We define an autogenetic system as a system that continually seeks to expand into the adjacent possible. Figure 1 shows how a population of virtual choreographies can expand into the adjacent possible through combination and recombination.
figure 1 - expansion into the adjacent possible through combination.
Our current thinking is that autogenesis is an emergent process that occurs when a number of system characteristic coincide:
An ability to localise a creative field small enough to explore effectively yet diverse enough to create pools of creative possibilities (attractors).
An agency exists, which provides a yuk/yum ‘decision’, and gives a measure of fitness for each creative combination as they arise. The results of these ‘decisions’ determine whether each particular creative combination will be selected to become part of the next global creative set.
A means to combine creative elements together into an ordered set. The cyber-dancer’s ability to link Ideas using the advanced Idea types of the Cyborg’s PlexMind is an example of combination through an ordered set.
A playfully creative approach to the exploration or von Foerster’s (Heylighen 2001) ‘order through noise’ process exists. The nature of improvisation and also the inexact control afforded to the cyber-dancer by the joystick and timing of mouse clicks allow more extensive exploration of the creative choreographic domain between the Dancer and the Cyborg.
A sufficient diversity in each creative exploration needs to be built before the emergence of new products from recombination can occur. We found that through multiple applications of autogenesis, the emergence of new choreographic ideas became almost inevitable, and that as the diversity and sophistication of virtual choreographies within the Plex increased, then wide variations of choreography, multiple scenes and hypertextual narrative easily emerged.
Autogenesis is explained in more detail in 'A Duet of Cyborg and Dancer: Creative Autogenesis'.