The main theme of my research is that the philosophical problem of induction is an artifact of a bad turn taken in the early 19th century, by which induction came to be conceived as a logic of propositional inference that depends on a suppressed uniformity principle. In antiquity and from Bacon to Whewell, induction was instead conceived as a logic of classification.
For several years at Stanford University, I taught a seminar on the history of scientific methods and a seminar on moral foundations of capitalism. In 2011, I taught a course on history of science at Stevens Institute of Technology, and in fall 2012, I taught the capitalism seminar for the Political Theory Project at Brown University. I'll be back at Brown in fall 2013 teaching a seminar on Ayn Rand.
“A great class. Frankly, it was one of the best I’ve ever taken and by a wide margin the most thought provoking.”
“By far been the most challenging and most rewarding course I’ve taken thus far at Stanford.”
“I’ve never had as much fun doing readings, writing papers and learning as I did in these two courses.”
“I’ve always liked precision of logic but wasn’t aware of how it could be applied to morality.”
“It’s one of those classes that changes the way you look at things—which is perhaps the greatest compliment a class can get.”
After spending twenty years in the computer business, I went back to school and got a PhD in history from Stanford. I mostly now research and teach the history of philosophy of science, but I also teach some history of 20th century political philosophy.