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Computability and recursion
 BULL. SYMBOLIC LOGIC
, 1996
"... We consider the informal concept of “computability” or “effective calculability” and two of the formalisms commonly used to define it, “(Turing) computability” and “(general) recursiveness.” We consider their origin, exact technical definition, concepts, history, general English meanings, how they b ..."
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We consider the informal concept of “computability” or “effective calculability” and two of the formalisms commonly used to define it, “(Turing) computability” and “(general) recursiveness.” We consider their origin, exact technical definition, concepts, history, general English meanings, how they became fixed in their present roles, how they were first and are now used, their impact on nonspecialists, how their use will affect the future content of the subject of computability theory, and its connection to other related areas. After a careful historical and conceptual analysis of computability and recursion we make several recommendations in section §7 about preserving the intensional differences between the concepts of “computability” and “recursion.” Specifically we recommend that: the term “recursive ” should no longer carry the additional meaning of “computable” or “decidable;” functions defined using Turing machines, register machines, or their variants should be called “computable” rather than “recursive;” we should distinguish the intensional difference between Church’s Thesis and Turing’s Thesis, and use the latter particularly in dealing with mechanistic questions; the name of the subject should be “Computability Theory” or simply Computability rather than
Does Mathematics Need New Axioms?
 American Mathematical Monthly
, 1999
"... this article I will be looking at the leading question from the point of view of the logician, and for a substantial part of that, from the perspective of one supremely important logician: Kurt Godel. From the time of his stunning incompleteness results in 1931 to the end of his life, Godel called f ..."
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this article I will be looking at the leading question from the point of view of the logician, and for a substantial part of that, from the perspective of one supremely important logician: Kurt Godel. From the time of his stunning incompleteness results in 1931 to the end of his life, Godel called for the pursuit of new axioms to settle undecided arithmetical problems. And from 1947 on, with the publication of his unusual article, "What is Cantor's continuum problem?" [11], he called in addition for the pursuit of new axioms to settle Cantor's famous conjecture about the cardinal number of the continuum. In both cases, he pointed primarily to schemes of higher infinity in set theory as the direction in which to seek these new principles. Logicians have learned a great deal in recent years that is relevant to Godel's program, but there is considerable disagreement about what conclusions to draw from their results. I'm far from unbiased in this respect, and you'll see how I come out on these matters by the end of this essay, but I will try to give you a fair presentation of other positions along the way so you can decide for yourself which you favor.
Knowledge Representation and Classical Logic
, 2007
"... Mathematical logicians had developed the art of formalizing declarative knowledge long before the advent of the computer age. But they were interested primarily in formalizing mathematics. Because of the important role of nonmathematical knowledge in AI, their emphasis was too narrow from the perspe ..."
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Mathematical logicians had developed the art of formalizing declarative knowledge long before the advent of the computer age. But they were interested primarily in formalizing mathematics. Because of the important role of nonmathematical knowledge in AI, their emphasis was too narrow from the perspective of knowledge representation, their formal languages were not sufficiently expressive. On the other hand, most logicians were not concerned about the possibility of automated reasoning; from the perspective of knowledge representation, they were often too generous in the choice of syntactic constructs. In spite of these differences, classical mathematical logic has exerted significant influence on knowledge representation research, and it is appropriate to begin this handbook with a discussion of the relationship between these fields. The language of classical logic that is most widely used in the theory of knowledge representation is the language of firstorder (predicate) formulas. These are the formulas that John McCarthy proposed to use for representing declarative knowledge in his advice taker paper [176], and Alan Robinson proposed to prove automatically using resolution [236]. Propositional logic is, of course, the most important subset of firstorder logic; recent
Types in logic and mathematics before 1940
 Bulletin of Symbolic Logic
, 2002
"... Abstract. In this article, we study the prehistory of type theory up to 1910 and its development between Russell and Whitehead’s Principia Mathematica ([71], 1910–1912) and Church’s simply typed λcalculus of 1940. We first argue that the concept of types has always been present in mathematics, thou ..."
