My name is Min Baek (she/they). I am a transsexual Korean/American poet and social theorist based in Berkeley, Ohlone land. I theorize philosophy of computation, phenomenology of race, gender, and sex, heterodox economics, and Korean history.

To connect, please email me at jbaek080 at protonmail dot com, or DM me on Twitter at @problem_halting.
I offer philosophical-technical consulting, mainly working in the Ethereum space. Former clients include SushiSwap and Roll. Contact me at my email if you are interested in my services.

From October 2018 to September 2020, I was a software engineer at Microsoft Corporation, where I was part of the MSAI team. I worked on natural language query systems and knowledge graphs. At a conservative accounting, I created roughly $100MM in surplus value, for a rate of exploitation of 99.7%.

I studied for a bachelor's in computer science and a bachelor's in philosophy at UC Berkeley for three years. I did not graduate. I have been on a leave of absence since after Spring 2018.

In 2017-18, I taught "CS198-79: The Poetry of Computer Science, the Computer Science of Poetry", a course at UC Berkeley, as co-founder of Philosophy of Computation at Berkeley. Here is the Textbook I wrote for the course, a Syllabus for Spring 2018, the official Website, Discussion Forum, Course Notes.

I performed poetry at Seattle LitCrawl 2018 and 2019, EM Wolfman in Oakland, and the Rubber Flower Poetry Hour in New Orleans.

In 2012-14, I made 6180 the moon with Turtle Cream. Through 2007-19, I was manager of CrazyGM, the largest Korean indie game developers' community.

Here is a visual representation of where all I have lived.
The Phenomenology of Being-Racist (August 2020)
There they are. The racists. They shit. They eat. They breathe. Where are they? Where are they going? How are they going? There they are. Are they there? (They are nowhere.) They turn. They turn. They turn again. They are as they turn. "Don't their stomachs churn?" "How may they eat?" They turn towards me. They move. They move straight. They are straight towards me. (They have eyes on their backs. Their front-eyes and back-eyes work in unison, constantly switching duties.) They move straight towards me, all the while turning/being right, right, right. They are right and I am wrong. They are right and I am wrong. Wronged, I leave. They are there. I dare lift another leaf of the curtain. Where are they? The question remains. Are they? The question becomes. "What a mistake to have ever said the" racists.
A Human H Ought Not To Be Computing An Arbitrary Human H' (2017-18)
Definition 2. A human H is free if and only if H is uncomputable.
How to Solve Moral Conundrums with Computability Theory (First published May 2018, lightly revised Dec 2020)
Various moral conundrums plague population ethics: the Non-Identity Problem, the Procreation Asymmetry, the Repugnant Conclusion, and more. I argue that the aforementioned moral conundrums have a structure neatly accounted for, and solved by, some ideas in computability theory. I introduce a mathematical model based on computability theory and show how previous arguments pertaining to these conundrums fit into the model. This paper proceeds as follows. First, I do a very brief survey of the history of computability theory in moral philosophy. Second, I follow various papers, and show how their arguments fit into, or don't fit into, our model. Third, I discuss the implications of our model to the question why the human race should or should not continue to exist. Finally, I show that our model may be interpreted according to a Confucian-Taoist moral principle.
The Poetry of Computer Science, the Computer Science of Poetry (Dec 2017)
Using computer science to talk about moral philosophy is a sort of perversion. In a sense, all philosophy is a sort of perversion. But as a smartypants once said, the purpose of philosophy is the dissolution of philosophy. I know at least a dozen grandmothers and grandfathers, most of them selling fish at a street market, who know everything this book can say and more. The audience I have in mind are the cynics, the highly educated, the "rationalists", who have retreated to their enclave, who refuse to believe anything that cannot be proven, who endorse things like utilitarianism, behaviorism, and The Bell Curve. I believe I can change their minds because they are rational, and rationality is an admirable ontological property. Rationality, for all its faults, does one job very well: when proven wrong, it clips off, however much it hurts, that irrational cancerous outgrowth, the misapplication of ego. What this book has tried to do is to show that the Modern Scientific World View, and its moral philosophy, which purports to be based on rationality, is utterly irrational. I tried to show this using something every "rationalist" would agree as a method for achieving rational truth: theoretical computer science.
Paper 3: Uncomputability and the Categorical Imperative (Dec 2017)
When Kant said we must not treat humans as mere means, but ends in themselves, he was saying that humans are arbitrary programs, not specific programs. Therefore, we cannot use them as mere means, and must treat them as ends in themselves. And the sense just used in cannot and must is not that of mere moral indoctrination. It is the authority of mathematics. So Williams has been answered: we legislate to the moral sentiments by right of mathematical fact.
Culture, Computation, Morality (May 2017)
I point to a deep and unjustly ignored relation between culture and computation. I first establish interpretations of Piaget's and Vygotsky's theories of child development with the language of theoretical computer science. Using these interpretations, I argue that the two different possible routes to Piagetian disequilibrium -- a tendency to overaccommodate, and a tendency to overassimilate -- are equivalent to the two distinct cultural tendencies, collectivistism and individualism. I argue that this simple characterization of overaccommodation versus overassimilation provides a satisfying explanation as to why the two cultural tendencies differ in the way they empirically do. All such notions are grounded on a firm mathematical framework for those who prefer the computable, and grounded on my personal history for those who prefer the uncomputable.
Parasite is the first sexual critique of capitalism (Feb 2020)
Its so metaphorical! exclaims KiWoo, several times, throughout Parasite. The metaphors, eventually, bash his head in. Bong JoonHo seems to be warning us: analyze the movie, interpret every gesture, every word, every prop, every symbol, as a metaphor, at your own peril. For your metaphors become self-fulfilling prophecies, and may, eventually, bash your head in.
Software engineers must think deeply about ethics (Oct 2017)
Great power must be accompanied by great responsibility, which remains largely absent in Silicon Valley. The Valley's fantastical vision of a techno-utopian future where robots do all the menial jobs, Universal Basic Income is firmly in place, and everyone can freely pursue their creative endeavors, is just that: a fantasy. Between that fantasy of tomorrow and the reality of today is a gap into which real families, with real mortgages to pay and real mouths to feed, are falling into.
Selected Poems (Early 2020)
Donald Trump in the Elevator

I ate the burger!
My fingers are salty.
Behind me, to the right of me, to the left of me ...
They all look up to me.
My tummy hurts.
My stomach feels like it's been washed with rainwater.
They all look up to me.
They're jealous because my fingers are salty.
85, 86, 88 ...
This building should be taller.
Identifying Semantic Components From Cross-Language Variation, Structured Lexical Sources, and Corpora: a Review of Recent Literature (Summer 2016)
Recent efforts on distributional semantics may be divided into at least four clusters: using more complicated mathematics to represent words and compositions of words, leveraging high quality structured knowledge bases, combining multiple languages, and going beyond corpus training data to visual, auditory, and olfactory training data, to giving the machine multiple modalities, so to speak. ... In what follows, I have listed papers of interest with a brief summary of their methods and, if particularly promising, an extended discussion of their formalizations and limitations.