We’re delighted to welcome Clark Goble back to T&S!
Clark grew up in Canada in that part that appears like a strange looking foot extending south and east of Maine. There in the city of Halifax he watched the church grow from a small branch into numerous wards eventually even getting a temple. His father taught physics there which must have been addictive since both Clark and his brother studied physics as well. Clark always dreamt of going on a foreign mission and prayed that this would be so. He soon realized that God both had a sense of humor and that it was tied to overly literal interpretations of prayers when he was sent from Canada to Louisiana. Upon returning to BYU Clark decided he had a masochistic streak and studied mathematics, physics and philosophy until being informed by numerous letters that he had far too many credits to be allowed to continue at BYU.
During this era Clark was part of the initial burst of discussion in mailing lists. He was on the original Eyring-L discussing science and religion, Morm-Ant discussing Mormonism and antiquities including the Book of Mormon, and Mormon-L a more social and quasi-politically oriented list. After a few years he left Mormon-L as its tone changed. He ended up running the Eyring-L and Morm-Ant mailing lists for a few years until passing the reigns. He was one of the early members of the LDS-Phil mailing list which remarkably is still running, albeit at a much lower volume than in those early heady days.
Some time around 2003 or 2004 blogs started becoming popular. Clark became a member of the first group blog, The Metaphysical Elders, when invited by Nate Oman. He quickly showed himself an idiot by creating two accounts and getting into an argument with himself as critiqued by a 19th pragmatist.
Around the same time Clark started his first religious blog, Mormon Metaphysics primarily focused on analyzing the philosophy of Orson Pratt. It quickly decided there wasn’t as much behind Pratt as most thought and instead considered many issues from the perspective of pragmatism and Heideggarian styled phenomenology. The blog has gone up and down and tends to get bursts of posts depending upon how busy Clark is at work. Also how much he can remember of what he’s read after years of sleep deprivation from little toddlers waking up at night plays more than a small role as well.
For work Clark worked summers and part-time at school for Los Alamos National Laboratory in inertial confinement fusion largely working on programs analyzing the nuclear explosions being conducted. After graduation Clark did IT work for a few years and then started a computer company primarily dealing with linguistic software. He wrote the original spellchecker for BBEdit for all you Apple greybeards from the 90’s. He also wrote most of the search and indexing technology for Adobe Acrobat if you use that. About 10 years ago he and his business partners started up a chocolate company, Amano Chocolate, on the side. Clark ended up being a major part of the wave of bean to bar chocolate makers who brought a more pre-war artisanal style of chocolate making to the United States. He’s won awards around the world for his chocolate including being picked by the New York Times in January as best chocolate in America.
Clark obviously has pretty varied interests. On Mormon topics he’s constantly fascinated by the statistics about Mormonism – especially its growth and retention. He also can’t help himself from analyzing all the ontological views related to various speculations over the years on Mormon theology.
We have long been delighted to have Clark commenting on Times and Seasons and are delighted to have him back again as a guest blogger. Welcome!