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Abstract. In this article, we study the prehistory of type theory up to 1910 and its development between Russell and Whitehead’s Principia Mathematica ([71], 1910–1912) and Church’s simply typed λcalculus of 1940. We first argue that the concept of types has always been present in mathematics, though nobody was incorporating them explicitly as such, before the end of the 19th century. Then we proceed by describing how the logical paradoxes entered the formal systems of Frege, Cantor and Peano concentrating on Frege’s Grundgesetze der Arithmetik for which Russell applied his famous paradox 1 and this led him to introduce the first theory of types, the Ramified Type Theory (rtt). We present rtt formally using the modern notation for type theory and we discuss how Ramsey, Hilbert and Ackermann removed the orders from rtt leading to the simple theory of types stt. We present stt and Church’s own simply typed λcalculus (λ→C 2) and we finish by comparing rtt, stt and λ→C. §1. Introduction. Nowadays, type theory has many applications and is used in many different disciplines. Even within logic and mathematics, there are many different type systems. They serve several purposes, and are formulated in various ways. But, before 1903 when Russell first introduced
The Mathematical Import Of Zermelo's WellOrdering Theorem
 Bull. Symbolic Logic
, 1997
"... this paper, the seminal results of set theory are woven together in terms of a unifying mathematical motif, one whose transmutations serve to illuminate the historical development of the subject. The motif is foreshadowed in Cantor's diagonal proof, and emerges in the interstices of the inclusion vs ..."
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this paper, the seminal results of set theory are woven together in terms of a unifying mathematical motif, one whose transmutations serve to illuminate the historical development of the subject. The motif is foreshadowed in Cantor's diagonal proof, and emerges in the interstices of the inclusion vs. membership distinction, a distinction only clarified at the turn of this century, remarkable though this may seem. Russell runs with this distinction, but is quickly caught on the horns of his wellknown paradox, an early expression of our motif. The motif becomes fully manifest through the study of functions f :
Motivations for MathLang
, 2005
"... FOMCAF13 What do we want? Open borders for productive collaboration or that we each stick to our borders without including and benefiting from other input? Do we want war+destruction or solid foundations for wisdom and prosperity? • Do we believe in the chosen framework? Should all the world believe ..."
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FOMCAF13 What do we want? Open borders for productive collaboration or that we each stick to our borders without including and benefiting from other input? Do we want war+destruction or solid foundations for wisdom and prosperity? • Do we believe in the chosen framework? Should all the world believe in the same framework? Does one framework fit all? Can such a framework exist? • Think of Capitalism, Communism, dictatorship, nationalism, etc... Which one worked in history? • But then, if we are committed to pluralism, are we in danger of being wiped out because being inclusive may well lead to contradictions? • Oscar Wilde: I used to think I was indecisive, but now I’m not sure anymore. FOMCAF13 1Things are not as somber: There is no perfect framework, but some can be invaluable • De Bruijn used to proudly announce: I did it my way. • I quote Dirk van Dalen: The Germans have their 3 B’s, but we Dutch too have our 3 B’s: Beth, Brouwer and de Bruijn. FOMCAF13 2There is a fourth B:
Reviewing the classical and the de Bruijn notation for λcalculus and pure type systems
 Logic and Computation
, 2001
"... This article is a brief review of the type free λcalculus and its basic rewriting notions, and of the pure type system framework which generalises many type systems. Both the type free λcalculus and the pure type systems are presented using variable names and de Bruijn indices. Using the presentat ..."
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This article is a brief review of the type free λcalculus and its basic rewriting notions, and of the pure type system framework which generalises many type systems. Both the type free λcalculus and the pure type systems are presented using variable names and de Bruijn indices. Using the presentation of the λcalculus with de Bruijn indices, we illustrate how a calculus of explicit substitutions can be obtained. In addition, de Bruijn's notation for the λcalculus is introduced and some of its advantages are outlined.
Notes on Discrete Mathematics for Computer Scientists
, 2003
"... 1.2 Formal Languages.......................... 2 ..."
Paradoxes in Göttingen
"... In 1903 Russell’s paradox came over the mathematical world with a double stroke. Bertrand Russell himself published it under the heading “The Contradiction” in chapter 10 of his Principles of Mathematics (Russell 1903). Almost at the same time Gottlob Frege (1848–1925) referred to Russell’s ..."
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In 1903 Russell’s paradox came over the mathematical world with a double stroke. Bertrand Russell himself published it under the heading “The Contradiction” in chapter 10 of his Principles of Mathematics (Russell 1903). Almost at the same time Gottlob Frege (1848–1925) referred to Russell’s