Books
Overview
Here are my (not very impressive) attempts at writing books. Mostly in the form of aborted projects, but also, some ideas in progress.
A few words on the evolution of my ideas for books.
Each volume is available online in A4 PDF and HTML, and is intended to be made available in POD hard copy through Amazon.
A triad of book projects related to Positive Philosophy.
These ideas are not entirely dead, though they never got very far as book projects. Some of the ideas have evolved into my current project. Some of the projects here may yet be revived or merged into future projects going outside the confines on analytic philosophy.
Introduction
A few words on the evolution of my ideas for books.
Format

The distinguishing characteristic of the material I am presenting is that it is linar, and is intended to be fairly long. Usually it is also plain prose, but I do have one impossibly large project which contains formal mathematical material.

The reason why this is a distinguishing characteristic is because before I ever attempted a book I was seduced by the "World Wide Web" and into the conviction that I should do hypermedia rather than linear prose. I found that to be less straightforward than I anticipated, and have since continually experimented with form working both in hypermedia and in linear prose.

I have not yet cracked it, but I don't think the choice between linear and hyper- media is really my main problem. My present expectation is to continue with both, at least in the hypermedia something comes out. I hope that eventually a book will appear, and that once over that hurdle a productive pattern will emerge.

This material is produced as PDF documents so that it can be published using Amazon's POD (print on demand) capability (see: CreateSpace.com. Usually I set up the process to produce the smallest size of page acceptable to Amazon for a prose book, and a larger format for a book with formal content. Versions are made available on this web site, but these are not the same format as the one for POD publication. The informal "books" are available as two-column A4 pdf documents and also in HTML. The formal volumes are available in single column A4.

The sources are all LaTeX, though sometimes as ProofPower LaTeX.

A Short History of My Attempts

There really is not much material here at all, these are all pathetic little starts which get nowhere at all! However, though I once thought of all my false starts as cul-de-sacs in a lengthy search for a viable projects, I can now see that they are all minor variations in the formulation of one project, which I will figure out how to do.

My first project was called "Philosophical Revolutions" which I worked on in 1999. My ostensible reason for abandoning this before it got very far was doubt about the historical content (and my ability to do that kind of thing to a satisfactory standard). This was turning out to be a significant proportion of the whole, and I had little confidence in my ability to do it well. Since then I have continued to struggle with how to present historical material, since I usually think that historical material is esswential to the presentation of my philosophy, and am acutely aware of my limitations as a historian.

In retrospect it now seems that there was a certain inevitability in my having at this time (though it was not to become conspicuous to me until the next year) a fairly comprehensive collapse in my confidence as a writer of any kind.

The material on "Rationality and Utopia" was begun in 1999 as "Engineering the Future", (getting nowhere at all), resumed in 2002 under the title "Evolution, Rationality and Utopia" (the "evolution" bit arising from the influence of Howard Bloom's books), with some more work in 2005 dropping the "Evolution".

In 2008 I started the "Anarchy is Order" material, in my conception of which material on evolution is pretty essential. There is behind this much more in my utopian conception, but not much sign that this will ever get onto paper. Like a cat a played with this idea in my head, for a while convinced that it would fly, but it did not, though I cherish the hope that something not to far removed from it can be revived if I can first do some more theoretical work.

In 2009 I came to the opinion that I would have to do the theoretical philosophy first, and that to do so required confrontation of Quine and Kripke on the three classic dichotomies, analytic/synthetic, necessary/contingent, a priori/a posteriori. This set me out on a project at first entitled "The Fundamental Triple-Dichotomy", but which quickly mutated into "Metaphysical Positivism" when I reflected on the point of it all, and sought a purpose with broader appeal. This is an approach to metaphysics which passes through (and fully embraces) the positivist rejections to yield a subtler and more modest conception of metaphysics.

Having conceived of this as a work of informal prose, I then decided that I needed a home for formal materials complementing the formal prose. This began as something like "A Formal History of Philosophical Logic", but by the end of the year had become "An Analytic History of Philsophical Analysis". During the autumn of 2009 I found that my conception of philosophical analysis was moving rapidly, causing web all these projects to falter pending a reumption of some stability.

At the beginning of 2010 I did a little dance, which consisted first in dropping the two projects I had then in progress and inventing "The HOT Philosophy Project", and then reviving the two prior projects, somewhat modified.

Then, toward the end of January, while fielding some historical questions from Mark Adams, it occurred to me to ask Donald MacKenzie for the transcript of an interview conducted by Tony Dale for a sociological project which ultimately lead to MacKenzie's book Mechanising Proof [MacKenzie2001]. I slotted this into an appendix in a previous rather half hearted attempt at an inventory of ideas, and then decided that this was potentially a feasible (if unambitious) book project which I could slip in before the HOT philosophy project. What was the project?

The HOT philosophy project then morphed into Evolution, Rationality and Deduction.

During 2011 I was distracted by the philosophy of set theory, primarily because of events at Birkbeck college which encouraged me to familiarise myself with some current themes in that area. That preoccupation resulting in no thinking of books at all until the Autumn. I returned to thinking about books with yet another "new" project, another approach toward a persistent preoccupation, Positive Philosophy and The Automation of Reason.

Collected Works
Each volume is available online in A4 PDF and HTML, and is intended to be made available in POD hard copy through Amazon.
PDF
HTML
POD
Books on Positive Philosophy
A triad of book projects related to Positive Philosophy.
Introduction
Of the three books envisaged two are informal, one covering the theoretical and the other the practical aspects of positive philosophy. The third book contains formal materials connected with positive philosophy in various ways, and comes in three volumes. Of these three volumes are concerned with formal exegetical analysis, one consists of various formal syntheses, and the third contains supporting materials (theories having little philosophical interest), and complete theory listings for all three parts.
A presentation of the theoretical/analytic side of Positive Philosophy closely coupled with a contemporary conception of the research and development programmes of Leibniz and Carnap on the formalisation and automation of reason and its applications in science and engineering.
Practical Positive Philosophy is concerned with existential questions, ethics, morality, justice, politics and economics.
An analytic examination of varieties of analysis (mostly but not necessarily philosophical) and their philosophical, technical and technological underpinnings, historical and contemporary, formal and informal.
Earlier Ideas
These ideas are not entirely dead, though they never got very far as book projects. Some of the ideas have evolved into my current project. Some of the projects here may yet be revived or merged into future projects going outside the confines on analytic philosophy.
Really a prospectus for a book of similar title, but masquerading as program of action.

(also available as A4 two-column pdf pamphlet)
This is about "practical" philosophy, influenced by Dao and anarchism.

(also available as A4 two-column pdf pamphlet)
An attempt to tell a story about what analytic philosophy might be, come the next revolution (pdf).
The beginnings of a "utopian engineering" project (pdf).
My own study notes on this book by Hacker {This wasn't ever intended as a book, its here just because I used latex2html to make the HTML].

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