Papers from the Bot seminars

Biological systems were once famously described as 'enigmas within enigmas within enigmas'. They can also be likened to sets of Russian dolls, where inside each Russian doll you'll find another. These descriptions can also apply to Web sites that are based upon biological systems.

For all their apparent simplicity, stigmergic Web sites involve a diverse mixture of esoteric concepts that include bots, personal agents, living databases and the abstract notion of a formatted information space.

Some of these ideas were explained in talks I gave at three Bot seminars run by Dr. Marcus Zillman for (Dr. Marcus Zillman was the founder of

The notes for these talks can be viewed by clicking on the links on the left. They are essential reading for understanding the background to stigmergic systems and the organic, virtual databases that are created as part of a stigmergic Web site.

New York 2000

This first talk was entitled: Bots with emotions. It was given at the New York BOT2000 seminar on September 13th, 2000 at the New York Hilton Hotel, New York City, NY. It describes how bots and intelligent agents can be given decision making capabilities using simulated emotions.

San Francisco 2001

The second talk was entitled: A living database for volatile data. It was given at the San Francisco BOT2001 seminar on January 25th, 2001 at the Fairmont Hotel, San Francisco, CA. It introduces the idea of creating a formatted space that can be used to enable people with similar interests to find each other

Boston 2001

The third talk was entitled: Using bots to create a living database for volatile data. It was given at the Boston BOT2001 seminar on June 19, 2001 at the Boston Marriott Copley Place Hotel, Boston, MA. It built on the talk given in San Francisco to describe how the stigmergic systems used by ants can be adopted for Web based, low cost knowledge management systems.