Monday, August 27, 2007

Delightful ambiguity

I saw a book on a professor's shelf today whose spine said "Ideal Code, Real World". For a brief second I thought, "Is that about programming or ethics?" Then I realized I was in the office of an ethicist. I just found out that the complete title (not appearing on the spine) is: Ideal Code, Real World: A Rule-Consequentialist Theory of Morality. Alas.

4 comments:

? said...
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Kenny said...

I just saw the book title "Word Processing in Groups", which sounds like it's about online collaboration on documents, but is actually about recognizing whether a sequence of generators of a group evaluates to the identity.

Justin said...

Context is key. Left as a comment here, the title very much sounds like algebra. It was only after reading through it that I noticed the deviant reading involving computers.

Brendan said...

"code" is a fun one.

there's lawrence lessig's book, "Code: and other laws of cyberspace". He uses "code" for both legal code and computer code (and claims computer code attains some of the functionality of legal code in a computer-mediated world).

I like "ethical calculus", which reminds me of "propositional calculus". Maybe we need an ethical logic. Logic of ethics. An ethics algebra? I Actually first saw the term in a computer game, "alpha centauri". Maybe they ripped it off from some science fiction novel, I don't know.