Moving as cloud nexi

450px-Tea_cupsSaul Bellow calls what I do being “a first class noticer”; which, with a  talent for complex spatial reasoning, you could call “wraparound” thinking: using parallel/multilevel strategies to conceptualize the entirety of 3D experience.

Sometimes when I start thinking about a problem, it sits in there for a while, and then (after  minutes; and sometimes months or years if there is a lot of other research to do besides) I get an answer.  Which is not an “answer” really; it is a key clue/source/cue/root cause for a simpler experiment – a process that is much like what Spanish architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava (designer of St Nicholas Church on Ground Zero) calls de-coding.

I have taken no math beyond high school. Nevertheless, right now (January 2015), I am thinking about something that could be termed ‘isometric geocohedrons in n-folding quadrille space’. And got this description of what I am thinking about by thinking about another problem and getting this as the answer [Note 1].

Simply put, spatial thinking and imagined space can be sticky for me–to reduce the complexity of understanding, usually I describe this as being able to enter imagined space and sometimes become the space/problem/challenge.

My lesson in exercising the mind’s eye illustrates this further. Also the note about Cloudboxing (Project #5 at the ‘wicked problems’ page) 

But for those who are able to imagine the truly big, the better explanation is to place/imagine yourself standing in the midst of a cloud of data with datapoints arrayed around you, and you are the moving core of the cloud of data. I think/live at the interface between imagined and physical space and see myself as creating frameworks to comprehend both.

Note 1: To me, this describes the motion of the nexus object on a offset path curving along and then down the inside of a teacup of space to a right angled path, accompanied by a arraycloud of data particles moving along a concave curvature of near-distant space towards an imagined collapsing unifying convergence point with the right-angled path.

Image: Three stacked purple tea cups with saucers in a neutral background, by Gisela Francisco (CC 1.0, 2.0, 2.5, 3.0)

Could “globular thinking” be used as an encryption cypher?

800px-Maya-Maske-modifiedI’ve been watching videos about Maya scholar Dr. David Stuart’s deciphering breakthroughs.

Wondering from this whether pre-modern priesthoods might have had globular thinkers (at the very least, different thinkers of any kind)? 

Might Maya priestly scribes have imagined the placement of glyphs as a 3, 4, or 5-dimensional view of space, and used this to instruct lay scribes how to write the sacred texts?

A globular thinker could, with a writing implement, sketch the writing plan for a scribe, with cypher clues to hidden text among visible text. If a caste of lay scribes was selected for globular thinking ability, they could write the system directly, but this limits the priesthood’s ability to mystify (all priestly academies impose hierarchical limits, to create the means to demand gifts, obedience, and favours from “the lesser-than’s”).


Such a language . . . might be visualized as cylindrical, with the nested Long-Count wheels as the “end(s)” of the cylinder.

Or, it might be spherical or globular, which in our Western view might be visualized as an x-y-z coordinate system, or more properly as a latitudinal-longitudinal -declination (globular) coordinate system.

Such expertise is rare, and in a theocracy, would be a way to restrict “sacred knowledge” simply because of the inability of “flat” (2D)-language thinkers—the vast majority of the population, including the transcribing scribes, and the lesser priestly ranks—to comprehend the reading ability of the few with this cognitive skill set.

In all practicality, very few people anywhere think globularly/spatially; and because it is a rare way of thinking, the effect is that this ability becomes a form of encryption.



Our writing systems and social concept of time . . . varies to the intellectual tradition of the society where we live. The Western tradition is deeply informed by the historical view we have of time marching forward.

We look to yesterday and look to tomorrow – a linear progression, where since Adam Smith‘s day we developed the industrialized idea of progress — that things always get better. Other cultural/religious traditions imagine time as circular – a wheel of time.


So what about globular time and imagination?

Is this a thinking cypher that might unlock a variety of heretofore incomprehensible languages?


