[pcp-discuss:] New member: Manuel Mendoza García

From: Cliff Joslyn (joslyn@lanl.gov)
Date: Tue Sep 19 2000 - 01:35:38 BST

  • Next message: Cliff Joslyn: "[pcp-discuss:] New member: Alexander Valerievich Bonin"

    >Date: Fri, 15 Sep 2000 23:14:57 +0200
    >From: lolo@ccuma.sci.uma.es (Manuel Mendoza)
    >To: OWNER-PCP-DISCUSS@listman.lanl.gov
    >Subject: Subscription to PCP-discuss
    >X-VMS-To: owner-pcp-discuss@listman.lanl.gov
    > Email address: lolo@uma.es
    > Name: Manuel Mendoza García
    > Postal address: Departamento de Ecologia y Geologia,
    >Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Malaga, Malaga, Spain
    > Phone: 952474861
    > How did you hear about PCP? Looking for "Self-organization"
    >in internet
    > Please take at least one page to describe your work
    > and how it might relate to PCP:
    > I am finihing my PhD on Evolutionary Paleoecology. After that I am
    >thinking to apply for a fellowship to keep on researching with Brian
    > Please find enclosed the letter that I sent to Brian Goodwin, one
    > month
    >ago, and his answer. In that way, I think you will be able to have a
    >good idea of my work.
    > Looking forward to hearing from you, I send my best regards
    > Manuel Mendoza
    >Dear Dr. Goodwin,
    > My name is Manuel Mendoza. I think Dr. Ricard Sole has told you about
    >my intention to work with you. I have decided to contact you because I
    >plan to finish my PhD before the end of this year. I am thinking to
    >apply for a fellowship by the next year. In the meantime I will try to
    >publish some papers from my PhD work.
    > My PhD thesis is about evolutionary paleoecology. My PhD advisor, Dr.
    >Paul Palmquist (ppb@uma.es), is not a traditional paleontologist but he
    >doesn´t work with a complex sistems approach. So, at the begining, my
    >PhD thesis had not either this approach. Its aim was the application of
    >multivariate stadistic and morphometric analysis to the paleoecology
    > I began to work with Dr. Palmquist on August 1993. Because I had not
    >been funded with a fellowship during my PhD work, I decided to open a
    >small private school. I began to work as a teacher of mathematics,
    >chemistry and physics with high school students. Since then I have been
    >studying these subjects by my own, in particular physics and chemistry.
    > >From a few years ago I teach even at university level for students of
    >Life Sciences. When I began my PhD thesis on 1994 I wasn´t sure I wanted
    >to work like a researcher. I love science and biology, but I also like
    >many others disciplines, and not only scientific ones.
    > At the begining of 1995 I read "General evolution" by Erwin
    > Laszlo. It
    >has been one of the most important things in my live. Since then I have
    >read all I have been able about complex systems and other related areas.
    >I have read, among others, to Ilya Prigogine, Stuart Kauffman, Murray
    >Gell-man, Per Bak, Ian Stewuart, Fritjof Capra, Ricard Sole, Humberto
    >Maturana, Francisco Varela, Lynn Margulis,Roger Lewin, Daniel Dennett,
    >and you. I have learnt a lot of things to understand the word around
    > One of the first purposes of my PhD was to identify some features in
    >the trophic structure of the mammals communities, characteristic of
    >every ecosystem, with the help of multivariate analysis. The finality of
    >this was to identify the ecosistem of past communities from the trophic
    >structure of its mammals. I found very clear patterns in the trophic
    >structure of the present mammals communities. Characteristic patterns of
    >every kind of ecosistem. I unknown the origin of this patterns and I
    >thought it was an important question, so, about two year ago, I was for
    >a long time searching an explanation in the ecology department: books,
    >papers and ecology teachers. I intuited that it was related with the
    >dinamic of the system and in fact, I found some related explanations,
    >but I didn´t found any satisfactory direct explanation. At that time I
    >was reading "The Origins of Order" from Stuart Kauffman. Reading the
    >fifth chapter (Self-Organization and Adaptation in Complex Systems) I
    >found an answer. It didn´t talk about biological communities but I
    >understood how non-linear systems, far from equilibrium can origin
    >complex patterns. I created a model about how biological communities get
    >trophic structure, based on dynamic systems theory. I shown it to Dr.
    >Criado (c_criado@uma.es), he is a physicist who teach dynamic systems
    >theory at the mathematic-science faculty, at the University of Malaga.
    >He agreed with the ideas of the model and he propoused me to simulate it
    >by computer. A bit later I had the oportunity to contact Dr. Ricard Sole
    >and to show him the model about the origin of trophic structure and our
    >intention to simulate it. He seemed also to agree and he is now
    >revising the results of the model and his simulation: A manuscript about
    >how communities evolve.
    > At the begining, Paul Palmquist did not seem to agree with this
    > change
    >of approach, but he has changed his mind and now this approach plays an
    >important role in my PhD thesis. Right now I am sure I want to devote to
