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Some useful general resources

        This open source online bulletin is sent free of charge to anybody who has an interest in getting informed about people and places, topics and events, books and websites, and in all matters relating to semiotics in the broadest sense.

Complex Systems Virtual Library
Complex Systems Virtual Library Manager
        A good set of links to sites dealing with complexity. 

Information Theory and Molecular Recognition
Webmaster: Tom Schneider
        Deals with molecular machines and information theory. Good primer on information theory.

Biosemiotics Home Page,
Webmaster: Alexei Sharov
        Has a links page to many other resources on the net on biosemiotics, as well as some interesting introductory material and essays.

ARISBE: THE PEIRCE GATEWAY: Home Page of the International Peirce Telecommunity
         A philosophical Web site, providing coordinated access to the resources on the Internet relevant to the life, work, and continuing interest in the American philosopher, scientist, and humanist, the father of American semiotics.

University of Colorado at Denver, School of Education
        A key semiotics site, with many useful links to organizations, people, books and conferences.

Online Journals

Entropy, an International and Interdisciplinary Journal of Entropy and Information Studies, 
         Editor:  Dr. Shu-Kun Lin, and Production Editor, Dr. Andrey V. Gutnov. Subject Areas: general aspects of entropy and information concepts as used in statistical mechanics, thermodynamics, etc., studies on chaos, complexity, self-organization, symmetry breaking, stability, reversibility and spontaneity, quantitative relations of entropy (information loss) and other concepts (e.g., symmetry, similarity, orderliness, simplicity and complexity), molecular evolution, biological evolution and the evolution of the universe, application of entropy and information studies in any natural and social sciences. 

VisMath, Online journal with articles on Symmetry, Related to the text journal Symmetry: Art and Science (formerly Symmetry: Culture and Science), Editors: Dénes Nagy and Slavik Jablan, published by the Mathematical Institute, Belgrade, Yugoslavia. 

Complexity International, Editor: Terry Bossomaier and David Green,
        Complexity International is a refereed journal for scientific papers dealing with any area of complex systems research. The theme of the journal is the field of complex systems, the generation of complex behaviour from the interaction of multiple parallel processes. 

The Semiotic Review of Books, Editor: Gary Genosko
       The Semiotic Review of Books (SRB, 1990--) is a multidisciplinary journal publishing review articles. It endeavours to monitor those domains in the Humanities, the Social and the Natural Sciences which bear upon symbolic and communicative behaviour, cognitive systems and processes, cultural transmission and innovations, and the study of information, meaning and signification in all forms. This refereed journal provides its readership with substantial and critical accounts of recent books, debates and events, explaining their disciplinary relevance and importance for the development of neighbouring disciplines.

Emergence: A Journal of Complexity Issues in Organizations and Management
        Emergence publishes articles of a qualitative nature relating complex systems, sensemaking, psychology, philosophy, semiotics, and cognitive science to the management of organizations both public and private. The readers of Emergence are managers, academics, consultants, and others interested in the possibility of applying the insights of the science of complex systems to day-to-day management and leadership problems.


International Society of the Interdisciplinary Study of Symmetry ISIS-S
       Holds meetings once every three years. The last one was Sydney 2001The "International Society for the Interdisciplinary Study of Symmetry" ("ISIS-Symmetry"), founded in 1989, provides a central forum for these activities. ISIS-Symmetry comprises several branches of science and art, while symmetry studies have gained the rank of an individual interdisciplinary field in the judgement of the scientific community. The Society has members in all continents, in over forty countries. 

Principia Cybernetica Web, Editors: Francis Heylighen, Cliff Joslyn and Valentin Turchin

Santa Fe Institute
       Operating as a small, visiting institution, SFI seeks to catalyze new collaborative, multidisciplinary projects that break down the barriers between the traditional disciplines, to spread its ideas and methodologies to other individuals and encourage the practical applications of its results. 

Centre for Hyperincursion and Anticipation in Ordered Systems (CHAOS)
       Contact Dr Ir Daniel M. Dubois. Runs CASYS conferences on computing anticipatory systems.

NECSI - New England Complex Systems Institute
       The New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI) is an independent educational and research institution dedicated to advancing the study of complex systems. Complex systems have multiple interacting components whose collective behavior cannot be simply inferred from the behavior of components. The recognition that understanding the parts cannot explain collective behavior has led to various new concepts and methodologies that are affecting all fields of science and engineering, and are being applied to technology, business and even social policy. 