Dave Huer



Glyph Image by Xenophon (Wolfgang Sauber). License Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-3.0,2.5,2.0,1.0 via wikipedia

Sphere Image by Yaroslav Bulatov at his blog

Solving wicked problems

Using Fluid Web Linkage (FWL) thinking to solve novel conundrums . . .


Identifying root causes can take significant time, effort, and energy. Many challenges are a thicket. What we think are the issues are often simply the visible tip of an “iceberg”; a clue that points to a wickedly tangled interwoven web–a Gordian knot of issues. I get embedded into the core data set to get to the core issue, having discovered that once we find the key to deal with this, the overlying elements unlock fairly easily.

Imagining Fluid Webs


It helps to imagine yourself standing in the midst of clouds of data with datapoints arrayed around you; you are the moving core of the moving local cloud; and when wanting to look at something particularly closely . . . you gather and stitch the points together into an area of study.

This method seems to be best suited to discover what is the most essential; the tweak–the crux–that when activated unlocks the puzzle. The website at this link showcases my solution sets for different business challenges, including the ones described here:

  • [link] Machining an “impossible-to-make” 7-sided part on a hex milling machine design-limited by engineers to stop at 6 sides. My instructor claimed it was impossible to surpass the design maximum established by professional engineers – but I solved it, and he got excited by this.
  • [link] Coaching a physically disabled teenager, whose arms and hands were twisted, to roll a kayak after national coaches and athletes gave up – using “Liquid Membraning” – spatially projecting “Anticipated Liquid Data Fields” to find the pivot point where he could roll; and then teaching him to find the pivot – exactly mimic the harmonics’ flow-through – so he could roll himself.  Seeing the boy grin to his dad made the day!
  • (later…in 2008) using the insights to show BC slalom kayaking Olympian David Ford how he could improve his paddling…shifting his thinking about technique…to obtain explosive bursts of micropower (and hence, microspeed leaps) by leveraging a complex multiple linkage that occurs during the “spring system transition” we experience in whitewater kayaking. Microsecond bursts, consistently applied, sum up to competitive advantage in a discipline where partial seconds decide who stands on the podium. Dave used the insights to up his game when prepping for London 2012.
  • [link] Solving a 6-year old manufacturing flaw in 2 minutes: finding a 1/4 cm stitching flaw in a canoe spray deck (a flexing fabric cover) that could only be found by noticing and tracing a complex flexible double-reverse 4-bar linkage web that only activates when the product assembly is being used.
  • [link] Cloudboxing to comprehend what code actually is – a tutorial for spatial/globular thinkers. To learn where flat/discrete 2D data sits.. . . to be able to use it to code. For a spatial thinker, learning 2D thinking must be like what left-handers go through trying to learn right-handedness. Awkward and painful, having to learn a wholly different and unnatural way of cognitive processing. Whilst learning coding, I was getting lost in the fields of datapoints when trying to model the waypoints. But found a way forward through weeks of constant study, interviewing other classmates and faculty to get a sense of what coding actually is. Then taught myself to construct a box out of datapoints in visual thoughtspace: creating the study space using FWL solid-modelling (cognitively akin to AutoCAD™, Solidworks™, or Rhino 3D™).

Note 1:

GDKE: From the German “Gedankenexperimente”

Note 2:

I used to take the time to explain the steps to solutions (often having to take months or years) because uncomprehending evidence-demanders would demand a proof-of-the-how despite the evidence in their hands, but then after a chat with spatial-thinking compatriot Prof. Hugh Wynne-Edwards (who told me of his own challenges and then decision to give up wasting precious time trying to explain solutions to his uncomprehending linear-minded university colleagues), decided that it doesn’t make a lot of sense explaining how we get to solutions, when oftentimes, linear-thinkers decide to ignore the results anyways.

So instead, when ready, I explain what the solutions are, what the measurable impact will be; and only flow-chart the results when absolutely necessary.

NB: Roger Martin has gone into detail explaining why “linear-thinking” and “ambiguity-comfortable design-thinking” do not easily mix in many corporations and universities (book: The Design of Business).