Autopoietic Computing and Reality Augmented Autopoietic Social Structures

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Reality Augmented Autopoietic Social Structures

A self replicating machine is a machine which can make a copy of itself. Just as biological entities have DNA which operates on the same principle of self replication, the same fundamental process which takes place in biological organisms can take place in artificial lifeforms. This fundamental phenomena allows robots to essentially create clones of themselves. Computing software protocols like Bitcoin rely on decentralized self replicating nodes to create a unified shared blockchain which acts as the public ledger for the network.

Self replication of a reality augmented autopoietic social machine can be facilitated by many different methods. Self replication of a reality augmented decentralized autonomous corporation for example can be facilitated through the utilization of a incentive centered design protocol. The incentive design protocol determines the incentive structure necessary for the autopoietic social machine to maintain health and survival.

In order for an idea to replicate itself it must encourage itself to be copied and if we consider the essence of the Decentralized Autonomous Corporation or DAC to be a general idea then the entire family of DACs all belong to the same family of ideas, the same family tree, and trace back to the same source. To put it in technical context all DACs belong to the same family tree which could be represented as a tree of blockchains with the protochain as the root chain.

The protochain could just as easily have been called a seedchain. The seedchain for the idea of a DAC itself originates with protoshares and by owning the protoshares you own the original seedchain for whatever branches off from the idea of a DAC provided that the social contract is followed and all DACs then compete in a survival of the fittest corporation evolutionary strategy.

The 3d printer could be considered a replicating machine but it is not a self replicating machine until the 3d printer can print another 3d printer. This would require that the 3d printer be capable of autonomous recursive reproduction. The human being is still needed to input the design into the 3d printer so that the 3d printer can output the product. As machines become more intelligent the 3d printer will learn to replicate itself and from that ability it may eventually learn to improve upon it’s design and at this point it is becoming an autopoietic process. To say it is an autopoietic process would mean it is an autonomous, self designing, self improving, self maintaining/self healing, self producing machine.

[su_quote]Biological seeds grow into larger organisms using local matter and energy, and eventually produce copies of the original seed. By analogy a seed factory grows from a small starter set to a larger factory using local matter and energy and high levels of automation. The factory is flexible and general purpose, and produces a variety of useful products. It’s also intended to be self-replicating, producing more seed factories. [/su_quote](Eder, n.d.).

A seed factory can allow for decentralized autonomous manufacturing. The seed factory has the abilities of replication, diversification, and scaling. Replication meaning the factory can produce copies of its own parts.

Diversification meaning the factory can make new parts for new equipment by adjusting the type. And scaling meaning the factory can adjust the size of the parts (Eder, n.d.).

To decentralize seed factories each of these seed factories can be considered a node on a seed factory network similar to the way the Internet works.


A decentralized autonomous network of seed factories and a decentralized autonomous network of DACs

A DAC is an autopoietic social structure.  If / when an augmented reality layer is built on top of that underlying autopoietic social structure then the next stage is to build a decentralized autonomous network of seed factories. A DAC (decentralized autonomous corporation) can generate it’s own currency but that currency should be backed by something. If each generated currency is backed by the goods and services of each DAC then it becomes possible to build a decentralized global automated exchange. Each currency unit generated by each DAC could be a virtual coupon, voucher, credit coin, gift point, but the most important critical feature is to allow for redemption of that unit within a specific time period in exchange for a product or service generated by that DAC.

So if that DAC can do manufacturing it is essential that anyone who redeems their credits prior to the expiration date can receive their manufactured product. If it is a service then it is essential that anyone who redeems before the expiration date receives that service. And most importantly it is essential to have a decentralized global exchange so that people can trade their credits when they have too many of a particular credit for the credits they do not have enough of. The expiration date can encourage trading to promote economic activity  and discourage hoarding.


Exponential economic growth as a result of autonomous self replicating machines

[su_quote] The cost of many goods is high because the output quantity is linear with the input effort. For example, in construction, it takes about the same amount of work to build the next house as it did the last house. If you plant some acorns, however, you can eventually end up with an oak forest as a result, which is an exponential result from a fixed amount of work. This is because oak trees are living things which both expand themselves and make copies. Applying that kind of growth to automated production systems can fundamentally alter the nature of human work.  (Edner, “3.1 – Economics Concepts,” n.d.).[/su_quote]

The overall result of building a decentralized autonomous network of seed factories, decentralized autonomous network of DACs or other autopoietic social structures, and decentralizing ownership of these self replicating machines will be economic growth like we have never seen before. Community owned seed factories could back community owned cryptocurrencies which can be used to trade with decentralized autonomous corporations which distribute jobs to human beings or to machines.

Machines will work for human beings and human beings will work for machines. Machines will work for machines and trade with human and non-human alike. And self replicating machines will be able to make many items which we consider to be luxury items or high tech cheap and abundant. The key aspect to providing a universal basic dividend is to keep ownership of these machines decentralized and owned by distributed virtual communities not under the political influence of local politics.

These virtual communities can be global, distributed, and act as sovereign decentralizing economic forces. Anyone who joins a virtual community and who abides by the rules can receive the basic dividend and there should be many competing virtual communities with different rules and currencies to choose from.

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(from Bass, Thomas. “Robot, build thyself.” Discover 16.10 (1995): 64-70.)



Ackley, D. H. (2013). Bespoke physics for living technology.

Briscoe, G., & Dini, P. (2010). Towards autopoietic computing. InDigital Ecosystems (pp. 199-212). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.

Eder, D. (n.d.). My Quest To Create Self-Building, Self-Tooling, People-Free Manufacturing Plants Co.Labs code community. Co.Labs. Retrieved December, 2013, from

Grignon, P. (2009, August 14). Digital Coin A Design for a Technologically Innovative, Sustainable and Self – correcting Software Medium for Trade and Capitalization of Production. Retrieved December, 2013, from

Introduction of digital coin. (2009, October 25). YouTube. Retrieved December, 2013, from

Luhmann, N. (2008). The autopoiesis of social systems. Journal of Sociocybernetics6, 84-95.

McMullin, B. (1997, January). Computational autopoiesis: The original algorithm. Santa Fe, NM 87501, USA: Santa Fe Institute.

ZEEUW, G. D. (1992). AUTOPOIESIS AND SOCIAL SYSTEMS—2.International Journal Of General System21(2), 185-186.


Exploring the the Darkside of Artificial Intelligence: thoughts, ideas, rants, and research from darklight

“you think darkness is your ally. But you merely adopted the dark; I was born in it, moulded by it.”


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