Center for Complex Systems, J.A.S. Kelso
       The Center for Complex Systems and Brain Sciences at Florida Atlantic University was founded in 1985 by Dr. Scott Kelso when he assumed the University's Chair in Science. Multidisciplinary since its inception, the Center involves the cooperative efforts of neuroscientists, psychologists, mathematicians, physicists, computer scientists, and engineers. The overarching objective of the Center is to understand the mechanisms and principles underlying complex behavior on all levels, from molecules and cells to whole brain functioning. 

Center for Semiotic Research (Denmark), Webmaster

The Knowledge Management Forum, Contact: Brian (Bo) Newman
       The Knowledge Management Forum is a virtual community of practice focused on furthering the fundamental theories, methods, and practices collectively called - Knowledge Management - . Between 1995 and 1996 this web site was an active shared resource where anyone with an interest in Knowledge Management was invited to join as an active participant, tell us about their background, their interests, their views on Knowledge Management and contribute material or links to be shared with others.

       Linking Innovation and Knowledge Management and Intellectual Capital professionals worldwide to certification programs, expert networks, knowledge resources, and electronic publishing services. Keep current with the latest in research, trends, and news. Oriented towards training.

Department of Information Studies, University of Woolongong
       The Application of Activity Theory and Other Techniques to the Study of Information Systems in Organisations

This area of research is concerned with the study of information systems as tools which support the business processes and management of organisations. The group is adopting a broad, multidisciplinary approach to adapt and integrate well established and relevant theories from other disciplines for use in this study. Members have already gained recognition for their work on Information Systems and Activity Theory, the Russian cultural/historical psychology. The work is aimed, firstly, at gaining an appropriate and solid theoretical foundation for research into organisational information systems and, secondly, at providing research output relevant to IS practitioners in modern organisations.

The Complexity & Artificial Life Research Concept for Self-Organizing Systems Webmaster
       CALResCo is a non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting the wider aspects of the Complex System sciences by education, synthesis and by the integration of the theories into the mainstream viewpoints of arts, philosophy and science. All the printed materials on this site are made freely available for use, unmodified, in any non-commercial context (excludes some copyrighted images). Any part may be quoted with appropriate acknowledgement of the source.

Upcoming conferences

Recent conferences

Interculturality and Globalization
Lyon, France
July 07-12, 2004. .
Related Web site:

CASYS'03: Sixth International Conference on Computing Anticipatory Systems
Liege, Belgium
August 4-9, 2003
Theoretical Developments and applications in the modelling and computing of anticipatory systems in any field of natural and artificial systems.
Web site:

Symmetry: A Synthesis of Constancy and Change
Budapest, Hungary
August 18-24, 2003

December 9-13, 2002
Artificial Life VIII: the simulation and synthesis of living systems
University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
An interdisciplinary conference focused on fundamental properties of living systems through the simulation and synthesis of life-like processes in artificial media.
Web site:

This conference is linked with:
December 2-6, 2002
The 15th Australian Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence
Rydges Hotel, Canberra, Australia.
Web site:

Quantum Mind 2003: Consciousness, Quantum Physics and the Brain
University of Arizona, Tuscon, Arizona, USA.
March 15-19, 2003
Web site:

August 2-6, 2002
ISSS Annual Meeting and Conference
Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China
The International Society for the Systems Sciences is holding is 46th annual meeting, with a general theme of "Managing Complexity and Change". This is a very large annual meeting, with many subthemes and special interest groups.
Conference Web site:

June 9-14, 2002
Fourth International Conference on Complex Systems
Nashua, New Hampshire, USA.
This is the fourth in a series of conferences with two major aims: first, to investigate those properties or characteristics that appear to be common to the very different complex systems now under study; and second, to encourage cross-fertilization among the many disciplines involves. Sessions include themes of emergence, modeling, complexity in natural, engineered and social systems, biocomplexity, evolution.
Host: New England Complex Systems Institute
Conference Web site:
Contact: Yaneer Bar-Yam

June 14-15, 2002
The Fifth Workshop on Organizational Semiotics
Semiotics within the economic, business, management organizations.
Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands
Conference Web site:

June 14-17, 2002
Gatherings in BioSemiotics 2
This is the second meeting of this vital new group, meeting to provide a regular framework for discussions of biosemiotics in the context of biology. Denmark and Estonia alternate as hosts for these meetings.
Department of Semiotics, University of Tartu and Jakob von Uexkull Centre
Tartu, Estonia
Conference Web site:
Contact: Kaie Kotov

