When we were at DIDW my friend Bob Blakley and I got into some deep discussions about identity, and decided to pursue the conversation here since it might be of interest to others. When I asked how to introduce him, Bob suggested I explain he is in the “Drama Department at IBM”, which is, for all who know him, an understatement. Our goal is to make it clear that this isn't a discussion between companies, but between people deeply interested in identity issues. Since we're both pretty busy, this conversation will likely go on intermittently for quite a while, and I look forward to it. So without further ado, here is the rest of Bob's CV:
I was trained as a Classicist.
I don't have my own blog, nor even a webpage. I'm deeply suspicious of such things, because I prefer REAL things. When I say REAL, I mean this:
A thing is REAL if its existence and properties are not contingent upon our agreement or belief (“reality is that which continues to exist after we stop believing in it”).
A thing is REAL if it lasts a long time all by itself.
A thing is REAL if it does not require batteries.
A REAL thing is fixed, not discarded, when it is damaged or broken.
I'd rather have a REAL discussion about identity with REAL people, as you and I so often have late into the evening, than type things into a blog. But neither of us has a REAL living room of the requisite size, so the blog will have to suffice.
I think a breath is REAL, though it may be ephemeral, and a word is REAL, even just a whisper from a lover. So too this blog is REAL, though its mission is pragmatic. So I will draw this introduction to a close – and we'll take it from here.