James Keller's Personal Web Page

The Web Page of James Keller

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About Me

I am currently a graduate student in the philosophy dept. at the University of Illinois. My area of specialization is the philosophy of mathematics and logic. I am currently a teaching assistant for PHIL 102 which is an introduction to the basic techniques for analyzing arguments.


After graduating from G. Ray Bodley high school in Fulton, NY in 2005, I went to St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY. In 2009 I earned a B.S. in mathematics and philosophy. In 2010 I went to Carnegie Mellon University to study in the philosophy dept. there. I wrote a thesis paper on normative decision theory under the direction of Teddy Seidenfeld and Kevin Zollman. I earned an M.S. in Logic, Computation, and Methodology from Carnegie Mellon in the summer of 2013. I am currently working on earning a PhD in philosophy and an M.S. in mathematics.


I have taught introduction to philosophy in the summers of 2011 and 2012 at Carnegie Mellon University. I have been a teaching assistant for introduction to philosophy, introduction to argument analysis, and introduction to ethics. I have also graded for courses on ancient philosophy and a course on computability and incompleteness.

Interests and Hobbies

My academic interests include the philosophical writings of William James (and to some extent the writings of Charles Peirce and John Dewey), normative decision theory, formal epistemology, and of course the philosophy of mathematics and logic. I am interested in William James' writings for many reasons. For one, he presents what seems to me a rather novel view of the world and I also tend to think he is right about many things. For another, I think he is a great writer and just enjoy reading his work. I was fortunate to be able to take a seminar on William James' Principles of Psychology at Carnegie Mellon and I highly recommend reading it (though it is quite long). James' Essays on Radical Empiricism is a good introduction to some of his philosophical ideas. I suppose my interest in decision theory, epistemology, and logic stems from my general interest reasoning. My interest in the philosophy of mathematics is primarily mathematical cognition and so fits this pattern as well. What specifically is my interest in reasoning? How best to reason of course!

My non-academic interests include music, audio equipment, and the goings on of the NHL (especially the Buffalo Sabres). I enjoy music from almost every genre, but most of the time I listen to jazz, soul, and folk music. I built a pair of speakers from a kit I ordered online, the Overnight Sensations. I really enjoyed putting the kit together so I have many plans to build more equipment when I can afford it. In particular anything from Bottlehead would be awesome to build. I would eventually like to build the famous Dynakit ST-70 and my very long term goal is to build a pair of Kleinhorn speakers that were designed by Nelson Pass. My next projects will likely be to build a Gobo amp kit from Boxed Kit Amps and a TriTrix tower speaker kit. I also want to learn how to make audion cables of various types. I have some pairs of headphones that need to be re-cabled.

My music collection consists mainly of vinyl records (I also use spotify). I bought most of records from Jerry's Records in Pittsburgh,PA. My favrotie labels that I but new records from are Daptone Records and Light in the Attic records.

I get most of my news from the PBS Newshour and I listen to the following podcasts: The Gist, Good Job, Brain!, Snap Judgment, The Allusionist, Invisibilia, 99% Invisible, Planet Money, Risk!, Stuff You Should Know, This American Life, and RadioLab.