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A status update

To all who use my course notes.

This is one of the charities that I support. The group has raised 50% of their target. They have a lovely book that you can download for free. Will you help them along the way to providing safe water for the world’s inhabitants?

“No donation is too small, no thought insignificant.”

Of Words and Water

It’s been almost four months since Of Words and Water was published. Let’s take a look at one of the important numbers connected with this publication. No, not downloads, even though they are very interesting to follow. No, what I’m talking about are the donations for WaterAid – the reason why we put together this anthology in the first place. Well, one of the main reasons anyway (another being our love for words).
After almost four months we’ve actually managed to raise half of our target of £500 with a total of 22 donations.

To all of you who have donated to the cause and downloaded the anthology we would like to say a huge thank you! Thank you for backing us up, for reading our words, and helping to improve access to clean water in some of the world’s poorest communities by donating to our cause – all the…

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Tim Minchin’s graduation speech

(Credit – news.uwa.edu.au)

This is here because I like it.  It is re-blogged from Tim Minchin’s blog.  I like the sentiments of his speech, I hope you like it. Don’t forget that you can translate this using the translation programme from the home page.

Philosophy – Peer Assessments.

The peer assessment for this course was optional and didn’t effect the overall grade for the course. The options were:- (more…)

Philosophy week seven – time travel

Alasdair Richmond

Time Travel and Philosophy

These lectures were great and there is so much interesting reading to do I doubt if I will finish it before the end of the course. What I loved most about this particular part of the course was that I understood all the language. (more…)

Philosophy week six -Science

This course is making me more and more of a sceptic.

I know really not to believe everything, that I should question, but I believe in the honesty of humanity as a basic premise. This week we have been asking the question

Are scientific theories true?

Dr Michela Massimi of the School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences of the University of Edinburgh was the lecturer.

My initial response when I saw the question was ‘well no’, they are not true they are theories. Then we test theories we can see if they are true or not. I don’t think that I realised just how much of science that I had taken for granted as a truth was in fact only a theory. I tended not to question the truth of science as it is something I have never fully understood. The men in their lab coats with serious faces tell me something is true and I believe it. Obviously not the ones in washing powder adverts as they are trying to sell me something. Apart from that they can’t all wash whiter than any other.

The first job for me for this course was to put everything into simple English so that I could have a better understanding of the concepts. The lecturer was very clear in her explanations but I am not sure I have it all sorted out I don’t think I yet understand clearly. (more…)

Philosophy Week five – Testimony

This weeks question is

Should you believe what you hear?

Intellectual autonomy

The most important philosopher f the Scottish Enlightenment was David Hume.  He studied humans as others studied the rest of nature. He concluded that you should never believe an exceptional event on the basis of what other people  say or write.

Three Minute Philosophy – David Hume – CollegeBinary (more…)

Philosophy Week four – Morality

I am playing catch up this week as I wanted to finish my project for the EDC MOOC. Now that is done I can concentrate more on Philosophy.

I just took a whirlwind tour of Morality.

Plato and Aristotle in The School of Athens, by Rafael

Six videos with a total length of not quite fifteen and a half minutes described the whole of the Philosophical viewpoint of Morality.  The shortest of the video lectures so far.  The philosophy of morality is ethics.

Before I listened to the lectures my view of ‘morality’ was pretty much the same as the dictionary definition. (more…)