May 6-10, 2002
Electronic Conference on Foundations of Information Science
The nature of information: conceptions, misconceptions, and paradoxes.
This is an on-line conference, to be served through their web site location. It is free to all presenters and participants. The conference themes are focused around the conceptions and misconceptions of informations in diverse fields, such as communication theory, machine intelligence, economic and technological evolution, bioinformatics and biosemiotics, entropy, symmetry.
Conference Web Site:
Publication of papers will be in the on-line journal:
Contact: Pedro C. Marijuan

Interactivism Summer Institute, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA, July 23-27, 2001

It 's happening: research threads in multiple fields scattered across the mind-sciences seem to be converging towards a point where the classical treatment of representation within the encodingist framework is felt as an impasse. A rethinking of the methods, concepts, arguments, facts, etc. is needed and, so it seems, is being found in the interactivist approach. From research in human cognition, motivation, and development, through consciousness, sociality, and language, to artificial intelligence, post-behaviorist cognitive robotics, and interface design, we are witnessing the appearance of projects where the assumptions of interactivism are embraced. More often then not, this is in an implicit manner, so that at a superficial level those projects (the problems they deal with, the methods they use) seem to be incommensurable. However, underneath, one can feel their interactivist gist. The time is right (and ripe) we felt, to articulate this 'irrational' (in Feyerabendian sense) pressure for change at a programmatic level, and this is what we want to accomplish with the present workshop. The workshop will be preceded by a Summer School in Interactivism featuring several tutorials which are meant to provide the needed theoretical background, based mainly on Mark Bickhard and his collaborators' work. The intention is for this Institute to become a traditional annual meeting where those sharing the core ideas of interactivism will meet and discuss their work, try to reconstruct its historical roots, put forward current research in different fields that fits the interactivist framework, and define research topics for prospective graduate students. People working in philosophy of mind, linguistics, social
sciences, artificial intelligence, cognitive robotics, and other fields related to the sciences of mind are invited to send their statement of interest for participation to the organizers:

Mark Bickhard <>
John C. Christopher <>
Wayne Christensen <>
Robert Campbell <>
Georgi Stojanov <>
Goran Trajkovski <>

Gatherings in Biosemiotics 1, Copenhagen May 24 - 27, 2001
Gatherings in Biosemiotics intend to establish a regular framework for discussions of biosemiotics in the context of biology. Gatherings in Biosemiotics will be international annual meetings for scholarly exchange of ideas and views in biosemiotics. Denmark and Estonia will alternate as hosts for these meetings.
Jesper Hoffmeyer
, Institute of Molecular Biology, University of Copenhagen
Kalevi Kull, University of Tartu
Claus Emmeche, CPNSS, Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen

Semiotics of Nature - Imatra, Finalnd June 13-14, 2001, International Summer Institute for Semiotic and Structural Studies
In contrast to the cultural semiotic perspective of nature, the perspective of general semiotics investigates sign processes in nature as semiotic processes sui generis. Foundations of this tradition have been laid by C. S. Peirce, Ch. Morris, and T. A. Sebeok, and on the basis of this broader concept of semiotics, new fields of semiotic research have been explored during the last decades, which have led to a considerable extension of the field of semiotic research. Semiotics is no longer only concerned with signs that depend on culture and codes, since it has advanced to a theory of sign processes in culture and in nature. Contributions to this extension of the semiotic field come from the history of semiotics with its long tradition of the study of natural signs, which were sometimes defined in sharp
opposition to other signs, but sometimes as a branch of the general theory of signs. Research in zoosemiotics and biosemiotics has proceeded with the lowering of the semiotic threshold from human semiosis to semiotic processes whose agents are animals and micro-organisms. More recently, the question has been raised whether precursors of semiosis should even be sought in the inanimate world and whether semiotics should also include the field of physicosemiotics: autocatalysis, order out of physical chaos, dissipitative structures, and other processes in dynamic physical systems, which testify to the possibility of a spontaneous increase of order in nature, have become the topics of study in the search for the origins semiosis and have led to a new field of protosemiotic studies.

Semiotics, Energy, Evolution II, Toronto, October 6, 7, 8, 2001
At the University of Toronto. The title is: 'Four Realms of Semiosis: The Sign in Nature and Mind', and will deal with all four SEE themes - Biosemiotics; Robotics, Computers and Cognition; Business Management; and Physics, Energy & Symmetry."
Contact: Edwina Taborsky

Computing Anticipatory Systems (CASYS)
        Contact Dr Ir Daniel M. Dubois. The next meeting of Computing Anticipatory Systems (CASYS) is in Liège, Belgium August, 2001. Conference topics include a wide range from mathematics to music, including cosmology, philosophical reflection and and specific examples of computating anticipatory systems. Papers vary from highly technical to very accessible.

