Category Archives: Ismail Gokhan Catikkas

Swarm Intelligence


David Castro taking a shot at an awesome courtship swarm of Bigeye fish at Cabo Pulmo, Baja California Sur, Mexico.
Caption provided by Octavio Aburto (via National Geographic Photo Contest 2012)

A critical analysis of the book Swarm Intellignece – Neil Leach, Roland Snooks

What to underline

The bee builds the next cell starting on the corner of other cells, wich are already have two walls built. This simplicity protects the natural growth of the hive,  the contuniuty is necessary for success. Mıcroscale generates simple inputs, wich collectively form the whole. As the organism gets bigger, the possibility to bring the whole information at any given moment to every individual becomes impossible. The set of simple rules and tracable information patterns allow the individual to make decisions. Ant body collectors are not able to sit on a desk and decide how many dead bodies should be carried in wich direction, they just follow little patterns and the job is done.

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Microstupidity renders macrointelligence




The video game Lemmings has the basic idea, lemmings have no brains, they have no decision-making mechanisms and for that reason the player has to assing the lemmings some tasks, as they walk constantly around. If there is a stair, they climb, if there is an obstacle they turn around, if there is a gap, they fall and die. The user input is to give them specific tasks to make them survive with no brains at all. Assign some task to some of them, sacrifice some of them for the good of the whole family.





No brain single cell organism makes you find the best way may be?

the intelligent slime

The emergence of intelligence from little rules and local interactions, as happening on the street level in bigger organism like the “city” where people are living together occasionally or on purpose. The text from the book EMERGE from STEVEN JOHNSON makes the question appear: Where does the organism start and what is the motivation of the smallest element.

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Tarzans in The Media Forest





Summer of 2013 something happened in Istanbul, the monetary system wanted to take the only green space left in Taksim, the GEZİ PARK, wich was the last public breathing point for the people and the reason to do so was to build a SHOPPING MALL

Like Toyo Ito says, the rapid economical growth was there, trying to reach every corner of the city, every valuable space was being occupied by big “bosses” to be sold. The park was tried to be destroyed with the help of police force. People resisted, the resistance spread to the country, that mall was not built. This shows if people themselves have the respect to the nature, we have a lot to learn from a tree, everything startet with a tree at gezi park but of course had political background.




Toyo Ito mainly focuses on the idea of creating a connection between nature and human living environments “cities”. There is the example of the tree, which can grow vertically but also create harmony with his surroundings and in itself by sharing the sunlight with every leave democratical as neighbours living in harmony. He asks the question why humans today “lost” that connection wich he had with the nature in rural horizontal cities, what did we miss trough the inevitable proccess of going vertical in the city.

Ito runs his office for over 40 years and he talks about the different eras of arcitectural growth of the city, and for him the word city means “Tokyo”. The swimming in the sea of consumption, extreme fast economical changes influence architecture and create almost impossible relationships in the city texture. He and his colleagues ask the same questions in every era, even if  rules of the game changes in every 10 years period. Who is the architect, how much an architect can influence the world in this rules and for whom is architecture practiced and how can we learn from the nature.

He accepst and creates an anology with the rules of the game in the human world, in the the ecosystem “the forest”, when if only one tree tries to abstract himself form the system, gets eliminated, as this fight between spiecies creates their harmony. Harmony comes from the constant fight, which fight brought us to live worse. Instead of creating indusry for sustainability, we should simply learn from nature.

Modern times create so called fictional architecture, Ito states, as we architects fix on an image and miss the importance of building creation proccess and humanitary needs also naturality. His own Sendai Mediatheque building period is for him an example of, how reality changes the mind of an architect by time, the end product may vary from the idea or image, but get better qualities after facing reality. The imaginary idea dies, leaving huge amount of construction work behind. However your image is idealised, the building is real.


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