Sponsored by Josiah Macy, Jr. Foundation. Edited by Heinz Von Foerster. Price, $2.75. Pp. 100, with 2 illustrations. Josiah Macy, Jr. Foundation Publications, 16 W. 46th St., New York 30, 1955.
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With this volume, memorializing the tenth and final meeting of the Macy Foundation unit devoted to cybernetics, the present series of conferences underwritten by the Macy Foundation is at an end. This book is more valuable than some of the previous ones, which were only slightly edited stenotype reports of the actual give and take of the meetings. There is no question that such meetings are intensely stimulating to the participants. What is sometimes not so easily apparent, though it is perfectly obvious after a moment's thought, is that a playby-play description of such conferences quickly reaches the point of diminishing returns for a reader. In this last volume, however, instead of a play-by-play account, there are individual essays with a very thoughtful foreward and appendix by Warren S. McCulloch.
At this turning point, it is well to back off a bit and think, not about this conference but about
Bean WB. Cybernetics: Circular Causal and Feedback Mechanisms in Biological and Social Systems; Transactions of the Tenth Conference, April 22, 23, 24, 1953.. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1956;98(1):127-128. doi:10.1001/archinte.1956.00250250133030