“One becomes two, two becomes three, and out of the third comes the NEW one as the fourth.” Maria Prophetissa
Maria certainly knew a thing or four, so much so that the Arabs bestowed her the honourific, Plato’s Daughter. However I have taken the liberty of inserting NEW into her axiom.
The ‘new one as the fourth’ more accurately describes our findings with the Meta Model for Process. Namely, that the fourth order effect is the heart which transcends the other three. Taking Space-time as an example, our one temporal dimension is the heart of the three spacial dimensions; bringing them all to life! The new one that enables progression to occur. Without it, the third order effect of spacial dimensions (x,y,z) only allows for presentation.
The biosphere is also a fourth order effect allowing progression between it’s three sub-spheres which can all come together to sustain life in it’s many different forms.
As predicted by the Meta Model; the biosphere is a three into one phenomenon. The biosphere can be seen as the summation of its three sub-sphere’s which is greater than its parts.
When meta modelling we use the meta tags of body, mind, soul and heart, to assign the first through to the fourth order effect respectively. They are also useful to keep a track as you move up and down levels of abstraction and layers of interaction.
The table above demonstrates the utility of the meta tags when observing stages of Involution, increasing material complexity, or of Envolution, increasing functional complexity; in this case four examples of Envolution are shown.
In the case of the biosphere we would apply meta tags in the following order:
Heart: Biosphere. (Life)
Soul: Atmosphere (Air)
Mind: Hydrosphere (Water)
Body: Lithosphere (Earth)
As a form of envolution, the biosphere also presents as an accumulation of functional complexity; The lithosphere presents as land masses that are separated until the hydrosphere connects them, while the atmosphere connects both the lithosphere and the hydrosphere simultaneously. Finally the biosphere is the unification of all three of these functional domains.
The biosphere then can be considered the global eco-system which houses all other eco-systems. The biosphere eco-system also provides a great analogy to a ‘Trust-sphere’ eco-system or ‘equ-system’ for the proliferation of data as an analogy to the proliferation of life. An equ-system, like any true partnership or relationship exchange should be imbued with trust. For that to occur there should be no gradient (asymmetric information) relationship between any two parties within the system.
A trust-sphere may look something like this;
Heart:Experience trust as new form of eco-system (Equ-system)
Soul: Engagement trust as new form of e-commerce (MeCommerce)
Mind:Execution trust as new form of framework (OIX’s)
Body:Enablement trust as new form of infrastructure (CSP’s)
The Meta Model points to a reflexive process that already appears to be emerging toward the manifestation of a trust-sphere by reflexing the pre-existing conditions and turning them inside out. Just as these examples indicate;
– CRM reflexes to VRM
– E-Commerce reflexes to MeCommerce
– Attention (Push/Advertising) reflexes to Intention (Pull/Casting).
VRM (Vendor Relationship Management) tools provide customers with both independence from vendors and better ways of engaging with vendors. The same tools can also support individuals’ relations with schools, churches, government entities and other kinds of organizations.
