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General Discussion / Re: A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Dennis Darland on April 28, 2018, 02:46:58 AM »
I fixed the reading problem - it was a typo.
General Discussion / Re: A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Dennis Darland on April 28, 2018, 02:02:58 AM »
I've added Ada and Eiffel. I also have Isabelle installed & working, but I have not learned how to use it. Bertrand Meyer invented Eiffel. Does anyone know whether he was named after our Bertrand? I have a problem reading real numbers in Eiffel. Also, do not have my editor set up for indentation, etc. for Eiffel.
General Discussion / Re: A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Dennis Darland on April 14, 2018, 07:49:27 AM »
I have it working in oz!


Also: Added video for APL

Also: Added Perl & Python

17 languages in total.
I have a few improvements to make .
Then I will move on to more physics problems!
General Discussion / Re: A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Dennis Darland on April 13, 2018, 09:30:51 PM »
I checked. I do have oz working with openSUSE linux. It is broken in Ubuntu Linux - where I have been doing my work. Actually, oz is the name of the language & Mozart the name of the system. As Mozart uses emacs (my favorite editor) for its interface, using oz will be more work than the other languages - as I have been able to use shell scripts for those. More to learn!!!  I have also been considering using APL, perl, and python. APL also will be more work due to its interface.

BTW: No work seems to have been done on Mozart since 2008.
A manual om the language is at:

The book I have is:
Concepts, Techniques and Models of Computer Programming by Peter van Roy and Seif Haridi

General Discussion / Re: A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Dennis Darland on April 13, 2018, 08:25:40 PM »
I was not as much concerned with Parmenides himself, as the issues about language he raised for BR, and BR's discussion of those issues.
I have van Roy and Haridi's book on Mozart - not enough time to study it yet.
van Roy was one of the authors of WildLIFE - the language I have put great effort in bringing back to life.
I had oz (a Mozart implementation) working at one time, but it seems broken now.
Although oz is supposed to be open source, the installation seemed to destroy the source code after the installation completed.
My plan is to mainly use Maple & Maxima - they are more suitable for physics than the other languages.
But I am enjoying practicing the other languages & may try to fix oz.
General Discussion / Re: A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Jack Clontz on April 13, 2018, 10:24:55 AM »
Pray tell why BR's amatuer discussion of Parmenides is important (if you can). Doesn't it rely excessively on the outmoded F. H. Cornford and other members of the Cambridge Ritual School, especially Jane Harrison? Have you consulted the fragments in Diels and Kirk & Raven? Of course not.

  BR's discussion is decades behind the scholarship on Parmenides, not to speak of voluminous treatments of Parmenides by the antipodes Karl Popper and Martin Heidegger, both of whom are hopelessly tendentious and sometimes even bizarre.

Jack Clontz in Bangkok, Kingdom of Thailand

PS Try using Mozart and Eric Satie to accompany your writing of code.

General Discussion / A History of Western Philosophy
« Last post by Dennis Darland on April 10, 2018, 01:59:41 AM »
I have been studying physics - writing programs for the textbook I used in 1970/
Anyway, while writing code., I have had gentle music on & listening to books.
I finished In Freedom We Trust, by Buckner and Buckner.
Jan Eisler and Tom Flynn are in the acknowledgements.
I am in a group discussing it tomorrow (today now).
Then I started the audiobook of A History of Western Philosophy by BR.
My attention is not good on the books while I am programming, but I could not help but notice the
importance of the chapter on Parmenides.

General Discussion / Book Note: Waking Up White by Debby Irving
« Last post by Phil Ebersole on April 02, 2018, 04:13:14 PM »

     I was brought up to judge people by their individual qualities, and not by their race, religion, nationality, level of income or level of schooling.  I can honestly say I have made a good faith effort to do that throughout my lie.

     But this is not enough.

     Ignoring race, or poverty, makes me blind to the things that black people or poor people have to struggle with that I don't.

     And if I judge people, I judge them by my own criteria, which are conditioned in ways I don't think about by my race, religion and all the rest.

     I thought about this after reading Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race by Debby Irving (2014), which is about her coming to understand how her attitudes were formed by the fact that she's white.

     She worked as an arts administrator in the Boston area, then taught in the public schools when her own children enrolled in school.  She was always bothered by the fact that, despite her good will, she never was quite able to reach the black community in her arts promotion or black students as a teacher.

     This changed in 2009, when she took a course called "Racial and Cultural Identity" at Wheelock College and woke up to the reality of white privilege..

     Since then she's been on a quest to deepen her new understanding of race and share her understanding with others.   Her book is full of honest admissions of failure to understand the viewpoints of black people.

     She thought nothing of going to a school principal and asking her children be assigned to a particular teacher, and never wondered why so few black parents did this.  But when she mentioned this to black parents, she found that the majority of them were unaware that this was even something you could do.

     A little Haitian girl in her class frequently left her seat to help other students in their work.  Irving at first perceived this as cheating and only later came to realize that in the Haitian culture, unlike in the white American culture, children are taught to help others and not to compete.

     She said the main barriers to honest black-white communication are:

     Unawareness by white people of their white identity and how it shapes their values and assumptions.
  • The assumption by white people that overt racism and racial discrimination are a thing of the past, and that whites and blacks are now on a level playing field.
          Unwillingness of "nice" white people to speak their minds frankly, for fear of giving offense or seeming foolish.
          Fear of black people of bad consequences if they fail to conform to the expectations of white people.
          The assumption by educated white people that they have the right, responsibility and knowledge to solve the problems of black people.
          White middle-class belief in individualism, self-sufficiency and competitiveness, which leads us to disrespect those whose primary values are solidarity, community and mutual aid.

     To break through these barriers, liberal white people need more humility and willingness to listen, we need to be more honest with ourselves and other people, and we need to have the courage to make fools of ourselves and admit mistakes.   The last part of her book has useful tips for white people on things to say and things not to say.

     Debby Irving is doing good work.  She is painfully honest about embarrassing things she has said and done.  I have no doubt she is a nice person.

     But when I first read this book, I felt dislike because of her unawareness of the ways in which she is privileged that have nothing to do with race.

     Her wedding was listed on the society page of the New York Times.  On page 209, she asks readers whether they belong to a white-only country club or getting a legacy admission to a private school as examples of racial preference that benefit white people.  She was able to step seamlessly and seeming without effort from a career in arts administration to a career as a public school teacher and now a career as a "social justice educator."

     Very few white people would be in a position to do that—certainly not me, and I had a better starting point in life than probably the majority of white Americans.

     None of this shows up on Debby Irving's radar.  She acknowledges that not all white people are like her culturally, or have all her advantages, but says this is unimportant in the light of the fundamental black-white divide.

     I reconsidered these reservations after being a discussion of her book at First Universalist Church of Rochester, N.Y.  It was led by Tim Mullins, who was a white civil rights worker in Alabama in 1965, and Delores DaLomba, the only member of the group who identifies as black.

     Some of our group were educators who'd worked with poor black children.  Some were employees with many black co-workers.   Some had taken part in the "sacred conversations" organized by local churches to bring white and black people together for honest talk.

     They all liked the book, and, as far as I could tell, so did everyone in the group.  They saw themselves in Debby Irving's story and so, on reflection, do I.

      It is true that the only people who will listen to her are the sub-set of white people who are concerned about people of color to begin with.   But that's okay.   That's not everything, but it's a lot.  I won't criticize somebody who is doing good things just because those good things aren't everything.

A version of this appears on my web log with a video and link.


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