Complexity and small things

I am in Santa Fe, New Mexico and have had a very interesting week. Santa Fe is the home of the aptly named Santa Fe Institute that is an inter disciplinary research center that focuses on complexity and complex systems.

For many years I have been reading about this place without ever knowing where it is. I can say that Santa Fe is a beautiful town and unlike any other place that I have been to in the past.

This week I had the chance to briefly meet Murray Gell-Man who wrote the book “Quark and the Jaguar” and is won a Nobel prize for his work In describing the behavior of elementary particles inside the atom. For me this is a journey that started in high school when I wondered about the difference between the simple, idealised linear models that were used to describe science to a 15 year old and the real world that is fundamentally non-linear and, well, messy.

My father bought a book called Chaos, by James Gliek, that seemed to be the antidote to this simplified thinking. It differentiated between simple, predictable order, complete randomness and something beautiful and unpredictable called Chaos. I am not sure if he bought it for me or if I stole it from him but it is with me still decades later.

That book was the beginning of a thirst for more information about complex systems that better explain the beauty of the world around us. Many of the best books that I remember have had their origin here in Santa Fe.

Being a dad

The last 5 months have been amazing and exhausting, rewarding and frustrating. For the last five months I have been a dad to my beautiful little man – Jack.

Tonight Jack is having a hard time getting some sleep. We have been pretty lucky lately with his sleep. He has learned to relax himself and sleep on his own in his own bed – most of the time anyway. Tonight however he is sick with a cold. This is making sleeping flat a difficult proposition since his throat seems to fill with goop, causing him to cough and wake himself up.

Right now he is draped across my lap, asleep with the tele filling the empty silence of the dark night. I am going to have to try and get him to sleep before I doze off myself.

Moving Out

I have been able to postpone this day for over 12 years, but finally the time has come. We are moving out of our safe and cosy home in cammeray to set up for the next phase of our life in the heart of the city.

From our new apartment we will be able to amble into our office in the city in just 10 minutes. We have free parking in the city! As well a gym and a swimming pool. All this comes at a cost though so there will need to be some careful budgeting ahead.

Of course the catalyst for all of this is the news of little Jack. We need a nice safe place to bring him into the world. The initial plan had been to buy a 3 bedroom place that we could be comfortable in. Unfortunately there are a lot more adventures going on in our lives that just the arrival of our first baby. I had previously referred to our business as our baby if any one asked when we were planning to start a family. Well the business is approching it’s fourth year in operation and things are gaining momentum which is very exciting but it takes a hell of a lot of effort to keep everything running smoothly.

To help keep it running smoothly, when Jack arrives in October we will be nice and close to the office, such that it is effectively an additional office space. Either of us will be able to dash back and forth from home to office, which is something that we just couldn’t do from any other suburb in Sydney. Not even our beloved Cammeray.

So tomorrow will be our last full day here. I am now really excited to be on the move since everything in the place is all packed into boxes.

new baby – Jack Charles Coster

For anyone that we haven’t told yet and who is still reading this blog, I have a little bit of news….
Adrienne and I are expecting a new addition to the family. As I type here at just before midnight, Adrienne is all snuggled up with a little baby boy wriggling around in her belly. We have just started to feel a little bit of motion. Here is a tracking tool to describe where she is at right now.

pregnancy due date

Since it moves with time I’ll mark here what it says today.

‘twenty more weeks before Mommy can have a nice strong, margarita…or five. I’m 19 weeks & 4 days old, only 143 days to go!’

Wow. Only 143 day’s. To say the least it has been ‘exciting’ trying to make competely new plans to accomodate this new adventure.

New Years Day 2008

The food was great, the drink flowed freely and everyone had a very happy new year. Waking up this morning was not as hard as I thought it might have been after the night before. We are on the road back home now, stopping off at Kingscliff for a couple of nights so that we can be close to the Gold Coast for a meeting tomorrow. On Thursday we will head home via the New England Highway and stay over in Armidale.

Today though, we waved goodbye to the Brisbane clan and are having a quiet little rest at the Peppers resort here. Not a bad start to the new year if you ask me.