Publication 3245

Krippendorff K. (2003) Recollections of Heinz von Foerster, a rhetorical genius. Cybernetics & Human Knowing 10(3–4): 195–196. Fulltext at
On a cold day between Christmas and New Year 1961, in search of a place to study, I met Heinz in his office at the Biological Computer Laboratory. I knew of him through a network of designers who, like me, were interested in issues that conventional curricula did not address. Heinz greeted me, a total stranger, with the enthusiasm usually reserved for an old friend. To my surprise, he knew of the place where I had came from (the Ulm School of Design, an avant-garde institution now extinct but reproduced everywhere – much as cybernetics is now), and he suggested that I come to the University of Illinois to study with W. Ross Ashby. This short encounter enrolled me into cybernetics and defined my intellectual focus for years to come.


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