Scholarly Works

Scholarly Works, Dissertations, and Ideas

This section includes dissertations, other scholarly works, and works that have a scholar’s heart, so to speak, but which I was not able to properly develop in an academic setting. These works cover both the sciences (math and computers) and humanities (generally theology).

An Abstract Art of Memory (medium)
The ancient Greeks developed an art of memory that is very good with concrete facts. I wanted to see if I could adapt the principles to be more effective in storing abstractions.
AI as an Arena of Magical Thinking Among Skeptics (long)
My second master’s thesis, from Cambridge. It’s theology (or what is considered academic theology at a university, which isn’t really theology at all), and touches on a number of interesting areas.

The Blacksmith’s Forge: An Extension to Euclidean Geometric Construction as a Model of Computation (short)

There were a few ideas that stayed with me from what I did while exploring and working for my master’s (or my first masters, at least). This offers a model of computation that is theoretically more powerful than a Turing machine; however I don’t believe it does so in an interesting way.

This is not written to scholarly standards, but it contains the germ of potential academic exploration.

Closeness Spaces: Elementary Explorations Into Generalized Metric Spaces, and Ordered Fields Derived From Them
The thesis I wrote for my first master’s. It represents something unusual: a development in pure mathematics (even if I had an applied mathematics degree so I could get the Computational Science and Engineering option), that arose from practical problems in applied math and computer science.
DEC64 Is the Wave of the Past
This offers something fundamentally better than arbitrary precision’s arithmetic letting you choose where the digits drop off. It stores any (computable) number exactly, and offers print-on-demand decimalizations.

If you originally calculate a number to three decimal places, and later find you need six, or want the user to be able to specify any number of decimal places you can’t know in advance, no problem. Just ask for six or a user-entered number of decimal places: no need to refactor all of your code. And if an exact number is generated by someone else’s code, you need not dig into that code to get your preferred number of decimal places.

This also does not suffer the corruption on arithmetic operation that slowly corrupts float- (or arbitrary-precision) arithmetic.

This is not written to scholarly standards, but it contains the germ of potential academic exploration.

Dark Patterns / Anti-patterns and Cultural Context Study of Scriptural Texts: A Case Study in Craig Keener’s Paul, Women, and Wives: Marriage and Women’s Ministry in the Letters of Paul (medium)
My first thesis in academic theology, looking at how the concept of dark patterns or anti-patterns may illuminate recurring tendencies in the wrong kind of advocate scholarship.
Does Augustine Return to the Interpersonal Image of Love as Representing the Trinity, or Does He Abandon This in Favour of the Psychological Image?(medium)
After years of being a pariah and whipping boy, the Blessed Augustine is going through a rehabilitation. This is an essay I wrote where Augustine served to me as a Church Father and as a halfway house between a Western, more philosophical approach to theology and the Eastern, mystical ocean I needed to dive into.

The essay looks at Augustine with respect but calls to task some of the silliness in people who are willing to be selective about Augustine’s own words in order to make him look better.

Frankincense, Gold, and Myrrh: A Look at Profound Giftedness Through Orthodox Anthropology (medium)
To be human is to have a profound gift in the first place, and one that far overshadows what psychology refers to as “profound giftedness”. But that “profound giftedness” is both human and interesting. Here’s an article looking at it from a theological perspective.
Orthodoxy, Contraception, and Spin Doctoring: A Look at an Influential and Disturbing Article (long)
This article was occasioned by the discovery of some of what programmers ironically call, buried treasure: in this case, current Orthodox positions on contraception often are built on top of the buried treasure. Maybe this buried treasure is, as the definition in the jargon file says, “something that needs to be dug up and removed.”
“Religion and Science” Is Not Just Intelligent Design vs. Evolution
This is a nonscholarly writeup of what I had hoped to explore in my doctoral dissertation in theology. Alas, I was unable to complete the program!
Zeitgeist and Giftedness
This work is dense, but not written for scholarly audiences. It does, however, quote the germ of a master’s thesis that I was actively prevented from completing.