Time-scales in/of Networks

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It is possible and useful to imagine scenarios in which spatial distances and exchanges of mass-energy are mostly irrelevant (though necessarily present) to the adiabatics of sub-networks of processes in which heterogeneous actants participate sui causa.

= If the network connections are random in space, and the speed of communication great compared to all other characteristic times, and only energetically minimal informational signals exchanged, we still get an adiabatic separability of fastnets and slownets

= What matters are the relative rates/frequencies with which the elements of each subnet communicate with one another internally and those for their interactions or samplings of the states of elements of the other subnet; the effects are just those of the Principle of Alternation, but we learn as well that the very existence of a subnet is itself contingent on these rate relations -- it exists or not only with respect to some other subnet with the right relative rates; it is in effect only so constructable, or meaningful-FOR some subnet (and this WITHIN the larger network formed by them jointly)

= This leads back to consideration of our role as participant-analysts, not just individually, but as participants in our own sociotechnical networks. What we learn is that:

= If we seek to build sociotechnical networks within which processes and phenomena (actants) of widely differing relative time scales are all contained, then the networks which do this must themselves expand in temporal, and for us real material systems, also in spatial extension and/or aggregate energy and mass.

= Thus if we seek to link the sub-atomic to the human scale, we need sociotechnical networks that are vastly LARGER than the human scale, and operate over time-scales long compared to human actions-events (e.g. the financing and building of super-colliders, the historical development of needed theory and technology), and the same is true if we wish to go to much slower, larger-scale actants (e.g. galaxy distributions via sattelite-borne telescopes, etc.)

= It is the RANGE OF SCALES characterstic of the heterogeneity of networked actants that sets the necessary scale of the sociotechnical network, most clearly in TIME, but also in the other linked parameters

= Moreover, to ensnare a wider range of time-scales, the actants that must be networked together must themselves become more internally heterogeneous, each black-boxing the heterochrony of the subnetwork needed for it to be meaningful

= Finally, we can begin to see that the analysis of organizational activity and change itself requires an organization to carry it out, with an organizational memory on a long-time scale, able to analyze and model its object faster than that object can change, but also itself so much more slowly changing at its largest scale (e.g. its research paradigms) that it can integrate faster internal changes (say in research questions) in some coherent fashion ... but to judge this would require the perspective of a still more extended network.