Thursday, January 31, 2008

Studyin' aint fun!

I'm surfing Kotaku and I find an article about Dr. Kawashima of Brain Training fame. There's this little gem in there.

"Having fun is not studying. Making them study is not to entertain children but to pressure them to make efforts. People fall to lower and lower places unless they are driven to go higher," he said (linky)

I find that rather sad. He does not see the link between fun and learning? How play can enhance information retention in your mind? Reminds me of the overachievers from high school, all work and no play. They couldn't understand how I ended up in the same classes as they were, and able to talk about what they knew about just as intelligently as they did. "You must be so smart!" Nothing of the sort. I just happen to like learning and playing.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The Undead Monkey

My Lord,

I am but a humble philosopher, but I heard reports of undead pirate group that has been terrorizing our holdings in the Caribbean. These uncouth criminals must be stopped, but I putting forth my request to allow me to investigate the matter before they are totally eliminate. You see, there has been one thing that has perplexed me ever since I had heard it. Reports mention the pirates have with them a monkey who is similarly afflicted by their unnatural condition. While it may seem like a small matter, this has the potential to changing our understanding of morality and the animal kingdom.

Rumor has it that the pirates were cursed to be living dead for their greed. However, why is the monkey cursed? Was he cursed simply by proximity, just by being the pirates' pet? Then the monkey cursed unjustly, as he would not be responsible for the pirates' actions. This would lend credence that there is some warlock who has great power that cannot be allowed to act with impunity, which would mean that we would need a greater force in the Caribbean that would appear.

Or is it possible that the monkey was punished for his greed as well? Could it that monkeys are able to be greedy, and therefore to sin. And if they can sin, then they are moral agents. If that can be proven, then we have to rethink our whole stance of treatment of (some) animals. While I am not positing that that monkeys and chimpanzees should be treated as humans, but we do have to treat them ethically, if they are capable of making moral decisions. Our claim that we can own animals is based mostly on the premise that they are not agents who can make their own decisions. Similar to how parents can make decisions on behalf of their children and why we do not hold children responsible in the same way as adults. However, if this is proved false, then we have to expand our understanding of justice itself.

I urge you to permit me to accompany any investigation or military force that will sent after this criminals so that I may delve deeper into this matters and discover if what we hold as moral truths are, in fact, true.

My Lord,
Your Lordship,
Most Humble
And Devoted,

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

I choose free will

I believe in free will but perhaps I am just determined to think that way.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Playing the Philosopher

So, a funny seed of an idea popped into brain. What about some story-driven game (RPGish perhaps) where you play a philosopher. The philosopher collects different arguments and beliefs and then evaluates them. Criticizing your arguments will make them stronger, but become too skeptical (possibly in conjunctions with other arguments or beliefs) and you can no longer use that argument or hold that belief.

Do that the latter enough, and then you become a nihilist. And goddamn it we hate nihilists. Fuck me! Let's say that they are the enemy or something. You don't want to do that.

In life, I've always considered becoming a nihilist like playing the game of philosophy and losing. You tried to come away with stronger beliefs and you ended up with none. You failed it. Maybe I'm wrong, though. /me shrugs.

Then you take this interesting subsystem and apply it to a broader context. Having certain beliefs allows you to do certain things, like say cast certain spells. Being able to perform certain arguments allows you to do certain things in a social context. Get people to act a certain way or whatever. Or simply just spread your ethos.

I'd work on this right now, if I wasn't busy trying to bang out something else out for the EGW. Maybe after...