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money

Financial Physics: Entropy, Gravitation, Complexity

The proliferating, bubbling, effervescent diffusion of information abstractions in (and as) cultural and economic – ergo financial – systems nowhere reveals itself as so much smoke and mirrors than, ironically, where it assumes such literal gravity and influence over our lives and experience. I am fascinated by the autonomous methods and optimal functions of system self-organisation and the spontaneous arrival of emergent complexity; we see in all (these) organisational systems a progressive sedimentation of historical artefacts that exhibit certain underlying classes, principles and symmetries.

The indefinite extensibility of logical, axiomatic (yes, assumption-laden) systems and paradigms is both boon and blocker, feature and bug. The ontological and topological complexity of financial systems undergo something of a self-propagating hyper-inflation – the more endpoints, the more network edges – the more those network edges themselves become virtual endpoints, entities, agents of influence in a swelling tide and (self-gravitational) field of self-inflection and endlessly-extensible logic. Artefacts and entities endlessly multiply in circularly recombinatory self-reference and resonance in these abstract information spaces.


That was (a) description of a model of large-scale cosmogical evolution, rendered into brief analogy of financial networks. It is not necessarily physics that is inappropriate for use in this context, it is a limited rationality built on mechanistic axioms and the psychologically-reflexive aspiration towards closure and logical completeness that is the real demon here, in my opinion. These systems are instances of emergent complexity and the shaping of their destinies requires a subtlety and insight conspicuously absent in political discourse.

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