonee Valley and Moreland's expansive masterplan for the Moonee Ponds Creek: Chain of Ponds • The Rivers of the West campaign building on the protections of the Yarra River Protection (Wilip-gin Birrarung murron) Act 2017 and likewise coördinated by Environmental Justice Australia These are but a peak in the flood which challenges the focus of infrastructure projects on the Arden-Macaulay–West Melbourne Lagoon precinct which is the most accessible place to be swamped by rising tides. There might never be a better time to explore what new forms of organisation might emerge to dissipate this flood flow. Background: https://www.slideshare.net/ynotds/cynefin-meets-the-maribyrnong-and-moonee-ponds-creek https://yoursay.melbournewater.com.au/healthy-waterways http://moreland.vic.gov.au/about-us/projects/park-playground-and-creek-projects/moonee-ponds-creek-plan-community-consultation/ https://www.envirojustice.org.au/projects/rivers-of-the-west/

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  • Explore Kororoit Institute's opportunities in light of LeadWest's Future is West

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    A week after regional coordinator LeadWest launched their report "The Future is West" with a well attended function at Parliament House, http://www.leadwest.com.au/files/files/666_The_Future_is_West_LeadWest_Report_website.compressed.pdf we have a chance to look at the fit with Kororoit Institute's foundational focus on servicing the WNW growth areas of Melbourne which were designated in 2009, given growing interest in region-shaping environmental and transport planning concerns from Airport Rail to the Rivers of the West campaign. The region is already the fastest growing part of Australia, with that position projected to continue beyond another generation. The aforementioned launch event may have opened some doors to ensure KI's work has longer term relevance. Pic is one of the endless local details where Stony Creek restarts with flow and litter from street drains in central Sunshine, briefly forming the boundary between the Cities of Brimbank and Maribyrnong and meters from where a wetland is being dug to capture storm water from the Orion townhouse estate commencing development immediately east of that border, presenting a perfect opportunity to develop a larger scale storm water management wetland to clean and moderate the main creek flow.

  • Revisit the Wye fire recovery from the pointy end 27 months on

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    Repercussions from the Christmas Day 2015 Wye River fire and the landslips concentrated in the fire zone following heavy rains late that winter are ongoing. Revisited this week exposed challenges for local authorities stuck with expert advice in conflict with local experience resulting in proposed hydrological engineering that has become unthinkable in suburbia.

  • Hear how today's Yarra emerged from an industrial river and lessons for others.

    Seminar Room B309, Engineering Block B

    Marcus Lancaster presented "An industrial river, a newspaper campaign, and deindustrialisation: The role of the Lower Yarra in remaking Melbourne’s post-industrial fabric" to the Urban History Planning History conference at the end of January, drawing on his PhD research. He will present it with fresh reference to the Yarra (Birrarung) Act 2017 and consequent moves to extend similar protections to Rivers of the West. Borrowing his original abstract: Since the early 1840s Melbourne’s Lower Yarra River was used by the city’s noxious, manufacturing and maritime industries as a source of water, a convenient sewer, and main transport link with the outside world. By the 1890s the sluggish, meandering, and narrow Lower Yarra had been transformed into an industrial river. Major industries were scattered along its banks and the city’s main ports located along its lower reach. By 1980, many of these industries had, or were in the process of closing, while the port had consolidated further downstream. As a result the city reach of the Yarra was largely an industrial wasteland, the river polluted and inaccessible to the public, the banks lined with industrial artefacts. During this period of deindustrialisation, Melbourne largely ignored the Yarra, some commentators arguing with good reason. In its determination to improve the quality and public perceptions of the Lower Yarra, the Age Newspaper launched the Give the Yarra a Go campaign. The campaign, claimed as one of the Age’s most successful, resulted in major changes leading into the river’s post-industrial transformation. This paper examines the campaign, its results, and any continuing legacies in response to remaking the Lower Yarra and surrounding area as a post-industrial fabric. It also examines the notion - does Melbourne’s central business district remain with its back to the river, or has it finally become a riverside city?