Wai H. Tsang

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Wai H. Tsang
Wai H. Tsang
Born (1969-10-16) October 16, 1969 (age 44)
Ipswich, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Occupation Author, Futurist and founder of the Fractal Brain Theory

Wai H. Tsang (惟|琤); (born October 16, 1969) is a British author, futurist and founder of the Fractal Brain Theory.

The Fractal Brain Theory seeks to explain human, mental phenomenon (the neural architecture, the cognitive design and the structural processes of the human brain) by analogy to Benoit Mandelbrot's technical definition of recurring, self-similar "fractal" patterns.[1]

Beyond Wai's Fractal Brain Theory, his research and literature is active in the fields of technological timeline prediction, anthropology of religion, the mathematics of topology, artificial neural network design, gnostic cosmology, reductive ontology and theories/methods of Transcendence.[2]

Wai speaks Hakka Chinese and English. He studied Computer Science at Imperial College London in London, UK.

Fractal Brain Theory[edit]

Fractal Brain Theory is a nascent, multi-disciplinarian hypothesis that compares the geometry (topology) of Mandelbrot's fractal patterns with the functioning architecture of the human brain.[3]

An object is fractal when its core topology reflects a recurring structure (of the whole object and one of its constituent parts) at various levels of abstraction in a way that is continuous and non-differential (as it scales through each abstracted topological layer).[4]

The classic example would be a tree. The branching effect of a tree continues to sub-branch according to its defined rules of sub-division (encoded in the biochemistry of the tree's DNA). It branches up into the sky to collect sunlight and down into the ground with its roots. Both symmetries (downwards and upwards) follow the same geometry. The sub-sections of the branches resemble the tree as a whole just as the tree as a whole resemble each branch. At the end of each branch is a leaf which in turn has veins sub-branching to distribute water and nutrients according to a branching topology. The tree also sheds its seeds (copies of itself) that fall deep into the soil sending sub-branches to repeat this process all over again.

Wai Tsang proposes that the organization of the brain is fractal just as this tree is fractal.[5] He proposes this fractal structure (of self-similar repeating patterns nested within themselves) of the brain not just in structure but also in process. For example, one can show that the brain's neuron (i.e. atomic unit of the brain, the brain cell) is geometrically equivalent to the neuron complex (i.e. Cortical Cell Column), as is the neuron macrocomplex (e.g. cortical patch); and so on for the entire arrangement of neurological components of the brain.

Similarly however, mental processes nest within themselves. Cognitive memory storage works in this way. A novel experience stored in the echoic memory short loop has to write itself into the context of the entire long-term memory system. But the long-term memory system itself is composed of hierarchically organized tokens of short-term memory experiences. This codependency of part and whole (see mereology and set theory) is not by accident but rather seems to reflect something fundamental about the brain as well as something fundamental about the world. This is precisely the guiding insight of Wai Tsang's Fractal Brain Theory. Rather than circularity being fatal (a formal logical fallacy) it is rather a clue towards disclosure. The discussion of the hermeneutic circle by Heidegger, Gadamer et al elaborates further on this process.

The Fractal Brain Theory is not only a model to compare topologies however, it also proposes specific technical methods for how information can be stored, copied and transmitted. In short, the theory predicts that compressive pattern technologies exist both in human neuro-biology (the architecture of our brains) as well as among the many methods of modelling machine intelligence. Semantic search uses this context-analysis approach to more accurately understand the intentionality and/or subtlety of the questioner's search query. [6]

Brain recursion methodology and general artificial intelligence[edit]

General intelligence of an artificially intelligent machine is any instance of AI that matches or exceeds human intelligence.[7]

One branch of research in this sub-discipline is recursive brain modelling. Examples of recursive brain modelling (methods and projects currently underway) include Henry Markram's Neocortical Column Modelling, GA modelling and Wavelet AI.

The application of recursive patterns in these modelling methodologies reinforces (perhaps accidentally) the assertion of Fractal Brain Theory that mental process are fractal. This is not an experimental confirmation of predicted results of the theory but rather an artifact of principled correspondence. For example, in 1920, Niels Bohr proposed that his model of the atom (perhaps accidentally) mimic the nucleus model of the solar system with orbiting planets.[8] Although a more detailed model of the underlying atomic structure soon refined Bohr's model (accurately predicting valence orbits) it did not replace Bohr's model. In a similar way, the Fractal Brain Theory simply asserts correspondence of self-similarity in recurring mental patterns and cognitive/neurological architecture.

This feature of the fractal brain theory is both its greatest asset (because it creates an element of irrefutability) but also a conceptual liability (because it inadvertently reduces the descriptive framework of theories of consciousness to topological autologies, which is the same as saying that it inadvertently reduces the descriptive framework of theories of cognition into seed-like ontological tautologies).[9]

For example, the brain has self-similar recursive patterns because self-similar recursive patterns have over time unfolded inside the brain. This claim is logically valid in much as any tautology is valid in form. But in practice it becomes undecidable because there is no human or machine brain capable of formally refuting the existence of themselves as an existing brain able to refute itself. If such an architecture existed and was capable of intelligence able to refute its own existence then it would cease to exist (formally) and never had existed (practically).

The form of this argument similar to René Descartes' reductive assertion of his own existence (cogito ergo sum).[10] But whereas Descartes only uses the dimension of time to enact his methodological application of doubt to arrive in procedure at his tautology of, "I think, therefore I am," the dimension of time in the Fractal Brain Theory is not only methodological. It is also existential.

For Wai, this conceptual liability (of tautological undecidability) need not be concerning, however. Wai believes that just as mental processes cascade down symmetrically into recursive neurological patterns, so to do these patterns regress in a self-compacting (self-compressing) path backwards through time. Likewise, these patterns also digress in an un-packing path forward through time. This backward self-compression and forward unpacking of information unfold via the process of hereditary DNA.

Which is to say that the atomic unit of the gene can be both a seedling of information as well as give birth to the human observer trained in the study of genomics and therefore eventually capable of deciphering the meaning of his/her own genetic code. In this sense, the observer is observing themselves. The tautology of existence in this world is not an isolated phenomenological accident but rather the unfolding of ontological self-hood.

Philosophical Ramifications of Fractal Brain Theory[edit]

The philosophical ramifications of fractal recursion for a computational theory of mind and/or comptutational theory of the universe are largely unexplored although the application of these methods in the construction of computers and logical systems (or at least the mathematical models that underpin these) likely dates back to the 1930s work of Stephen Cole Kleene.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Wai Tsang - Fractal Brain Theory". IAWWAI.com. Retrieved 2012-01-01. 
  2. ^ "Wai Tsang - Fractal Brain Theory". IAWWAI.com. Retrieved 2012-01-01. 
  3. ^ http://www.iawwai.com/FractalBrains.html
  4. ^ http://mathworld.wolfram.com/Fractal.html
  5. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnWvlyPmpBI&feature=related
  6. ^ http://company.hakia.com/whatis.html
  7. ^ (Kurzweil 2005, p. 260) or see Advanced Human Intelligence where he defines strong AI as "machine intelligence with the full range of human intelligence."
  8. ^ Bohr, N. (1920), "Über die Serienspektra der Element", Zeitschrift für Physik 2 (5): 423–478, Bibcode 1920ZPhy....2..423B, doi:10.1007/BF01329978 (English translation in (Bohr 1976, pp. 241–282))
  9. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnWvlyPmpBI&feature=related
  10. ^ http://records.viu.ca/~johnstoi/descartes/descartes1.htm
  11. ^ http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/computational-mind/ Horst, Steven, (2005) "The Computational Theory of Mind" in The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

External links[edit]