Seeing the Loop

[from Gary Cziko 921223.1815 GMT]

Rick Marken (921223.1300) says:

For me, one of the most dramatic demonstration of this fact is given
in my ?Cause of control movements...? experiment (included in Mind
Readings). This experiment shows beyond doubt that THE STIMULUS
in a tracking task IS NOT THE CAUSE OF OUTPUTS that control the
stimulus; there is no cause-effect (where it seems that there must
be) because the cause and effect are IN A LOOP. It?s the loop
that changes everything that has always been taken for granted in
all previous approaches to understanding human nature.

I must admit that this short paper by Rick is my ALL TIME FAVORITE of
demonstrations of perceptual control. I thought I understood the basics of
PCT before I first read it and then when I realized that Rick's results
seemed like magic I realized that did not. Now when I read it, the results
seem only 50% magic. Progress, but I still have a way to go (but I was
happy that Rick himself admitted to me last July in Durango that he also
finds the results somewhat mysterious).

I strongly recommend that anyone wanting to understand PCT read Rick's
paper. So let me (as my Christmas gift to the net) remind people how they
can do this.

1. Get the paper from your local academic library in the journal in which
it as originally published:

Marken, R. (1980). The cause of control movements in a tracking task.
_Perceptual and Motor Skills, _51_, 755-758.

2. Buy the collection of Rick's papers published as _Mind Readings_
available from The Control Systems Groups, 460 Black Lick Road, Gravel
Switch, KY 40328. Price is $18 postpaid. (I believe that Greg Williams
told me he will send the book anywhere in the world for that price, but
you should check with Greg <> first about this for
orders coming outside the USA).

This also reminds me that I was going to try to devise a convincing
portable "manual" demonstration of what Rick does in this paper. I'll keep
the net informed if I come up with something useful.--Gary

P.S. Rick, why do I keep seeing ? in your posts where single and double
quote marks should be"""


Gary A. Cziko Telephone: 217.333.8527
Educational Psychology FAX: 217.244.7620
University of Illinois E-mail:
1310 S. Sixth Street Radio: N9MJZ
210 Education Building
Champaign, Illinois 61820-6990

[From Rick Marken (921226.1500)]

Gary Cziko (921223.1815 GMT) --

Thanks for the nice comments on the "Cause of control movements.."

P.S. Rick, why do I keep seeing ? in your posts where single and double
quote marks should be"""

This happens when I post using Microsoft Mail on my Mac. I don't
understand why -- but I see it when I look at the mail delivered
(from me) to my other address. I believe I'm using the appropriate
terminal emulation (vt100) -- and I see """, not ? when I create
my posts. It's quite annoying; I guess I could just avoid typing """
when I post using Microsoft Mail. Any other suggestions would be
welcome (though probably most appropriate if posted directly to me).

Best regards




Richard S. Marken USMail: 10459 Holman Ave
The Aerospace Corporation Los Angeles, CA 90024
(310) 336-6215 (day)
(310) 474-0313 (evening)