Re: MEMES: and things.

Dan Fabulich (
Tue, 2 Nov 1999 18:37:02 -0500 (EST)

'What is your name?' 'Anders Sandberg.' 'IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT YOUR NAME IS!!!':

> To continue the series: what would it be to have *three* kinds of
> replicators?
> Genes, memes and... ?

Note that memes don't RUN on genes, they run on the machinery which genes "know" how to build, our brains. So extending the metaphor leads one to the obvious conclusion that the next thing will not run on our brains, but on the machinery which our brains figure out how to build: thus, SIdeas will become the next level. (SInes?)

A good point raised in Kevin Kelley's _Out of Control_, however, is that memes don't obey the same sort of rules that genes do; if anything, they evolve in a much more Lamarckian way than genes, since individuals can make intentional changes to their memes rather than random changes which simply turn out to have beneficial changes. (Or, on another similar picture, memes are gene-like, varying randomly, but most variations usually die in our individual heads before they are copied to other people.) On account of this, I find the predictive power of memes to be pretty poor.


-unless you love someone-
-nothing else makes any sense-

e.e. cummings