Future of Memetics

If Memetics becomes a science it would have immense practical applications. Imagine if we were able to predict which rumors in the wild would spread faster than others, imagine the implications that would have on financial instrument speculation and banking. Predicting fashion and trends would be gold mine for business and marketing disciplines which currently rely mostly on case studies (anecdotal evidence) instead of rigorously tested tenets. Futurists will able to predict where will the future take us. This will bring in investments into the relevant fields. Consider the possibility of monitoring spread of terrorism and destructive cults not on the basis of vivid speculation but by using experimentally tested results with astonishing precision. Internet search engines and social bookmarking facilities would be able to rank which pages will become popular in the future based on characteristics of the page. Memetics will be facilitate the better teaching techniques and human resource management (i.e. getting a lot of people to do the same thing like recycling, voting).

Why can’t behavioral economics or psychological sciences include memetics within it? Why do we need a separate discipline and a new name? I believe memetics should solely deal with the phenomena of various types of replicating information with the attributes of the information being spread as the subject of scientific inquiry instead of the host of such information. I believe a lot of exploration has to be done within this set of unknowns, which would eventually render memetics as a new discipline of its own.

Memetics should lay foundations which are so abstract that it could be applied to a wide variety of information replication like computer viruses, efficient patenting and copyright laws, biological viruses, genetics, prions. Cultural memetics should lay foundations for the study of cultural artifacts in animal and especially human populations like the dynamics of animal migrations and phenomena like human language extinction. It is improtant to note that memetics should be quantitative and mathematically rigourous and not simply promote complacency with the unknowns explained using statistical results.

Further along the field it should unravel the clockwork within our brains that select for the replication certain types of information over other. Finally memetics will explain why is universe experiencing a proliferation of information replication by using the laws of physics (2nd law of thermodynamics) and whether this will lead to something like the Omega Point.

In a few words, memetics could become yet another scientific device that can satisfy our ever increasing lust for certainty and control over our destiny.


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