To better understand systems

Nevejan replies that we need to better understand systems because we live in a world where they have become very important; they interfere in more personal spheres than any tool ever before, even in the body.

Witnessing each other between human beings sets the terms for interaction. Human beings witness and are witnessed by systems and these systems influence possible survival more and more. Systems operate with a speed and scale human being’s cannot compete with. It’s more micro than ever and more macro than ever. Nevejan argues that the basic way we witness, that we perceive what we see including our understanding of this, is changing profoundly because of systems. So it is of vital importance to understand the relation between human beings and systems better than we do, she argues.

Warnier answers that systems are also very stupid. Systems themselves are not the real danger; it is in the people who are using the systems. Also he argues, a lot of changes we now attribute to computers and distributed systems for example, are changes and feelings of uncomfortability that were also triggered by earlier media and technologies. Our grandmothers have seen huge changes happening in technology. He agrees though that the invasion of the personal sphere is much larger than ever. But for Warnier this is an issue of political concern for him personally and less an issue of scientific research.