The team at dissertation.com did a wonderful job in preparing my thesis,
Into Complexity: A Pattern-oriented Approach to Stakeholder Communications, and now it's even available on Amazon!
When I first saw that, I felt a bit intimidated...I can no longer backtrack.., but that feeling left me quite quickly.
Well, everything seems to be final! I've got a date for my defence... April 14 2010 at the Academiebebouw Utrecht (Academy Building), which starts at 10.30 AM. I will be defending my take on Complexity, which may be a bit different than the non-linearity, chaos theory, and other precursors (or elements) of complexity. In my Ph. D research, I have made an attempt to develop a 'vocabulary' that can be used to share concepts of a complex theme amongst various stakeholders. This vocabulary is based on the notion of patterns, and is derived from the design patterns as they are known in architecture and software engineering.
First public presentation for my research. Zin in Chaos is about complexity in the way it is being conceived in the social sciences and the humanities, which takes a different direction than 'complexity theory' or 'complex adaptive systems'.
I am very excited that world-renowned primatologist Frans de Waal will receive an honorary degree at our University today, which has been organised because of the twentieth birthday of the UvH. de Waal is directly responsible for my current engagement in artificial intelligence and complexity science. When I was still employed in the IT industry and working on my masters degree in computer science in the evening, I got fed up with working on computers day in day out and decided to buy de Waal's photo book on his research on Chimps and Bonobos. While reading this book, I realised that my knowledge on evolution theory was outdated, and especially I did not realise the role that cooperation played in evolution theory. Evolution theory and computers spell 'artificial intelligence', and this eventually resulted in the symbiotic algorithms that I eventually graduated on.
Last week was dedicated to the formal farewell of Paul Cilliers, the co-supervisor of my research, who stayed a year at our University. Paul has been widely acclaimed as a philosopher of complexity, especially through his book Complexity and Postmodernism: Understanding Complex Systems. My supervisor, Harry Kunneman organised a symposium on Towards an ethics of Complexity in which I was mainly working on the sound recordings. I often jokingly say that everyone should be an engineer before moving on to other things, because the practical always comes in handy...