Action, Being and Darwin (posted by Fabien Villard)

Since a long time (does it come from the beginning?) IT approach is centered on functions, those classical beasts that are considered essential when analyzing the needs for our systems. It is so important that the term does not only indicate an abstraction used to model the real but it is the retained term for denoting the business we are trying (and sometimes succeeding) to help. The “functional details” or the “functional view” relates to the business exactly as if we were saying “business details” or “business view”.

This semantic bias has happened without notice, as a slow migration from one sense to another very different. Semantic changes happen all the time, this is the nature of evolving languages. Here the speed and the degree of the change may seem astonishing.

Function is tied to action. When I “use” or “fulfill” a function, I do something, I act, I make a change in the real. No matter what this change may be, because I’m using a function, and this is good. Being? The thing on which the function acts? The thing I’m changing by acting? What’s that?

Seems a strange attitude? It’s not.

Because we as humans are here, now. And to be here, we need our ancestors to have passed a huge amount of obstacles by adapting to a huge number of situations where certain characteristics made them more resistant to adversity. Genes have passed those characteristics until us, modern human beings. And guess what: when we were only humanoids, or even some kind of monkeys, without notepads nor cellphones, when we were to meet a lion, what was the best according to Darwinism, run away or stay here considering what *exactly* is a lion?

Well now we know: action and functions are natural to us because this is partly why we as humans still exist today.

This post is clearly inspired by Richard Dawkins books (The Selfish Gene for example).

One Response to “Action, Being and Darwin”

  1. 1
    Fabien Villard:

    See this post on It shows things from an opportunist point of view: how some people can benefit from our brain behavior.

    Read especially point #2 “Black and White Choices”

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