Reflections on the First Spring 2017 Session

Within the previous eight weeks, two courses were completed: Computer Architecture and Introduction to Information Systems. Since my first session involved two courses, CSCI 210 and ISYS 204 that were three credit courses within the Regent University course offerings, the format was accelerated; as the previous and future courses fitting the description mentioned are identified as such, they require more percentages of weekly study time periods in shorter total course durations. ISYS 204 being an introductory course consisted of learning business and analytical knowledge about information systems, and Biblical ethics remain significant since this was a Regent University course, a Christian university. As sister to Oxford University, Regent University emphasizes the integration of the faith described and urged by the Bible with reason related to contemporary issues; ISYS 204 involving this demand on students was consistent with previous courses in my academic program.

In ISYS 204, there was an emphasis on the economics related to businesses using information systems as well; since contemporary economic theory in secular settings approves of utilitarianism, accepting this emphasis within course textbook titled Essentials of Management Information Systems by Laudon and Laudon (2017) as a challenge for the liberal arts encouraged confidence. The writing attributed by critical scholars to the Apostle Luke, the Book of Acts in the King James Bible expresses the basis that the Apostle Paul had for confidence. The Book of Acts (KJV) says about Paul, “And Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that came in unto him. Preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him” (28:30-31). An interpretation of this passage is the recognition that any coming unto followers of Christ and not bringing the truth should be denied entry into our place of rest and encouragement for the rate of action that faith in the God of Israel provides (2 John 10:10). In exposition, the Laudon and Laudon (2017) text discusses the Golden Rule of the Biblical Scriptures; that a candidate ethical principle for business practices involves doing unto others as you would have them do unto you (p.127). Theologically speaking, although Laudon and Laudon are not literally in my home when studying the course text, the thoughts written to the text can be challenged; the form of written communication on the Internet Web provides a domain for capturing thoughts so that they are for Christ (2 Cor 10:5) rather than every wind of doctrine (Eph 4:14).

In my view as a Regent University student, the applications of the Biblical Scriptures mentioned was a learning outcome of CSCI 210 and ISYS 204, though not explicitly mentioned as such in them. My basis for the applications of the Bible for CSCI 210 and ISYS 204 is my experience with CSCI 220, Ethics for Computer Science: supporting the divine command theory was encouraged by my course instructor while rejected by the writers of the course texts called Ethics in a Computing Culture, Bo Brinkman and Alton F. Sanders (2013, p. 10). In contrast, the relevant Stallings (2016) text for CSCI 210, Computer Organization and Architecture: Designing for Performance, did not suggest or recommend any ethical arguments for computer architecture, so the Biblical integration related to that text was more relatable to transcendentals in mathematics than approval of utilitarianism by contemporary economists; conflicting interpretations of ethics were researched outside the CSCI 210 by Stallings for reasonable exposition. Having said that, there were much descriptions about computer architecture and low-level programming helped with programming skills; instructions on binary, hexadecimal, and assembly language programming emphasized allowed for studying applications related to computer architecture. Describable as essentially a game, one in particular, Core Wars, involved programs that combat a separate program for processing capability was useful for study; this was not played, so to speak, as the concept of play is about action without reason.

With two courses in the Spring 2017 term concluded, there are seven courses that remain in my academic program. Looking forward to my future challenges, my view remains that Regent University has much that may be offered to students, and online courses require commitment to significant periods of self-study that might build confidence in a power beyond the intelligence of mankind. Hopefully, my future academic studies will involve more Biblical integration for scientific and scientifically analytical theories and applications for continued research opportunities and the blessings of family and friendships.

References

Brinkman, B., & Sanders, A. F. (2013). Ethics in a Computing Culture. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.

Laudon, K. C., & Laudon, J. P. (2017). Essentials of Management Information Systems (12th ed.). Pearson Education.

Stallings, W., Zeno, P., & Jesshope, C. (2016). Computer Organization and Architecture: Designing for Performance (10th ed.). Hoboken, NJ.

