In the past century, the tradition of Freudian psychology popularized the idea that our psychological dispositions could be traced to formative childhood experiences. In many areas of modern academic sociology and psychology this belief is still widespread, though it has been extended to include cultural and environmental factors more broadly as important determinants of our characters.
But these fields have been fighting a rearguard action in recent years, against an onslaught from genetics and neuroscience, which have provided strong evidence that such traits have at least some basis in our innate biology. To some, this is a controversial position, perhaps even a morally offensive one. But really it fits with our common experience that, at some level, people just are the way they are—that they’re just made that way.
Interesting to see the theoretical inroads stigmergy is now making into the field of music.
[t]he idea for this research is to create a new rhythmic generator technology. This system will be capable of generating multiple lines of percussion that sound natural. The synchronization will be self-organising and thus will be governed by a Stigmergic model that must be derived. The rhythm generator based on this Stigmergic system will be suitable neural network technology that can manage both short-term and long-term patterns in the percussive line.
Another fabulous evening in the company of Nick Lowe and the razor-sharp Los Straitjackets. A lovely balanced set from across his amazing back catalogue. I’m pleased to learn that a biography of Nick is forthcoming: here is an interview with biographer Will Birch.