morphogenesis

B/Z Reaction

B/Z Reaction

Chemical reactions do not generally display dynamic patterns or spatial order. The Belousov-Zhabotinsky reaction, discovered in 1951, may be the first completely understandable laboratory example of pattern formation in a chemical system that involves nothing more than chemical reaction and molecular diffusion. That same year, in 1951, Alan Turing investigated the theoretical possibilities of pattern formation by reaction/diffusion as "The chemical basis of Morphogenesis." The B/Z reaction is an example of a chemical system that shows spatial, periodic and wave properties that suggests that morphogenetic self-organization might follow similar pathways in both inorganic and organic systems. (cf. Slime Mold)
from Arthur T. Winfree, When Time Breaks Down, p. 168

Read More

field

field

In The Evolution of Physics, Einstein described the collapse of the mechanical world-view, leaving an intellectual vacuum before the radically new "field" theory could emerge. A field describes the behaviour of a dynamic system that is extended in space, through kinetics (interaction in time) and relational order (in space). It is a function of space and time coordinates that assigns a value of the field for each of the coordinates.  Jackson Pollock, Number IIA, 1948

Read More

morphology

morphology

Morphology is an "account of form," an account that allows us a rational grasp of the morphe by making internal and external relations intelligible. It seeks to be a general theory of the formative powers of organic structure. The Pre-Darwinian project of rational morphology was to discover the "laws of form," some inherent necessity in the laws which governed morphological process. It sought to construct what was typical in the varieties of form into a system which should not be merely historically determined, but which should be intelligible from a higher and more rational standpoint. (Hans Driesch, 1914, p. 149)

Read More