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25
Safety Signatures for Firstorder Languages and Their Applications
 In FirstOrder Logic Revisited (Hendricks et all,, eds.), 3758, Logos Verlag
, 2004
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Reflections on Skolem's Paradox
"... In 1922, Thoraf Skolem published a paper titled "Some remarks on Axiomatized Set Theory". The paper presents a new proof of... This dissertation focuses almost exclusively on the first half of this project  i.e., the half which tries to expose an initial tension between Cantor's the ..."
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In 1922, Thoraf Skolem published a paper titled "Some remarks on Axiomatized Set Theory". The paper presents a new proof of... This dissertation focuses almost exclusively on the first half of this project  i.e., the half which tries to expose an initial tension between Cantor's theorem and the LöwenheimSkolem theorem. I argue that, even on quite naive understandings of set theory and model theory, there is no such tension. Hence, Skolem's Paradox is not a genuine paradox, and there is very little reason to worry about (or even to investigate) the more extreme consequences that are supposed to follow from this paradox. The heart of my...
A Framework for Formalizing Set Theories Based on the Use of Static Set Terms
"... To Boaz Trakhtenbrot: a scientific father, a friend, and a great man. Abstract. We present a new unified framework for formalizations of axiomatic set theories of different strength, from rudimentary set theory to full ZF. It allows the use of set terms, but provides a static check of their validity ..."
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To Boaz Trakhtenbrot: a scientific father, a friend, and a great man. Abstract. We present a new unified framework for formalizations of axiomatic set theories of different strength, from rudimentary set theory to full ZF. It allows the use of set terms, but provides a static check of their validity. Like the inconsistent “ideal calculus ” for set theory, it is essentially based on just two settheoretical principles: extensionality and comprehension (to which we add ∈induction and optionally the axiom of choice). Comprehension is formulated as: x ∈{x  ϕ} ↔ϕ, where {x  ϕ} is a legal set term of the theory. In order for {x  ϕ} to be legal, ϕ should be safe with respect to {x}, where safety is a relation between formulas and finite sets of variables. The various systems we consider differ from each other mainly with respect to the safety relations they employ. These relations are all defined purely syntactically (using an induction on the logical structure of formulas). The basic one is based on the safety relation which implicitly underlies commercial query languages for relational database systems (like SQL). Our framework makes it possible to reduce all extensions by definitions to abbreviations. Hence it is very convenient for mechanical manipulations and for interactive theorem proving. It also provides a unified treatment of comprehension axioms and of absoluteness properties of formulas. 1
How Deep is the Distinction between A Priori and A Posteriori Knowledge? 1
"... Abstract: The paper argues that, although a distinction between a priori and a posteriori knowledge (or justification) can be drawn, it is a superficial one, of little theoretical significance. The point is not that the distinction has borderline cases, for virtually all useful distinctions have suc ..."
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Abstract: The paper argues that, although a distinction between a priori and a posteriori knowledge (or justification) can be drawn, it is a superficial one, of little theoretical significance. The point is not that the distinction has borderline cases, for virtually all useful distinctions have such cases. Rather, it is argued by means of an example, the differences even between a clear case of a priori knowledge and a clear case of a posteriori knowledge may be superficial ones. In both cases, experience plays a role that is more than purely enabling but less than strictly evidential. It is also argued that the cases at issue are not special, but typical of a wide range of others, including knowledge of axioms of set theory and of elementary logical truths. Attempts by Quine and others to make all knowledge a posteriori (‘empirical’) are repudiated. The paper ends with a call for a new framework to be developed for analysing the epistemology of cognitive uses of the imagination.
The Continuum Hypothesis
, 2011
"... The continuum hypotheses (CH) is one of the most central open problems in set theory, one that is important for both mathematical and philosophical reasons. The problem actually arose with the birth of set theory; indeed, in many respects it stimulated the birth of set theory. In 1874 Cantor had sho ..."
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The continuum hypotheses (CH) is one of the most central open problems in set theory, one that is important for both mathematical and philosophical reasons. The problem actually arose with the birth of set theory; indeed, in many respects it stimulated the birth of set theory. In 1874 Cantor had shown that there is a onetoone correspondence between the natural numbers and the algebraic numbers. More surprisingly, he showed that there is no onetoone correspondence between the natural numbers and the real numbers. Taking the existence of a onetoone correspondence as a criterion for when two sets have the same size (something he certainly did by 1878), this result shows that there is more than one level of infinity and thus gave birth to the higher infinite in mathematics. Cantor immediately tried to determine whether there were any infinite sets of real numbers that were ofintermediate size, that is, whether there was an infinite set of real numbers that could not be put into onetoone correspondence with the natural numbers and
Absolute Infinity ∗
, 2012
"... This article is concerned with reflection principles in the context of Cantor’s conception of the set theoretic universe. We argue that within a Cantorian conception of the set theoretic universe reflection principles can be formulated that confer intrinsic plausibility to strong axioms of infinity. ..."
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This article is concerned with reflection principles in the context of Cantor’s conception of the set theoretic universe. We argue that within a Cantorian conception of the set theoretic universe reflection principles can be formulated that confer intrinsic plausibility to strong axioms of infinity. How can I talk to you, I have no words... Virgin Prunes, I am God 1
Safety and Domain Independence in Relational and Web Query Languages, and in Set Theory
"... We show that there have been common ideas concerning important properties of formulas which were independently developed in the research on query languages and in the mathematical discipline of set theory: safety versus limitation of size, domainindependent versus absoluteness. For each of these pa ..."
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We show that there have been common ideas concerning important properties of formulas which were independently developed in the research on query languages and in the mathematical discipline of set theory: safety versus limitation of size, domainindependent versus absoluteness. For each of these pairs we provide common generalizations and show that they are useful for both theories. In the database case they provide obvious improvements of usual syntactically characterized classes of reasonable queries. Apart from significantly enlarging those classes, they provide a firm theoretical foundation for using in queries complex terms as well as relations which do not belong to the database scheme, or relations that are not completely given, but only partially accessible through links (like in the world wide web). On the other hand a completely new understanding of the axioms of the axiomatic set theory ZF is gained by looking at ZF from the perspective of relational databases.
BADIOU AND THE CONSEQUENCES OF FORMALISM
"... ABSTRACT: I consider the relationship of Badiou’s schematism of the event to critical thought following the linguistic turn as well as to the mathematical formalisms of set theory. In Being and Event, Badiou uses formal argumentation to support his sweeping rejection of the linguistic turn as well a ..."
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ABSTRACT: I consider the relationship of Badiou’s schematism of the event to critical thought following the linguistic turn as well as to the mathematical formalisms of set theory. In Being and Event, Badiou uses formal argumentation to support his sweeping rejection of the linguistic turn as well as much of contemporary critical thought. This rejection stems from his interpretation of set theory as barring thought from the 'OneAll ' of totality; but I argue that, by interpreting it differently, we can understand this implication in a way that is in fact consistent with the critical and linguistic methods Badiou wishes to reject.