Jan van Leeuwen, born in Waddinxveen, the Netherlands, in 1946. Ph.D. from Utrecht University (1972). Professor of Informatics at Utrecht University.
Distinguished Lorentz Fellow (1 March 2009 – 28 February 2010)
Towards a philosophy of information and computing sciences
Computer science (informatics) is branching out to every field of scientific, industrial, business and societal relevance. While the technological advances in the field are enormous, their development challenges the nature of computer science as a science. Do we have a good picture of the field, as a science? What are the fundamental questions the field is addressing? What are the key paradigms of the field, and how are these paradigms developing? How far has the philosophy of computer science progressed in addressing these issues?
My project will develop the elements of a comprehensive philosophy of computer science to give a perspective on the revolutionary development of the field and the role of information technology in it. At NIAS I will examine the subject from science, philosophical and socio-cultural perspectives, in separate periods during the year. Also, I will investigate the logical aspects of the finite versus the infinite, as occurring in theories of hyper-computation. At the Lorentz Center (Leiden), I will organise an interdisciplinary workshop on the philosophy of computer science to bring extant views of the field together.
The workshop will be held on 8-12 February, 2010.