The Twitter Chaos Theory

by techagogy

After listening to the Guardian Podcast about information overload, reflecting the ideas of James Gleick, where he details the “defining quality” of humanity is “information”, yet “truth” (whatever that is) is hard to find. We appear to be an “absolute unique and unprecedented situation” where the “signal is left in the noise”.

Gleick refers to the idea that we connect 1:1000000 or 1000000:1, and refers to the “oddly named species” such as facebook, google (but not twitter) as functions that search and filter the information for us.

It is this idea of information overload that I would like to consider the function of twitter in a metaphor of child brain development, perhaps considering twitter as the lacanian mirror stage of our development as a species.

Gleick is correct, we are information, yet the internet before twitter was that of the child being aware of the fantastic surroundings, unable to make sense of everything, too much information, so much noise. We are all information but in the pre twitter world we were neurons without the synapse, unable to make the connections, unable to learn. Just as the child learns, and passes the cognitive ability of the chimpanzee through its ability to learn between the self and its other, so can we as earthy neurons link and learn through the mirror phase of twitter, twitter is information synapse.

As we as neurons synapse ourselves through twitter – we learn, just as learning creates strong links in the brain as we learn. Just as the individual neuron does not recognise its place in the whole scheme of cognition, neither do we as individuals in the global context. It is this twitter synapse that when strong and learnt creates the opportunity for the theory of twitter chaos to evolve.

The butterfly chaos theory in its absence or presence can under the right conditions lead to the presence or absence of a hurricane. Here the conditions seem unlikely to create this physical occurence, yet perhaps the conditions are here now that the butterfly as the individual could through the synapse of twitter create some metaphorical hurricane through the absence of presence of 140 characters (or less).

Have we already seem some influence of this twitter chaos theory already?