The Science of Transcendental Empiricism

Is Deleuze’s transcendental empiricism a philosophy? If so, what kind of philosophy is it? The answer, of course, depends on what we mean when we say philosophy. Heidegger-Nietzsche has famously, if perhaps a little too ominously, pronounced the end of metaphysics — the end of Western philosophy as we know it since the very beginnings of philosophy. This is to say the end of transcendental-speculative philosophy, and, at least by implication, the beginning of philosophy of becoming (for Heidegger, phenomenology).

And so, if by philosophy we mean deploying a conceptual matrix in order to re-present, speculate about, and even change reality, whether as or behind the veil of appearance, we will remain far off from and very foreign to Deleuze’s philosophical project. We will further misunderstand Deleuze, and this is where he parts ways with Heidegger, if we think his philosophy as working from the actual, the world of apparent or substantial forms, rather than from the virtual, the pure sensible that should not, if it is to have any formative power at all, be conceived of as given in or solidified into actual experience. This emphasis on the formlessness of forms, or the pure virtuality of the actual — rather than its groundedness in Being — is an overlooked yet necessary key to understanding the seriousness of Deleuze’s philosophical project, and so we will return to it over and again.

For now, however, let us simply note that Deleuze himself repeatedly stresses that transcendental empiricism is neither speculative nor abstract (representational thought), and that as such it is not about anything other than what Deleuze calls becoming-animal or becoming-invisible, which it makes possible for the mind that truly takes a hold of it — whether it expresses a concept (philosophy), an affect (art), or a function (science). Put differently, since the import or “meaning” of this kind of philosophy is nothing other than its formal expression — its expression as a form of life, or its alignment with the trajectory of becoming what it already is — the true value of this expression is the intensity with which it can act as what it is, or the extent to which it can produce a becoming-animal.

At its most intense then, non-representational philosophy should be capable of dissolving, or at least eroding, the ubiquitous structures of subjectivication that capture the energies of the body-mind, and which presence as nothing other than the actual perception and understanding, or the little more or less whimsical fascisms that the body-mind entertains to solidify perception and understanding into objects, and thought itself into stances or intellectual positions. It is these dissolutions of perceptual and conceptual solidity that restore to the actual its pure unbridled power, and unleash inherent therein capacities to affect and be affected.

“Already accomplished the moment you undertake it; unaccomplished as long as you don’t,” Deleuze’s transcendental empiricism, on proper application, re-forms the usual, naturalized, representational image of thought that haunts beings with infinity of petty stupidities, de-fetish-ises it, and returns thought to what it always was: a tool. The alchemy involved here is simple: turn the all-too-human, inert form identity re-production in perception and thought — the cause and the effect of our implicit belief in the “four shackles of representation”: identity, opposition, analogy, and resemblance — into a production of intensive difference in-itself, an impersonal explosion of un-mediated, pre-representational, differential univocity.

Is it true, then, as more than one commentator quipped, that it is impossible to reasonably disagree with Deleuze’s philosophy? Of course it is. Just as it is impossible to disagree with a gust of wind or mooing of a cow. Or, for that matter, life itself as it expresses completely and seamlessly in every instance of pure immanence. Where is there any (necessarily removed from experience, transcendental) room for disagreement? An underwater river in the depths of an ocean is ocean, is river. Their relationship need not be articulated with the heavy-handedness of the negative nor the dullness of the abstract, and yet nothing here is obscured. But further still, the ocean and the river, the guest and the host, are both effortlessly “actual without being real, ideal without being abstract”; that is to say, regardless of how they have been conditioned in the past, or how they condition each other in the present, they are always already unconditioned.

Dialectical thought, the image of thought implicit in the idea of disagreement — derived as it is from the necessarily abstract actual, from what is effectively already formed, and as such already past, dead — arrives always already a moment too late. This is precisely why Deleuze tells us that real action is never a question of agreement or disagreement, just as real knowledge is not a matter of fact or truth. The efficacy of both acting and knowing is rather a question of un-mediated alignment with what is obviously going on as it is going on; of responding to life in the same register, the same modality of becoming, as the becoming of life itself. Of making thought a life form capable of hijacking and exhausting the inertia of habit.

Hidden to speculative, abstract, dialectical, theoretical thought — the blunt tool of Deleuze’s fans and critics alike — remains this mystery in plain view: pure difference is both the virtual that lies nearest to the actual and that which makes it possible, its sufficient reason; as such, it is the mysterious inexactitude in God’s calculation, and the reason for why there is something rather than nothing: “if the calculation were exact, there would be no world”.

But Deleuze’s (intensive) difference in-itself is not the (extensive) dialectical difference in-itself (Badiou, Zizek), wherein difference neatly maps onto identity (the synthesis of the dialectic), but what Deleuze calls an “asymmetrical synthesis of the sensible”: a movement that is free from all identity conditions and thus cannot be apprehended by means of any actual operation alone, only its symptoms can.

This is important as from the viewpoint of representation, and so dialectical thought, intensity means an experience of intensity, an actual variation in sensation or thought that changes in degree or quantity as it intensifies; for Deleuze, however, intensity grows qualitatively: as it intensifies it changes in nature. And, unlike differential representation (Badiou), differential intensity arises at the intersection of both: qualitative, virtual, intensive difference prior to actualization (that which can) and quantitative, actual, extensive difference (that which does), the aligned doubling of which produces real change: it is the missing piece in God’s calculation.

