John Baez

Mathematics of Collective Intelligence, Institute of Pure and Applied Mathematics

February 16, 2022

Categories: the Mathematics of Connection

As we move from the paradigm of modeling one single self-contained system at a time to modeling 'open systems' which interact with their — perhaps unmodeled — environment, category theory becomes a useful tool. It gives a mathematical language to describe the interface between an open system and its environment, the process of composing open systems along their interfaces, and how the behavior of a composite system relates to the behaviors of its parts. It is far from a silver bullet: at present, every successful application of category theory to open systems takes hard work. But I believe we are starting to see real progress.

You can see my slides or watch a video of my talk on the IPAM website or here:

For some other related talks, see:

To read more about my work on categories and open systems, go here:

© 2022 John Baez