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Preamble

  • Skepticism is not a philosophy of disbelief. Rather it is a philosophy that suggests that there is merit in examing beliefs. A skeptical view of the world allows for faith, in fact recognises that 'faith' at some level often underlies so-called scientific theory. Skepticism does not lead us to the 'entire truth' of the universe, but it is discipline that allows us to better understand small parts of it. And for those parts that we want to grow or progress, skepticism is a tool to open the hood, check the hoses, replace the worn out parts, and lubricate the engine.
  • So why was the focus of this Blog on Skepticism and Technology, and Computer Technology particularly? Because Computer Technology (like every new science struggling for respectability) has surrounded itself with beliefs, an aura which resembles an old style religion where the priests have all the knowledge and know what's best for the humble, confused and worshipfull users of the technology. While the Computer people might enjoy the adulation and their 'special status' and while the computer users (and their managers) retreat comfortably into their 'I don't know what I'm doing and can't be held responsible for anything' attitude, the field of computing technology will largely stagnate. In such an environment we can only extend computer technology by replacing more and more manual processes. That is to say that we can use technology to replace jobs, but we have largely failed to empower the users of the technology to use technology to find creative ways of enhancing their existing jobs.

Biography

Hmm, I might take the view that I am much less important or (hopefully) interesting than the things I have to say, or quote from other folk. Humility is just another vanity of course..

Is there anything that I could tell you about me that would more forcefully persuade you to my point of view, or better explain for you why you don't like my opinions (or those I promote)? Probably not.

So for the moment I think I'm attracted to the purity of the idea of a weblog that promotes ideas, not personality, and has room for ideas other than my own. Because as I always say, it is the person who disagrees with you who often has the most to teach you. But purity as a concept - even with the best intentions in the world - contains the seeds of prejudice, and so I'll make no promises to keep things this way.

The photo ? Yes it is (or was) real. The caption should read "Cynic invites skeptic to visit his humble abode'. It's a cave, or room hollowed in the side of the gorge at Ronda, possibly dating back to Roman times. I don't believe the dog actually lived there. He, like I, was just doing the tourist 'off the beaten track' thing.