Forensic Science Technicians

Forensic science technicians investigate crimes by collecting and then analyzing physical evidence found at the crime scene. They often specialize in areas such as DNA analysis or firearm examination, performing tests on weapons or on substances such as fiber, glass, hair, tissue, and body fluids to determine their significance to the investigation. Proper collection and storage methods of evidence are important to protect their validity. They also prepare reports to document their findings and the laboratory techniques used, and also provide valuable information and expert opinions to investigators.

When criminal cases come for trial, forensic science technicians often testify, as expert witnesses, on specific laboratory findings by identifying and classifying substances, materials, and other evidence collected at the scene of a crime. Some forensic science technicians often work closely with other experts or technicians. A forensic science technician may consult a medical expert about the exact time and cause of a death or a technician who specializes in DNA typing in hopes of matching a DNA type to a suspect.

Most employers prefer applicants who have at least two years of specialized training or associate degrees in applied science or science-related technology. Others prefer applicants with bachelor’s degrees in chemistry, biology, or forensic science. Career preparation in forensic science is also available through two year formal training programs that combine the teaching of scientific principles and theory with practical hands-on application in a laboratory setting with up-to-date equipment. Science technicians must have strong communications skills and should be able to work well with others. Excellent organizational ability, an eye for detail, and skill in interpreting scientific results are also important. Technicians usually begin work as trainees in routine positions, under the direct supervision of a scientist or an experienced technician. As they gain experience, they take on more responsibility and carry out assignments only under general supervision, and some eventually become supervisors.

On a typical day, a forensic science technician might perform some of the following duties – examine, test and analyze tissue samples, chemical substances, physical materials, and ballistics evidence, using recording, measuring, and testing equipment; interpreting laboratory findings and test results to identify and classify substances, materials, and other evidence collected from the crime scene; collect and preserve criminal evidence used to solve cases; confer with ballistics, fingerprinting, handwriting, documents, electronics, medical, chemical, or metallurgical experts concerning evidence and its interpretation; reconstruct the crime scene to determine relationships among pieces of evidence; prepare reports or presentations of findings, investigative methods, or laboratory techniques and even testify as expert witness on evidence or laboratory techniques in trials or hearings.

Giving Great Formal Presentations

For scientists who want to move ahead in their careers, the ability to give a truly great formal science presentation is a vital skill. Being able to give an outstanding presentation is important in all phases of your career. When you are interviewing for a new job, the presentation is almost always a major part of the interview process; often it is the first chance that your prospective coworkers get to see what you can offer. Even when you are comfortable in a stable position, you still need to be able to give a great presentation at a moment’s notice in order to advance your career.
In talking with scientists I have found that this ability can be a highly effective way to get noticed by management in an organization.

In addition, taking the time to prepare formal presentations can help your career in another way. As you take the time to organize your thoughts for a presentation you will find your overall understanding of the material improving. Most people aren’t born with the ability to consistently deliver a great presentation, but learning some basic skills and continuous practice can dramatically improve your presentations.

In any presentation you give, the primary goal is to communicate some idea or concept to your audience. The easiest way to really communicate with your audience is to capture their attention and really engage them in the material. One surefire way to do this is to display an appropriate amount of enthusiasm for your subject matter. If you present with too little energy, your audience will have no reason to pay attention to you. On the other hand, if you bounce around like a motivational speaker after 20 cups of coffee, you will not be taken seriously. The ideal balance is to let yourself express a sincere interest in your material. A second way to get the audience’s attention is to use overheads or slides that are useful and easy to read. Again, balance is the key; your overheads should not be too cluttered with information and graphics or be full of empty spaces. It is important to put time and thought into developing interesting and visually appealing overheads or slides, with each individual overhead communicating a distinct point.

Once you have captured the audience’s attention, you can really engage them in the material. Perhaps the single biggest key to keeping your audience engaged is to aim a little low in terms of the knowledge that you expect the audience to have. In most situations you will not just be presenting to experts in your field, but also to scientists who have only partial knowledge of the details of your field. As soon as you launch into heavy jargon, you run the risk of losing a good chunk of your audience. This method of breaking down your presentation into easy to understand pieces has the added benefit of increasing your own understanding of the material.
Another useful technique for engaging an audience is to organize your presentation into a story. Having a narrative to follow throughout the course of your talk can really help the listener to keep up, even if they are not familiar with the exact field that you are speaking on. On a related note, the more that you can illustrate the technical details with cartoons and other visual representations, the more successful your presentations will be. One well-designed figure that explains a concept or technique can be used in many different presentations, so it is worth your time to develop a distinctive and informative figure.

There are also a number of tricks and techniques that you can use to help your audience stay engaged with what you are saying. The most important aspect of your presentation style is your pacing; your goal is to find a pace of speaking and presenting that does not bore anyone or leave anyone behind. The best way to find this pace is to know your audience and adjust to any feedback you get from the audience during the early part of the talk. One good way to periodically slow down the pace of your presentation and make sure your audience can keep up is to explain what the axes are in the graphs that you are presenting. Graphs can be a wonderful way to illustrate important results or ideas, but they can also be a real barrier to understanding a talk that is a little outside of your area of expertise. Everyone who works in the field automatically knows what the graph is telling them, while those who are less familiar can easily get lost. Taking a moment to define the axes gets everyone on the same page and has the added bonus of helping you maintain a reasonable pace of presentation.