Emergence, Chaos, Hierarchy, Organization, Contact George Farre
       The last meeting was July 26-August 1, 2000 in Odense, Denmark  Covers a range of topics similar to CASYS, but with more emphasis on physics. Usually held on the second year near and before the CASYS conference.

Artificial Life 7, Portland OR August 2000, contact Mark Bedau

Other resources

Complex Systems Virtual Library, Complex Systems Virtual Library Manager
        A good set of links to sites dealing with complexity 

Information Theory and Molecular Recognition , Webmaster: Tom Schneider
        Deals with molecular machines and information theory. Good primer on information theory.

Biosemiotics Home Page, Webmaster: Alexei Sharov
        Has a links page to many other resources on the net on biosemiotics, as well as some interesting introductory material and essays.

Agent-Based Simulation, Contact: Luis Rocha
       Fundamentals of Simulation LDRD DR. This project advances basic research related to simulation particularly of large socio-technical simulation. The approach relates and illustrates four research areas in simulation science using a telecommunication infrastructure analysis setting. The four areas are: 1. Sequential Dynamical Systems (SDS)[Barrett and Reidys, 1999]. SDS provide theoretical foundations for simulation as ordered composition of dependent local mappings and make connections to algorithm theory. 2. Representation for high performance computational implementation of SDS. 3. Principles of statistical design and analysis of simulation studies. 4. Foundations for assisted reasoning system design and use. Includes LANL researchers from TSA-SA, CIC-3, TSA-1, and T-7.

Luis Rocha Cuurent Research Projects
       Distributed Information Systems, Complex Systems Modeling Agent-based modeling of socio-technical systems, Simulations of Evolving Agents with Material Symbol Systems, Emergent Computation in Cellular Automata: Evolving Artificial Symbols Biocomputing Data-Mining and Functional Genomics, Models of RNA Editing and Contextual Genetic Algorithms Uncertainty-Based Modeling, and Decision-Support Systems More research details available with my publications on-line

Research Unit: Evolution and Complexity, Contact: Gertrudis Van de Vijver
       Current research: Project 1: FWO project on "A study of psychoanalytical theories of affect and their relevance for current viewpoints on emotion" "Een studie van psychoanalytische theorieën over het affect en hun relevantie voor de huidige opvattingen over emotie", Project 2: Bof Project on "Architecture and evolution of genetic circuits. A science-philosophical analysis of self-organization and selection in genetic and epigenetic evolution". Project 3: Fwo Project on
Complexity and Evolution. An epistemological and historical analysis of the implications of self-organization for the biological theory of evolution"
There are also lists of current and past conferences orgnaised at the University of Ghent, as well as online and offline publications.

Decision Structures of Socio-Technical Organizations, Contact: Cliff Joslyn
       Members of the Complex Systems Modeling Team of the Computer Research and Applications Group (CIC-3) of the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) are working on a project with the Physical Science Laboratory (PSL) of the New Mexico State University (NMSU) on the analysis of the decision structures of complex organizations dependent on information systems for communication and coordination. The project aims to develop formal representations and agent-based computer simulations of such Socio-Technical Organizations (STOs), conceived as hybrid systems with an underlying physical (dynamic, law-based) system, mediated with a layer of computer-based communication, and interacting with communities of decision-making agents or actors. Target applications include "Operations Management" (OM) STOs such as 911/Emergency Response or Search and Rescue operations.

Complexity and Non-linear Social Systems Home Page
       This page developed as an outgrowth of a shared interest in critically employing the research techniques and concepts of complex systems, deterministic chaos theory, nonlinear process, and cultural complexity in the study of human culture, society, and spirit.

The Evolutionary Processing Group Laboratory for Micro and Opto-Electronics (LAMI) VUB-IMEC Electronics Division (ETRO) The University of Brussels (VUB) Webmaster

Newcastle Complex Adaptive Systems Research Group
        The CASRG is concerned with examining the fundamental concepts and principles on which dynamical systems models are founded and with understanding the impact of their rapidly expanding use on the content and methods of the natural and social sciences, on public policy, and for our general philosophical understanding of ourselves and our world. A number of online publications available.

UMBC AgentWeb, Contact: Tim Finin, Editor
        AgentWeb was started sometime early in 1995 initially as a collection of material on KQML and the Knowledge Sharing initiative. I actively maintained it during 1996 and 1997 and for part of 1998. Sometime in 1998 the weeds began to grow and eventually overtook the site. Late in 1999 Yannis Labrou and I revived the AgentWeb using bk@site -- an excellent tool developed Jose Vidal. it's our hope that Jose's tool will allow us to jointly evolve and maintain the site for the new millennium.

