Principia Cybernetica Web

Reviews of Principia Cybernetica Web by others

The Principia Cybernetica Web is being linked to by more and more other web pages. You can get a partial list of the thousands of sites linking to PCP Web from the AltaVista catalog. The following quotations give a good idea of how Principia Cybernetica Web is perceived by others. I have separated "personal" comments (made in various places linking to PCP Web because they find the subject interesting) from "professional reviews" by various web surveying service, which are not a priori interested in the subject, but try to evaluate PCP web for the "general reader" who is unlikely to know anything about cybernetics. Other evaluations can be found in the review in Wired magazine, and the nomination for the Best of the Web Awards.

Personal appreciation

"Bow down before Principia Cybernetica, perhaps the most extensive single Complexity resource on the Web. Go here and you may never return." (PCC- Complexity Theory Resources)

"Principia Cybernetica Project. Philosophy on the Net. As only could be done on the Net. This is complex but amazing." (Cool links)

"an excellent resource for cybernetics, systems theory, and other disciplines often mentioned in Neuro-Linguistic Programming circles" (Neuro-Linguistic Programming and Design Human Engineering )

"The most impressive Cybernetics resource I've ever seen." (Intelligent Systems )

"An extraordinary experience of collective creation on the Web : an international group of research scientists is writing an hypertext on the global brain created by the interconnection of men, computers and network. A quantum leap into the third millenium." (Joël de Rosnay's list of Web Future Sites)

"This rich and complex site investigates systems science and cybernetics in an attempt to integrate technology into an organized philosophy. The site solicits contributions on cybernetic epistemology, process metaphysics and even asks and discusses the meaning of life! This is a thought-provoking, challenging yet quite lucid source of information." (TeachersFirst Content Matrix)

"An extraordinarily interesting site about evolution, cybernetics and philosophy." (Evolution Resources on the Internet)

"This "Universal Knowledge System for Cybernetics and Systems Science"--put together by Belgium's Dr. Francis Heylighen with a prestigious international team--is a wonderland in which you could wander for months. It covers memes, genes, evolution, the global brain, epistemology, metaphysics, ontology, "the meaning of life," and nearly every conceptual cutting edge." (Howard Bloom's list of related links).

"... for easy to understand definitions of cybernetics and virtual reality" (Virtual Reality Research)

"an excellent resource for systems science. " (Jon Wallis' Home Page)

"The stated goal of the Principia Cybernetica Project is to link all of Mankind's knowledge... have to give them credit for ambition." (Recommended Internet Resources)

"An intriguing place" (

"Everything you ever wanted to know about systems and cybernetics".(Web Sites With Information on Systems Science Topics)

"congratulations on a job well-done, both in initiating Principia Cybernetica in the first place, and also in implementing the Principia Cybernetica Web, which is a rare and rich site on the Net." (Arkuat's comments on PCP )

"...and finally, the ultimate...
Principia Cybernetica" (Onar Aam's ;Related Servers page)

"An extremely sensible philosophy. The next step in human evolution!" (Expanding Your Consciousness )

" For some theoretical background try [...] the Principia Cybernetica Web which will stretch your mind a little" (Media lab).

"an excellent site" (Wiener: ideas)

" This is a remarkable site: Systems Science, Feedback Loops, etc. It's a very busy site, so be patient and keep trying." (Quality related Information Sources)

" More than you can ever learn on cybernetics and related issues - the Website is overwhelming! (Frontier organizations on the Web)

"The Principia Cybernetica site is the largest Web 'nexus' on cybernetics and general systems theory."(Guide to Autopoiesis related Internet Resources)

"a fascinating collection of indexes and links on a diverse range of topics collateral to Gestalt and Systems conceptualization" (Psychology and Psychotherapy sources)

"[...]This is a very worthy project. It is attempting a task that must be done; a task essential for the advancement of mankind's knowledge, and hence the advancement of mankind itself. However, if PCP has a flaw, it is that the work maintains a somewhat narrow, academic context." [...and more Comments on the Principia Cybernetica Project]

