8 RULES OF BIO CYBERNETICS
1. Negative feedbacks must dominate positive feedbacks:
Negative feedbacks imply self-regulation by circuits, e.g. the autonomous nervous
system controls the concentration of hormones; the carburettor controls the petrol
supply. Self-regulation is the most important principle of organization of a subsystem the
controller is included in the system, too. Or: everything that keeps on growing will
swallow everything around one day and consequently kill itself. This was perhaps the
reason for the extinction of the prehistoric tiger whose giant teeth did not release any
prey. As the tiger’s population was growing unstoppable, one day there was no prey left.
As the immediate regulating circuit was burst, a higher regulating circuit intervened and
eradicated the species.
2. The vitality of the system must be independent from quantitative growth:
If a system wants to grow and survive it will have to go through metamorphoses. At a
certain size a caterpillar would not be viable anymore. So it switches to zero growth in
the nick of time, becomes innovative, pupates and becomes a butterfly. A good example
for the fact that sheer growth cannot replace metamorphoses and restructuring this is
also valid for complex systems. The amount of connections (network) is essential for the
stability of a system. With unstopped growth (violation of rule No.1) and a higher amount
of connections - that could even lead into chaos stability declines again. Best example:
the human brain. A few months after birth it is full-grown: growth can be disturbing
where it is important to function.
3. The system must work function-oriented and not product-oriented.
This rule guarantees the necessary flexibility of a business or a regional business site in
times of change. For example, the breakthrough of Volkswagen’s beetle in those days
was not achieved by the product itself but by unique, global service. Rationalisation and
location advantages do not help much, if one does not dare to question the product itself.
4. Use of existing forces (principle of jiu-jitsu) instead of fighting (boxing-method):
Because they make use of the leverage effect, Asian martial arts like judo or aikido only
need a very low steering energy compared to the energy needed for other sports. Natural
systems work correspondingly. The same way we use energy generated by sun, water or
wind, we could also use every incline in temperature or waste heat instead of fighting
against them with air-conditioning systems that have further energy demand.
5. Multiple usage of products, functions and organisational structures:
Systems that are fit for survival prefer products and processes, they can kill two or more
flies with one hit. A way of realizing such ideas would be compound technology, e.g.
force-heat coupling, energy boxes, utilization of biogas, insulating material and fuel made
from natural fibres etc.
6. Recycling cycle processes for the utilization of waste and sewage:
The principle of recycling is no old hat. Especially for middle-class companies and the
trade sector it carries some very attractive possibilities. Nature does not know any
"waste" every product has its enzyme. We, on the other hand, are different, as we tend
to consider production more important than recycling of waste.
7. Symbiosis reciprocal usage of difference by the employ of coupling and exchange:
The best example is the mitochondrion, a relict of a prehistoric bacterium. Provided with
nutrients by cells, they manage the cell’s energy-supply. The advantage of symbioses is
a considerable saving of energy, transport and raw material for all participants.
8. Biological design of products, procedures and forms of organizations by feedback
Everything that contributes to the survival of our species has to be compatible with
human beings and nature. A deterring example is the Internet that connects anything
with anybody without structure here dangers lurk because of the unrestricted transfer of
interference and faults.