The model represented in Figure 1 is a purely formal model of tripolar interaction between positions as well as between relations, that is, a model with specific mathematical rules of operation, but otherwise void of empirical content. It offers symbolic means that leave open possible interpretations in a variety of languages, among them philosophical language. It restricts the freedom in defining concepts. It has been designed by Ruys for use in economic research, as it permits the modeling of roles and perspectives of economic actors and their interaction. It has a number of characteristics that I consider as apt means for my reconstruction of Habermas’ conceptual frame of reference.

The formal model consists of seven interdependent points and of seven interdependent lines. See respectively Figure 1a ad Figure 1b. The tripolar interaction model represents the structural nexus of points and lines, having four main characteristics: (1) the structural interlinking of the points is the same for the structural nexus of the lines (isomorphy), and (2) this sameness is dual, that is, it offers the opportunity to be used and read in two complementary ways, without giving up the sameness of the structural nexus, (3) a further characteristic is, that every point is defined by the intersection of three lines and that each line is defined by the operative interaction of the three points on that line (I will call the result of the interaction of three points a relation and the result of the interaction of three lines a position); and (4) that it consists of three groups of points (Fig. 1a), respectively groups of lines (Fig. 1b) with different quality constituents. The three polar points, coded 100, 010 and 001, have only one quality. Three intermediate points, coded 110, 011 and 101 have two qualities. And there is one integrative point, coded 111, having three qualities. The lines of the dual model have comparable codes, representing the result of the operative interaction of respectively two polar points with an intermediate point; of the interaction of a polar, an intermediate and the integrative point; and of the interaction of the three intermediate points. All four characteristics will be used for my philosophical interpretation of the formal tripolar model.