I hope you find my wikipedia presence interesting and stimulating. Please feel free to jump over to my talk page and add a section if you'd like to say hi. If you'd like to engage me in a civil, friendly discussion on any of my subpages here on wikipedia, please feel free to do so on the discussion page of that subpage.
By the way, I used to be sever around these parts. I know it's not compatible with Wikipedia's rules to have multiple user accounts, but I don't use the old account at all anymore. (Am I supposed to mark that old account as a sock puppet account of this one? Or is that done only when someone is actually misusing the secondary accounts? If you know, please answer on my talk page.)
Would you like to play in my /sandbox?
I have a fairly strong background in the natural sciences with an emphasis on physics. Physics has held a fascination for me ever since I was young. I watched a PBS special on the life of Richard Feynman, read his autobiography soon thereafter, and I was hooked. Since attending elective philosophy classes at Northwestern University as part of my undergraduate education, I have come to recognize philosophy as the ancestor of natural science, as philosophy was the earliest discipline to apply rigor to thinking.
Unfortunately, in my own experience, most people the world over do not understand the basics of science as a logical framework nor as a discipline; I have even met many people with advanced degrees in various technical disciplines that lack awareness of the nuance of these fundamentals.
Of great interest to me is the debate involving creationism and evolution in public schools. I find this topic particularly noteworthy because it has proven a rich source of understanding others' misconceptions regarding science itself as well as specific scientific topics. In my desire to contribute constructively to this debate, I have collected my thoughts in the following subpages (please feel free to engage me in civil, friendly discussion on the discussion pages of any of these subpages):
- /What Is Science? - a concise definition
- /Is Creationism Science? - a scientific approach to the debate
- /Common Specious Arguments Against Evolution - debunking myths about evolution
I am an enterprise Java developer by trade (though by no means limited to just Java as a programming language). My interests in this area tend toward object-oriented theory.
I am an avid amateur photographer. I find the technical part of photography to be just as interesting as the artistic part and, as I shoot digital, I am always improving my skills with Adobe Photoshop. I aim to document the most significant aspects of my knowledge with respect to digital photography.
At Northwestern, I enrolled in a wine tasting mini-course at the student union (no, not for credit—I'm still amazed that some non-culinary colleges have for-credit courses for things like wine tasting). I took the course mainly to get the lay of the land; I had seen adults in situations where they had to engage in the ritual of selecting and drinking a bottle of wine with dinner, and I found it exceedingly easy to spot those who were out of their comfort zone. So to know a little about wine seemed a very good skill to have tucked away in my back pocket.
Beyond learning the basics—the significance of vintage and varietal—I found that I often picked up on flavors and odors the instructor mentioned while sipping. It was a surprise to me to discover such varied notes as white pepper and blueberry could be combined in a way that was pleasant, and I noticed over the 13-week course that as I paid more attention to flavor, I enjoyed food and drink more while taking in less calories on the whole. Since then I've struck out on my own, tasting wines all across the spectrum of quality and price (which I find often operate indepedent of one another in the wine world). I still get a much bigger charge when I can find a good $12 bottle than a great $35 bottle.
While I'm by no means a connoisseur, the tasting mini-course saved me from wasting a lot of money trying to figure out the wine basics. It also saved me from spending a lot more money on bad wine (though I'm sure that number still tallies higher than I'd like). I hope to pass on a little of what I've figured out to save someone else a little money and time along the way.
- /Starting Wine - a primer for someone who knows nothing at all about wine