# Computer Science and Christianity: A Modeling Approach Gene B. Chase 29 March 2001.

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Computer Science and Christianity: A Modeling Approach Gene B. Chase 29 March 2001

“Thank you for not using 666 in your papers”

Three Approaches to Integration § Incarnational Approach: Who am I? § Incompleteness Approach: What do I not know? § Imago Dei: What do I know? Modeling Approach

I. Incarnational: Who am I? § Lynn Arthur Steen. “The Science of Patterns.” Science, 240, 29 April 1988, pp. 611-616. §“I am a scientist, and I am a Christian. The integration takes place in me, not in the subject matter.”

Apply this to Computer Science? §In the CS workplace, I will model virtue. §In worship I will praise God for the beauty that I see in CS.

Lutheran View § St. Olaf College §Dr. Richard Hughes, President of California Lutheran University: “The Lutheran vision never seeks to superimpose the kingdom of God onto the world... Lutherans seek to bring the world and the kingdom of God into dialogue.”

Lutheran View §At Lutheran Valparaiso University one department chair said: “Show us what Lutheran economics is and we'll see if we can find a Lutheran economist who can teach it.”

II. Incompleteness: What don’t we know? § Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem (1931): For any mathematical system S strong enough to do addition and multiplication of integers, the consistency of that system, Con(S), cannot be proven within the system.

Gödel Numbering  g( x )=2, g( y )=3, g( ( )=5, g( ) )=7, g( + )=11,g( * )=13, g( 0 )=17, g( 1 )=19, g( 2 )=23,...  g( x*(y+21) )=  2 g( x ) 3 g( * ) 5 g( ( ) 7 g(y) 11 g(+) 13 g(2) 17 g(1) §g(statements)= § 2 g(st1) 3 g(st2) 5 g(st3) 7 g(st4) 11 g(st5) 3 g(st6)

Incompleteness Results § J. R. Lucas: Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem suggests that humanity is not the measure of its own meaning. § Chase: “Skolem’s Paradox and the Predestination/Free-Will Discussion” § Chase: “What Does a Computer Program Mean?”

Incompleteness in CS §Alan Turing (1937). The Halting Problem: No computer program U can be written which receives as input a program P and its input I, and returns true if P halts on input I, but returns false if P loops infinitely on input I. § Kurt Gödel (1956). P=NP?

Is P=NP? § P=solved in polynomial time. § NP=checked for correctness in polynomial time. § Optimists: P=NP, or maybe P  NP. § Pessimists: P=NP can’t be known. § Ecc. 3:11: God “has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”  4 - 10000 = 4

Advantage & Disadvantage § Advantage: A sense of humility, awe, and mystery before a great God. § Disadvantage: This view has a “god of the gaps” feel to it.

Calvinist View § Creation mandate: To “subdue the earth” (Gen. 1:28) § The Fall affected our ability to reason, not just our ability to be moral.

III. Imago Dei: What do we know? § Parables. § Donald MacKay. The Clockwork Image, IV Press 1974. A marquee of flashing lights: § Physics explanation. § Information-processing explanation.

III. Imago Dei: What do we know?

Complementarity § Information-processing complements Physics § Waves complement particles § “Complementarity as a Christian Philosophy of Mathematics”

Deciding on a Career

Roger Penrose

Big Ideas of CS § Abstraction § Hierarchy § Virtuality § Global versus local § Parallelism § Time/space tradeoff §...

Analogies in CS §Sofware§ Soul Don’t confuse the map with the territory.

Parables as Analogies

Social Relationships About God in Jesus’ Parables §Father / Mother §Friend §Husband §Master / Employer § Judge § Shepherd § Vineyard Owner

C. S. Lewis § The metaphor is backwards: It is not God who is like our earthly fathers; it is our earthly fathers who should strive to be like Father. § Similarly, CS is not the reality and our faith the metaphor; our relationship with God is the reality and CS can only provide metaphors.

Anabaptist View § Love more important than doctrine (John 13:36) § “We see a poor relfection in a mirror” (I Cor. 13:12)

Anglican View

Bibliography of Faith-Learning Articles and Books by Dr. Chase Arranged in Reverse-Chronological Order [1] Faith-Discipline Musings http://www.messiah.edu/acdept/depthome/mathsci/courses/sen sem/manifesto.htm. http://www.messiah.edu/acdept/depthome/mathsci/courses/sen sem/manifesto.htm Web posting of March 15 about Intellectual Property.

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