Friday, December 05, 2008

Emergence and Year Four

December 5th marked the start of year four for San Francisco Crossfit. Anniversaries are clearly times of potential reflection, and turning three left us in a mood to ruminate on who we are and how we've come to be so.

And, no three year old's birthday would be complete without at least some cursory examination of the phenomenon of emergence.
So here goes:

An emergent behaviour or emergent property can appear when a number of simple entities (agents) operate in an environment, forming more complex behaviors as a collective. The processes from which emergent properties result may occur in either the observed or observing system, and can commonly be identified by their patterns of accumulating change, most generally called 'growth'.

For example: Think of a line of ants walking across a yard. No ant knows how long the line is, or even that its a line. The ant just follows a scent or taste and the emergent behavior is dozens of ants following what looks like a long organized line.

Is SFCF our programming?
Is SFCF the sum of our great coaches?
Is SFCF our brilliant athletes?

No. And yes.

Disparate, diverse, eclectic people comprise our extended family of coaches and athletes. Each shows up in an attempt to perform a simple task. Namely to increase their ability to perform work. The algorithm is simple. And yet the resultant community is complex, unique, and rich. While the ant model may not perfectly reflect the depth and breadth of our community, it does illustrate the unique beast that SFCF is as a function of a simple organizing paradigm.

If Crossfit isn't an experiment in Emergent behavior I don't know what is.

So here's to accumulating another year of "change" and "growth".
I'm quite fond of our little ant hill.

Go ahead, chew on that again as you sing happy birthday. Can't wait to see what we look like in another year.

Coach Kstar

To celebrate, Coach Angel Pr'd with and easy 265 pound clean and jerk today.


Melliefarrell said...

Nice work!

Anonymous said...

Awesome, Angel! Great to see you "hit it."

Keep it going!


Anonymous said...

awesome Angel! 'Leh-git'

Meeks said...

Karl and the 7AM crew--Thanks for letting me join in the WOD yesterday! It's always nice to get in a good crossfit workout while on the road. If y'all are ever in Atlanta come visit us at CF East Decatur.

Anonymous said...

Angel, that split jerk was beautiful. Congrats on the PR.

Molly Petersen Nardone said...

ANother awesome year bro. Cheers. Here's to not goin' sailing and doin what we love.

Molly Petersen Nardone said...

ANother awesome year bro. Cheers. Here's to not goin' sailing and doin what we love.

FilthyBrit said...

Happy B-day SFCF! Michael and I have an especially awesome idea for a present. Details to follow.

Angel - you made that clean and jerk look like cake!


Person said...

Biba kumplianos SFCF! And Angel crushes it as usual.

Brett_nyc said...

Sweet lift. Looked easy.

Unknown said...

Angel...You are a MONSTER! Good work! Now...300 by January 1st! You can do it!

Kelly Corbett Sanders said...

Coach Angel stole my backside's 15 minutes of fame, but since he ROCKED it I think its ok...