I had a similar with with the Internet and talking to people online. I’m thrilled that it’s so commonplace now and that people will never know the nerdy struggles of way back but I didn’t realize the same had happened to my favorite ideas about the power of chaos, complexity and connectionism… and it’s been right in my face for years. I just didn’t see it. I feel like I can relax now.
Now I understand why I haven’t heard anything much about connectionism for a long time: It’s quietly become accepted fact and no longer has strong proponents or detractors like it once did.
It’s utilized all over the place without even being called by name (either PDP or connectionism) or even recognized as having had a theoretical source: It’s just the “way things are”.
It’s absolutely fascinating to realize that the thing I was so excited about 25 years ago simply became absorbed into general knowledge and that it didn’t disappear: it just no longer had to be separate anymore.
I know! I mean, it’s been great hearing people talking language that’s familiar to me, with the neural networks and all that… yet I didn’t make the connection JUST how everyday it’s become.