Humanity can be characterized as a tool-using and tool-creating species. The tools we create or borrow can obviously give us enormous power, for good or ill: they will, however, always do so at a cost. We sometimes mark that cost ahead of time and choose to pay it; at other times, we don’t fully appreciate… Continue reading Words and Things
You may have seen a picture of movie film. A movie film consists of a large sequence of still images, which are presented so rapidly that the viewer perceives it as motion. This is true whether the pictures are photographic images of something with physical existence, or whether they are drawn or composed artwork. (Collecting… Continue reading Continuous? Step-wise? What’s up with that?
I’ve learned many useful things from my students through the years. Last fall, Peter Jackson from my Senior English class drew my attention to the the term “Steel Man”. I’d understood the concept it represented, but not encountered the term; as often, however, having a name for something makes it easier to handle and promote.… Continue reading A Rhetorical Superhero
In the context of twenty-first century America, “politics” is perhaps one of the most curiously irritating words in the English language. I know from personal experience – whether from observing others, or from paying attention to myself – that there is a visceral reflex to feel something between annoyance and disgust upon hearing the word.… Continue reading The Politics of Perplexity in Twenty-First Century America
I have to date remained silent here about the COVID-19 pandemic, because for the most part I haven’t had anything constructive to add to the discussion, and because I thought that our parents and students would probably prefer to read about something else. I also try, when possible, to discuss things that will still be… Continue reading Unprecedented?
I’m one of those aging folks who still remember the original run of Star Trek (no colon, no The Original Series or any other kind of elaboration — just Star Trek). It was a groundbreaking show, and whether you like it or not (there are plenty of reasons to do both), it held out a… Continue reading Mr. Spock, Pseudo-scientist
I rather like Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories. I should also admit that I’m not a hard-core devotee of mysteries in general. If I were, I probably would find the frequent plot holes in the Holmes corpus more annoying than I do. I enjoy them mostly for the period atmosphere, the prickly character of… Continue reading The Sherlock Holmes Law
I’m not a mathematician by training, but the language and (for want of a better term) the sport of geometry has always had a special appeal for me. I wasn’t a whiz at algebra in high school, but I aced geometry. As a homeschooling parent, I had a wonderful time teaching geometry to our three… Continue reading Reflections on Trisecting the Angle
The course on Ethics offered in the autumn is at a college level, so the work will be challenging and interesting. The text originally identified, Alasdair MacIntyre’s After Virtue, begins with the problem that the variety of moral beliefs, and the difficulty of finding objective reasons to prefer one over the other, invites the conclusion… Continue reading Bulletin for Seniors (and Juniors?) Interested in Ethics