A phrase coined, as far as I can tell, by Kevin Kelly in his book "Out of Control", copyright 1994.

He uses "vivisystem" to describe the melding of mechanical and natual systems; things that are man-made, but instilled with Life's Laws. He believes this to be the eventual direction humanity is heading for: One where the things and machines we create will grow, learn, and heal like living things.

The things Kelly sees as part of a "unified biological frontier" are many, complex, and grand in scale: Things like computer virus incubators, artificial ecologies, virtual worlds and the like.

In Chapter One, part three, Kevin writes the following intriguing paragraph about the advent of vivisystems :

"Yet as we unleash living forces into our created machines, we lose control of them. They acquire wildness and some of the surprises that the wild entails. This, then, is the dilemma that all gods must accept: that they can no longer be completely sovereign over their finest creations."

You can read the rest of Kevin's book online at http://www.well.com/user/kk/OutOfControl.