Stuff about me
What I do, mostly, is teach and conduct philosophical research at Texas A&M University, where I am a professor in the philosophy department. My research interests encompass both the sacred and the profane: on the one hand, metaphysics and philosophical logic; on the other, the application of these to problems of representing and managing information in engineering and manufacturing systems. Consequently, I spend a lot of time with engineers, who are generally really nice people once you get to know them. Before arriving in College Station, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for the Study of Language and information at Stanford University for two years. I really liked it there, and was even willing to chair the philosophy department if they would have let me stay, but they hired Fred Dretske instead; go figure. Prior to that I was a graduate student at the University of Notre Dame, where I wrote a dissertation on platonism in set theory with two exemplary philosophers, Pen Maddy and Al Plantinga; please don't read it. It gets way too cold in Indiana. I graduated with a BA in philosophy from Pacific Lutheran University, a small liberal arts college in Tacoma, Washington, about 30 miles south of Seattle and 50 miles northwest of Mt. Ranier. I was a music major for one year at Central Washington University in Ellensburg just east of the Cascade mountains, and began as a music major at PLU, but made the mistake of taking courses in philosophy and mathematics.

Despite abandoning music as a career, I still play the piano often. My favorite classical composers are Bach and Brahms, in that order. I am also a serious jazz fan, and am especially big on most everything Miles Davis did between 1959 and 1970. Non-jazz favorites include Stevie Ray Vaughan (I live in Texas, after all), Shawn Colvin, Ricky Lee Jones, and Steely Dan.

After ten years of jogging started taking its toll on my knees I took up road cycling. (Go here to get information about some nice rides in the area, and here for a peek into my deeper nature). The Bryan / College Station community supports a robust and friendly group of riders of various stripes known collectively as the Brazos Valley Cyclists. I occasionally race (or some approximation thereof) in the Masters category (50+ — that’s all I’m saying) and I am the faculty advisor for, and enjoy training with, A&M's powerhouse cycling team. The weather here is great for cycling, and would make it very hard for me to leave (like I've got options). I also love backpacking. Here are some some nice pictures of a recent (Aug 2013) hike in King's Canyon National Park in California's High Sierra with my friends Ed and Susanne (the photographer). Here are some more from a 2012 hike in Sabrina Basin. And yet more from another trip into the Ansel Adams Wilderness. I am also an Episcopalian (of sorts -- like all good Episcopalians), and have two exceptional adult children, whose ages I shall not divulge other than to say that it frightens me that I have children as old as I do. Indeed, one of them has produced a child of their own, which I guess makes me a grandfather.