One of the frustrations of using ant was the difficulty of deriving one property value performing some sort of editing operation on an existing property value. The mapper task does a lot of grunt work for file names, but not for property values as such.
A common requirement is to map a Java package name to a corresponding directory structure. I have a property containing the package name, and I want to create another property with the directories. Here’s one way to do that. Continue reading “Ant: edit property values”
If you want to set environment variables in OS X in such a way as to be recognised in applications run from Finder, it is not enough to set the env var in .profile. You must also ensure that the variables are set in the file ~/.MacOSX/environment.plist. Setting values in that file is most conveniently done using the executable PlistBuddy.
On my system, the command
$ which PlistBuddy
Continue reading “Setting Environment Variables in OS X Lion”
I am moving any potentially useful posts over from my LiveJournal blog in hopes that they may be found a little more readily. Most of these posts are from years ago, but some still have relevance.
Spengler (David Goldman) posted an article in the Asia Times Online, titled Why ‘Intelligent Design’ subverts faith
. What follows is my reply. Quotes from Goldman’s article are in italics
, for the most part. Spengler quotes from an article by David Bentley Hart, hence the reference.
The workings of nature are so complex and perfect…that they bespeak a design, and a design must have a designer. The trouble is that the same clock seems to set off a bomb at random intervals.
There is a false premise in Voltaire’s argument, namely that humankind is always and inevitably subject to the ravages of cruel and capricious nature. We now build cities able to withstand earthquakes; the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in 2011 killed 16,000 people in much more densely populated regions, a terrible toll, to be sure, but a fraction of the Lisbon dead. No human being need die from hunger, or cold, or bacterial disease; if some die, it is the fault of human action, not an Act of God.
Continue reading “Does Intelligent Design subvert faith?”
Daniel Dennett published an article titled ‘A Perfect and Beautiful Machine’: What Darwin’s Theory of Evolution Reveals About Artificial Intelligence in The Atlantic on 22nd June, 2012. What follows is the text of a post of mine on the Polanyi Discussion List, polanyi_list.
Daniel Dennett is performing conjuring tricks for his Atlantic audience.
To this day many people cannot get their heads around the unsettling idea that a purposeless, mindless process can crank away through the eons, generating ever more subtle, efficient, and complex organisms without having the slightest whiff of understanding of what it is doing.
How true. Drop the last couple of clauses, and he’s describing Polanyi.
In order to be a perfect and beautiful computing machine it is not requisite to know what arithmetic is.
This in bold, no less. I’ll come back to this. Continue reading “‘A Perfect and Beautiful Machine’”
The Anglicans have rewritten the Gloria Patri to make it less offensive, bless their hearts. The optional new, improved version goes like this.
Glory to God, Source of all being, Eternal Word and Holy Spirit,
As is was in the beginning, is now, and shall be forever. Amen.
Continue reading “Glory to God?”
In the collection of essays on which I based my discussions of Bultmann, you will find, as the last essay, a summary of the original eight essays by Austin Farrer, entitled An English Appreciation. In the course of it, he offers this:
The established, or virtually established, positions of science and history give rise to necessary refusals, as when we refuse to believe that the world was created eight thousand years ago or that the sun stood physically still for Joshua… About necessary refusals nothing can be done or ought to be done. They must be accepted.
Continue reading “The Science of Resurrection”
On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side… Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said, “Peace be with you.”Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing.”
When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to them. And their eyes were opened and they recognized him; and he vanished out of their sight… As they were saying this, Jesus himself stood among them, and said to them, “Peace to you.” But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit… “See my hands and feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet.
This is what Christians believe. St Paul understood this. If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile… If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all men most to be pitied. At least, this is what Christians believed for two millennia, and what they still profess. The problem is that so many of them do not.
Continue reading “Resurrection Denialism”
What does Dawkins mean by the term evidence? That seems to depend on the circumstances in which it is applied. In a previous post, I wrote about the challenge to the likes of Dawkins, presented by the testimony of and about Padre Pio. Subsequently, I discussed the use Dawkins made of Hume in dealing with that challenge.
It has occurred to me since, that Dawkins double standards on evidence align him in some senses with the Schoolmen from the declining years of Scholasticism; or at least with the caricature of them that is retailed by the camp-followers of “The Enlightenment.” In this view, the Scholastics were lost in a world of excessive subtle arguments based on an Aristotelian and Thomist philosophy, splitting finer and finer hairs in a debate hopelessly divorced from the real world. Into this massive but brittle word of ideas was introduced a new realism, throwing away the old edicts, and relying only on observation, evidence and reason. Continue reading “The Schoolman Dawkins”