 

 

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Perceptions on Reflections

While reading a book by Clifford A. Pickover called The Physics Devotional, a quote reminded me of the importance of reflecting. Pickover wrote about something that Arnold Arons said about physics. Of Arons, Pickover (2015) wrote:

There is a kind of symbolic relationship here between law and theory. A theory becomes more and more respected and powerful the more phenomena that can be derived from it, and the law describing these phenomena becomes more meaningful and useful if it can be made part of a theory. Thus, Newton’s theory of universal gravitation gained greatly in stature because it enabled one to derive the laws that govern the moon’s motion, known by empirical rules since the days of the Babylonian observers. (p. 8)

Within computer science, for instance, the programmer or software developer goes through the process of designing, creating, testing, and debugging a software or system application. This is how a program becomes made. However, the question of why a program does good or bad is commonly expressed with the notion that truth is a matter of pleasure; that is supposed as a fine replacement for the objective balance. For reference, the United States of America, which produces litigation, confirms that scientifically analytical laws follow propositions. Bo Brinkman and Alton F. Sanders distributed information about the classical popularizer of pleasure as truth, John Stuart Mill. Brinkman and Sanders (2013) claimed, “Laws governing free speech in the United States today are generally consistent with Mill’s view. However, the issue of free speech is not settled” (p. 245). For computer science solutions, optimizing code might not always be the simplest or most effective way for building a successful product, but documentation can guide that process. Therefore, the reader may look to an objective source of ethical documentation about people for an understanding of why a particular software is good or bad.

Among scholars, theology is considered the queen of the sciences; it is a responsibility and a gift. The Book of James (KJV) says, “My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons” (2:1). This is a prohibition on favoritism for an ethic of fairness for the Jew and the Gentile. Thomas Aquinas theological first way of proving a Creator supports this. Ellen T. Charry wrote that Aquinas (2000) explained,

For it is only when acted upon by the first cause that the intermediate causes will produce the change: if the hand does not move the stick, the stick will not move anything else. Hence one is bound to arrive at some first cause of change not itself being changed by anything, and this is what everybody understands by God. (p. 32)

Thomas Aquinas perceived that the initial state is the origin of the continuum. With a final point, Archimedes would call this a summation. Regardless of the origin, considering the final point as the end of history, Hegel (1956) argued that “The History of the world is none other than the progress of the consciousness of freedom” (p. 19). The Bible challenges that by conserving a story throughout history. The Almighty, spoken on behalf of by the prophet Isaiah (KJV), said, “And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, and set it in order for me, since I appointed the ancient people? And the things that are coming, and shall come, let them shew unto them” (Is 44:7). The progress that Hegel mentioned leaves behind truths perceived as irrational for the evolution of validity. Thus, when documenting computer applications, agreement with Hegel would require abandoning whatever causes errors in usefulness according to rationality. However, mainstream physicists who discuss quantum mechanics usually agree that human reason is not always sufficient for understanding the world. The Nazis, for example, were rational in that they had a goal in mind that they thought would be useful to them: creating a master race by destroying the Jews. Therefore, when Arons mentioned that law may be derived from theory, this is in agreement with the mathematical sciences, but it did not embed the assumptions into human perception; empirical observations were considered a stepping stone towards the highest understanding. Therefore, documentation should be valued for what it can help beyond the code. Further, analytically oriented computer scientists should be raised up by reflecting on the big picture when developing applications because doing so provides more contextual understanding.

In the coming weeks, I will work on more courses related to computer science and information systems. That said, there are alternative worldviews in this pluralistic nation that I live among as an American. While that is the case, I do think that I should stay focused on what is straight ahead that is reckoned for me. There may be chronological parameters that allow for people meeting in the middle. Seeking true exegesis for studying the perceptions of others is what I think is the way. Thus, I hope that my comments provide such opportunities over time.

References

Brinkman, W. J., & Sanders, A. F. (2013). Ethics in a Computing Culture. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.

Charry, E. T., & Aquinas, T. (2000). Inquiring after God by Means of Scientific Study. In Inquiring after God: Classic and Contemporary readings (p. 32). Malden, MA: Blackwell.

Hegel, G. W. (1956). The Philosophy of History.

Pickover, C. A. (2015). The Physics Devotional: Celebrating the Wisdom and Beauty of Physics.