There’s “cyberspace” and “cybersecurity”, but what do they really mean? The following are my notes after some spontaneous late night research.
- Definition - Cybernetics is the study of using feedback to achieve goals.
- Etymology - Comes from the word “kybernetiki” meaning “art of steering”.
- Formalized by Ross Ashby who wrote “Introduction to Cybernetics”
- Cybernetics deals with all forms of behavior in so far as they are regular, or determinate, or reproducible.
- Originated from Aristotle and Plato
The Law of Requisite Variety (Coined by Ashby)
- Variety - The degree of range of capabilities a system has to achieve goals.
- Requisite Variety - The system’s ability to achieve its goals.
- The more features a piece of software has, the harder it is to build. (“Variety” is synonymous with “complexity”)
Cybernetics: The Beginning of the Information Age
- “Feedback” became synonymous with “response”.
- “Cyber” became the trigger prefix for anything having to do with computers.
- Control requires information.
- A “bit” is the unit of information.
- A torpedo or missile which adjusts it’s trajectory according to feedback about it’s target is a prime example of cybernetics.
- A thermostat automatically adjusting temperature.
- Similar to “data driven”?
- The steering logo for kubernetes makes sense now.
- Cybernetics is part or synonymous with Information Theory??
- Going meta, there also exists cybernetics for cybernetics or second-order cybernetic theory