The Sciences of the Artificial reveals the design of an intellectual structure aimed at accommodating those empirical phenomena that are "artificial" rather than "natural." The goal is to show how empirical sciences of artificial systems are possible, even in the face of the contingent and teleological character of the phenomena, their attributes of choice and purpose. Developing in some detail two specific examples—human psychology and engineering design—Professor Simon describes the shape of these sciences as they are emerging from developments of the past 25 years.
"Artificial" is used here in a very specific sense: to denote systems that have a given form and behavior only because they adapt (or are adapted), in reference to goals or purposes, to their environment. Thus, both man-made artifacts and man himself, in terms of his behavior, are artificial. Simon characterizes an artificial system as an interface between two environments—inner and outer. These environments lie in the province of "natural science," but the interface, linking them, is the realm of "artificial science." When an artificial system adapts successfully, its behavior shows mostly the shape of the outer environment and reveals little of the structure or mechanisms of the inner. The inner environment becomes significant for behavior only when a system reaches the limits of its rationality and adaptability, and contingency degenerates into necessity.
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As the Earth has made more than 5,000 rotations since The Sciences of the Artificial was last revised, in 1981, it is time to ask what changes in our understanding of the world call for changes in the text.About the Author:
Herbert Simon is Professor of Psychology at Carnegie-Mellon University. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics in 1978.
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Descripción The MIT Press, 1970. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Never used!. Nº de ref. de la librería P110262690233
Descripción The MIT Press, 1970. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería DADAX0262690233