Envisaging NATO Otherwise — in 3D and 4D?

TRANSCEND MEMBERS, 5 Jun 2017

Anthony Judge | Laetus in Praesens – TRANSCEND Media Service

Potentially Hidden Faces of Global Strategy Highlighted Through Polyhedra

Introduction

5 Jun 2017 – This exercise is a development of the possibility noted in an earlier document with regard to rendering the 2D NATO logo into 3D (Framing Global Transformation through the Polyhedral Merkabah: neglected implicit cognitive cycles in viable complex systems, 2017). This was briefly illustrated with images (reproduced for convenience below). A similar argument was made with respect to envisaging The Pentagon otherwise.

That argument followed from several earlier exercises of a more general nature (Towards Polyhedral Global Governance: complexifying oversimplistic strategic metaphors, 2008; Polyhedral Pattern Language: software facilitation of emergence, representation and transformation of psycho-social organization, 2008; Configuring Global Governance Groups: experimental visualization of possible integrative relationships (2008) and Polyhedral Empowerment of Networks through Symmetry: psycho-social implications for organization and global governance, 2008; Polyhedral Empowerment of Networks through Symmetry: psycho-social implications for organization and global governance, 2008; Dynamic Exploration of Value Configurations: polyhedral animation of conventional value frameworks, 2008).

The question is whether new insights into the nature and potential of NATO (or The Pentagon) could be derived from depiction in 3D — or 4D, if dynamics can be reflected in suitable animations. Whether these aspects are already implicit, or could be usefully rendered explicit, remains to be investigated. The previous arguments notably explored the use of such polyhedral projections as mapping surfaces through which otherwise disparate insights could be configured in an integrative manner in order to facilitate comprehension of complex systems of organization — beyond the possibilities in 2D.

Use of NATO as an example is relevant at this time when its future has been called into question — despite dependence on it for security. There is of course the further issue of the controversy and criticism surrounding its functions. Depiction in 3D and 4D offers a means of reframing such issues. This may be especially valuable in a period in which ever greater use will be made of virtual reality and augmented reality technologies to comprehend complexity in ways which are challenging in 2D representations.

The focus of the argument here is on overly simplistic conventional use of a logo or symbol to provide a succinct insight into the nature of a complex entity — whether an organization or a system of concepts or values. As illustrated by any map of the planet, if a logo or symbol is a form of map, of what subtlety is it a map — a cognitive map? A conventional map of the globe is a “projection” of a sphere onto the flatness of a two-dimensional surface. Rather than projection, the question then might be how the “conjection” of the multidimensional form (from which the logo derives) is to be determined and understood — rather than through the commonly problematic process of “interpretation”, as in the case of any symbol.

Curiously the question then also suggests the value of reflecting on the strange relationship between that geographical sense of projection and the understanding of projection extensively explored by psychology and psychoanalysis — with respect to engagement with an “other”, most notably one framed as an opponent. What is the process of “conjection” in that respect — through which a coherent, integrative “global” understanding is achieved?

Arguably, richer visualization in support of “conjection” enables more fruitful imagination.

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