It is also crucial that you look at your audience as much as possible during your talk. When you are facing your audience, not only can they hear you better, but they will also be more motivated to pay attention if they know that you can see them losing focus. Of course, it is also much easier to get feedback from your audience when you are actually looking at them! One little trick to get yourself to look out at the audience is to think of yourself as Vanna White on the Wheel of Fortune. When you are pointing at something on screen, you don’t need to stare at it. Instead you can point like Vanna while facing the audience, allowing your audience can see and hear you.

Incorporating a joke into a presentation can be another way to keep your audience engaged. However, there are some caveats to consider when you are injecting humor into your presentation. The best jokes are delivered with a light touch. If your audience gets it, that’s great, wait a moment and then move on. If the audience doesn’t acknowledge the joke, you need to be able to move ahead with the talk rather than waiting for a laugh that probably won’t come. It goes without saying that you should also be careful not to use jokes with offensive content.

By using these techniques to capture your audience’s attention and keep them engaged, you will be able to deliver outstanding scientific presentations. Of course, the only way to develop the skills you need is to practice giving presentations as much as you can. Only through repeated practice and feedback can you master the art of giving great science presentations.

Behavioral Sciences Schools – Gaining an Education

Gaining a degree in behavioral sciences gives students the knowledge to understand relationships and the factors that affect them. Students are able to obtain a strong foundation by gaining and education through behavioral sciences schools. Accredited programs can be worked through while enrolled in one of several colleges that offer training.

Human behavior and actions are explored, which allows students to step into various fields related to behavioral sciences. Students should research the possible options to choose the program that focuses on the skills needed for their desired careers. Fields such as social psychology, ethology, and organizational behavior are some areas that are integrated into many of today’s degree programs as well as careers. Educational training is available at every level including graduate certificate programs. Programs can be pursued through concentrations, which can include:

Counseling
Sociology
Human Development
Students that don’t have a specific direction they want to follow may find associate degree programs highly beneficial. The field is explored through basic concepts and theories that prepare students for further education and some entry-level careers. Courses may include developmental psychology and introduction to sociology, which starts to build the skills needed for the industry. Business or government careers are obtainable upon completion of an accredited degree program.

Bachelor’s degree programs in behavioral science focus primarily on giving students a solid foundational understanding of the field. Through courses and class lectures students learn the techniques used to evaluate human behavior and interactions. Social environment is studied to help students understand why people make certain decisions. The different disciplines of the field give students the knowledge required for careers and continued education. Course subjects cover sociology, abnormal psychology, social research, and problems of society. Careers that center on human relationships and behavior are widely obtainable for students that complete programs. Students can step into positions as community health workers, assistant social services caseworkers, and more.

When students decide to pursue further education at the master’s degree level they work through concentrations. Areas of study can have students working through programs in public health, marketing, applied behavioral science, and more. Before working through coursework that is related to a concentration students will complete a core curriculum that establishes an advanced behavioral sciences understanding. Coursework stresses empirical and conceptual components of the field. Behavior development, direct observation, elderly care, scientific research and communication courses are some topics covered regardless of the specialization. Advanced careers as gerontologists, neuromarketers, and behavioral scientists are open to students that complete this level of education.

Behavioral analysis is examined inside a PhD degree program as students work through advanced research practices. Education focuses on developing research projects that explore new ways to work with individuals in regards to behavioral science. Students often become professors and behavioral health specialists.

Separation of Science and Religion

The expansion of human knowledge took place largely through the interaction of human beings with nature, fellow humans and forces of history. In this process, the existential condition of human beings, their basic needs and methods to satisfy themselves played a crucial role. The human existential nature comprises both natural endowments, the biological and mental peculiarities and cultural styles and achievements.

With the emergence of imperial political organisation, there took place large-scale growth in trade, commerce, technology and industrial production. This is revealed through the history of ancient civilisations like those of India, China, Egypt, Greece and Rome. With few exceptions, now a differentiation between the scientists and religious or priestly classes took place. The knowledge of science and technology had its uses in industry and warfare. These were the foundations of new empires and they were organised in a comprehensive institutional form. At this stage of social development, the magical practices were largely individualised, and the institutional organisation of science and religion was slowly being separated. This separation was often hazy but the specialised roles necessitated functional differentiation.

With the decline of the Graeco-Roman civilisation and the rise of Christianity, the Church had emerged in Europe as the most powerful social and political institution. It was a major setback to the process of differentiation between religious and scientific knowledge. As the religious worldview of medieval Christianity increased its influence through the church, the scope for scientific experiments and success of its humanistic and rational worldview declined. All knowledge was now subject to approval of religious authority represented by the Church. Its Seminaries were the only institutional organisations recognised for generation and communication of knowledge. This pattern continued for several centuries unit it was challenged by forces of renaissance and religious reformation during the 15th and 16th centuries.

