Birdbrain, Bird-witted, and more on Thought

Reflecting yesterday afternoon on my morning post, “On the Coast Starlight,” in which I suggested thought, if we are to try to compare it to anything, seems more bird-like than the train of thought first found in Thomas Hobbes’s 1651 “Leviathan,” I thought, to force thought onto a track where ideas are coupled one afterContinue reading “Birdbrain, Bird-witted, and more on Thought”

On the Coast Starlight

We climbed aboard the Coast Starlight in Portland, bound for Los Angeles, 24 train-ride hours away, but we stopped unexpectedly somewhere up in the Cascades southeast of Eugene. Snow was falling. In those days, you could walk between the cars and open the top of the dutch door for some fresh air. The air wasContinue reading “On the Coast Starlight”

Problems, Inventions, and Implications

Inventions are usually a response to a problem. A problem is something that limits or impairs access to needs, wants, or values. An invention solves the problem, granting or improving access. An invention might be a machine, an idea, or a new value. Inventions alter our environment and often present side effects, good or bad,Continue reading “Problems, Inventions, and Implications”