While Me-Commerce (Life Management Platforms) will allow consumers to disrupt conventional advertising directly and social network revenue models indirectly. Overall the shift to a trust-sphere would put the heart and soul back into our online interactions by empowering the many;
Heart: Many to Many
Soul: Many to One
Mind: One to Many
Body: One to One
Personal data sovereignty then, will be the basis for a trust-sphere. As we all create the data in the first place we should be at its heart. It is our asset to commoditise then use as a form of currency however we should choose;
So what might a trust-sphere look like and what would constitute the sum of its parts? Well the Meta Model also points to the trust-sphere and it’s three sub-spheres all creating three into one eco-system’s in their own right:
Heart: Experience (Trust-sphere)
Soul: Engagement (Enter-sphere)
Mind: Execution (Exec-sphere)
Body: Enablement (Infra-sphere)
Ultimately the trust-sphere as a whole will allow us to ‘Experience’ trust throughout as we transact our lives in the digital era. The three sub-spheres required to make this a reality may also look something like this:
The enter-sphere would be the ‘Engagement’ layer delivering all the enterprise activities we have come to expect but in a safe sovereign environment where we can transact our lives and add value by creating new data for us to own and control with new value adding enterprise models that were previously unavailable:
Heart: Engagement (Me-Commerce)
Soul: Platforms (Life Management)
Mind: Applications (Collaborators)
Body: Brands. (Co-creators)
The exec-sphere would be the ‘Execution’ layer providing the governance frameworks of open identity exchange systems and memberships both personal and business. Above all else this will provide the portability that guards against monopoly. These are the four facets required of any sustainable civilisation;
Heart: Execution Framework (Social Facet)
Soul: Technology Framework (Technical Facet)
Mind: Legal Framework. (Political Facet)
Body: Business Framework (Economic Facet)
Finally, the infra-sphere would be the ‘Enablement’ layer providing the infrastructure to underpin the experiences, enterprises and execution entities. The ultimate role of a data infrastructure layer would be to act as the Utility providers and securers of our data. This is already most likely taking shape as personal and business Cloud Service Providers (CSP’s)
Heart: Enable Content as a Service (CaaS)
Soul: Utility Platforms as a Service (PaaS)
Mind: Utility Software as a Service (SaaS)
Body: Utility Hardware as a Service (HaaS)
Returning to the biosphere analogy where the biosphere and trust-sphere both equate as heart / heart. We can take the notion that the lithosphere (infra-sphere) comprises continents (CSP utilities) or Islands (DIY Clouds) that are separate and associate it with the trust-sphere’s infrastructure layer of data utilities; both lithosphere and infra-sphere equate as body / body.
In turn the lithosphere’s continental land masses (CSP utilities) are connected by the hydrosphere’s Oceans (Open Identity Exchanges) which also associates nicely with the trust-sphere’s ‘Execution’ and governance layer allowing content to move freely between the continents (CSP utilities); both hydrosphere and exec-sphere equate as mind / mind.
Lastly the atmosphere as the ‘Enterprise’ layer adds value as it sits above both and absorbs water (data) by the process of evaporation from the hydrosphere (OIX’s), transporting and depositing it back onto the lithosphere’s (CSP utilities) as precipitation (data content) which can then return it to the hydrosphere’s Oceans (OIX’s) via lakes and rivers to be recycled. Or it can store the precipitation (data content) which can be likened to percolation back into the water table of the lithosphere (CSP as storage).
The processes of sublimation and transpiration that occur on the lithosphere (CSP utilities) also allow the atmosphere (enterprise layer) to absorb water (data) and transport it back to other regions of the lithosphere (CSP utilities) or hydrosphere (OIX’s); both atmosphere and enter-sphere equate then as soul to soul.
Admittedly if a data trust-sphere as an entire global equ-system is to emerge, it will no doubt require a lot of resources and cooperation. Yet we only have to look back a generation to see the enormous development that has given rise to our current form of internet.
The secret for a wiser generation who have borne witness to the reckless and uncontrolled profusion of our personal data and resultant loss of sovereignty;
Will be in ensuring that the three sub-spheres cannot contaminate or corrupt one another and that each sub-sphere maintains a sizeable community engaging in healthy competition much as the biosphere does between life forms within it.
Therefore each sub-sphere will require its own specialisation of cultures, technologies, policies and economic models. In essence we do not need another controlled eco-system, we have that now; what we do need is a collaborative one so we as individuals can remain in control of our sovereign data rights.
Are you ready to trust in a new future? It may not be utopian but it will be tritopian which will be essential if we are to support all life in trust by avoiding our current growing dystopia of data haves and have nots!
This article was written by Brian Grimmer, Founder & CEO of Present Group, with insights and understandings derived from extensive cooperation with Peter Midgley, CXO of Present Group on the Meta Model for Process. The terms ‘Trust-sphere’, ‘Equ-system’, ‘Enter-sphere’, ‘Exec-sphere’ and ‘Infra-sphere’ are new terms to have emerged while meta modelling a data eco-system to be analogous to the biosphere.