The contributions to science by Galileo, Copernicus and Newton and the religious reforms initiated by Luther and Calvin made it possible that humanistic, rational and empirical forms of knowledge could slowly emerge. Luther and Calvin emphasised the role of individual over that of Church for religious salvation. Galileo and Newton offered scientific and experimental evidence instead of theological cosmology and brought the human being back into the natural scheme of universe. Slowly the nature of seminaries which were like theological schools changed. These were taken out of the control of the Church and taken over by the city councils of citizens for administration and cultivation of knowledge. The modern university system on secular basis of organisation, production and communication of knowledge thus came into being. This process of secularisation of knowledge in the European society took several hundred years and was aided by its own social, political, cultural and economic transformation.

Spiral, Spirituality and Social Matters

The Spiral

The Eastern worldviews tend to describe the world in cyclical terms. Life and death, creation and destruction, summer and winter, and time itself, are conceived in circular manner in which life repeats continuously. In the West, we see a linear worldview, in which human activity builds on itself to attain at an ongoing progressive change. From this I posit a pathway that is a combination of the Western and Eastern thought and affectuates the virtues of both while doing away with the flaws of both.

This pathway can be visualized as a spiral.

A spiral repeats cyclically along the X and Y dimensions while consistently rising along the Z dimension. The cycles of growth and reproduction – the cycles of natural growth and rebirth – the cycles of childhood, youth, adulthood and old age – continue as they do in nature. Meanwhile human activity builds on itself to affectuate ongoing progressive improvement. Science, technology, and economic well-being build on themselves to result in ongoing improvement in matters of civilization. Meanwhile natural cycles remain what they are, and people get to enjoy their benefits.

In the spiral model, people have the benefit of both the natural and the man-made. They are free to enjoy the richness and beauty of nature; free also to affectuate ongoing improvement in civilization. Both the natural and the man-made are honored, and people have the benefit of both.

The spiral model is congruent with rationality. A human being possesses both the physical aspect, which follows the laws of nature, and the intellectual and volitional aspect, from which he conceptualizes, invents, creates and builds. The first is congruent with nature; the second is the creator of civilization. As a being of both nature and civilization, the human being is happiest when he gets to enjoy the fruits of both nature and civilization – as such, of the rightful application of both the cyclical and the linear mentalities.

The cyclical model, by itself, does not allow for ongoing growth and improvement. The history of imperial China, which practiced the cyclical worldview in all matters, was one story repeated any number of times. Someone comes in to create a dynasty; the dynasty does well for a while; then someone in the dynasty governs badly; after which someone starts a revolution and puts another dynasty into place. This kept repeating through centuries, and China did not register ongoing improvement during those centuries. A person from the West would say, what a waste. And he would be right.

The linear model, where misapplied, also leads to undesirable outcomes. A generation might believe, as it itself goes from youth to adulthood to old age, that its changing attitudes reflect a linear progression in the consciousness of humanity. It may start with romantic love and sex and music, then go to business and science, then go to religion, and think that it is creating through its changing attitudes a linear progressive change in the world; but it would be wrong. What it is experiencing is progression from being one age to being another age – a natural cyclical alteration – and natural changes in attitudes that are functional of it being that age. Meanwhile at the same time there are in the world other generations that are of different ages; and these generations are prevented from going through their natural growth cycles by this generation claiming that its progression through natural cyclical changes comprises a linear progress that speaks for the the whole of humanity. There will always be young people; there will always be middle-aged people; and there will always be old people. Functional to the natural cycles, these will all want what is wanted by people of their age. To see one generation’s changing attitudes as linear progress, and as such reflecting the progress of humanity, is a vast error of judgment. These are natural, cyclical changes; and they will be such for any generation that comes to live on the planet Earth.

Some changes are reflection of natural cycles and are by their nature cyclical. Other changes are a reality of human activity building linearly upon itself. It is important to know which changes are which in order that they rightfully be approached and rightfully dealt with. Changes from youth to middle age to old age are natural and cyclical and will go on for as long as there is humanity. Whereas going from horse and buggy to personal computer is a progressive, linear change;a result of knowledge and its application building upon itself toward ever more advanced outcomes.

Cycles therefore are appropriate to things of nature, and linear progress to things of civilization, science and technology. For as long as people remain people, they cannot escape the first; and for as long as people remain interested in their economic and material well-being, they will want to partake in the second. A strong distinction must be drawn
between the natural matters – the matters that are cyclical in their logic – and matters of man-made reason, creation and productive activity – matters that can and should build linearly and progressively upon themselves.

For this reason I postulate the spiral model as a way to combine both nature and civilization in a way that is congruent with their reality and affectuates outcomes for humankind that are consistent with the logic of both and combining the benefits of each.

Spiritual Matters

The description of human being as possessing a natural aspect and the purely human intellectual-volitional nature may leave some unsatisfied. Someone might say, what about spirituality. My response is that the issue is irrelevant. Spirituality of one kind or another has always existed, in all kinds of social covenants and in all kinds of lifestyles. Native indigenous populations, nomadic tribes, agricultural societies, and industrial and information age societies, all had people practicing one or another kind of spirituality; and the right of people to have a spiritual orientation to life is not here under attack.

