SubjectSpace is an imaginary space that ideas live in.

It's a space, because there's ideas of "near" and "far."

For example, we might say:

"Wiki are close to Blogs, in SubjectSpace."

"Wiki are far from Flies, in SubjectSpace."

SubjectSpace is something that exists in people's heads. It's not a fixed thing. Things can be far one day, and close the next.

For example, imagine if a civil war broke out in some country, all of a sudden. Before the civil war, the idea of the country and the idea of civil war would be far apart. But after the civil war broke out, they'd suddenly be close.

SubjectSpace is a pragmatic, ever-changing thing. It's based on the associations people make.

Other Names

We haven't quite settled on a name. Sometimes we call it SubjectSpace, some times we call it TopicSpace?, and some times we might call it IdeaSpace?. We haven't really settled on anything, I don't believe. – LionKimbro

See Also


I just felt it was about time I write this idea.

Most people I talk with just intuitively get what I mean when I say it.

But I felt it should finally be fleshed out a little bit.

Cool. I know what you mean. It describes kind of an idea's localisation (in the Heisenberg sense) and the character, the density of its sourrounding within an ameboid all-over idea-cloud. Your example, ok, or for another example the idea of dinosaurs before and after "jurassic park", remember? Out of a sudden they were on mostly everybodies mind worldwide. The density of the ideas sourrounding changed. Hollywood is a subject-space changing machine.

Hah! You know, it would be interesting- I'll bet you could scientificly create a map of SubjectSpace by polling people. Then you make a map of SubjectSpace, as seen by some particular group of people, and then watch how the map changes in time, and in response to events.

The ProjectSpaceNetwork would be something like that, created and maintained by people working on projects over the Internet, showing how the HiveMind regarded itself.

What a pleasure it is to take part on this. I named it before. "Wait til we first make the hive-mind lay down on the couch and talk about its mother" - something like that, I don't remember. This is the human-mind understanding itself and learning to control itself. How does the map characteristically change when wars arise? Knowing that you might be able to prevent wars. Wouldn't that be useful?

I'll bet you could scientificly create a map of SubjectSpace. I would be interested in seeing that. Even non-scientific subjective maps – MindMaps – of a subject are helpful – based on a single person's subjective opinion (see ). I wonder if it's possible/useful to take a pile of MindMaps from various people and subjects and somehow combine them into one big map?

In 1996, I had a conversation about making a map of "information spaces". (The transhumanists, of course, wanted to make it 16-dimensional). Rather than asking people if 2 "topics" or "subjects" or "words" were close or far, one of our conversations discussed mapping individual authors/artists – by collaboratively combining the opinions of hundreds of the people who read/listened/watched them. We expected a cluster of people with one thing in common, a different cluster of people with something else in common, etc, but we never got around to implementing it. Yet. I think we expected to converge on some static "correct" mapping. I never thought about watching the map change over time – I would be interested in watching that.


Since there is no epistemic neutrality, you must take care not to assume an objective, or even a representative, SubjectSpace map. This is not an attempt to be post-modern. But there are wide differences in very fundamental presuppositions, so there will be differences (some striking) in interpretations of reality. This may be subtle and difficult to see at certain levels, but will be quite evident at others.ScottMoonen

I agree that "assuming there exists a Platonic Ideal map" may not be useful. But clearly many individuals have drawn a MindMap – I don't see why it's impossible for a completely objective computer algorithm to average a bunch of them together to get a "representative" map.

meta: "map of the differences between maps": It might even be interesting to map out "controversial areas" – places where people have strong disagreement as to what they think the map should look like.

Cool. If every individual had influence on the way evaluation gets done, if every individual could poll on and decide about the parameters of the evaluation, I guess, in different cultures (which are pretty much tied to their spoken language) different "maps" of the same "thing" would emerge. These different maps agein could be compared and evaluated (imagine the rest please).

Getting a better vision of the SubjectSpace would be pretty good. I think polling may be a way to go. I'll play with this idea in CorrelatingPolls. I also think that SubjectSpace is a good context for a DebateTool. Combining MindMaps could produce awesome results ! Just find a common mindmap data format …

We need to connect this with IdeasLikeStarsAndSymphonies.

Also, it occurs to me that the TopicNode is a ForwardIndex page that includes links to similar on other wiki, and that has CategoryBoundaries.


Define external redirect: TopicSpace IdeaSpace

EditNearLinks: MindMap WikiNodes MindMaps ScottMoonen


The same page elsewhere: