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User:Ergo Sum

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10:26, Monday, October 22, 2018 (UTC)

User:Ergo Sum
User talk:Ergo Sum
User:Ergo Sum/sandbox
Special:Contributions/Ergo Sum




Welcome to my user page. Should you care to know, my interests and contributions are fairly eclectic. As you can see from my userboxes, I enjoy law and philosophy but I also am fond of science. A hobby of mine is studying all things naval and maritime. I observe the rules of consensus of Wikipedia and assume good faith. I do my best to make no mistakes, but as a human (N.B. I am not a bot), I am fallible. If you believe I have acted in error or (even better) just want to say "hello," feel free to stop by my talk page. Insofar as one may generalize, I am both an inclusionist and an incrementalist, but there are certainly exceptions to such rules.

On my username


The name "Ergo Sum" derives from the famous proposition by French philosopher René Descartes, "cogito ergo sum," which translates from the Latin as "I think, therefore I am." This statement was the conclusion of his argument for the proof of the existence of the self as a thinking being, thereby ameliorating the problem of philosophical skepticism (although Descartes himself treated this problem only as methodological skepticism). The immense power of this simple statement permits the existence of knowledge and validates the epistemic endeavor. While innumerable philosophers went on to challenge various aspects of this argument, the Cartesian impact is still pervasive throughout the field of philosophy today.

The next question you might rightly ask is, "what does this have to do with Wikipedia?" Right. As an encyclopedia, Wikipedia is (ideally) a repository of human knowledge, which is to say, it contains all of and only that which is true. The veracity of a postulation may be tested empirically or metaphysically (the latter being logically necessary due to Hume's problem of induction), but all inquiries rest on the presupposition that the acquisition of knowledge is, in fact, possible. As such, the organization of inquiry into a methodological study of knowledge, epistemology, is forever indebted to Descartes.

It should be noted that Descartes is not alone in deserving laudation by those who cherish the rigorous and systematic study of reality, which, if not the definition, is at least the essence of philosophy. My interests being very much biased in favor of the Enlightenment, some of my other favorites include: Immanuel Kant, Jean Jaques Rousseau, John Locke, Thomas Hobbes, John Stuart Mill, Francis Bacon, Benjamin Constant, Adam Smith, and William Blackstone.


Working Man's Barnstar.png The Hard Worker's Barnstar
Amazing job cleaning up List of Georgetown University alumni‎‎ into a very respectable list article. You are a champion for seeing that through! Patrick, oѺ 22:48, 7 November 2015 (UTC)
Special Barnstar Hires.png The Special Barnstar
Great job writing Angelo De Donatis and promoting it to the Main Page! Its rare to see this level of article quality in DYK. Look forward to seeing more articles from you! MX () 00:16, 2 August 2017 (UTC)

General thoughts on my editing methodology

Language & Grammar
OEDThis user uses Oxford spelling.
... in.Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which this user will not put.
This user thinks that too many people have no idea how to use words that they should have learned in grade two.
Majority ≠ right This user recognizes that even if 300,000,000 people make the same mistake, it's still a mistake.
byThe passive voice may be used by this user.
This user supports the use of the
Oxford comma.
This user understands grammatical gender historically preceded and is independent of natural gender.
Latin Plurals: "Data is are..." This user uses "data", "media", "memoranda", "criteria", and "agenda" as the plurals of "datum", "medium", "memorandum", "criterion", and "agendum".

When making edits regarding the substance of an article, I tend to restrict myself to those articles that fall within my area of expertise or areas in which I have substantial non-expert knowledge. Aware of my own views and beliefs, I consciously consider my edits to ensure they are not influenced by these and strictly conform with Wikipedia's neutral point of view policies. I will also make edits of a non-substantive nature on articles with which I am less familiar regarding the correction of grammar, punctuation, and syntax. I believe (and hope) that the English Wikipedia should be written with the utmost conformity to the conventions of Standard English.

A note on "Standard English"

I am very much aware that some would object to the use of "Standard English" or would disagree as to what it comprises. However, I and many linguists would counter that there is a clearly identifiable core that exists by formal or informal consensus of syntactic and orthographic rules that constitute "proper" (for lack of a better word) English. Nonstandard dialects and transient or minor sociolects are absent from this core. Argumentum ad populum unaccompanied by further support does not constitute a valid basis for linguistic propriety. Accordingly, I will defer to the broader body of academic literature on matters of Standard English and, in instances in which there is legitimate academic disagreement, I will attempt to replace the term or device in question with one that enjoys more universal acceptance. Whenever possible, I will make every attempt to avoid pedantry or creating a perception of such. I also actively observe the Wikipedia community consensus regarding variations in English by country, though when in doubt, I will default to American English. Do consult the userboxes above for my stances on more specific matters.

Articles created

The following are articles and other pages (excluding redirects and disambiguation pages) I've created, unless otherwise noted:





Major contributions (but not created by me)

Daily Wikipedia

The Signpost
1 October 2018

Useful links


Committed identity: c91580840e99daa0d5637593c4a24a05f3d313b39e0dca792f83435f1bdb803bbd6e516554e1e6eb95175e78674­a8f482521a722dbc3d967ef1193cda15eca21 is an SHA-512 commitment to this user's real-life identity.

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