Rather the thinking relates to matters of physical and social reality. We are dealing with matters of nature and civilization – with matters that is of the human physical, emotional nature that is congruent with the non-man-made world of nature; and of the human intellectual, volitional nature that is uniquely human and that has created the man-made world of civilization. Possessing both aspects, people will have orientation toward both worlds; and the rational solution consists of maximizing their enjoment of both. This is as much the case for the native populations that believe in the Great Mystery as it is for the Asians who believe in Buddha or Syrians who believe in Allah or Southerners who believe in Christ.

Where religious and spiritual attitudes do become problematic is when they militate against either the physical nature or the intellectual-volitional nature, or against both. As someone who has intensively studied different kinds of spiritualities and religions, from ones with billions of followers to ones “out there,” I have found them used for all sorts of purposes; and most of these purposes are very much human. Whether it’s used to control one’s wife and one’s children, or to “scare people straight,” or to run communities, or to wield authority, or to reward people for collaborating and punish them for not collaborating, or to mold people’s personalities, or to overcome fear of death so that one would be willing to go to war, or to console oneself over bad things happening, spirituality and religion are for the most part tools of human agendas. These human agendas come, once again, either from the natural, physical, emotional aspect that is congruent with all of life; or from the intellectual-volitional aspect that is uniquely human. In either case, we are dealing with something that is a tool of either aspect – and, for as long as it is used for what it is used for, meant to be treated as such.

If the person has genuinely spiritual aspirations – if he wants to transcend the world, or to become enlightened, or to contact spirits, or to have high spiritual experiences, or to have a relationship with Christ, or to commune with nature – then it is his or her right to look for and practice the spiritual paths that exist toward that end or make his or her own. This is not what we are dealing with here. Nature and civilization exist both regardless of spirituality; and spirituality exists as much among tribes that live a fully natural lifestyle with no civilization component as it exists among people who live fully in civilization and think themselves beyond nature.

Within civilization itself there have been many spiritual masters and leaders, as well as many followers of these masters and leaders. Some had a cyclical view of life; others a linear view of life. Once again that is not the issue at hand. It is possible to have spirituality whether one lives in a world of cycles or in a world of lines. And it is likewise possible, though not necessary, to have spirituality when one lives in a spiral.

Oriental Beliefs

Whereas many indigenous populations possess beliefs that are affirming fully of nature and have no use for civilization – and whereas many white people possess beliefs that are affirming only of civilization and see nature merely as resources – it is in the Orient that we find beliefs affirming of both nature and civilization. Japanese tradition stresses extreme refinement, excellence, and self-control; it also respects nature and tells people to tread lightly thereon. In China, we have seen two belief structures exist side by side: Confucianism that seeks a deified social order of “li” and Taoism that seeks wisdom in nature and outside society. In both cases, civilization has existed for a long time side by side with nature, and people had benefits of both worlds.

From the standpoint of the Orient, both the white people who blindly and stupidly tramp on nature and the nomads who have no use for civilization come across as barbarians. Whereas in their more crystalline arrangement, nature was honored while civilization was cultivated by its side. The Orient has had success in maintaining the world’s longest-running civilizations; yet the Orient too has had a flaw in its mentality.

This flaw consists of its failure to achieve ongoing, linear scientific, technological and economic progress until it was made to embrace the same by the West’s technological superiority. The linear thinking, which the Orientals and the indigenous are right to claim inadequate for describing the world of nature until it is taken to a high enough level of knowledge and rarefecation, is nevertheless useful for creating machines, canons of knowledge, and ongoing technological and economic growth. It also becomes adequate for describing nature when taken to a high enough level – something that the Orientals did not expect. China was caught off-guard by the West’s rising and had no way to prepare itself for what came at it in 19th century. It is only now that they are beginning to recover and to regain their place in the world.

Of China’s religions, it is Taoism rather than Confucianism that has been of more interest to people outside of China. In part, the reason is that the people in the West who take interest in Eastern religions are typically the people who have disagreements with Western religions – disagreements as such with societies in which these have strong influence. They seek the Taoist path of getting their minds out of such societies and into more clear perception – a purpose that Taoism is uniquely suited to fulfill. In fact, Taoist techniques are perfect for deconstructing bigotry and could be used in the academia to help students get rid of prejudice and prepare them for scientific inquiry. Whereas Confucianism does not do any such thing, and being more socially authoritarian than the Western religions poses to Western seekers a much more limited interest.

According to Confucianism, as much as according to Solomon, all human things are cyclical and generic – “there is nothing new under the sun.” Of course there are many things new under the Sun, from computers to mobile phones to, well, death metal; but what we see here is an inherent clash of worldviews. Are all things social made of cycles, in which everything remains fundamentally the same, or is there a linear progression toward one or another outcome? Once again, we are seeing possibilities for both; and either is capable of desirable or undesirable results.

The physical, emotional nature of people is congruent with nature and will be common through ages and generations. Their intellectual and volitional nature, being uniquely human, can and will when free to do so produce things of innovation and ingenuity. We see in society therefore both the cyclical qualities and the linear qualities; and these are again optimized best in the situation of the spiral. Along the X and Y dimensions – the dimensions of the natural – cycles govern. Along the Z dimension – the dimension of the man-made – rules the line.

