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10:55-11:15    Astrid Modera    A Relational Definition of Life for Astrobiology


Live Discussion

Chat log

10:55:41 From to Everyone : Sara Imari Walker is thinking a bit differently about life


10:55:59 From Linda Billings to Everyone : Sara’s work is amazing. 


10:56:06 From Kelly Smith to Everyone : @ Kathryn - yeah, life as physics


10:56:54 From John Traphagan to Everyone : Paul Davies just published a book on this issue in which he defines life as information + matter.  I interviewed him for my podcast on New Books Network and that should be out shortly.


10:57:26 From Carlos Mariscal to Everyone : @Linda – I think I was on that paper! (And somewhat instrumental in pushing against definitionism)


10:57:35 From Julia DeMarines to Everyone : ^^ agreed about Sara’s work


10:57:43 From Alan Johnson to Everyone : I was wondering the same thing.  Rosen discusses organisms, and his (M,R) model seems very organism based, but the notion of "closed to efficient causation" as a criterion for life doesn't, to my mind, seem to require an organism or necessarily an (M,R) system.  Of course, I don't know category theory.  But I wonder if this definition isn't quite a bit more expansive than organismal.  Could, for instance, a biogeochemical cycle be considered closed to efficient causation?


10:58:54 From Kelly Smith to Everyone :



10:59:01 From Carlos Mariscal to Everyone : ^^ Yeah, Sara is pretty awesome. Davies is cool, too


10:59:04 From Lucas Mix to Everyone : I wonder how this aligns or not with Varela and Maturana's Autopoeisis.


11:00:36 From Carlos Mariscal to Everyone : While we’re sharing :)




11:01:39 From John Malloy to Everyone : Come to my session on Thursday for some of Sara’s work :) as a summary, the idea is that there can be a universal definition of life, similar to the general theories of physics. I’m looking specifically at network structures of biochemistry, but other functors may certainly be possible


11:03:03 From Carlos Mariscal to Everyone : That whole section of the program is fascinating (and not just because I’m in it!)


11:02:49 From to Everyone : You're right, John, and the work context mattered: Spencer being a theorist in England (d 1903) and Boas working in a more hands-on way in the Americas (d 1942).


11:03:43 From Kelly Smith to Everyone : It’s all fascinating, Carlos…:)


11:05:13 From Carlos Mariscal to Everyone : Agreed :) I’m glad SSoCIA could happen this year. It’s been going great (a bit early on the West coast, though)


11:05:40 From Nick Nielsen to Everyone : Yes, early on the west coast 


11:05:54 From Ted Peters to Everyone : Yawn! 


11:06:21 From Kelly Smith to Everyone : Morning people rule!


11:06:44 From Nick Nielsen to Everyone : @Kelly only during the day


11:07:15 From Robert.Kennedy to Everyone : not to mention pluripotent cells -- just one of them blooms into the entire human brain


11:08:52 From to Everyone : @Kelly, a recent paper suggests that coordinated teams with chronotype diversity rule ; )

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