    >scientific research, mainly if I can do it on complex systems.
    > Two months ago I decided to close my School in order to concentrate
    >all my effort on my thesis and the publication of the results. I hope to
    >get a posdoctoral fellowship next year and continue researching. The
    >only inconvinient is that my family (my wife and a five years old son)
    >is not able to accompany me out of Malaga, as she has a good and
    >permanent job and now, we all depending on her salary. Therefore, I
    >wouldn´t like to be far away from them for a long time, as I think that
    >I have an important responsability with them, mainly with my son. For
    >this reason I had given up the idea of requesting a posdoctoral
    >fellowship in other country.
    > But now I think it is possible. My tool of work is the computer, not
    >the laboratory, and England is very well connected with Malaga by plane.
    >I could be in England several months at the begining, in order to start
    >the research and after that I could continue working between the two
    >places, this is, living in Malaga, but connected with the research
    >Center in England by Internet, and travelling to England as much times
    >as necessary.
    > Nothing would like to me more than to be full time in the Schumacher
    >College. I got some information about its Master, some time ago, and I
    >have visited its web pages many times. Many of its teacher-visitors are
    >some of the most interesting researchers for me and I also think
    >personal meetings are fundamental in the research process, but I think
    >that the role of a father in the life of a five years old child is
    > Other things related with my formation are:
    > - In 1992 I was contracted for the Andalusian Enviroment Agency to
    >research some problems with the wild hogs (Sus scrofa) in "Montes de
    >Malaga" Natural Park.
    > - During the two last years I have been organizing and moderating
    >periodic transdisciplinar meetings at the University of Malaga. Among
    >the usual participants there were physicists, philosophers, architects,
    >epistemologists, informatics, and mainly biologists, from diferent
    >subdisciplines. Some of the subjets that we have talk about are, for
    > - Do the Science progress?
    > - Are there trends in biological evolution?
    > - Are there trends in social evolution?
    > - The responsability of the scientist
    > - The origins of order (I participated in its introduccion)
    > - Ways of knowledge
    > For the introduction of "Ways of knoledge" I invited Dr Humberto
    >Maturana, who was in Malaga offering a seminar in which I participated.
    > - I have also been collaborating to impart a new subject for the
    >biological studies. At the University of Malaga there is not a research
    >Group of Complex Systems, but Dr. Medina (medina@uma.es), a biochemist
    >teacher at this University, is very interested on Complexity Sciences
    >and he has been offering an optional subject about this matter, since
    >three years ago.
    > About one year ago I read your book "How The Leopard Changed Its
    > Spots:
    >The Evolution of Complexity". I liked it very much. When I read the last
    >chapter I thought you was the kind of person who I would like to work
    >with. However, at that moment I didn´t consider this possibility. But
    >now, the situation is different and I would like to know if this is
    >possible. I will appreciate if you can inform me about your opinion.
    > Best wishes
    > Manuel Mendoza
    >Dear Manuel,
    >Thanks for your email. Ricard Solé mentioned to me when we were in Santa
    >that you are interested in doing research on complexity in ecosystems
    >and related
    >areas. You will probably have seen that the other permanent member of
    >at Schumacher College is Stephan Harding, an ecologist and computer
    >So together we could probably help you with your research interests.
    >However, there are two factors that we must resolve. One is finance. Our
    >college has no funding for research, so you would have to find financial
    >support for a visit here. The other factor is that the college runs as a
    >community which takes collective decisions about the people who live and
    >here. We have no position of 'researcher' within the college. However, I
    >explore your situation with the other members of the college and see if
    >is some category of research visitor that you could occupy. However, you
    >would still be involved in college life (preparing meals, cooking), like
    >everyone else. We consider that learning is more than intellectual
    >work, as I am sure you agree. I shall make enquiries and let you know.
    >Yours sincerely, Brian Goodwin.

    | Cliff Joslyn, Member of the Technical Staff (Cybernetician at Large)
    | Distributed Knowledge Systems Team, Computer Research Group (CIC-3)
    | Los Alamos National Laboratory, Mail Stop B265, Los Alamos NM 87545 USA
    | joslyn@lanl.gov     http://www.c3.lanl.gov/~joslyn     (505) 667-9096
    V All the world is biscuit-shaped. . .

    ======================================== Posting to pcp-discuss@lanl.gov from Cliff Joslyn <joslyn@lanl.gov>

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