Social Progress

While matters of science, technology and economy are therefore best treated as linear, and matters of nature as cyclical, there are matters that are not solely either. One of these matters is what is known as social progress, especially as far as women’s rights are concerned. Is there such a thing as social progress, and is it a rational thing to believe in? The history presents a mixed verdict.

Under Tang dynasty in China, in 8th century, women had many of the rights and freedoms that are enjoyed by the better off women in the West. After the Tang dynasty, Chinese women lost most of these rights and freedoms. Under the Roman Empire, women enjoyed many rights and freedoms in 1st century BC and 1st century AD; which rights and freedoms were lost when Roman Empire became Christian. In the West, we have seen periods of improvement, periods of degradation, and periods with outcomes that were mixed. Renaissance, Enlightenment and Romanticism, early 20th century, and 1960s and 1970s, saw many gains by women in the West. The Reformation, the Victorian era, the period from 1930s through 1950s, the 1980s, and the Bush-Eminem-Bin Laden decade, saw many of these gains taken away.

One ongoing problem has been dischordance between what is advocated by leaders of feminism and what most women want. The bulk of women do not want to go without male partners, or to be denied the benefits of beauty and romance, or to be childless, or to be nasty mean-spirited harpies, or to live a grim workaholic existence without anyone to appreciate them. They want to be women; they want to have fruitful relationships with men. Some want to have careers; some want to be stay-at-home parents; some want both. In this matter the question to ask is, What is it that constitutes progress toward greater well-being for women? And is it the same as the directions espoused by the leaders of feminism?

The verdict here also appears to be mixed. Most women do not want to live as women did in the Middle Ages; but neither do they want to live the way that Andrea Dworkin and Catherine McKinnon want women to live. Many want a more wholesome, holistic existence in which they can have a fulfilling home life and a fulfilling work life; some want either one or the other. If there is such a thing as social progress, it is therefore not the same as what Marxist feminists believe social progress to be. Rather it is a progression toward a point at which more women have a chance at an existence they find fulfilling, and in which they have greater choice as to what kind of lifestyle they can have.

What is the reality of the situation? Same as above. Men and women are both beings of nature and beings of intellectual and volitional consciousness. They possess a physical, emotional aspect that is of nature and that is and will always be gendered; and they possess an intellectual and volitional nature in which men and women are the same. Many leaders of feminism, operating from the position of the intellectual and volitional nature, have denied women the right to their physical, emotional nature, and in so doing have alienated many women, severely sabotaging the cause of women’s empowerment and women’s rights.

What, then, is social progress? If there is such a thing as a social progress, it can be summarized in one word: Choice. I do not of course mean the abortion debate, which was a manufactured controversy to tie up liberal resources in the battle over abortion while leaving them away from addressing real issues such as domestic violence; I mean choice over one’s lifestyle and over one’s self. Choice – meaningful, real choice – is the essence of freedom. The more meaningful choices that people have, the greater the freedom, the more advanced the society.

I mean therefore more people having a chance at a life that they would want. In matters of man-woman relationships, it means creating better relationships that work both for the women and for the men according to facts of male and female physical and emotional nature. And in matters of business, science, politics, and all other endeavors involving intellectual and volitional nature, it means women attaining complete equality with men.

This, once again, is based upon a calculus that the human being contains aspects that are congruent with nature and aspects that are uniquely human. In matters concerning aspects that are uniquely human, is applicable the rational and progressive logic of full equality. In matters that are natural and gendered, is applicable the logic congruent with that gendered nature: The logic of men and women coming together in fruitful relationships to fulfil their gendered nature and to produce and sustain new life.

Once again, optimization is achieved through understanding the nature of the matter. A human being, possessing both the natural aspect and the intellectual-volitional aspect, will benefit from both being honored and applied where such are appropriate. This is as much the case for the natural, physical aspect as it is for the non-gendered intellectual-volitional aspect.

One classic error on this matter has been feminists claiming that the existence of the sex industry that caters to men proves an ongoing male domination. Rather the reason is the differences between men’s and women’s sexuality – a function, once again, of the differences between the physical, gendered natures of men and women. Many men want to look at naked dancing women; very few women want to look at naked dancing men. The solution to this is not attacking the sex industry catering to men, but rather creating an analogous industry catering to needs of women, based on what turns them on and what they want to see, hear, read or experience. Male rockers and rappers turn women on in the same way as naked women dancers turn men on; and for as long as such things exist there is some equality in this matter.

Other errors of feminism – such as their referring to mothers as “breeders” and their attacks on romance, beauty and sexuality – have likewise done much to hold back real social progress. Without mothers, they would not be alive; as for romance, beauty and sexuality, these are some of life’s greatest joys, both for women. and for men Such blundering misdirections of feminism have been a vast drain on the cause of women’s rights and do not belong as part of any agenda that dares to call itself progressive. Whereas confronting the real wrong facing women – domestic violence – is a burning matter that requires urgent attention of anyone who cares about the world in which we live.

