Table 2


Selected Major Components of Each of the 20 Critical Subsystems
At Each of the Eight Levels of Living Sysems*
Level/Subsystem Reproducer Boundary Ingestor Distributor Converter Producer Matter-energy
storage
Extruder Motor Supporter
Cell DNA and RNA
molecules
Matter-energy and Information
Outer membrane
Transport molecules Endoplasmic
Reticulum
Enzyme in
Mitochondrion
Chloroplast in
green plant
Adenosine
triphosphate
Contractile
vacules
Cilla, flagellae
psuedopodia
Cytoskeleton
Organ Upwardly
dispersed to
organism
Matter-energy
and information
capsule or
outer layer
Input artery Intercellular
fluid
Parenchymal
cell
Islets of
Langerhans
of pancreas
Central
lumen of
glands
Output
vein
Smooth muscle,
cardiac muscle
Stroma
Organism Testes, ovaries
uterus, genitalia
Matter-energy and
information Skin or
or outer covering
Mouth, nose, skin
in some species
Vascular system of
higher animals
Upper gastrointestinal
tract
Organs that synthesize
materials for
metabolism and repair
Fatty tissues Sweat glands of
animal skins
Skeletal muscle
of higher animals
Skeleton
Group NASA officer
who selects astronauts for crew
Matter-energy and
Inspectors of covering of
of spacecraft information
Crew radio operator
Astronauts who bring
spacecraft
Crewmember who
distributes food
dispersed to make
packaged rations
Crewmembers who repair
damaged equipment
Crewmember who stows
scientific instruments
Crew that ejects
satellite into orbit
Downwardly dispersed to
individual members
Crewmembers who
maintain spacecraft
Organization Dispersed upward to
society that creates
space agency
Matter-energy and
Inspectors of contracted
equipment information
NASA guards
who arrest intruders
Receiving Department
of NASA
Conveyor belt in
factory that makes
parts for space habitat
Workers who stamp
out parts for space vehicle
Doctors who
examine astronauts
Workers who store
supplies on space vehicle
Janitors in
NASA buildings
Driver of
gantry crane
Janitors in
launch site
buildings
Community Space Agency
that establishes
Matter-energy and
Dispersed to
builders of habitat
information Operators
of downlink to Earth
Receivers of materials
from Shuttle
Food servers
in dinning facility
Organization that
mines the Moon
Medical organization in
space community
Workers who put
supplies into storage areas
Mine organization
that sends materials to Earth
Drivers of Moon
surface vehicles
Maintenance crew
of habitat buildings
Society Constitutional convention
that writes
national constitution
Matter-energy and
Customs service
information security agency
Immigration service Operators of
national railroads
Nuclear industry All farmers and
factory workers of a country
Soldiers in
Army barracks
Export organizations
of a country
Aerospace industry
that builds spacecraft
Officials who
operate national public
buildings and lands
Supernational system United Nations when
it creates new
supranational agency
Matter-energy troops
at Berlin Wall
information NATO security personnel
Legislative body
that admits nations
Personnel who operate
supranational power grids
EURATOM
CERN, IAEA
World Health
Organization
International storage
dams and reservoirs
Downwardly dispersed
to societies
Operators of
United Nations motor pool
People who
maintain international
headquarters buildings


*Note: The components listed in table 2 are examples selected from many possible structures of each subsystem and at each level. At the organism level, animals are chosen in preference to plants, although many components of plants are comparable. In general, examples are from human rather than animal groups, although similar structures exist in many species. Only human beings form systems above the group. Table 2 places special emphasis on living systems involved in space exploration and habitation. At each level the examples of subsystem components are from different types of systems. This choice makes it clear that the analysis applies to various sorts of systems. At the level of the group and above, components involved in communications rather that monetary flows are used as examples in information processing subsystems. This is done because monetary flows, while obviously important, are found only in human systems and are currently not very significant in space habitations.
Table 2 concluded
Level/Subsystem Input Transducer Internal Transducer Channel and net Timer Decoder Associator Memory Decider Encoder Output Transducer
Cell Receptor sites
on membrane
for activation of
cyclic AMP
Repressor
molecules
Pathways of
mRNA, second
messengers
Fluctuating ATP
and NADP
Molecular
binding sites
Unknown Unknown Regulator genes Structure that
synthesizes
hormones
Presynaptic
membrane
of nueron
Organ Receptor cell of
sense organ
Specialized cell of sinotrial
mode of heart
Nerve net of
organ
Heart pacemaker Second echelon
cell of sense
organ
None found
upwardly
dispersed to
organism
None found
upwardly
dispersed to
organism
Sympathetic
fiber of
sinoatrial node
of heart
Presynaptic
region of
output nueron
Presynaptic
region of
output nueron
Organism Sense organs Proprioceptors Hormonal
pathways,
central and
peripheral nerve nets
Supraoptic
nuclei of
thalamus
Sensory nuclei Unknown
nueral
components
Unknown
nueral
components
Compnents at
several echelons
of nervous
system
Temporoparietal
area of
dominant
hemisphere of
human cortex
Larynx, other
components
that output
signals
Group Crewmember
who receives
messages from
ground control
Crewmember
who reports
crew's reactions
to life in capsule
Astronauts who
communicate
person to person
Dispersed to
all members
who hear
time signals
Member who
explains coded
message
Dispersed to
all members
who learn
new techniques
Dispersed to
all crewmembers
Captain of crew
in capsule
Members who
write reports
of space
experience
Members who
report to
Mission Control
Organization NASA secretaries
who take
incoming calls
Representative
of employees
who reports
to executive
Users of NASA
internal phone
network
Office
responsible
for scheduling
flights
Experts who
explain specs
to contractors
People who
train new
employees
Filing
Department
NASA
executives
department
heads, middle
managers
Public relations
staff
Administrator
who makes
policy
television
speech
Community Operators of
downlink to
Earth
Communicator
over downlink
to Earth
Psychologists
who report
on morale of
spacefarers
Caretakers of
clocks in
community
Users of
communication
system in
space station
Engineers
who interpret
building
blueprints
Scientists
who do
research in
space
Central
computer
of space
community
Commanding
officer and
staff
Officer who
writes report
to Earth station
Society Foreign news
services
Public opinion
polling
organizations,
voters
Telephone and
communications
organizations
Legislators
who decide on
time and zone
changes
Cryptographers All teaching
institutions of a
community
Keepers of
national
archives
Voters and
officials of
national
government
Drafters of
treaties
National
representatives
to international
meetings
Supranational
system
UN Assembly
hearing
speaker from
nonmember
territory
Speaker from
member
country to
supranational
meeting
INTELSAT Personnel of
Greenwich
observatory
Translators for
supranational
meetings
FAO units that
teach farming
methods in Third
World nations
Librarians of
UN Libraries
National
representatives
to international
space
conferences
UN Office of
Public
information
Official who
announces
decisions of
supranational
body


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