Master K’ung said, “The goal of speech is to be understood”. Mick Jagger said, “I can’t get no, satisfaction”. Does anyone feel satisfied about the way they are understood? I don’t. I don’t think its anything personal. When sitting down with good friends and talking about social technology we’ve had good discussions, but I recognized puzzlement in their looks. The concepts behind Social Technology are just too deep, too profound, for even intelligent and well educated people to understand. Well, that is arrogant of me, isn’t it? Not so much. I am IMHO as intelligent and well-educated as the people I have discussed this with, but not much moreso. If I understand it better it is because I have worked hard on it for decades. Time and effort well spent, I say. Let me just quickly review some of what I have learned. First, the importance of pool size. You can’t get good matches without a large pool of candidates. Second, the overwhelming computational load the desired bipartite matches would take, from which I repeatedly need to emphasize the need for approximations, though the difficulty of good ones is hard. Next, that even though the amount of social benefit is potentially enormous, the amount of social upheaval would also be great because making good use of the large pool of matches would mean travel or relocation. Next, that although a vast amount of social science survey data exists and is all potentially useful, most of it was collected for social-scientific purposes, not social-technological purposes, so it is much less useful than it should be. New survey data is needed with applications in mind. A vivid example of this is the way educators throw away ALL error-covariance data when they add up test scores. This is but a brief review, there are more concepts, but even getting these partially understood by a few people would help a lot. — dpw
I continue to use the clickable image below, though it dates from a time when I naively ignored the dangers of Social Technology.
Like all truly advanced technology, these solutions to social problems will involve a lot of math, but must not require users to have special knowledge or skills. Programmers are invited to help with the development of open source libraries for applied social mathematics.
Non-technical accounts of all these topics as well as accessible accounts of the underlying math are on the front pages of a network of associated websites.
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