Will there be women who will want nothing to do with men and relationships? Of course there will be such women; and they deserve to have as much the right to their choices as does anyone else. If these women genuinely want to improve the lot of women, the best thing they can do is help other women stand up to abuses of power that many men like to inflict on their partners, instead of attacking women for wanting to be loved or for wanting to be beautiful or for wanting fulfilling relationships with men. With a class of butch women who have the strength to stand up to bullies, there will be defenders of women against abusive partners; and standing up to these bullies, not attacking women for wanting love or romance or children, actually has a chance of genuinely improving the lot of women on Earth.

Six Steps to a Career in Computer Science

Computer science is not for everyone. If you like math and solving puzzles, then you will probably enjoy computer programming. Give it a try and see if it’s right for you. However, if you find puzzles to be tedious and frustrating then you should probably consider another line of work. Debugging computer programs can take hours of focused work with little reward until the end. Some people find this sort of work stressful.

If you think you have what it takes, here are six steps to launch your career in computer science and maintain a high salary:

Study math in high school. Computer programs rely heavily on algebra, with variables, functions, etc. Try to take the highest math classes your high school offers. Computer programmers sometimes employ trigonometry, calculus, and linear algebra depending upon the application. Take any computer classes offered as well.

Take computer science in college. While some folks can get a programming job with a high school diploma or associate’s degree, most employers require a four-year bachelor’s degree. Each university is different but the major is usually called “computer science”, “software engineering” or “computer engineering”. If they offer more than one that’s even better! Find out which department has the best reputation for producing skilled computer programmers.

Learn a programming language used in the industry. Some universities only teach “toy” languages because they are well suited for teaching computer science theory. If this is the only thing on your resume, employers will not be impressed. Decide what type of work you’d like to pursue (web development, desktop applications, etc.) and find out which are the most commonly used languages in that industry.

Complete a warm up project. There’s an old catch-22 about needing experience to get a job, and needing a job to get experience. A good way to gain programming experience is to volunteer on an open source project. Just choose a project that interests you. You can either start a new project on your own or contribute to an existing project on SourceForge. Prospective employers will be impressed by your initiative and you can even show them excerpts of your code as a sample.

Navigate your career path. Recent college graduates generally start in an entry-level position. With a good attitude and work ethic, you can move up the ladder to senior engineer in about five years. This may mean moving between companies. It’s common for employees to change jobs every year or two in high tech industries. Sometimes that’s the fastest way to get ahead and find a job you really enjoy.

Stay up to date. The technology of computers is always evolving rapidly. Make sure to continuously learn new developments in the industry. This will ensure a long and prosperous career. However, beware of short-term fads and don’t waste your time and effort to learn about them.

Computer Science Still an In-Demand Career

The age of computer is within us now and what better way to advance into the future than to embrace this era of information technology. Many people are so engrossed with technology these days that they would not hesitate upgrading their gadgets and other devices as new models are introduced in the market. Additionally, most organizations also operate today with the aid of electronic data processing systems while students make their research and other assignments faster with the help of computers.

Students pursuing courses in computer science, computer programming and other information technology (IT) related courses are on the right track. IT careers still have a bright future in the U.S. including Pennsylvania despite the reality that many companies are outsourcing their workload. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has shown that more IT jobs are being created and the rate is faster than they are outsourced to other countries. It also confirmed that computer skills application will increase in areas such as healthcare, retail trade and construction.

Various IT-related courses are available today for high school graduates or even for professionals who want to change their career path or improve their current careers. These include Computer Systems Software Engineering, Computer Applications Software Engineering, Systems Analyst, Database Administration and Network Systems and Data Communication Analyst. These courses can lead to some of the fastest growing jobs through 2014, according to the Labor Statistics Bureau. They are also among the top 10 jobs with computer or programming degree listed by CNN.com and CareerBuilder.com. Employment and wage in the computer science (CS ) field is seen to go up by 68 percent until 2014.

CS deals with the theories of information and computation or the study of algorithmic processes. It has four important areas as identified by the CSAB – theory of computation, algorithms and data structures, programming methodology and languages and computer elements and architecture.

In colleges and universities such as in Pennsylvania, this discipline normally delves into the computation theory, concurrency theory, analysis of algorithms and systems, databases, graphics and programming. A major part of the course usually provides college students hands-on training covering software applications, computer programming, online data and information and computer networking. A Computer Science education can be earned in two ways – either by getting a Bachelor’s degree or an Associate’s degree. One can undergo training online or by going to a traditional school.

An associate degree is a two-year general program that tackles operations, problems and solutions as well as designing computer systems. Students who choose this program are taught about theory, hardware design, applications and programming. The emphasis is more on the basic skills that an individual may need in performing his or her job. This degree program is ideal for people who want to land an entry level job right away and for professionals seeking advanced education in the field of computer programming.

A bachelor’s degree in CS, on the other hand, has a wider and more extensive coverage. This four-year course is also more mathematical in nature. Subjects taught in this program include theories of algorithms, programming languages and database management.

Graduates of Computer Science have excellent job opportunities ahead of them. They can work in different fields such as business, government and the academe. From the present through 2014, a 40 percent growth is seen in the demand for computer scientists with an expected median wage of $81,000.

Earning Your Computer Science Degree Online: A Computation of the Many Advantages

Have you always loved to tinker with things? Do you have a compulsion for computing or an addiction to addition? Maybe you have an incurable analytical bent that just won’t be straightened short of fully comprehending every conceivable theory, approach and analysis to a given problem or challenge.

