FOM: geometrical reasoning, logic and proof
Kanovei
kanovei at wmfiz1.math.uni-wuppertal.de
Thu Feb 25 02:55:35 EST 1999
<Date: Wed, 24 Feb 1999 13:35:07 -0500
<From: Michael Detlefsen <Detlefsen.1 at nd.edu>
Detlefsen, citing Poincare:
<"If all the propositions it enunciates can be
<deduced from one another by the rules of formal logic, why is not
<mathematics reduced to an immense tautology?
There is apparently no any example of a
mathematical statement commonly accepted as a
true theorem but not deducible logically from
some (also commonly accepted) list of axioms,
say ZFC.
Therefore, the output of mathematics has been
just a long list of "tautologies".
Even then, mathematics is rather an art
of finding "tautologies" (more often called:
theorems) by a human,
than a tautology itself.
Vladimir Kanovei
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