Common KADS, Contact: Guus Schreiber
       Knowledge management is part of a recent trend in business to view knowledge as a valuable asset for a value-adding organization. Companies are defining their own knowledge-management strategies for explicating, developing and distributing their knowledge assets. However, people interested in knowledge management often find that there is a lack of support techniques for practical day-to-day knowledge management. CommonKADS does not claim to be a full knowledge-management methodology, but is in practice used successfully as a powerful tool to support knowledge management. The CommonKADS analysis framework provides an extensive method for describing business processes in which knowledge-intensive tasks are carried out. The CommonKADS textbook gives a clear roadmap of how knowledge analysis and knowledge-system development can be used as techniques within an overall knowledge management approach. This provides the knowledge manager with clear handles to define a corporate knowledge-management strategy.

Castor Project, Contact: Prof. Dr. René Jorna , Professor of Cognitive Science at the Department of Management Informatics.

This is a research project on Innovation, Knowledge, Conversion and Representation. The project goal is to develop and empirically test a theory of the cognitive dynamics of organizations. A project summary is available.

Biosemiotics, Webmaster: Jakob von Uexküll
       BIOSEMIOTICS - the study of signs, of communication, and of information in living organisms (Oxford Dictionary of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 1997. Oxford: Oxford University Press, p. 72).

Jesper Hoffmeyer's Home Page, Webmaster: Jesper Hoffmeyer
        Present focus of interests: Biosemiotics (the study of living systems from a sign-theoretic (=semiotic) perspective): In the biosemiotic vision natural entities and processes are seen as interconnected webs of sign-relations, shaking hands so to say between levels in the hierarchical scale, stretching along the spatial dimension from the single cell to the biosphere or, along the semantic dimension, from pheromone-signalling to the human psycho-neuro-immuno-endochrine system. 

John Collier's Home Page, Webmaster John Collier
       Research areas: Foundations of Information theory, Evolutionary Biology, Evolutionary Ethics and Epistemology, Foundations of Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics, Theory Change, Reference and Meaning, Metaphysics and Epistemology of Complex Systems, Causal processes

Don Mikulecky's Home Page, Webmaster Don Mickulecky
The place for information on Robert Rosen and his research.

Mark Bickhard's Home Page, Webmaster Mark Bickhard
Henry R. Luce Professor of Cognitive Robotics and the Philosophy of Knowledge Director, Cognitive Science Departments and Programs of: Cognitive Science, Psychology, Philosophy, Biology, Counseling, and Computer Science Lehigh University

Stanley N. Salthe's Home Page, Contact: Stan Salthe
       Developmentalism, Infodynamics, Thermodynamics, Natural Philosophy, Postmodernism, Internalism, Materialism, Hierarchy Theory, Semiotics, Structuralism

Claus Emmeche's Home Page, Contact: Claus Emmeche
       Philosophy of biology and general philosophy of science, Theoretical biology (morphogenesis and evolution, developmental systems, complex systems), Biosemiotics, Philosophy of nature, theories of world pictures. Many good links.

Floyd Merrill's This is Semiotics?, Webmaster, Floyd Merrill

Rodney Clarke's Homepage, Contact: Rodney Clarke
       Dr. Clarke is a full member of the Information Systems in Organisations (ISORG) Research Group conducted under the auspices of the Department of Information Systems, University of Wollongong. His research interests include text linguistics and social semiotics; contextual approaches to systems development and usage; systems development failure; qualitative data analysis; hypermedia and user interface design. He is a Member of the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM), the International Society for Semiotic Studies (ISSS), and a Foundation Member of the Australian Association for Social Research (AASR). He is on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Distributed Work (forthcoming), and on the Editorial Advisory Board of Zeitschrift fur Semiotik. He is the editor and creator of Organisational Semiotics: International Working Paper Series, an Internet research publication.

Some papers on the web

Genes, Memes, Wemes, and Xemes, by David Keirsey
An amusing parody of the use of the concept of a meme.

Some interesting book reviews

Professor Whatever: Review of Kant and the Platypus: Essays on Language and Cognition by Umberto Eco translated by Alastair McEwan Harcourt Brace and Company, 464 pp. by Simon Blackburn.

Sign Language: Review of Kant and the Platypus: Essays on Language and Cognition by Umberto Eco translated by Alastair McEwan Harcourt Brace and Company, 464 pp. by Colin Mcginn