Those of you who have conducted thorough analyses and constructed flowcharts for the feasibility of online studies, take note. A comprehensive overview into the strategies and protocol of earning a computer science degree online has commenced. Get out of your mental loop and pause for the real scoop. Class is now in session.

Divisions of degrees

In the field of computer science, a degree is not a degree. That’s right, students: computer science entails a variety of subspecialties. Popular concentrations include Computer Programming, Technology Networking, Systems Analysis, Network Administration, and Support Specialist.

You must also decide whether to take a hard or soft approach when seeking the best solution for your situation. Some computer science disciplines focus on hardware; others concentrate on the software side. Your particular interests and aptitudes are the main determinants of which tack you should take.

Next, determine what degree level is required for your chosen career. Computer science degrees are available at associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s levels. Many specialized certifications are also offered. Gather employer-specific data to determine what is required.

A shocking discovery

If you are new to formal computer science education, you may be startled to learn that most degree programs involve very little computer coursework. You may find this difficult to compute, but there is a logical explanation for this phenomenon.

Computer science degrees focus on the theories that underlie computer operations. Strong emphasis on mathematics, data organization, and programming are the main centers of attention. Such skills are mandatory to effectively repair, troubleshoot, or develop technological innovations.

Online format adds to the equation

Whether you currently work in the computer science field and desire career advancement, are seeking an entry-level position, or desire a career change – virtual studies supply much-needed flexibility. Thanks to the same technology you seek to undertake the formal study of, you may earn a computer science degree online.

Complete coursework at your convenience on a schedule structured to suit your specific needs. Whether you are eager for educational enhancement and accelerated job advancement, or prefer a more leisurely learning style- online studies are ideal.

Don’t forget to factor in the lower costs of distance learning into your calculations. There is no need to physically relocate or interrupt your current income to commence computer science studies. Tuition costs for online computer science degree programs are comparable to those of traditional technological study.

Locate your likeliest source of learning

Start by conducting a basic internet search engine inquiry. Your screen will promptly load with legions of Elearning opportunities. Fine-tune the possibilities by identifying institutions that offer the subspecialty or certification you want.

Next, conduct a comparative analysis. Find a program that best suits your educational, occupational, and lifestyle needs. Be duly advised that the unmatched flexibility of online study it is a double-edged blade.

You must have sufficient self-motivation and discipline to commit the needed time and effort to insure academic success. Use that analytical head of yours for precision scheduling of your daily routine. This should assure allocation of an ample daily allotment of attention to your academic agenda.

Aim high and follow through

Although you may commence your computing career in the technical arena, logical progression into management is easily attainable. As a field that is growing exponentially, the technological territory is wide open for expansion and new development.

In fact, most people who pursue a computer science degree online are already employed in the vast industry of technology. Thus, a popular academic option is advanced study at the master’s or doctoral levels. The superior analytical and reasoning skills you already possess will go a long way toward beginning or furthering a computer science career.

Computer Science Education Kits

A massive change is coming to the ICT curriculum, a subject that the government has now deemed irrelevant. As of September 2014 ICT will no longer be taught, instead the new subject of Computing will replace the old ICT syllabus.

This change has been implemented with backing from heads of industry. The department of education has said that it hopes the proposed changes will help England retain a competitive edge in the global digital economy.

The implementation of Computer Science may look attractive form an industry point of view; however what does it mean for teachers and pupils who have little or no experience of programming or understanding how a computer works.

Like myself, most teachers will have to learn this new subject as we teach it. The department of education has promised to release the complete new curriculum in autumn 2013, leaving only a year to prepare.

One of the problems I foresee is that the majority of pupils will have no parents, uncles, aunts or family friends with any computer science experience. This will make teachers the only port of call for any queries; hence it is vital that we really know this new subject inside out. Personally I feel that the sooner we get to grips with what will be expected of us the fairer it will be on the pupils and the less chance for any nasty surprises.

So what am I doing to prepare for the new curriculum? Firstly I have looked into the new technologies that have kick started this change. The name on everyone’s lips is the Raspberry Pi.

The Raspberry Pi was released in February 2012 with the aim to attract more students into computer science at university, it has been recommended by companies such as Google for use in schools. What is the Raspberry Pi? It is a very small computer which can be plugged into a monitor and keyboard.

The clear set out and well laid out diagrams makes the Raspberry Pi ideal for teaching the components of a computer. It also has built in programs for spreadsheets, word processing and playing videos. While these functions make it a useful computer the main attraction of the computer is how easy it is to program.

While on its own the Raspberry Pi could be used to implement the new computer science curriculum there are companies who have been working with the Raspberry Pi to make computer science more exciting to teach.

By allowing pupils to program an object they can see and interact with, the real world applications of computer science can be quickly realised.

The hands on approach to computer science will be sure to demystify a subject that has for too long been taught only in universities. Any fear of an unfamiliar topic of study is likely to be forgotten as the pupils are swept away with an enthusiasm to program a robot.

These kits are specifically designed to be ready straight out of the box and intuitive for new users who are unacquainted with technology. They are also great entrance to further computer science studies for both boys and girls.