Software engineering satiates my desire to solve problems with magic — symbols, semantics, circuitry, and a dash of electricity.
Occasionally, I write about software, programming, and technology. These are my writings on software.
Even more rarely, I create software. You can find some of my personal software projects here.
I focus on web technology and developer tools, but my pet-projects center around cognition as a service (CaaS)™, tools from applied formal semantic ontology, open knowledge bases, and robots and shit.
I stay sane by writing an even mix of fiction and non-fiction.
First, the fictional. Similar to reading, I enjoy writing all types of fiction. My work is consistently speculative — fantasy, comedy and satire, and counterfactual realities.
I believe there is power in thinking about what could be. Here are a few examples.
Possible worlds are used in the semantics of set theory. Possible outcomes help us plan future action. The way things could have been can be used to analyze the past. Imagined solutions to real problems are at the heart of invention. Much creativity and art is inspired by counter-realities. Political and social change is motivated by the way the world could (should) be.
In writing, we can explore these realities other than our own, at little expense other than our time and energy. Because the writing is fictional, the danger of drawing unjustified conclusions from counterfactual reasoning is mitigated. Just because something could be, doesn’t mean it should or will. Fiction offers me a medium for experimenting with these different worlds and the conclusions they offer. These experiments are cathartic, quickly testable, and bloodless.
Next, I write all types of non-fiction — academic, popular, and blog. Writing non-fiction fulfills my drive to theorize, popularize, teach, and explain. I have a penchant for connecting disparate ideas and concepts. If all I achieve with writing is to digest and regurgitate (explain) complex ideas and their implications, I will be content. I am more than happy to act as a function from the academic to the popular.
Finally, I pursue ‘brief habits’ (Nietzsche) — attempting both breadth and depth. The areas which I write about span morality and how to live, science, mathematics, philosophy, history, business, and society.
I philosophize across ethics, science, the mind, and the logical universe.
Metaphilosophically, my work is firmly entrenched in contemporary analytical methods. I blame my poor philosophical habits on the dead German dudes — Kant, Nietzsche, and Wittgenstein.
In the philosophy of science, I tend to think most about interpretative challenges in Physics, particularly Quantum Mechanics. However, I am also interested in biology, neuroscience, and computer science.
My metalogical pursuits focus on the construction of non-classical logical systems, particularly deontic, temporal, and modal logics — I would like to be able to formally specify normative discourse so that computers can capture the large amount of normative talk on the web and infer over it.
I am fortunate to live near family, and I relish my role as Uncle Clarky.
My longest relationship belongs to Fiddle, my 10 year old heeler mutt. She won my heart at 12 weeks and never gave it back.
In 2021, we added a young husky mix to the pack. Staying on theme, Fiddle and I named him Banjo.
A couple times a week, I joyfully butcher classics at the piano or with the saxophone.
The dogs coerce me to leave the house for a walk or hike, daily.
Rain and shine, I fish in my little wooden boat. I fish for trout and crappie, most often; if I’m feeling active, I’ll chase bass. It is all an excuse to get on the water and drink beer.
This winter, I converted the garage to a wood shop. Learning woodworking has re-ignited my desire to build physical objects. There is no software-substitute for flattening a fresh slab of maple.
Since gaining the power of literacy, reading has been my most consistent hobby. I devour audiobooks, but will pick up anything with text and enjoy reading.
Because I have failed every attempt to draw or paint realistically, I am attempting to learn drawing and watercolor. The process of creating visual art terrifies and invigorates me. Some of my ‘artwork’ is viewable in my portfolio.