" a massive and ambitious site that covers such things as the Social Dilemmas, Memes, Cognitive Science, Philosophy, Psychology, Communications, Computers, etc., etc. The table of contents is overwhelming, although probably most items are empty at this time. It appears that it will take years to finish this project! "(The Social Dilemmas)

" much more than an introduction to systems theory; it is more like an online course!" (KAM resources)"

"Vast site of information on cybernetics and many related areas of science including open systems, chaos, evolution, artificial intelligence. A really good site for scientifically based philosophical thinking. The site articulates an integrative and comprehensive theoretical approach to understanding humanity, the universe, and existence. Relevant to the philosophy of science, the philosophy of mind, contemporary scientific thought, the future, and general contemporary intellectual thought. One of the best sites on philosophy and science. "(Philosophy WWW Bibliography)

"another handy link; although the contents are overly cosmic/far-out in places, there's loads of interesting and well-written stuff available there." (Sites related to Life science site)

"Un extraordinario proyecto que prentende lograr las respuestas a las preguntas fundamentales del ser humano a traves de la inteligencia artificial."(Teor*ias Generales de Avanzada)

"By now the alarm was permanently set at 4:30 am but Timothy Alan Hall never heard it. He had rewired the little clock radio to activate an ancient reel-to-reel recorder on the other side of the trailer, hooked up an equally old set of theatre speakers and had it rigged to play his tape recording of a vintage 8086 computer booting up off dual floppies, grinding into first gear with a seriously irritating reminder of days long gone.[...] Tim was perfectly aware of the existence of memetic evolution, an obvious competition going on between genes and memes and his favorite web site was Principia Cybernetica which he studied when time permitted. The various philosophical subjects and New Agey topics failed to hold his interest for long but the truth was that memes did exist, were powerfully motivated and his own life had been changing positively because of them. The truth was inescapable."(TRAP CITY: A Serial Story)

Reviews by web services

"What can artificial systems tell us about the meaning of life? What are we doing here anyway? These are some of the questions tackled on the PCP's Web server at the Free University of Brussels." (Global Network Navigator)

"The cool, the innovative, the excellent - they're all here in our gallery of Internet resources that exemplify the pioneering spirit of the Internet. These are the pages we like this week: December 30, 1994 to January 5, 1995. Academia: Cybernetics and Systems Theory" (Netscape's "What's Cool" list)

NetGuide                           Platinum Site"A platinum site: Overall Rating: 5 stars (out of 5), content: 5 stars, presentation: 4 stars, personality: 4 stars
The Principia Cybernetica Project brings together a number of scholars from around the globe to tackle age-old philosophical problems with the aid of modern cybernetic theories and technologies. If cyberphilosophy is your forte, you can delve into subtopics that include ethics, metaphysics, ontology, and many other disciplines identified by long words. Even people with less arcane interests will find the Web Dictionary of Cybernetics and Systems useful." (NETGUIDE'S BEST OF THE WEB, details on PCP site)

"A 3 star site. Rating Summary:
Net Appeal: 8 [out of 10], Depth of Coverage: 8, Ease of Exploration: 8
Audience: Philosophers, Evolutionists, System Theorists
Description: The Principia Cybernetica Web is the home of a project that promotes the computer-supported collaborative development of an evolutionary-systemic philosophy. This project tackles philosophical questions with the help of cybernetic theories and technologies. Visitors to the site will find an overview of the plan and details of its metasystem transition theory, among others." (Magellan's ;review of the PCP site)

Selected by PC WebopaediaCongratulations. The following URL at your site has been selected to be included in the PC Webopaedia:

"Content: 41/50, Presentation: 34/50, Experience: 35/50
The Principia Cybernetica Project is an in-depth look at the whole of philosophical thought, and it's not for armchair thinkers. Using a system of "nodes," it attempts to fill in the whole of human philosophical thought, from ethics to physics to evolutionary theory. In its complete form, the authors maintain it will give you the answer to basic questions like "Who am I? Why am I here?" It's quite involving, though occasionally we'd be happy with the answer to "What the heck does this mean?" on some of these pages. " (Point's review of the PCP site)

 Key ResourceCongratulations! Your page: has been selected to receive a Links2Go Key Resource award in the Philosophy topic. The Links2Go Key Resource award is both exclusive and objective. Fewer than one page in one thousand will ever be selected for inclusion. Further, unlike most awards that rely on the subjective opinion of "experts," many of whom have only looked at tens or hundreds of thousands of pages in bestowing their awards, the Links2Go Key Resource award is completely objective and is based on an analysis of millions of web pages. During the course of our analysis, we identify which links are most representative of each of the thousands of topics in Links2Go, based on how actual page authors, like yourself, index and organize links on their pages.

AwardYour website,, has been selected as a featured site in StudyWeb as one of the best educational resources on the Web by our researchers. (StudyWeb)

Date Reviewed: April 24,1997
This academic and technical site dates back to the beginning of the WWW and is hosted by the Principia Cybernetica Project (PCP), an international organization. Principia Cybernetica Web is one of the oldest (registered July 1993), best organized, and largest, fully connected hypertexts on the Net. It contains over 1300 hypertext pages.
Content: 4 Ages: Adult
Depth: 5 Ease of Use: 4
Amount of Graphics: 2 Quality of Graphics: 3
Objectivity: 4 Timeliness: 4 (Soundprint Science Scouts in Cyberspace)

"Links 'ground-zero' for industrial/cyber-culture and memetics. Excellent introductory point to memetics resources on the web. Developed by Belgium's Dr. Francis Heylighen and his international team, this 'Universal Knowledge System for Cybernetics and Systems Science' also covers genes, evolution, the global brain, epistemology, metaphysics, and other cutting edges of conceptual and cultural development."
" Congratulations: the editors of Disinformation ( have chosen your Web site for the Disinformation Subversive Site Award! We have linked to your site in Disinformation's Memetics dossier as one of the most informative sites on that topic. Since 1996 Disinformation has been the Web's leading source for news, information and opinions that the establishment media prefers to ignore or suppress.." (Disinformation)

"You are publishing important, high-quality material on the Web. For this reason, ISI has selected your site for inclusion in Current Web Contents , a new section of Current Contents Connect TM (CC Connect TM ). CC Connect offers Web access to Current Contents, the ISI premier current awareness database that provides information in the fields of science, social science, technology, and the arts & humanities. For more than 40 years, ISI has delivered this multidisciplinary table-of-contents database to researchers, scientists and information professionals around the world. Since its inception, this journal-based resource has reflected the strict guidelines for selection developed by the ISI Editorial Development Staff. The result is the most prestigious database available internationally.
High standards of selection -- and data quality -- have made ISI a leader in the information industry.
ISI has now applied similarly high selection standards , specialized to the medium, in the creation of Current Web Contents, an ever-growing collection of high-quality, scholarly Web sites. ISI editors have visited your site, reviewed it, developed a standardized descriptive record, written an abstract and created a link from CC Connect to your site."

An Emerald Coolsite " Congratulations on being awarded five stars by Emerald Abstracts Computing Coolsites, our indexed reviews of the best of the Web. Only exceptional sites are included in Coolsites and are eligible to display this award."
"... although we often refer here to the standard academic style and note that the content is more important than the page design in many cases, this site shows that even academic information can be attractively designed. So, this site is worth visiting, not only as an introduction to cybernetics, but also as an exemplar of how academic sites can be designed" (from the Emerald Review)"

Copyright© 2001 Principia Cybernetica - Referencing this page

F. Heylighen,

Nov 8, 2001 (modified)
Jul 19, 1994 (created)


Introduction to Principia Cybernetica

History of the Principia Cybernetica Project

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