“cool” as information flow

“Coolness” is a measure of creative information’s degree of flow through a social network.

Individuals merely channel and contribute to this flow as it progresses through such networks, they do not contain or retain coolness within themselves.

However some individuals prove more receptive to the incoming information and more effective at transmitting it forward than others, and we often label these people as “cool”. But this focuses attention toward the wrong place—the individual—where in reality coolness only resides in the experience of its movement through the network’s nodes.

And when the network consists of many such open, creative people sending signals back and forth, we accurately describe the network as cool.

It’s a jam session. Whether I’m working on a collaborative science project or improvising with a rock band, it’s a jam session. Creative information flows through the network of participants—and we experience “cool” through the exchange.

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