The Importance of Being Earnest

These pages reflect an obsession with structure and purpose, of which the first is incidental and the the second fundamental.


The advent of WWW was for me timely. When I first managed to get full interactive internet access in 1994 I had been for sometime increasingly keen to get into writing something. Deciding what to write about, and deciding how to structure the work, were big problems for me. When I started working with HTML I immediately felt that this was my medium, just what I needed. I still haven't decided what to write about, or how to structure it. This is made much easier now because I don't really have to chose in the sense in which one does have to chose to write a book. On the question of what to write the fact that readers will dip into whatever they find of interest, rather than acquire something which is offered as a coherent whole, makes it easier to explore several different possibilities at once. On the structure side again, no single choice is necessary. The medium makes natural a much higher degree of detailed structuring than is normal in the more linear printed media, and permits the presentation of several different structured perspectives on the same topic. I need to have structure, that was always and remains important to me, but I don't need to chose a single structure.


I like to know why I am doing something. I always like to have some purpose for what I am doing. Furthermore, I find that by far the most frequent problem I have with what other people are doing is not how well they are doing it, but how well they have thought out their purposes. The tradition of academic freedom and the principle that knowledge is a good in itself without consideration of applicability, result in a large proportion of academic research being blighted by simple irrelevance to any worthwhile end.

So purpose is a metatheme of this space.

Purposeful Philosophy


Everything in Factasia flows from a single simply stated purpose:
to promote the good and fight evil.
This provides a starting point for both:

A Personal Philosophy
A Philosophical System
in which philosophy encompasses all.
is not:

half-baked answers to important questions
rather than
fully-baked answers to "academic" questions

To promote the good is to seek to influence the future (significant changes take time).

So, FACTASIA is, in part, Philosophy as Cultural Engineering.

Influencing the future and understanding the future go hand-in-hand.

The factastic view is that one cannot influence without understanding and one cannot understand unless engaged in an attempt to influence.

Engineering is a creative activity, it involves design before fabrication. He who understands the design is best place to forecast the outcome of the implementation.

UP HOME © RBJ created 1995/5/16 modified 1998/06/28