Another Attractor

There is a fourth major attractor, that of `becoming', which has it's own rich archaic and modern history. It's best modern theorist are Deleuze and Guatarri.

Briefly, this fourth attractor can be characterised as the acceptance of the process of `schziophrenia' (here not meant in the clinical sense of mental-illness). Deleuze and Guatarri's explication of `schizoanalysis' in `Anti Oedipus makes it a break into the `unstable equilibrium' (plateau) of continuing self-invention

In `1000 plateaus' Deleuze and Guatarri go on to give examples of some becomings; `One or Several Wolves?', `Becoming Intense, becoming-animal, becoming-imperceptible...', and `Treatise on Nomadology' being the most influential among them.
Playing with yourself.

While a lot of their theory is difficult to read, it also has a playful and wicked sense about it; Deleuze himself describes his early program of historical assessment;

"What got me through that period was conceiving of the history of philosophy as a kind of ass-fuck, or, what amounts to the same thing, an immaculate conception. I imagined myself approaching the author from behind and giving him a child that would indeed be his but would none the less be monstrous." ( from `Negotiations')

In the current context, one of their most important elaborations is that of the `rhizome', which coincides almost exactly with my conception of the network. The rhizome is a `molecular' joining effect which stands opposed to the arboreal hierarchy which has dominated thought for so long, and, aside from being very fashionable in academic circles (particularly amongst the architectural, media and writing communities who seize it for it's practical bent) achieves a degree of embodiment in the distributed networks of the computing world, of which the internet is one.

immaculate conception?

Becoming Virtual

However, to see the rhizome as merely a articulatory metaphor for analysing the structure of the internet is superficial. It also extends beyond social or technical models and directly into issues of identity   So we can meaningfully look at the relationship between the strange attractors; one of identity creation, the other of `virtuality', which necessarily leads us on to a further examination of the nature of the computer as a prosthesis, and some political implications. In this construction we are led to the concept of `becoming virtual' and it's contrary motion `becoming real'.

Deleuze and Guatarri would draw no lines between the social, the technical and the personal: all are `strata'. They would also approve of contingent uses of their philosophy, describing it themselves as a toolkit.
Computers as `Logical and Informational Prosthetics'...
More on Clock, Motor and Network paradigms...
Problems of definition by language...