In Yuk Hui’s ‘Algorithmic catastrophe — the revenge of contingency’, the automatisation of agencies cause the unavoidable algorithmic catastrophe which is structurally necessary according to Paul Virilio. As an accident of knowledge, it is imperative to address our material and social affordance when confronted with the repetitive arrivals of catastrophes. The main issue sits on the pondering over whether these catastrophes can lead to the apocalypse in human civilisation.
Aristotle’s definition of 'contingency and luck' can not be determined by other agencies, on the contrary, his definition of ‘spontaneity’ can be determined by thoughts. As all exteriorised algorithms that drive machines are totally detached from the human brain where all the thoughts are generated, human’s beings decide the process of computational automatisation which inevitably causes catastrophes. However, according to Meillassoux, the necessity of contingency becomes the signifier of immanence. In other term, human thoughts could bring allocated spontaneity, which becomes the signifier of uncontrollable contingency. Probably, the immanent property of human thoughts belongs to the causality of the catastrophic phenomena from an anthropocentric perspective.
In my opinion, some algorithmic catastrophe can be seen as opportunities for both mankind and nature. My definition of ‘algorithmic catastrophe’ is however a derivative of the law of nature blended with human intervention caused by thoughts. For example, the increased Keystoneness of jellyfish is caused by both the immanence of jellyfish’s propagation and the rising global temperature. This fact sheds light upon the notion that human intellectual by far is still far away from understanding the complicated automatisation of nature itself. Instead of using the most powerful computer to simulate the processing of thoughts, exploring other organisms for their congenital system of automatisation probably will open more chances to discover the evolutionary pathway for machines. In addition, we should also be reconsidering the notion of an algorithm that it is only detached from human brains. Modern and contemporary botanists have discovered the hyper-sentience from plants, revealing the potential that plants can become a perfect wireless sensor or mediator for information and emotion processing. The improvement of such technologies will indeed transform our cognition from a mechanical reductionism based paradigm to a transfinite state of being where technicity and systematicity are automatically assumed within other living organisms. By including a broader recognition of the universal consciousness as organic algorithms, the algorithmic catastrophe might turn into algorithmic contingency for human to grasp and learn.
As Quentin Meillassoux stated ‘Absolute contingency characterises the aesthetics of the algorithmic catastrophe’, after all, the universally shared emotions in all organisms can collaboratively weave the epiphenomena of kalology. Maybe the most bedazzling contingency is still waiting at the non-material realm of unified field theory that can someday redefine the ramification of our entangled thoughts and emotions.